When that pesky little notification pops up prompting us to update our iPhone software, it’s just natural to ignore it and tap “later” subconsciously. But after it shows up several times, you begin to wonder, “Could this be important after all?”
Software updates take time, effort, and storage space. So, no matter how many times it pops up, the only thing that can convince you to tap “Install Now” is the understanding of why you should.
We will go through reasons why it’s important to update your iPhone software, how to update it, and problems you might run into.
Why Should You Update Your iPhone Software?
1. To Improve Performance
iPhones with outdated software tend to slow down over time. While this is not the number one cause of slowdown (we have another article on this).
This happens because, with every major update, apps have to adapt to the new technical standards. This means some of them won’t work as intended on older software versions, or will make the devices lag.
Even though you may not notice it because you have been using your phone all along, you will notice the difference after installing the update. Your iPhone will resume working efficiently at top speed.
2. To Fix Bugs
A bug is an error that messes with the functioning of a program or causes it to crash. They are random and quite frustrating.
For example, lots of iPhone users have experienced bugs such as WiFi not getting connected, cellular connection not working, iPhone getting stuck at the iPhone logo, and freezing/crashing randomly among others.
These common user issues are usually solved by bug fixes in software updates. So, by updating your iPhone, you solve and prevent these frustrating issues.
3. To Improve Security
Have you ever wondered why you never have to install antivirus software on your iPhone? It is because most vulnerabilities are taken care of by iPhone’s security features.
But hackers get smarter every day and come up with new ways to hack iPhones. Software updates come with updated security improvements called “patches” based on the vulnerabilities found in the previous version. So, to protect your privacy, identity, and financial information, you need to install the latest software that has no susceptibilities.
Let’s walk you through several other DIY tasks that will keep your details secure as you enjoy being an Apple user.
4. New Features
With every major iPhone software update, comes new and exciting features. You might feel like you don’t need your phone to do anything new, but it is more than likely that there is a feature you currently rely on that was rolled out in an update.
Some notable features that came with updates include:
Some applications and Apple products only work with later software versions. For example, apps such as Canva and Reddit are not compatible with any software earlier than iOS 13.
Even if you have an older iPhone with the latest software, you can enjoy these apps.
How to Update Your iPhone Software
If you receive the software update notification, you can easily install it by tapping Install Now to do it immediately. If you don’t want to install at the moment, you can tap Later, then choose Remind Me Later or Install Tonight. If you choose the latter, just plug in your device to power at night them it will automatically install the updates.
If you don’t receive the notification, you can either update your iPhone manually or automatically.
How to Update Your iPhone Software Manually
Updating your iPhone software manually is simple. You can update it from your phone or computer. To update it on your phone, here are the steps to follow:
- Plug in your device to power and connect to WiFi.
- Go to Settings > General, and tap Software Update. If you see that your device is up to date, just exit and wait to receive a notification in order to update it.
- If there is more than one software update option, choose the one you want to install.
- Tap Install Now. If instead of Install Now there is Download Now, tap it to download, enter your passcode, then tap Install Now.
To update it on your computer, here are the steps to follow:
- Plug in your phone to your computer
- If you are on a Mac, open Finder and click on your phone. If you aren’t, open iTunes.
- Allow your computer access to your iPhone.
- In iTunes, click Library > iPhone icon. In Finder, click General.
- Click Check For Updates
- Click Download and Update if there is an update available. Leave your phone connected and your computer on until it completes updating.
How to Update Your iPhone Software Automatically
Your device can download updates automatically without prompting you. Here is how to turn on automatic updates.
- Go to Settings > General, then tap Software Update.
- Tap Automatic Updates, then turn on Download iOS Updates and Install iOS Updates.
And that’s it! Your phone will install the updates and notify you when done.
Problems When Updating iPhone Software
Although it is a simple process, you might run into some problems as you update your iPhone. Here is a list of common issues you might run into and how to handle them.
1. Storage Full
Before you install your updates, the first step should be checking if you have enough storage space. For instance, to install iOS 15, you need at least 3.24 GB of space. If need to clear some space, please read our How To Make The Most Of Your iPhone Storage article.
If you start your installation without enough space, you will receive a message asking you to temporarily remove apps.
Tap Continue to allow the apps to be removed as they will be automatically reinstalled when installation is complete. You can also tap Cancel to delete content manually from your device.
2. Low Battery
For your iPhone to update, you need to have at least 50% of charge, or it should be plugged in. Make sure to charge your phone beforehand and you won’t run into this issue. If you’re unable to charge your battery to atleast 50%, or if your iPhone Battery Health continues to be poor, considering replacing it versus upgrading your iPhone.
We all hate to be inconvenienced, and having to take the time and effort to update your iPhone is a hassle. But you have to pick one: either the inconvenience of taking a few seconds to set up the update, or the inconvenience of having a slow phone, privacy violation, or stolen personal information that come with using an outdated software version.
Let a Local Apple Expert Extend the Life of Your Apple Device
If you are having problems with any of your Apple devices, whether software or hardware, it is hard to pinpoint the reason. And even if you do, it is not easy to solve it yourself. That is when you can visit your local Gophermods, or send us an email and we’d be more than glad to help.
Maybe your considering upgrading your iPhone? We can help with that to! We stock a wide range of iPhones across our four Minneapolis stores.
We are the largest locally independent repair facility in Minnesota specializing in iPhone, iPad, MacBook, and other mobile technologies. Founded in 2010, our company has serviced hundreds of thousands of devices with varying issues.