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How to update your iPhone’s operating system

Keeping your iPhone’s iOS operating system up to date is crucial to maintaining security and app compatibility, not to mention accessing the latest features that Apple has to offer.

Apple will generally notify you when a new version of iOS is ready to install, but there is a way to check for any updates and initiate an installation yourself.

Here’s how to update your iPhone’s operating system.

What we used

  • We used the iPhone 13 Pro, but these methods will work on any iPhone

The Short Version

  • Prepare your iPhone
  • Open Software Update
  • Download update
  • Install and wait
  1. Step

    Prepare your iPhone

    Before you install any updates, make sure that your iPhone is fully charged or plugged into a power source, and also check that it’s backed up (Settings > Apple ID > iCloud > iCloud Backup > Back Up Now).

    If you want a more detailed explanation, follow our guide on How to backup an iPhone.Back up now iOS

  2. Step

    Open Software Update

    Open the Settings app and tap General, followed by Software Update.Software Update iOS

  3. Step

    Download update

    If there’s an update available, it’ll be listed here in the Software Update section. Tap Download and Install, followed by your passcode, to initiate the download process.Software Update iOS install

  4. Step

    Install and wait

    Tap Install Now when it appears, or simply wait for the process to commence automatically. Your iOS update will now be installed, during which your iPhone will be unresponsive except for a logo and a progress gauge on a black screen.

    Leave it alone until the phone boost up again.iOS Software Update Install Now


How do I find out what an update includes?

In the Software Update section, tap Learn more for a rundown.

Why won’t my iPhone update?

If your iPhone is too low on power or storage, it won’t be able to update. Plug in or free up some space before trying again.

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