Update your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch iOS software

The steps below will help you update your device wirelessly or using iTunes.

Before you get started

iOS software updates introduce new features that let you do even more with your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch. Be sure to keep your devices up to date so that you don't miss out on the latest features.


  • Before you make any updates, back up your device to iCloud or iTunes.
  • Make sure your device has enough available space to install the update. Tap Settings > General > Usage to see how much space your content uses. Use iTunes to create space if you don't have enough, or remove content from your device.
  • If you use your device's Personal Hotspot for your computer's Internet connection, update your device wirelessly or connect your computer to another network.
  • If you’re updating from iOS 4.3.x or earlier, you need to update using iTunes.

Update your device wirelessly

The easiest way to update your device is wirelessly, also called “over the air.” Here’s how:

  1. Plug in your device to a power source.
  2. Tap Settings > General > Software Update.
    Software Update screen on iOS
  3. Tap "Download and Install" to download the update. Updates might download automatically while your device is connected to Wi-Fi and a power source.
  4. Tap Install when the download completes if you want to complete it now. Tap Later to install the update later. If your device is passcode enabled, it will ask you to enter the passcode before installing the update.
    Install or later

Some iOS software updates aren't available as over-the-air updates. VPN or proxy connections might prevent your device from contacting the iOS update servers.

Update your device using iTunes

If you can’t update wirelessly, or if you want to update with iTunes, follow the steps below.

  1. Install the latest version of iTunes on your computer.
  2. Plug in your device to your computer.
  3. In iTunes, select your device.
  4. In the Summary pane, click "Check for Update."
    iPhone summary tab
  5. Click "Download and Update."

If you see an error message while updating your device, you can learn how to resolve it.

Last Modified: Sep 19, 2014
  • Last Modified: Sep 19, 2014
  • Article: HT4623
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