How to Update Your Phone — iPhone and Android

How to Update Your Phone — iPhone and Android

Phone manufacturers release new updates constantly. When many people see a pop-up notification about installing the latest update on their phone, they run for the hills. If you've ever ignored this notification, you're not alone. You might wonder what happens if you don't update your phone, or want to keep the features you currently have. Updating your phone's operating system (OS) might seem like a chore, yet an update is one of the best things for keeping your phone performing at its best.

Once you understand the importance of installing those new phone updates, the process is pretty straightforward. Here's how to install an iPhone update or Android update and tips for troubleshooting some common issues you might face when updating your device.


Why It's Important to Update Your Phone

If you've put it off in the past, you might have asked yourself why you need to complete updates for your phone. After all, change can be difficult. Yet updating your device is one of the best things you can do for its performance and security. Phone manufacturers roll out updates to keep your phone performing at its best. Updating your phone is definitely worth the time.

Consider a few of the reasons why you should say yes to your next phone update:

1. Updates Keep Your Phone Running Faster

Updating your device's OS is one of the best solutions for a slow phone. All software is vulnerable to bugs. Although performance problems sometimes happen, you don't have to live with them. If your OS is older, it might run slower because it lacks the improvements of the latest update. When you update your iPhone or Android device, your phone will run more efficiently. From internet connectivity issues to poor battery life, an update might solve the problem.

2. Updates Improve Your Phone's Security

Outdated software is an easy target for security issues. A hacker or virus can take advantage of an old OS and its weak spots. Phone manufacturers constantly troubleshoot security issues and develop updates to prevent disaster from striking your phone. You might not notice the software patches included in an update, yet they're essential for protecting your phone from ever-evolving threats to your personal data.

3. Updates Make Your Phone More Useful

Software updates also carry new features and simplify the user experience. With the latest update, you can take advantage of features that help you make the most of your device. For example, Apple's iOS 15 update lets users point their phone camera at any text and highlight it to make a call, look up directions and more. Downloading the most recent update gives you access to the latest features your phone supports, so you can do more with your device.

Steps to Update Your iPhone

Here's everything you need to know about how to update your iPhone:
• Update Your iPhone Manually
• Enable Automatic
• Updates Update Using a Computer

Steps to Update Your iPhone

Apple's OS is called iOS, and it receives major updates at least once a year. Apple also releases minor periodic iPhone updates in between. These updates include everything from installing security patches to introducing new features. Before installing the Apple® iPhone iOS update, it's essential to back up your data to ensure the update doesn't alter important files. You can back up your iPhone to iCloud, your Google account, an external storage device or a third-party app.

If you're unsure how to update your iPhone, you have three options — manual updates, automatic updates or on your computer. Here's everything you need to know about how to update your iPhone:

1. Update Your iPhone Manually

The first method for updating your iPhone is from your device's Settings. This process is wireless and lets you manage updates manually. If your device uses iOS 14.5 or later, you may be able to choose between the latest update and a pared-down version that only provides security fixes. Choosing to receive security updates only lets you keep your current software version for a while.

Follow these steps on how to update iPhone operating systems manually:

  • Connect your device to a strong Wi-Fi.
  • Open your iPhone's Settings app.
  • Tap General.
  • Select Software Update so your phone can check for any available updates.
  • If there is an available update, choose the one you want to install.
  • Select Install Now or Download and Install.
  • Agree to the Terms and Conditions.
  • Enter your iPhone passcode if it's required.

You might see an available upgrade on the General page instead of an update. An iPhone upgrade is a larger and more extensive change to the OS. It might take more time to download an upgrade, and older devices may not be compatible because they lack the power to support the upgrade's technology.

2. Enable Automatic Updates

You can also let your iPhone automatically update while charging and locked at night. When you enable automatic iOS updates, your phone will download them as they become available. Automatic updates will only download at night to prevent the download from interfering with your phone use. You must also charge your phone during the night for the update to complete. Once you've enabled downloading and installing iOS updates, your device will handle the rest.

Here's how to update iOS on iPhone automatically:

  • Open Settings.
  • Select General.
  • Tap Software Update.
  • Choose Automatic Updates.
  • Swipe the Download iOS Updates and Install iOS Updates toggles on the right.

3. Update Using a Computer

You might occasionally encounter an issue where you can't see or install an available update from your device's Settings. In these cases, you can update your iPhone with a PC or Mac computer instead.

Here's how to update iPhone operating systems using your PC:

  • Connect your computer to a strong Wi-Fi network.
  • Open iTunes.
  • Allow your computer to access your phone by clicking Continue.
  • Tap Trust on your iPhone.
  • Select Library within iTunes.
  • Click the iPhone icon on the left of the toolbar.
  • Select Check for Update.
  • If there is an available update, click Download and Update.
  • Leave your iPhone connected to your PC during the iOS update.

You can also update your iPhone with your Mac computer with these steps:

  • Connect your computer to Wi-Fi.
  • Plug in your iPhone.
  • Open Finder by clicking on the blue and gray face icon in your dock.
  • Select your phone's name displayed in the sidebar under Locations.
  • Click General.
  • Give your Mac access to your phone by clicking Trust on your Mac.
  • Tap Trust on your iPhone.
  • Select Backup Now if you haven't already backed up your phone.
  • Click Check for Update.
  • Select Download and Update.
  • Keep your phone plugged into your Mac until the download is complete.

Troubleshooting Your iPhone Update

If you encounter an issue when downloading the most recent iPhone update, try some of these top solutions and troubleshooting tips:

1. What If I See an Alert While Updating My iPhone?

You might see an alert pop up on your iPhone if you can't reach the update server or can't verify the update. The alert could say "unable to check for update" or "unable to install update." If you see one of these messages, try downloading the update again on the same Wi-Fi network. Then try switching to a stronger Wi-Fi network or updating your iPhone using your computer. If these actions still haven't fixed the issue, you can remove the update and reinstall it:

  • Navigate to Settings.
  • Tap on General.
  • Select [Name of Device] Storage.
  • Find and select the recent update.
  • Choose Delete Update.
  • Return to Settings.
  • Select General.
  • Tap Software Update.
  • Redownload the update.

2. How Do I Update My Phone If There Isn't Enough Space?

If you select an update and your iPhone has too little space for the download, it will make space by removing some app data. An iPhone will only remove app data that it can restore. However, there may still not be enough space left for your device's update. If this is the case, update using your computer. You can also free up space on your iPhone by manually deleting data and apps you don't use.

Here are a few ways you can free up storage space:

  • Delete photos: You can delete iPhone photos from your Camera Roll individually or all at once after you back them up.
  • Delete text messages: Text messages can take up lots of phone storage. You can delete text messages from your iPhone's Messages app or iCloud.
  • Clear the cache: Your iPhone's cache is another type of storage that could prevent a software update. If you clear the cache, you might free enough space for the download.

3. What Can I Do If My iPhone Update Doesn't Complete?

Whether it stalls or you encounter error messages, your iPhone update might sometimes fail to complete. Fortunately, you can try several solutions that will likely help solve the problem. Try these steps:

  • Charge your phone: Your phone might be unable to download the entire update if its battery is below 50%. Plug your iPhone in and try updating again.
  • Restore or reset your iPhone: If your device still doesn't update, you can restore it to a previous backup. Restoring your iPhone lets you keep your data, apps, photos, messages and purchased content. You might also choose to reset your device, which returns it to its factory settings. If you've stored data in iCloud, resetting it won't erase that information.
  • Ensure your phone is compatible: If your phone model is older, some software updates might not be available for it. If the latest software update doesn't support your iPhone's model, you've missed the boat and might consider saving for an upgrade.

Steps to Update Your Android

Updating Your Google Pixel
Updating Your Samsung Phone
  Updating Your OnePlus Phone

Steps to Update Your Android

The steps for installing a new Android update differ depending on your phone's maker. Each manufacturer within the Android ecosystem also releases updates at various times. Most of the time, Android manufacturers roll out major and minor updates every few months. Here's how to update Android phone settings for a few of the top Android devices:

1. Updating Your Google Pixel

Google issues regular app updates through the Google Play Store and releases periodic updates to the Google Pixel OS. You might get an update when a new update is available, and you can manually check for updates. Google devices support seamless updates, so a new update will download silently and quickly. Once you download the latest update, you'll have to restart your phone for the changes to take place.

Here's how to download the latest Android update for your Google Pixel:

  • Connect your Google Pixel to Wi-Fi.
  • Navigate to Settings.
  • Go to System.
  • Tap System Update.
  • Choose Check for Update.
  • If an update is available, tap Download.

2. Updating Your Samsung Phone

Downloading the latest update for a Samsung device is relatively straightforward. However, the process can take up to 10 minutes since Samsung devices don't update seamlessly like the Google Pixel.

Check out how to update Android settings on your Samsung phone:

  • Connect your Samsung phone to Wi-Fi.
  • Select Settings.
  • Tap on Software Update.
  • Choose Download and Install.
  • If available, select Download.
  • Tap Install Now.

3. Updating Your OnePlus Phone

OnePlus cell phones run an operating system called OxygenOS. OnePlus releases updates frequently. Here's how to update your phone with the new Android update:

  • Connect your OnePlus phone to Wi-Fi.
  • Open Settings.
  • Select System.
  • Tap on System Updates.
  • Your phone will automatically find and install any available updates.

Troubleshooting Your Android Update

Follow these tips for troubleshooting some common issues you might see with the new Android update:

1. Why Won't My Android Update Complete?

Several factors could be to blame if your phone won't complete the latest Android update. Check out these methods for finishing the update:

  • Your network is weak: Android devices need a strong Wi-Fi network or mobile data to complete an update. Wait until your Wi-Fi connection is stronger before trying again, or find a better network signal.
  • Your phone is too old: Being unable to update your phone is one of the major signs you need to upgrade. The latest Android updates might not be available for older devices, so the only way to update is to get a newer phone.

2. How Can I Install the Latest Android Update If There Isn't Enough Storage?

When downloading your Android update, you might get an alert that the update can't complete because there isn't enough storage. You can try deleting large files like photos and apps if this is the issue. Another effective method is to delete text messages from your Android phone.

3. Why Is My Android Update Taking So Long?

Since updates take several minutes on most Android phones, your phone will need considerable power to finish. Try plugging your phone into a dock or charger before trying again.

Recycle Your Old Phone With ecoATM 

Updating your phone is vital for maintaining its high performance, whether an Apple or Android device. 

Recycle Your Old Phone With ecoATM

Updating your phone is vital for maintaining its high performance, whether an Apple or Android device. Depending on the model of phone you use, it only takes a few simple steps to download the latest update and keep your phone working in top condition.

If your phone no longer supports updates operating system updates or routinely experiences other performance issues, it may be time to upgrade to a newer device. Find an ecoATM kiosk near you to trade in your old phone for recycling, and you could walk away with some extra money in your pocket to put toward your new device!