Everything You Need to Know About Updating to iOS 10

iOS 10
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Today Apple will be releasing the tenth generation operating system for iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch. The update comes with many new features like design refreshes in apps (Music, News, and more), a more social experience in Messages with stickers and full-screen effects, a better and friendly layout of Control Center and widgets, and many 3D Touch effects. The update should be arriving some time this afternoon.

Apple did not announce the release time of their update, but it is expected to drop around 9am PT (or 1pm ET). Typically everyone tries to download the update at the same time which puts a huge pressure on Apple’s servers, especially if people have multiple devices. A simple update could take hours to download. Your best bet is to either get in early or wait a little while to update. Also, make sure you have a fast Wi-Fi connection or go somewhere that does.

The iOS 10 software brings several new features but not all of Apple’s can upgrade nor will all of them get every new feature. The update is only available for the iPhone 5 and later, iPad mini 2 and later, iPad 4 and later, both of the iPad Pro’s, and the iPod touch 6th generation. If you have an iPhone 4S or an iPad 2 you are unfortunately stuck with iOS 9.3.5. In addition, not all devices will get the same features. For example, the iPhone 5s does not have 3D Touch so the Force Touch shortcuts will be absent on this phone.

iOS 10

The update is limited to the iPhone 5 and later, iPad 4 and later, iPad mini 2 and later, and the iPod touch 6th gen. only, via Apple.

If you have a relatively new device, the update will automatically show available in the Settings app when Apple releases it. There are two main ways to update your iPhone. First, you can use the Settings app. Go to General –> Software Update –> if the update shows, Download & Install. You may be prompted to accept the new Terms and Conditions here too. Or you can download via iTunes by connecting your iPhone to the computer. Click on your device in iTunes, open Summary tab, and click Check for Update. iTunes may also prompt you to Download & Install iOS 10 without checking for an update.

Before downloading any update, though, it is strongly recommended to backup your device. Previous updates have had a bug in them that could cause the iPhone to brick. This basically freezes the phone that only a complete reset and restore can fix. If you did not backup your phone and this happens, everything on your phone may be lost. It is quite rare and unlikely though. To update, go to the Settings app, iCloud, Backup, and Back Up Now if your device has not been backed up recently. Or you can use iTunes to backup.

Apple should also release watchOS 3 for Apple Watch and tvOS for Apple TV around the same time as iOS 10. The new update for Apple Watch brings faster apps with Background App Refresh, new watch faces that are easier to switch, fitness tracking for those in a wheelchair, an optimized keyboard for typing letters, and an SOS feature. The update for Apple TV only works on the 4th generation, but it includes a single sign-on for multiple apps, a special Dark Mode, redesigned Music app, and category search with Siri.