How to: Update iOS over the air

Since today is the first time we’ve had the ability to download updates over the air, we felt it to be the perfect time to give you this quick guide on how to do it. Follow these simple instructions:

1. Go to Settings>General>Software Update

2. Be patient, your phone will now check for any available updates:

3. Once it shows up, hit “Download and Install”. If you get a popup advising you to plug it in, hit “OK”.


4. Be patient some more. The update will download in a few minutes.

Once you’ve gone through these steps, and it’s downloaded, you’ll then get a popup telling you it’s going to auto-install in a few seconds. Just let it do its thing. Soon, you’ll have the newer software on your device.

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  • Omar Rodriguez

    is this suppose to fix the security issue?

  • gentaro

    We need to make back up first????

  • Seargentawall

    What fucking good is wireless updating if you are still limited to wifi? This is my first and last iPhone. Apple iPhone is an over rated piece of shit status symbol that compliments these fucking Hummer driving douche bags well. I am going back to Android so that I can do what I want when I want to do it. Fuck Apple!

    • Jake

      Who said it was Wi-Fi only?  Previous versions of the iOS 5.0 beta could be downloaded over network data…  I wasn’t able to download over-the-air this time, since I already had the software installed, but I didn’t hear it changed to Wi-Fi only…

    • Anonymous

      With your poor language skills and obvious tunnel vision regarding reality it would appear that you are no great loss.
      The fact that you left Android to try Apple shows that Android can’t have been as ‘wonderful’ as you try and imply; simple logic.

    • Ralphy

      No cursing please!

  • Wpriest

    Not available on verizon 4s

  • Anonymous
  • Larrys7791

    Thanks for the helpful instructions, Cam.

  • Anonymous

  • Wbunning

    Interesting note.. I updated my original iPad without connecting to the computer.. only took about 15 minutes. When I connected my iPhone 4 (NOT a 4s) to iTunes, iTunes failed to tell me that 5.01 was available, instead indicating “your software is up to date”, and check back next week. I had to tell iTunes to check again NOW.. and only then did it tell me there was a software update. Then it took about 40 minutes.. way longer than the iPad.