How to Update Apps on an iPhone

Apps are the essence of any self-respecting smartphone. From native Phone and Camera apps to third-party game apps, they’re what make phones do the things they do. This is why it’s important to update your apps as often as possible, in order to benefit from security and functionality upgrades. As such, we explain how to update apps on an iPhone, covering how to turn automatic updates on and also how to install available updates immediately, without having to wait for your iPhone to do things automatically.

How to update apps on an iPhone, the automatic way

If your iPhone is set up as normal, you should already have automatic updates activated. This means your phone will download and install app updates as and when they become available. However, if automatic updates aren’t activated, here’s how you can turn them on.

First, go to Settings > App Store. Next, find the Automatic Downloads subheading and tap the slider next to App Updates, so it turns green.

That’s it. Your iPhone will begin updating your apps as soon as new versions are released. You don’t have to do anything else.

Manual iPhone app updates

Assuming you don’t want to wait for your iPhone to get around to updating an app automatically, you can take the initiative yourself and do things manually.

Simply go to App Store > Your Profile, which you’ll see in the top-right corner of the App Store screen. From there, you’ll next see a subheading: Upcoming Automatic Updates. If there are any upcoming updates available, you can download and install them instantly by tapping the Update button next to whichever update you want to install. You can also tap Update All (in blue), which you’ll see immediately below the Upcoming Automatic Updates heading.

There is another way of searching for updates for your iPhone apps and then installing them manually. Open the App Store again, and then use the Search tab to find whichever app you’d like to update. If an update is available for the app, you’ll see an Update button next to it. Press this button to begin updating.

Lastly, there’s one other way of manually installing iPhone app updates. This involves offloading an app and then reinstalling it, which provides you with the latest version. This is obviously more involved than the methods outlined above, but it can sometimes be useful if you have an app that stops working properly. This is something we found in the case of Google Authenticator, for example, after we upgraded to iOS 14.2.

Go to Settings > General > iPhone Storage > [The app you want to update]. Next, tap Offload App, which will remove the app from your iPhone while retaining all of its data. Finally, tap Reinstall. This installs the latest version on your iPhone.

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