Smartphone Tips

To Update or Not Update: What to Do with the iOS 8 Update on Your Apple Mobile Device

ios8-heroAnother fall season, another new iPhone, and with it comes Apple’s latest mobile operating system update: iOS 8. But many Apple users have become hesitant about updating iOS in recent years. In some cases, the earliest versions of Apple’s iOS updates have been buggy and problematic. In other instances, they’ve caused problems for owners of older Apple mobile devices.

If you bought the iPhone 6, your device should already have iOS 8 pre-loaded, so you will have nothing to worry about. If you have an older device, though, and are wondering weather the iOS update is in your best interest, we’re here to help. Read on to learn whether you should accept the new update, or just leave it ignored for the time being.

Compatible Devices

The first thing you need to know before trying to update to iOS 8 is that not all of Apple’s mobile devices even support the update. All incarnations of the iPhone 5 and 6 should work just fine with iOS 8, but Apple has not supported the original iPhone 4 with the update. Therefore, if your iPhone is older than the 4S, you won’t be able to update anyway.

If you have the 4S, it’s up to you whether or not to update, but you might actually get better performance from an older and less demanding operating system. Newer operating systems won’t do any favors to the performance and speed of your older device and will probably impair the battery life.

As for iPads, Apple has supported most of its tablets for the iOS 8 update. The iPad Air and both versions of the iPad Mini are compatible, as are the iPad 4, the iPad 3, and surprisingly the iPad 2. The same advice given for iPhone 4S owners also applies for owners of the iPad 2 and the first iPad Mini.

Attractive Features

If you have a newer Apple device, you might be considering the iOS update, but you will likely want to know what new features it brings to the table. Truthfully, iOS 8 isn’t a huge update from iOS 7, but it does allow for email multitasking, more detailed battery monitoring, a hands-off, voice-activated version of Siri, and a customizable notifications center. The new iOS version also allows you to download new keyboards to your device, so if you’ve ever had a problem with Apple’s built-in keyboard, you’re going to want this update for that reason alone.

Reasons to Wait

True to form, users have already had a few issues with iOS relating to bugs and other problems that Apple probably should have noticed and fixed before release. The first update for the operating system, iOS 8.0.1, was actually taken down after users reported that it was disconnecting them from their mobile networks, among other issues. Apple will undoubtedly fix these problems soon and release another iOS 8 update that addresses them. However, you might be wise to wait a few weeks and let others test the waters before diving in headfirst. After all, while the new iOS 8 features might be attractive, you’ve probably lived without them for months or years already; you can wait a few more weeks.