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How to Get iOS 11 on iPhone and iPad

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iOS 11 brings many new features to both iPhone and iPad, but before we show you how you can upgrade, we recommend backing up your iPhone or iPad in case anything goes wrong. 

To find out the latest news ans see wha’s new, check out Latest iOS 11 news

iOS 11 supported devices


Before your hopes are dashed, these are the devices that support iOS 11:

  • iPhone 7
  • iPhone 7 Plus
  • iPhone 6s
  • iPhone 6s Plus
  • iPhone 6
  • iPhone 6 Plus
  • iPhone SE
  • iPhone 5s
  • iPad Pro 12.9-inch (first and second gen)
  • iPad Pro 10.5-inch
  • iPad Pro 9.7-inch
  • iPad Air 2
  • iPad Air
  • iPad (2017)
  • iPad mini 4
  • iPad mini 3
  • iPad mini 2

The following devices are not supported on iOS 11: Original iPhone, iPhone 3G, iPhone 3GS, iPhone 4, iPhone 4S, iPhone 5, iPhone 5c, original iPod touch, iPod touch 2nd-gen, iPod touch 3rd-gen, iPod touch 4th-gen, iPod touch 5th-gen, original iPad. iPad 2, iPad 3 and iPad 4.

Update apps first


Before you upgrade, there are a couple of housekeeping jobs to do. First, update your apps as it’s likely some out-of-date apps won’t work in iOS 11, partly because it only supports 64-bit apps.

Also, be sure to sign out of banking apps, or check with your bank if you need to do anything before upgrading. 

This is because some apps, particularly financial ones, use a ‘digital key’ that’s locked to the hardware and software, and won’t work if you upgrade iOS.

To update apps, open the App Store and tap ‘Updates’ at the bottom right. By default, updates install automatically, but you can tap ‘UPDATE’ on any pending updates before upgrading to iOS 11.

Make room for iOS 11


Now check if you have enough free storage space as the update has to temporarily store the download.

You can check how much space is available by tapping Settings > General > Usage. The list of apps will tell you which ones are using up your phone or tablet’s storage. Typically, it will be the Photos app, which is full of your snaps and videos.

You should copy these to your PC and then delete those you don’t need on your device to free up space.

Videos use up the most space, but beware that these aren’t backed up to your iCloud Photo Stream as only photos are included. To back up videos, you need to use iCloud Photo Library, which sounds similar, but synchs all your photos and videos across all your devices. (Hint: it’s under iCloud settings on your phone).

Finally, make sure your iPhone, iPad or iPod touch is fully backed up to iCloud or your computer via iTunes before performing the update. It’s unlikely anything will go wrong, but if it does, you could lose any data that’s changed since your last backup such as new contacts, documents, photos, videos and more. 

Download iOS 11


There are two ways to update your iPhone or iPad: over the air (via Wi-Fi) or through iTunes.

The easiest way is over the air. Open the Settings app and go to General > Software Update.

If iOS 11 is available, you’ll see the option to download it. If not, just be patient and wait a while before checking again. 

When iOS 11 is first released, Apple sends pop-up messages to tell users it’s ready to download.

Via iTunes


If you don’t want to update via Wi-Fi, the other option is to use iTunes. 

You’ll need to connect your device to a computer running iTunes. You should update iTunes to the latest version (currently 12.6.2) before connecting your iPhone, iPad or iPod touch.

To do this, launch iTunes and from the Help menu, click Check for Updates.

Once you have the latest iTunes, connect your device, unlock it and tap ‘Trust’ when asked if you want to trust this computer.

In iTunes, you should display a message saying a software update is available.

If you don’t see this, simply click on your iPhone, iPad or iPod touch icon, then click the Check for Update button.

You’ll be prompted to download and install the update – make sure you don’t disconnect your device before the upgrade process is finished.

Finishing up


Your iPad or iPhone will restart and install iOS 11. This can take a while, so be sure to connect its mains charger.

Wait for it to display the passcode screen: you’ll need to unlock it and go through a couple of setup screens before you see the Home screen.

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