How to update iOS Software on an iPad

 iOS (previously iPhone OS) is a mobile operating system developed and distributed by Apple Inc. Originally released in 2007 for the iPhone, it has been extended to support other Apple devices such as the iPod Touch, iPad and second-generation Apple TV. Keeping the iOS (operating system) software updated on your iPad is a very good idea. Each main update to iOS brings a fortune of impressive new features to the iPad. The ‘point updates’ tend to offer important bug fixes, security patches, and general performance enhancements.

It’s also a good idea to make sure you’re using the latest version to make sure your device remains compatible with apps and is free of bugs. Now it’s very easy to update your iOS software on the iPad itself, with no need to connect to a computer. But … in order to be able to do a wireless, over the air update to iOS you need to already be running at least iOS 5.0. If you’re not yet running iOS 5 then you won’t see the ‘Software Update’ section in the General section of the Settings app, which is where new updates are shown and installed from.

If you don’t know which version of iOS your iPad is running is, just go to Settings – General -About and look at the ‘Version’ field. If it shows anything lower than 5.0 then you will need to update via iTunes on a computer one time before being able to do over the air updates in future. Here’s how you go about this: Connect your iPad to a computer with iTunes installed, via USB and your sync/charge cable.

If you are updating immediately your iOS software you should choose to cancel and not do that right away. Make sure you have backed up or synced all your important data, photos, music, contacts etc. You can do this via iTunes sync or via a number of 3rd party apps and cloud services. Once you are sure you have safely backed up / synced your data, you can move on and get your iPad’s iOS software update done.

Generally, if a red mark appears above the Settings app’s icon, on your iPad’s Home screen, means that there’s an available update. Tap the Settings icon to launch the Settings app. Tap General on the list of Settings categories and then tap Software Update under the General section.

All available software updates are now listed. Scroll down and tap the Install Now button to begin the update. You can also tap Learn More to find out more information about the available update. When you choose to update your software you may be asked to agree to new Terms and Conditions from Apple. Read the agreement and tap the Agree button if you’re happy to accept the terms. That’s it. And now that you’ve got your iPad updated to the latest iOS version, you can do all your subsequent updates via the iPad itself and the Settings app.

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  1. Ramon P. Griffin said:

    — Once you are sure you have safely backed up / synced your data, you can move on and get your iPad’s iOS software update done. If you see another popup prompting you to update to the latest software version, you can go ahead and choose ‘Download and Install to get the update done.

  2. Gold Price said:

    iOS 5 is finally available for download from iTunes, the software update was made available at 10:00 AM PT. In order to update your iPhone, iPad or iPod touch you would first need to have iTunes 10.5. Once you have the latest version of iTunes connect your device and then under “Summary” tab click on “Check for update”.

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