Apple has released iOS 8 for all compatible iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch devices. The update offers significant improvements and many new features to prior versions of iOS and is recommended for all users to install on their devices. If you haven’t done so already, it’s a good idea to prepare for iOS 8 before updating the system software.
iOS 8 is supported by the following hardware; iPhone 4S, iPhone 5, iPhone 5S, iPhone 6, iPad Mini, iPad Mini Retina, iPad 3, iPad 4, iPad Air, and iPod touch 5th generation.
How to Update to iOS 8 with OTA
The simplest way to update to iOS 8 is to use the Over-the-Air update mechanism on the iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch:
- Go to Settings app, then to “General”, and then to “Software Update”
- Choose “Download & Install” when iOS 8 populates
The OTA download weighs in close to 1GB and requires nearly 5GB of free storage space on-device to install.
It’s always a good idea to back up your devices before installing an iOS update, at the very least make a quick backup to iCloud or, better yet, go all out and backup to both iTunes and iCloud before beginning.
How to Update to iOS 8 with iTunes
Users can also install the iOS 8 update through iTunes and a computer, though you’ll need to connect the iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch to a Mac or Windows PC with the latest version of iTunes to do that.
- Update iTunes if you haven’t done so already, then relaunch iTunes
- Connect the iOS device to the computer with USB
- Click on “Update” if the update option to install iOS 8 does not appear automatically
This updates to iOS 8 by downloading the update from Apple and using the computer to load it onto the iOS device, and it may or may not be faster to update your device this way, depending on a variety of conditions. One significant advantage to using iTunes is that it allows users to skip the “cannot install update” error due to storage capacity limitations on an iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch.
If you’re going to update through iTunes, be sure to backup the device to the same computer with iTunes before beginning the actual update process – or again – back up to both icloud and iTunes if possible.
Related to iTunes, users also have the option to download IPSW firmware files for iOS 8 and install that manually onto their devices. That route is generally considered a more advanced procedure and is best reserved for individuals who have a good reason to go with the IPSW method. You can find direct downloads to iOS 8 firmware here.
Apple TV Update Revamps Interface
Apple also released an update for Apple TV, which changes the interface and icons a bit to be more in line with the bright colors of iOS 7 and iOS 8, as this image from MacRumors shows:
The Apple TV update also adds support for iOS 8 features, making it a good idea to update for those users who have a third gen Apple TV.
Apple TV users can get the update from Settings > General > Software Update