Update: Apple's update to its newest operating system, iOS 10.3, is out and available for downloading. It's free, but before downloading, make sure your mobile files are safe and sound, just in case.
It's essential to back up your iPhone and/or iPad every time you update the device's software. New releases are not without their flaws. Follow this guide on backing up, restoring, and updating your phone and tablet.
The iPhone 5 and later, iPad (fourth generation and later), and iPod Touch (sixth generation) can run iOS 10. Unsure about the device model? Plug it into your computer, open iTunes, and the model as well as the currently installed version of iOS are listed under the Summary tab which has a phone icon in the top left. You'll also need to know the device's passcode in order to update. iTunes will prompt you to unlock the phone or tablet once it's connected.
If iTunes is your preferred method of backup, then connect your iPhone or iPad to a Mac or PC. You can only back up a device on one computer. Once the device is connected, click on File > Devices > Back Up to begin.
Alternatively, you can access the "Back Up Now" button under Summary in iTunes. Double-check your work by clicking the iTunes top menu > Preferences > Devices tab. You should see the name of the device and the time of backup.
On your device, open the Settings app, select iCloud, and tap Backup. Turn on iCloud Backup. After this option is selected, the device will automatically update when it is connected to the Internet via WiFi, the screen is locked, and it's hooked up to a power source. To do it manually, go to Settings, then iCloud, select Backup, and tap Back Up Now.
If you have a lot of photos or videos in your Camera Roll (1GB or more), then iTunes Backup will be the best option. If you don't connect the device to a Mac or PC frequently (or ever), then iCloud will be your best bet. You can restore data to a device from anywhere with a WiFi connection via iCloud Backup. However, iCloud will not back up media not purchased through iTunes.
On the device, update by opening the Settings app, tapping on General, and selecting Software Update. You can also connect the device to a computer and find the software update button next to the backup section.
Now that you're all backed up, discover all of iOS's greatest tips and tricks.
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