iOS 14 brings a slew of dramatic changes to your iPhone, including changes to how you store your apps, stunning new interactive widgets to place between your apps, new features in iMessage that’ll be immediately familiar to anyone who uses WhatsApp and much, much more.
If your iPhone is compatible with iOS 14 (you can check that here), you’ll want to run through a number of pre-flight checks to ensure that your smartphone is ready to download and install the iOS upgrade when it becomes available later today (September 16, 2020).
Hopefully there won’t be any issues moving your iPhone over to iOS 14. However, there have been a few hiccups with iOS upgrades in the past, so we can’t rule anything out.
As such, your first step should be to back-up your iPhone before attempting any update. This can be handled over iCloud – the cloud-based storage option available to every Apple user, or iTunes – provided that you’ve got a Mac or MacBook nearby with the correct cable to complete the back-up.
To use iCloud, first you’ll want to connect to a Wi-Fi network, launch the Settings app, then tap your Apple ID at the top of the list. Scroll down and tap on the iCloud tab, then iCloud Backup, and finally, Back Up Now.
If you’re a little short on iCloud space at the moment, or would rather use a trusty USB cable instead, it’s possible to use your computer too. If you’re using Windows or macOS Mojave or earlier, you’ll need to use iTunes. To do that, you’ll want to plug-in your iPhone, launch iTunes and click on the small iPhone-shaped icon in the top left-hand corner of the app. Once the panel loads up, you’ll want to hit This Computer in the backup section, then kickstart the backup right away.
If you’re running macOS Catalina, which debuted last year, on your iMac or MacBook, syncing an iPhone is now handled through the Finder (that’s because Apple ditched iTunes in favour of dedicated Music and TV apps). To use Finder, plug your iTunes into your machine and it should appear in the sidebar to the left-hand side of a new Finder window. And then follow the same step-by-step process as above.
Clear Some Room
You’ll need some free storage to download the iOS 14 update and kickstart the upgrade on your iPhone. If you’re the sort of person who is constantly swatting away warnings about ‘Low Storage’ every time you take a photograph, video, or try to install a new app – you’ll need to make some ruthless cuts before attempting to upgrade.
You’ll need roughly 2.7GB free on your iPhone or iPod Touch to upgrade to iOS 14, but ideally you’ll want a little more breathing room than that. We’d recommend at least 6GB of storage to ensure you get the best possible experiences with your software upgrade.
If there’s really nothing you can delete from your handset, you can use your computer to take the strain. Connecting your iPhone to iTunes/Finder (as mentioned above) will downlaod and unpack all of the important iOS 14 update files on your computer’s hard-drive – so there’s no need to clear a load of space on the handset itself. Nifty, eh? Of course, you’ll need to ensure that your Mac or PC has the required 2.7GB free needed to download the latest update.
…And Now You Patiently Play The Waiting Game
So, you’re ready. There’s nothing else to do but wait for Apple to flip the switch in sunny Cupertino, California, to launch iOS 13 to iPod Touch and iPhone owners worldwide.
As mentioned above, we’d expect the update to land in the UK around 6pm. To check whether there is an operating system upgrade available for your iPhone, head to the Settings app, scroll down the list to General, then tap Software Update to check whether iOS 14 is available.
It’s important to note, this won’t keep checking automatically – so you’ll want to head back to the Settings menu and then tap on Software Update again to refresh the search and see whether the update is now available.