Do I need to update my apps?

 

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Do I need to update my apps?

A jogger checking her heart rate on her smartphone's health app

What's coming up

In this course, you will learn why it’s important for your apps to be up-to-date, how to make sure that happens, and how to check that your data is used wisely during updates.

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Why update an app?

When an app is first created, it may contain minor computer 'bugs' (problems) which result in it not working properly. Updates usually fix those bugs.

In many instances, updates can also add more features to an app.

An illustration of a beetle-type insect - commonly known as a bug

App updates on Apple devices

An iPhone or iPad usually updates its apps automatically, but you can change this if you want to. Let's see how to do this on an Apple device in the video on the next slide.

Click 'Continue' below and then, on the next slide, click the ‘play’ button on the video to watch it. You can also click anywhere on the video to pause or restart it.

App updates on an Android device

Apps on Android phones and tablets usually update automatically, but you can change this if you want to. The steps vary between Android models but are very similar.

Let's watch a short video on how to change the update settings on an Android device, and how to check if apps need updating.

On the next slide, click the ‘play’ button on the video to watch it. You can also click anywhere on the video to pause or restart it.

Using Wi-Fi for Apple app updates

You can save your phone’s mobile data allowance by ensuring apps update only when you’re on a Wi-Fi network.

On an iPhone:

  • open the Settings app
  • scroll down and choose iTunes & App Store from the menu
  • make sure the button alongside Use Mobile Data is switched off.
The iTunes and Apps settings on an iPhone showing that the 'Use Mobile Data' button is set to the off position

Using Wi-Fi for Android app updates

You can save your phone’s mobile data allowance by ensuring apps update only when you’re on a Wi-Fi network.

On an Android phone:

  • open the Play Store app
  • then choose Settings at the top left
  • then select Auto-update apps
  • make sure Auto-update apps over Wi-Fi only is selected. If it’s not, tap to change it.
An Android smartphone Auto-update app setting showing it is set to update only over Wi-Fi

Congratulations!

Well done. You’ve completed the Do I need to update my apps? activity. You've learned that updating apps is a good idea, but that the phone can usually look after that for you.

Next up, we'll see how much of your data will be used by apps in the activity Will an app use my mobile data?

Nearly at his destination, a tourist checks directions using his smartphone map app