Don’t do it before you do this.

Apple’s new iOS update, iOS 12 has a ton of new features that are very cool and will actually speed up your phone, but one of the questions I get most often is: “Should I install the new iOS when it comes out or should I wait?”.

First, great question. Second, not a simple answer. For many people when Apple releases a new iOS, there’s no such thing as waiting. Millions of people even install updates before they’re ready through Apple’s Beta Testing. For everyone else though, the typical iPhone user, it might be a better idea to just wait until everyone else deals with the bugs.

Every new iOS has come with at least some bugs. iOS 11 had bugs that caused some iPhones to crash and wouldn’t let people read messages in Facebook or Gmail. In August, a bug in iOS 12 sent an annoying pop-up notification to everyone that they should update their iOS to iOS12 beta, even though they had already installed the update.

So the answer to the question, “Should I wait?”, ultimately comes down to whether you feel like dealing with the inevitable bugs in the first iteration of a new operating system. Apple will release an update to the iOS 12 update once bugs are discovered. This typically takes only a couple weeks. If you’re the cautious type, be patient and wait until around the first of October.

In the meantime, you should take a few steps to get your phone ready for the update.

  • Back up your phone. New iOS updates have, in the past, caused some users to lose data stored on the phone including photos. Backup your phone so you don’t risk losing important photos, videos, music, text messages, contacts or anything else you have stored just on the phone. You can do this using iCloud by going to Settings and taping your name,  then iCloud. . Then scroll down to iCloud Backup and tun it on. And tap Back up Now.
  • If you don’t have enough Cloud storage for an update, you’ll want to back up photos and videos using Google Photos or Dropbox.
  • Remove apps you no longer use. We’ve all downloaded apps, used them a few times, then forgot about them. Those apps are using storage space. Why not get rid of the ones you haven’t opened in months (years?).
  • Uninstall apps using and storing documents and data. Apps like Facebook and Instagram store documents and data that you really don’t need on your phone. The easiest way to delete that data from your phone is to uninstall the app and re-install them. You won’t lose any of it since it’s already stored within those social networks.
  • Update all apps. Most of us update apps only when we get a prompt while trying to use an app. It’s a good idea to get all of those apps updated before installing a new iOS. Tap on the App Store icon and look at the bottom of the screen to see how many apps have updates available. Connect your phone to your computer or to your home’s wifi and update them all.
  • Make a note of your Apple ID, password and passcode. You will need these after the update is complete. If you haven’t signed out of your Apple account for quite a while, you may either draw a blank or have forgotten them.
  • Once your phone and photos are all backed up, you’re ready to install the update. Connect the phone to power, open settings, go to About, and install the update.

It’s also important to know which phones can use iOS 12. It is designed to work with iPhones 5s and up.

So should you update now or wait? If you’re the cautious type, be patient. Apple will certainly release an update to iOS 12 in the next few weeks.

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