Apple on Monday released iOS 8.1, the first major update for iOS 8 that brought some new features to users (such as Apple Pay for iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus) and also fixed several other issues. However, Apple has apparently failed to fix an important iOS 8 issue it has never acknowledged since launching its newest OS version on September 17th — and it’s particularly important because it may have prevented many users from upgrading from iOS 7.
Users looking to update their compatible device from iOS 7.x or iOS 8.0.x to iOS 8.1 are reporting several storage requirements. The actual download seems to be minimal: 70MB on an iPhone 4S with iOS 8.0.2, 126MB on an iPhone 6 running iOS 8.0.2, 140MB on iPad Air with iOS 8 on board, or 999MB on an iPhone 5 running iOS 7.1.
However, it still looks like users need plenty of available storage space to make the jump from iOS 7.x directly to iOS 8.1, without hooking the device up to a Mac/PC to perform the update via iTunes rather than over-the-air (OTA).
On the aforementioned iPhone 5, updating to iOS 8.1 OTA requires a massive 4.8GB of storage available (see images below).
Apple’s own iOS stats for developers have recently revealed that iOS 8 adoption has almost stopped and is at a much lower rate compared to the previous iOS 7 upgrade. While there may be plenty of reasons for users to choose staying with iOS 7.x instead on jumping to iOS 8, many people have speculated that Apple’s massive storage requirements for the update are the real reason iOS 8 adoption is stalling, as many iOS device owners may be unaware they can update their devices with help of iTunes in order to bypass the storage problem.