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How to download and install iOS 17 on your iPhone

Published Sep 18th, 2023 10:55AM EDT
Best iPhone wallpapers
Image: José Adorno for BGR

After a couple of months of testing, Apple is releasing iOS 17 to all users at 1 PM ET. Here’s everything you need to know before updating to this system and how to download iOS 17 once it’s available.

Do this before installing iOS 17

Starting today, several developers are updating their apps to iOS 17. But a few of them might wait a little longer to make their apps compatible. That said, it’s always important to have these two things in mind before downloading iOS 17:

  • Make sure you have a cloud or local backup of your data on a stable version of iOS;
  • Make sure apps that store information also have the latest data backed up in a stable version of iOS.

Following these tips will prevent you from losing sensitive data or even being unable to correctly use your iPhone just because everything might not be running 100% smoothly just yet.

My favorite new iOS 17 features

Are you good, man? Image source: José Adorno for BGR
  • Live Voicemail: You can see a real-time transcription when someone leaves a voicemail. Calls identified as spam by carriers won’t appear as Live Voicemail and will be instantly declined.
  • FaceTime: When users call someone unavailable, they can share a message in audio or video that can be enjoyed later.
  • Check-In: This is an important feature when a user wants to notify a family member or friend that they have safely made it to their destination. After a user initiates a Check-In, their friend or family member will automatically be notified when the user arrives. If they are not progressing toward their destination, helpful information will be temporarily shared with the selected contact, such as the device’s location, battery level, and cell service status.
  • StandBy: It’s a new experience that gives users a full-screen experience with glanceable information designed to be viewed from a distance when iPhone is on its side and charging.
  • Mental Wellbeing: On the Health app, you can even log how anxious or depressed you feel. It lets you log your state of mind by scrolling through engaging visuals to help you select how you feel at that moment and during the day.
  • AirPods Pro 2 Adaptative Audio:  With this update, AirPods Pro 2 offers Adaptative Audio, which Apple says “dynamically blends Transparency mode and Active Noise Cancellation together based on the conditions of a user’s environment to deliver the best experience at the moment.”

For a comprehensive list of all the massive new features available, read our iOS 17 guide.

iPhone compatibility

iPhone 15 ProImage source: Apple Inc.

iOS 17 is compatible with these iPhone models:

  • iPhone XR, XS, and XS Max
  • iPhone 11
  • iPhone 11 Pro and 11 Pro Max
  • iPhone SE (2nd gen)
  • iPhone 12 mini and iPhone 12
  • iPhone 12 Pro and iPhone 12 Pro Max
  • iPhone 13 mini and iPhone 13
  • iPhone 13 Pro and iPhone 13 Pro Max
  • iPhone SE (3rd gen)
  • iPhone 14 and iPhone 14 Plus
  • iPhone 14 Pro and iPhone 14 Pro Max
  • iPhone 15 and iPhone 15 Plus
  • iPhone 15 Pro and iPhone 15 Pro Max

It’s important to note that not every feature is available to all compatible iPhone models.

How to download iOS 17?

  • Open Settings;
  • Go to General, then Software Update;
  • iOS 17 will appear once it’s available.

The same is worth it for iPadOS 17. If you are running the developer or public beta, you won’t get an update if Apple is releasing the same build as the official version. To ensure you stop receiving beta updates, especially ahead of the iPhone 15 release, turn off beta versions in the Software Update section.

José Adorno Tech News Reporter

José is a Tech News Reporter at BGR. He has previously covered Apple and iPhone news for 9to5Mac, and was a producer and web editor for Latin America broadcaster TV Globo. He is based out of Brazil.