My iPhone Apps Won't Update

By J.T. Barett

Step-by-step instructions, with illustrations, on how to work around an update issue in the iPhone App Store.

When you update apps in iOS 8, you may encounter an annoying glitch. The update process can freeze and not finish as it normally does. Forcing the app to close or temporarily removing it from the iPhone can help you work around this problem.

Force the App to Close

Step 1

Double click the iPhone's Home button to bring up a list of recently used apps. Locate the app you want to close by swiping left and right.

Step 2

Swipe up on the app you want to close.

Step 3

Restart your iPhone by pressing the Sleep/Wake button until the Apple logo appears.

Step 4

Enter the passcode when the iPhone prompts you for it.

Step 5

Tap the App Store icon on the Home screen. Tap Updates and select your app from the Available Updates section..

Remove and Reinstall the App

Step 1

Tap and hold any app icon on the Home screen until all the app icons begin jiggling.

Step 2

Home screen

Tap on the X on the app you want to delete.

Step 3

Tap delete button

Tap the Delete button when the iPhone prompts you to delete the app. Press the Home button to stop the jiggling apps.

Step 4

Tap on the App Store icon on the Home screen. Select the Search icon and type the name of the app you deleted into the search field. Tap the app to download it and reinstall it on your iPhone.

Warning

If you try to reinstall the app and the iTunes store prompts for payment, you are signed in under a different Apple ID than the one you used to originally purchase the app. Go to the iPhone's Settings app. In the iTunes & App Store settings, you can change the Apple ID with which you are signed in.

Change the Automatic Updates Setting

Step 1

Tap the Settings app to start it.

Step 2

Tap iTunes & App Store

Tap iTunes & App Store.

Step 3

Tap Apps

Slide the Apps slider under the heading Automatic Downloads to change the setting. Turn it off if it's on and try to update manually, or turn it off, restart your iPhone and then turn the setting back on.

Tip

To prevent automatic downloads from adding to your monthly cellular data bill, make sure the Use Cellular Data slider is set to the off position.

Step 4

Update your apps in the App Store. Go the Updates section of the app to find available updates.

Tip

If all else fails, perform a factory reset of the iPhone as a last resort