Friday, October 22, 2021

Here’s How Long the iOS 15 Update Takes

Apple’s iOS 15 update is a massive upgrade and it could take quite a bit of time to install on your iPhone.

The company’s finally pulled its iOS 15 operating system out of beta and the software brings a long list of changes to the iPhone. The update includes a variety of new features, enhancements, and security updates.

If you’re moving your iPhone from iOS 14.8 to iOS 15, you get the shortest list of changes and the smallest download size. The iOS 15 update is around 3GB for users currently running iOS 14.8.

If you’re upgrading from an older version of iOS, your iOS 15 download could be larger because the changes from the update(s) you skipped are baked in.

While some of you might want to skip the iOS 15 download for the time being, most people should install the software right now, or, at some point in the near future.

If you decide to install iOS 15 on your iPhone, you’ll want to set aside some time to get the upgrade properly installed on your device.

Moving a device from one operating system to another can cause problems so you’ll want to monitor the download and installation.

We can’t tell you exactly how long the process will take because it will vary. That said, we can help you approximate how much time you should set aside should you choose to install the new operating system on your iPhone.

Task Time
Sync (Optional) 5-45 Minutes
Backup and Transfer (Optional) 1-30 Minutes
iOS 15 Download 10 Minutes to 1 Hour
iOS 15 Installation 10 Minutes to 20 Minutes
Total iOS 15 Update Time 20 Minutes to 1 Hour+
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Before you start the iOS 15 download make sure you’re prepared.

If you don’t know how to properly prepare for an iOS upgrade, take a look at our pre-installation guide. It’ll walk you through the most important steps to take before you start the installation process.

You should be able to get through these steps in 30 minutes, but it all depends on your skill level and the current state of your iPhone.

If you haven’t backed up your data in awhile or you if you aren’t familiar with iOS 15, the pre-installation process could take you a longer.

You don’t need to follow every single step in the guide, but at the very least you’ll want to make sure your phone’s data is backed up properly.

Data loss issues are pretty rare, but if you store sensitive data (photos, videos, etc) on your device, it’s always better to err on the side of caution.

iOS 15 Download

Once you’ve prepared, it’s time to start the download process.

If you’ve prepared yourself, and your device, for the move and you’re on a fast Wi-Fi connection, it could take 20 minutes to complete during peak hours.

The exact size of your iOS 15 download will depend on your iPhone model and the version of iOS it’s currently running.

If you’re on a newer version of iOS like iOS 14.8 you’ll, again, see the smallest download size. If you’re running an older version, your download could be larger.

If you’re on a fast Wi-Fi network, the download could finish up in 10 minutes. If your connection is slower, or you’re downloading during peak hours, you might be looking at 15 minutes or more.

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iOS 15 Installation

Once your device is done pulling iOS 15 from Apple’s servers, the installation process will begin. This could take longer than the download.

If you’re moving up from iOS 14.8, your installation could take about 10 minutes to complete. It took about 10 minutes to install on an iPhone 12 running iOS 14.8.

Your iPhone might reboot itself a couple of times during the installation process, but this is perfectly normal. Your device should boot up normally once the installation process completes.


After the installation finishes up, you might need to spend time logging into your iCloud account, signing into your device’s various apps and services, and/or setting up Apple Pay.

You also might want to spend some time checking your important data (photos, music, etc) to make sure everything carried over properly from iOS 14.

After you do that, make sure you test your core applications and services to ensure they’re working normally. New operating systems can cause apps to go haywire.

If you notice an issue with one or more of your apps, try downloading the latest version. Developers are currently rolling out iOS 15 support updates.

You’ll also want to poke around your phone for bugs and performance issues. If you notice something take a look at our list of fixes for common iOS problems.


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