Update iOS On Your iPad, iPhone or iPod Touch Wirelessly

One of the things that came out of the Apple news last week was an update for iOS to version 5.1. This is an incremental update with some cool new features and security updates for your iDevice.

In this example I am updating my iPod touch. Also make sure you have one gigabyte of space available on your device.

First, tap Settings >> General >> Software Update.

1 Software Update

You’ll see that iOS 5.1 is available. Tap Download and Install to begin the process.
2 Download and Install

A message comes up advising you should connect your device to a power source, but you don’t have to, it’s recommended because the update process will drain the battery a great deal. Tap OK.

Note: I tested the update with an iPod touch unplugged from a power source — and an iPad plugged in to a wall charger. Both updates were successful.

5 Battery

Agree the the License Terms and Conditions.


While the update is being downloaded, tap Learn More to see what the update includes. You can see a full list on Apple’s Site.

3 Learn More

While the update is downloaded and installed, your device will restart a couple of times.

6 Download

After a couple restarts of your device, the update will be verified.

7verifying update

You’re done! On the Lock Screen you’ll see the new camera icon included in the 5.1 update.

8update complete

One of the cool features of the update for the iPhone and iPod touch (4th generation) is taking a picture by swiping the icon up on the screen. This lets you take pictures and video faster than navigating through the interface.


It’s best to plug your device into a power source. Here I started with a full battery, then after the update it’s just under half.

10 Battery

At lease you don’t have to use iTunes to update your Apple iOS devices anymore.



  1. Jeremiah Springfield

    March 12, 2012 at 7:10 am

    This is exactly why I’m getting rid of that piece of crap called iTunes that Apple tries to pass off as software.

  2. Brian Burgess

    March 12, 2012 at 1:58 pm

    @Jeremiah Yeah, I had some unreal issues with iTunes after the latest update. Too long to go into… needless to say, I think everyone can agree it needs a major overhaul. Especially on the Windows side.

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