How to Update Your iPad to iPadOS 16

Get ready to enjoy the newest iPadOS features!

iPadOS 16 is finally here! We’ll cover how to update your iPad so you can begin to take advantage of the new iPad software features right away. We'll also cover whether or not you should update to iPadOS 16, which models are compatible with the new operating system, and reasons why your iPad won't update to iPadOS 16. 

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How Do You Update Your iPad to iPadOS 16?

Follow the steps below to complete your iPad software update: For more great iPad tutorials, check out our free Tip of the Day.

  1. Back up your device to iCloud or to your Mac.
  2. Plug your device into power and make sure you're connected to Wi-Fi. 
  3. Open the Settings app.

  4. Tap General.​

  5. Select Software Update.

  6. Tap Download and Install. If your iPad already has the most current software, you will see a message noting your iPad is up to date.

  7. Enter your passcode.

  8. Tap Agree to accept the Terms and Conditions.

  9. Tap Agree again.

  10. Tap Install Now.

  11. Your tablet will power down. Then it will power back up and install the software.
  12. Once your Lock screen comes back up, unlock your iPad.
  13. Follow any on-screen directions to complete the update.

If for some reason, you've followed the steps above, but your iPad won't update, troubleshoot the issue and try again! It is important to keep your devices updated for security purposes

Related Article: How to Download iOS 16 & Update Your iPhone to the Latest Apple Software

iPadOS Software FAQ

Should I Update to iPadOS 16?

It's beneficial to update your iPad to iPadOS16 to get important security updates. Also, you don't want to miss out on the new features that come with iPadOS 16

Which iPads Are Compatible with the New iPadOS Update?

In addition to the newly released iPads, iPadOS 16 is compatible with all iPad Pro models, iPad (5th–10th generation), iPad mini (4th–6th generation), and iPad Air (2nd–5th generation). If you aren't sure which iPad version you own, we have an article that will help you identify which iPad you own, no matter which model or generation.

How Do I Update an Old iPad to iPadOS 16?

Unfortunately, if it's not one of the models mentioned above, you won't be able to update your old iPad to iPadOS 16. For older iPad models that are compatible with iPadOS 16, just make sure to follow the steps in the previous section of this article.

Why Won't My iPad Update to iPadOS 16?

There are multiple reasons why your iPad won't update to iPadOS 16. It could be that your device doesn't support the new software, so always make sure to identify the model of your iPad. Another reason why your iPad software update might have failed is you don't have enough storage on your iPad. Be sure to remove apps and other content that you don't use from your device. Your iPhone will also not update if you're not connected to the internet, so be sure to connect to an internet network before proceeding with the update.

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Author Details

Leanne Hays's picture

Author Details

Leanne Hays

Leanne Hays is a Feature Writer at iPhone Life, and has written hundreds of in-depth how-to and troubleshooting articles. She's a former Associate Editor for iPhone Life magazine, and has written for the Iowa Source, as well as web content for education marketing. Leanne has an associate's degree in education, with a focus on curriculum development, as well as a bachelor's degree in science. She has over nine years of experience with SEO, social media management, and web development and writing. Despite years of web work, Leanne is by no means an early adapter; she's only owned a smartphone for five years, which makes her highly sympathetic to the learning curve of new iPhone owners. She enjoys making reader's lives easier and putting her education experience to work by walking them through the most practical ways to use Apple devices, step-by-step.

In off-work hours, Leanne is a mother of two, homesteader, audiobook fanatic, musician, and learning enthusiast.