How to update to iOS 7 using iTunes

How to update your iPhone or iPad to iOS 7 using iTunes

Everything you need to know about updating your iPhone, iPod touch, or iPad to iOS 7 using iTunes and USB

It's much faster and easier to install iOS 7 via the over-the-air Software Update system. However, if you're a traditionalist, or if you're worried about data corruption from old backups and want a clean, fresh start, iTunes is still an option. Here's how:

  1. Back up your device to either iCloud or iTunes before performing any kind of update.
  2. Make sure you're on the latest version of iTunes. Go to About and then Check for Updates or visit
  3. Launch iTunes on your Mac or PC.
  4. Plug in your iPhone, iPod touch, or iPad.
  5. Once your computer recognizes it, click on the Summary tab if you aren't already there.
  6. Under the iPhone section, click on Check for Update.
  7. iTunes should recognize that there is an update available for iOS 7.0, click on Download and Install on the window that pops up.

Once your iPhone, iPod touch, or iPad reboots, you'll be running iOS 7. If you need more help, here are your go-to links!

Have something to say about this story? Leave a comment! Need help with something else? Ask in our forums!

Allyson Kazmucha

Senior editor for iMore. I can take apart an iPhone in less than 6 minutes. I also like coffee and Harry Potter more than anyone really should.

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Reader comments

How to update to iOS 7 using iTunes


The commenters are funny, thinking it was real lol. The "7" is clearly photoshopped in, the font is different. How could you guys not see that?

iOS 7 will require iTunes 11.1 in order to sync (but you can still update to iOS 7 using iTunes 11.0), which should be released at the same time, if not a bit earlier.

Looks like iTunes 11.1 was just released.. Didnt show up under software update, but showed up on the iTunes webpage.

Can you help me with this I upgraded my iTunes and when I connect the phone to my computer the iTunes only comes up with my library nothing else I cannot do anything on it like I could before I cannot sync, anything or even update or restore I'm at a loss hope someone can assist me .

I was going to download IOS 7 via iTunes, but didn't realise it was slower than on the device. I thought that as this was not an incremental update, the download time in iTunes would be the same as the device. Can anyone clarify this? Many thanks.

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my internet is much faster on the wire than on wifi so i was gonna plug in too! now im confused - rene/ally/imore team plz clarify!

iTunes on my Macbook Air didnt show the update yet (still says 6.1.4 is the current version). It's currently 1:11pm est. Phones are downloading iOS7 fine over the air, though.

When trying to restore using iTunes 11.1 on iOS7 GM, i'm getting "There was a problem downloading the software for he iPhone X's iPhone. The requested resource was not found. What gives?

This is usually the case when trying to update to the public version from GM. I have found the following, long and cumbersome, process to work. 1) Backup your phone (iCloud or iTunes) 2) download the 6.1.4 ipsw file ( 3) restore to this version using Option and Restore iPhone 4) Once reverted back to 6.1.4, iOS 7 will automatically start to download on iPhone 5) once updated to iOS 7, restore your backup.

I can't update my 4S. I'm using the latest iTunes version [ 11.1 (126) ] but it keeps telling me:
"This version of the iPhone software ( 6.1.3 ) is the current version."

So sad. :(

Sent from the iMore App

Getting the same error here on my iPhone 5. Just updated iTunes but the button tells me the version 6.1.4 is the latest.

Now it's downloading the update via iTunes. Weird. I've closed iTunes, reconnected the cable and now it is working.

Does anyone know if doing a cloud backup eliminates corrupted data that's usually carried over from itunes backups. I'm jailbroken and have been for many years. I know I'm supposed to setup as a new device to avoid any issues. I'm just curious if this is a different avenue that will yield the same thing.


I've got an iphone 5 and I downloaded the ios7 a while back without a developer account and now I've got a problem with this 'activation error' message popping up and i can't use my phone at all. i've read all the comments and been on loads of sites/tried downloading every .ipsw file.
If I can't download back to ios 6 to then upgrade back to ios 7, how do I use my phone at all?

I don't care what software its running on i just really need my phone working again.

Does ANYBODY have ANY suggestions???

I hv a iPhone 5c and i tried to update to IOS 7.0.5 but all times download was stucked. then I downloaded the IOS 7.0.5 separately to my PC.

Please help me to install it to my phone.


I'm very new at all of this. This whole IOS stuff seems too much trouble. I'm going to call my provider and see if I'm due for an upgrade phone. I feel, that Apple should make a phone that stays updated.
It appears to me that our phones get out dated so we have to go buy the latest version. Excellent marketing..