{App Update Tips} Why automatic updates are a bad idea & how to manually update apps

Why automatic app updates are a bad idea and how to manually update iOS apps

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{App Update Tips} There are several reasons why I have “automatic downloads” toggled OFF on all my iPads:

  • Some app updates cause you to lose access to an app. See the “First Nouns” app in this screenshot as an example. The developer has switched to a subscription based model.
  • If an app is working properly with the version of iOS that I’m running on that device, there is no need to update. Doing so may cause problems. The saying “if it’s not broken, don’t fix it” applies. As a side note, I always hold off on updating to the latest iOS operating system to allow time for bugs to be worked out and to allow time for app developers to release updates to make their apps compatible with that iOS and work out bugs there too. I use my iPads everyday in speech therapy and especially depend on AAC apps and therapy apps so I can’t afford to take any risks. I look for comments on an app developer’s page and in a variety of FB groups for signs that it’s safe to update the iOS and/or the app.
  • Some updates add content that I’m not interested in. An example of this is when many apps add seasonal content for Halloween.

But there are times that I do need to update an app. I often will look to see if an app has been updated if it is acting glitchy or after I have updated to a more current iOS and apps are acting glitchy with that.

Important reminder: It is always wise to back up any programming that you’ve done on an AAC app BEFORE you install an update. It’s also wise to get any info you need from the data collection area of a therapy app before you install an update.

In order to update apps manually, you go to the App Store, tap “Updates” at the bottom of the screen (or search for the app by name) and read the info closely about the update to decide if you want to install it. NEVER click “update all”. Instead click “update” just on the specific app you have decided to update. Some updates are large and will require a strong WiFi connection and may require you to free up space on your iPad before you install them.
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Angela Moorad, MS, CCC-SLP
Speech-Language Pathologist
Founder of OMazing Kids, LLC – inclusive wellness & educational activities for kids of all abilities
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Angela Moorad is the founder of OMazing Kids, LLC and is an ASHA certified & licensed pediatric Speech-Language Pathologist and Kids Yoga Teacher with over 26 years experience working in a variety of settings (early intervention, schools, teletherapy & a nonprofit pediatric rehab hospital for children with developmental disabilities). She is an app beta tester for educational & therapeutic app developers and loves sharing info about great apps, products, books & toys to use with kids of all abilities.
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