Software updates

This section allows checking for updates to the Android operating system, including whether you can upgrade to a new version of Android.

Android devices can often receive updates to their operating system directly from the device itself.  These are sometimes referred to as "over the air" (OTA) updates because they can be received by your device without the need to connect it to a computer.

An update might:

  • Upgrade your device to a new version of Android
  • Correct serious security problems or bugs
  • Add new features

This section also allows you to configure how your device automatically checks for updates periodically.

Update over Wi-Fi only

Specifies whether to limit the downloading of updates to Wi-Fi connections only, as opposed to allowing downloads via either Wi-Fi or cellular connections.

Before an update can be installed it must be downloaded. Some updates may be very large (hundreds of megabytes) and thus you may not want to download it over your cellular data connection if you have a limited quota.

Auto-download system updates

Specifies whether your device should automatically begin downloading a software update as soon as one has been found. If this is not enabled, then you will be notified when an update is available but it won't start downloading until you have accepted the download.

This setting may not be available on some devices.

Auto-update apps

A new feature on recent versions of Android, this enables your device to accept automatic updates to some apps by the manufacturer of the device. This is different to the similarly named feature inside the Google Play store in that it deals with updates to certain apps that were provided by the device manufacturer, rather than apps you have installed yourself from an app store.

Check now

This allows you to manually check for available software updates. On some devices, simply opening the Software updates section will cause it to check for software updates. However, you can also check this way.