Q: I have an iPhone 4. I like the new iPhones, but I am not in the market for a new phone any time soon. I just bought my iPhone about 3 months ago. However, I really like iOS 7. Can I upgrade my iPhone 4 to iOS 7, should I upgrade it to iOS 7, and, of course, how do I upgrade it to iOS 7?
A: Every time Apple releases the latest version of iOS everyone rushes to download it. In fact, so many people were trying to download it on the 18th of September that when my wife tried to download it, it told her it would take 51 hours! However, just like Mom used to say, just because everyone else is doing something doesn't mean you should. The reviews have been saying that iOS 7 does not run well on the iPhone 4.
Technically, iOS 7 works on the iPhone 5S, 5C, 5, 4S and 4, but the older generation phones have lower and lower specs. In fact, Apple claims that every iPhone since the 4 can run up to twice as fast as the previous iPhone. So, an operating system designed to run on an iPhone 5S might not run perfectly on a phone that is three years older. It is likely because of that reason that the iPhone 4 does not get some of the latest and greatest features of iOS like Siri, camera filters, panoramic camera mode, and full screen Safari. Even with the missing features, according to Ars Technica, most applications take almost twice as long to launch in iOS 7 than they did in iOS 6.1.3.
Here's something that should also give you pause before you update to iOS 7: Once you update, there's no going back. Apple has made it so that once you upgrade to the latest version, you cannot downgrade to iOS 6.1.3 or earlier. It is somewhat possible to do with an iPhone 4, but you have to jailbreak your iPhone before you upgrade, and you have to have saved your SHSH blobs. No, I did not just make that up. Suffice it to say, if you think an SHSH blob sounds like a quiet monster from a B-rated movie, you probably don't want to mess with it.
However, if you still want to upgrade to iOS 7 on your iPhone 4, or if anyone else with a 4S or 5 wants to upgrade, first, make sure to sync your iPhone with iTunes and backup your iPhone with iTunes, then follow this easy cheesy guide on how to update to iOS 7 at iMore.com.