Apple will allow users to download and install iOS updates over a 5G cellular connection on the brand new iPhone 12. In support pages posted earlier today, Apple details the features of its “Allow More Data on 5G” mode, which uses extra data that enables higher-quality streaming with Apple TV+, FaceTime calls, and the ability to download/install iOS updates.
The support page does not directly state whether the mode allows users to download and install updates, or simply only download them. However, Apple has confirmed to Apple Terminal that the feature allows users to download, and install updates with 5G connections under the “Allow More Data on 5G” mode.
On all other devices Apple limits iOS updates to only WiFi, which has been a major point of complaint from users. Apple says that it restricts the ability to download updates over cellular given the strain it causes on networks, however, it seems thanks to 5G technology it’s able to alleviate any strain.
On the iPhone 12 Apple is offering 3 separate data modes for 5G. The “Allow More Data on 5G,” a “Standard” and “Low Data” mode. The Standard mode is the typical default and will operate as normal, allowing background updates and tasks, Low Data mode on the other hand minimizes data consumption as much as possible. Neither of those modes offers the ability to download or install iOS updates.
5G does take more battery life, and a new battery test earlier today proved it. In an attempt to minimize the impact on battery life, Apple is offering a new feature called “Smart Data Mode” that will automatically switch between an LTE and 5G connection depending on what is needed most, and what will save battery life.