Digital Declutter Day 10: Update Apps

The Digital Decluttter

We are on Day 10 of the Digital Declutter Challenge, and today’s challenge is to update the apps on your smartphone.

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Publishers often update their apps to provide bug fixes and improve functionality. Keeping your apps up to date is a good way to maintain their security and stability. Updating apps isn’t difficult, but it is one of those tasks we often procrastinate and consider a low priority.

In order to make this process easy and quick:

  • work in a location where you phone is connected to a Wi-Fi network
  • avoid using your phone for other purposes while updating

Both Android and Apple will periodically notify you if you have apps that need updating, typically with an alert or a number in a red circle. If you are not sure if any of your apps need updating, and to update those that do, follow these directions:

On Android:

Tap the “Play Store” icon. Swipe left or tape up at the top where it says “My apps” and a list of your apps will appear. Any apps with updates available will have the word UPDATE to the right. You can then tap the word UPDATE for each one individually, or simply select UPDATE ALL.

For an visual overview of the process, click below to watch a brief video:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xfeX0VQSufk

On Apple:

Tap the “App Store” icon. Any apps with updates available will have the word UPDATE to the right. You can then tap the word UPDATE for each one individually, or simply select UPDATE ALL.

For an visual overview of the process, click below to watch a brief video:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MmJVRFIiYu0

Periodically, an app gets stuck and the update quits midstream. If this happens, simply move on to the others and then you can go back and try it again.

ANOTHER OPTION:

With newer phones, it is often possible to set your phone to automatically update your apps. The benefit of this approach is that you no longer have to manually update your apps. The major potential downside is that your phone may update apps when you are away from Wi-Fi, which eats up data and can be expensive. If you have limited data and/or are worried about your budget, you may wish to instruct your phone not to use cellular data to update your apps.

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If you have multiple devices (e.g. a phone and a tablet), take the time today to update the apps on all of them. Going forward, either update apps as the alerts appear, enable your phone to perform updates automatically, or schedule time monthly to perform this task.

Do you update your apps regularly?

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