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7 Things to Know About the iPhone 7 iOS 14.6 Update

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Apple’s pushed its iOS 14.6 update and the software could have a tremendous impact on your iPhone 7 or iPhone 7 Plus’ performance.

As we push deeper into 2021, Apple continues to refine iOS 14 and the latest release is a milestone upgrade with a new batch of features, bug fixes, and important security patches on board.

Some iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus users have already made the jump up to iOS 14.6 and we’ve seen positive feedback emerge as we push away from the release.

On the flip side we’ve also heard about problems. Some iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus users have encountered bugs and performance issues.

If you do decide to download iOS 14.6, note that it requires a fairly large download. And if you’re running an older version of iOS, your iOS 14.6 upgrade will be larger because the features and fixes from the iOS updates you skipped are baked in.

With that in mind, we want to take you through the most important things to know, right now, about the iPhone 7’s iOS 14.6 update.

Our walkthrough will guide you through the software’s initial problems, the downgrade status, the iOS 14 jailbreak, and the iPhone 7 iOS 14.6 update’s performance.

iPhone 7 iOS 14.6 Review

We’ve been testing the iOS 14.6 update on an iPhone 7 for several days and we’re pretty impressed with the software’s performance thus far.

While some iPhone 7 users have noticed bugs and performance issues, iOS 14.6 is currently performing at a high level on the phone in our possession.

iOS 14.6 feels extremely snappy and fast. Apps open up quickly and the software’s animations and transitions are crisp.

We haven’t noticed any slowdown in problem areas like Notification Center, Control Center, or the keyboard. There are areas where we’ve seen sluggish performance on previous versions of iOS 14.

Battery life is very strong at the moment and we haven’t noticed any issues with Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and GPS. All of these connections are strong.

Our core apps, a list that includes apps like Netflix, Chrome, Gmail, Dark Sky, Asana, and Slack, are all stable. We haven’t noticed any hiccups yet.

App developers are still rolling out iOS 14 support updates so if you’re having issues with your apps, make sure your device is running the latest version.

Overall, iOS 14.6 is treating our iPhone 7 well. We haven’t stumbled upon any massive bugs or catastrophic performance issues in the hours since its arrival.

As of right now we’re recommending iOS 14.6 to most users given what’s on board. That said, if you’re having a good experience on iOS 14.5.1, or an older version of iOS, you might want to wait for more feedback about its performance.

If you need more help making a decision, have a look at our reasons to, and not to, install iOS 14.6.

How to Prepare Your iPhone 7 for iOS 14.6

If you’re planning to make a move to iOS 14.6, make sure you prepare for the upgrade.

While some of you might see a performance boost after upgrading, many others will run into trouble. This is why it’s important to prepare yourself, and your device, for the transition.

To assist you we’ve released a pre-installation guide that will take you step-by-step through the process we typically use before we install new iOS software on our phones. If you’re new to iOS or you just want to play it safe, it could help.

If you don’t have a ton of time to devote to the pre-installation process you’ll at the very least want to make sure your files are backed up before you tap download.

iPhone 7 iOS 14.6 Problems & Fixes

We’re having a good experience on iOS 14.6, but some iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus users are running into problems.

The current list includes excessive battery drain, connectivity issues, UI lag, issues with first and third-party apps, issues with Touch ID, Exchange issues, and many more.

If these problems have you feeling leery about an upgrade to iOS 14.6, you might want to hang back and wait for Apple’s next batch of bug fixes.

If your device is already running iOS 14.6, and you’re dealing with issues, have a look at our fixes for the most common iOS 14 problems.

We’ve also released tips to improve iOS 14 battery life and a guide to fixing bad iOS 14 performance.

iOS 14.5.1 Downgrade Closed

If you move your iPhone 7 or iPhone 7 Plus to iOS 14.6, and you hate its performance, you no longer have the ability to downgrade to older software.

Apple has stopped signing on iOS 14.5.1 which means you can’t drop your device’s software back to previous version of iOS 14 in an effort to improve its performance. The company isn’t signing on older versions of iOS either.

So if you’re having a good experience on iOS 14.5.1 or below, approach iOS 14.6 with caution. Once you upgrade, there’s no going back.

If you’re unfamiliar with the downgrade process, take a look at our guide.

iPhone 7 iOS 14.6 Update: What’s New

The iPhone 7’s iOS 14.6 update has new features on board. They include support for Apple Card Family, upgrades to the Podcasts app, and enhancements for AirTag users.

On top of that, iOS 14.6 includes bug fixes and 30+ security patches to help protect the devices from harm. If you’re interested in the particulars, check out our guide.

If you skipped iOS 14.5.1, you’ll get its changes with iOS 14.6. The iOS 14.5.1 update brought three changes to the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus.

Two of those changes were important security patches related to WebKit. The other change was a fix for an issue with App Tracking Transparency where some users who previously disabled Allow Apps to Request to Track in Settings may not receive prompts from apps after re-enabling it. App Tracking Transparency arrived on board iOS 14.5.

For more on iOS 14.5.1, read our walkthrough.

If you skipped iOS 14.5.1 and iOS 14.5, you get iOS 14.5’s changes with iOS 14.6.

iOS 14.5 was a massive upgrade for the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus. If you’re interested in the particulars, have a look at our list of the best features.

If you skipped iOS 14.4.2, you’ll get its changes with your upgrade. iOS 14.4.2 was a small point upgrade with a single change on board. You can learn more in our guide.

If you’re currently running iOS 14.4, you’ll also get iOS 14.4.1’s security patch with your upgrade to iOS 14.6. You can read about iOS 14.4.1’s patch right here.

If you skipped iOS 14.5.1, iOS 14.5, iOS 14.4.2, iOS 14.4.1, and iOS 14.4, you’ll get iOS 14.4’s features and fixes with your upgrade. You can learn more about iOS 14.4’s changes in our walkthrough.

If you skipped iOS 14.5.1, iOS 14.5, iOS 14.4.2, iOS 14.4.1, iOS 14.4, and iOS 14.3, you’ll get iOS 14.3’s changes with your iOS 14.6 update. Learn more about iOS 14.3 right here.

If you skipped iOS 14.5.1, iOS 14.5, iOS 14.4.2, iOS 14.4.1, iOS 14.4, iOS 14.3, and iOS 14.2, you’ll get iOS 14.2’s contents with your upgrade to iOS 14.6. Here are those changes if you’re interested.

If you skipped iOS 14.5.1, iOS 14.5, iOS 14.4.2, iOS 14.4.1, iOS 14.4, iOS 14.3, iOS 14.2, and iOS 14.1, you get iOS 14.1’s changes with your upgrade. If you’re interested, you can read more about iOS 14.1’s bug fixes in our roundup.

If you missed iOS 14.5.1, iOS 14.5, iOS 14.4.2, iOS 14.4.1, iOS 14.4, iOS 14.3, iOS 14.2, iOS 14.1, and iOS 14.0.1, you get iOS 14.0.1’s bug fixes with your upgrade to iOS 14.6.

As for iOS 14 itself, the iPhone 7’s version of the operating is robust. The devices miss out on a few features, but all of iOS 14’s key components are on board.

iOS 14 includes Widgets on the home screen, improvements to Messages and Maps, the new Translate app, and a laundry list of changes to Siri.

We’ve put together a guide that will take you through some of iOS 14’s best features and it’s worth a look if you haven’t been following along.

What’s Next

Apple’s confirmed iOS 14.7, another milestone upgrade, and the software is currently in beta testing ahead of a public release later this year. We expect a release sometime this summer.

iOS 14.7 will likely carry new features, bug fixes, and other enhancements. If you want to give the software a try right now you can do so via Apple’s beta program.

For more on the iOS 14.7 update and the beta, check out our guide.

Apple is also working on iOS 15, the next operating system for iPhones, and it’s currently in beta testing ahead of an official release this fall.

If you can’t wait until the fall, you can try iOS 15 out on your iPhone 7 or iPhone 7 Plus right now via Apple’s beta program.

For more on iOS 15 and the beta, have a look at our walkthrough.

iPhone 7 iOS 14 Jailbreak

Avoid iOS 14.6 if you’re jailbroken or want to jailbreak your phone.

The developer teams behind the Checkra1n and unC0ver jailbreaking tools have released versions that are compatible with newer versions of iOS 14. It’s unclear if they work with iOS 14.6.

For now, you’ll want to stay on older software if you jailbreak or if you’re thinking about jailbreaking your phone.

4 Reasons Not to Install iOS 14.6 & 11 Reasons You Should

Install iOS 14.6 for Better Security

Install iOS 14.6 for Better Security

If security is important to you, think about installing iOS 14.6 right away.

iOS 14.6 brings 38 important security patches to the iPhone. If you're curious about the particulars, you can read about them right here.

If you skipped iOS 14.5.1, you get the update's two security patches on board. You can read about them over on Apple's website. Both are related to WebKit. 

If you missed iOS 14.5 you'll get its patches with your upgrade. You can read more about those changes over on Apple's website.

iOS 14.5 also brought Apple's new App Tracking Transparency which lets you control which apps are allowed to track your activity across other companies' apps and websites for ads or sharing with data brokers.

If you skipped iOS 14.4.2, you get its security patch with iOS 14.6. You can learn more about that patch over on Apple's website as well. 

If you missed iOS 14.4.1, you get its patch with your upgrade to iOS 14.6. You can read about that patch right here.

If you skipped iOS 14.4, you get the update's patches with your upgrade. You can learn more about iOS 14.4's security patches right here

If you skipped iOS 14.3 you'll get its nine security updates with your upgrade. You can read more about them on its security site

iOS 14.3 also included a new privacy information section on App Store pages that includes a developer-reported summary of the app’s privacy practices.

If you skipped iOS 14.2, your iOS 14.6 update includes 24 additional security patches. You can learn more about the patches on Apple's security website

If you're still running iOS 13, iOS 14.6 includes iOS 14.0's security updates. 

iOS 14.0 brought 11 new security patches to the iPhone. If you're interested in the exact nature of these improvements, you can read about them over on Apple's website.

In addition to those patches, iOS 14 comes with some security and privacy upgrades including improvements to Home/HomeKit and Safari. 

For instance in Safari, you can now tap the Privacy Report button to better understand how websites handle your privacy.

With iOS 14 on board you can now get information on the App Store that will help you understand the privacy practices of apps before you download them. 

There is also a new recording indicator that will appear at the top of your screen whenever an app is using your microphone or camera. You can see if an app has used them recently in Control Center.

Researchers also discovered that Apple brought a new "BlastDoor" sandbox security system to iOS 14. The system is meant to prevent attacks from occurring via the Messages app. 

You can read more about "BlastDoor" right here

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