How to Fix Automatic App Updates Not Working on iPad

automatic app updates not working on iPad

Find that the automatic app updates are not working on your iPad despite having tried everything?

Keeping your iPad’s apps up to date is a crucial step in taking care of your iPad. Outdated apps can lead to possible malfunctions of your device. For instance, potential malfunctions could include crashes, battery drain, and slow down of your device. 

Outdated apps could potentially be a security risk as well. For example, you might have a banking app installed that recently had a security update released for the app, but you haven’t updated it yet.

Since keeping your iPad’s apps updated is an important task, Apple released automatic updates as a brand new feature for iOS and iPadOS users in iPadOS 13.

Unfortunately, this feature doesn’t always seem to work. Several iPad users, with automatic updates turned on, have proclaimed their apps do not update automatically.

Because keeping your apps updated is very important, we will show you today how you can fix automatic updates not working on your iPad. After testing the various methods below, we have confirmed that these steps provided should fix your problem! We will supply you with written steps and pictures to help illustrate how to fix the ‘Automatic app updates not working’ issue. 🙂

Let us begin!

 

1. Making Sure Automatic Updates Are Enabled.

Before making sure automatic updates are enabled, the first step we should consider is making sure our iPad is on iPadOS 13 or newer. Any iPad below this version will not support the automatic updates feature.

To check your device’s current version, follow these simple steps below:

  1. Go to your iPad’s home screen and open the Settings app.
  2. Then, tap on General and then About (as demonstrated below).

automatic app updates not working on iPad

 

After doing this, you should be able to see your iPadOS version near halfway down the page.

If your device is on iPadOS 13 or newer, then your device will support automatic updates.


If your device is below iPadOS 13, then we will check to see if you can update it.

To do so, follow these simple steps below:

  1. Go to your iPad’s home screen and open the Settings app.
  2. Then, tap on General and then Software Update (as demonstrated below).

automatic app updates not working on iPad

 

From here you will be able to see if there are any updates available for your device.


The next step is checking to see if you have the automatic updates feature enabled.

Here’s how you can check if this feature is enabled or not:

  1. Go to your iPad’s home screen and open the Settings app. Then tap on your name at the top.
  2. Then, tap on the iTunes & App Store option and toggle on the Apps button under Automatic Downloads (as shown below).

automatic app updates not working on iPad

 

Note ⚠️

By default, apps will not update over a cellular network. To do this, toggle on the Automatic Downloads button under Cellular Data (see image above).

 

After completing these steps, automatic updates should now be enabled. If your device is still not updating apps automatically, then proceed to the next step.

 

 

2. Restarting Your iPad.

If your iPad has been running for the past several days or even months, then it may be bloated with running apps or services in the background.

So if you haven’t restarted your device in a long time, then updates may have a hard time downloading and installing. Therefore, we should try restarting your device.

To restart your iPad, follow the following steps below:

  1. Press and hold your iPad’s Power Button until the Slide to Power Off button appears.
  2. Then, press and slide the Slide to Power Off button to the right to turn off your iPad (as shown below).

automatic app updates not working on iPad

 

Once the iPad shuts off completely (the screen will appear completely black), press and hold the Power Button again to turn it back on.

Now see if your apps are updating automatically again. If your apps are still not updating, then proceed to the next step.

 

 

3. Pause and Resume the App Download.

When an app is updating, some interruption may occur. 

An example of a possible interruption could be losing internet connection, even for a split second. One possible interruption like this could freeze an apps update process, causing it not to finish updating or update at all.

Luckily there is an easy fix for this. We can simply pause the app download and then unpause it.

To do this, follow these simple steps below:

  1. Go to your iPad’s home screen and find the app you want to fix. Then press and hold your finger on the App Icon.
  2. Then, you should see a Pause Download button. Simply tap this button (as shown below).

automatic app updates not working on iPad

 

3. After you have paused the download, tap the button again to resume the download.

If you do not see the ‘Pause Download’ button, then your iPad may be on an older iPadOS version. So instead try tapping the App icon and pressing the Pause Icon. Then, press it again to resume download.

Now your app should start updating again automatically. If your app is still not updating, then proceed to the next step.

 

 

4. Connecting to Wi-Fi.

If you have confirmed automatic updates are enabled and your apps are still not updating automatically, then one possible issue might be that you are not on Wi-Fi.

Sometimes apps may not update when not on Wi-Fi due to the update’s file size. This has been reported by some Apple users. If an app update is too large, it may use up too much mobile data when downloading the update. Therefore, Apple restricts large updates to Wi-Fi only.

And if you are never on Wi-Fi, then you will not be able to install updates for these particular apps.

So we should try enabling Wi-Fi if it already isn’t enabled. To enable Wi-Fi, follow the following steps below:

  1. Go to your iPad’s home screen and open the Settings app.
  2. Then, tap on Wi-Fi and then toggle on the Wi-Fi button (as shown below).

automatic app updates not working on iPad

 

Once you have tried enabling Wi-Fi, if it already wasn’t enabled, check to see if automatic updates are working now.

If Wi-Fi was already enabled, try disabling it and re-enabling it. If automatic updates are still not working for you, then proceed to the next step.

 

 

5. Plugging in Your iPad.

iPads can stop updating apps when the battery life is low. The reason for this is to conserve battery life. Apple wouldn’t want your devices to run out of power! 

For Apple Watches, it is advised to keep your battery life to, at minimum, 50 percent to avoid issues when installing app updates. We could generally use this same recommendation for all Apple devices.

But what if you cannot charge your iPad? If you cannot charge your iPad due to a technical problem, then check out one of our previous articles ‘iPhone Won’t Charge’. That article was written for iPhone users but will work the same for iPad users. 😄

If your iPad is now charging but apps are still not updating as they should, then see the next step.

 

 

6. Checking Your iPad’s Storage.

One possible reason why apps won’t automatically update could be your device’s storage is full or close to full.

We would recommend that you at least keep a few gigabytes of storage free on your iPad at all costs. This is because your iPad requires extra space to run smoothly, and this extra space also affects apps being updated.

To check how much space is free on your iPad, follow the following steps below:

  1. Go to your iPad’s home screen and open the Settings app.
  2. Then, tap on General and then iPad Storage (as shown below).

 

If your iPad’s space here is low (for instance, less than 1 to 2 gigabytes free), then you could try going to your iPad’s home screen and uninstall unimportant or unused apps, or delete other data, such as photos, to clear up space.

If you do not want to delete any content, then you could try moving some of your iPad’s data to the iCloud (see ‘Turn on iCloud Photos’ and ‘Save space on your device’).

Once you have enough space to install updates, your apps should start updating automatically again. If they still are not updating automatically, then see the next step.

 

 

7. Update Your iPad’s Date and Time.

If your iPad’s date and time are invalid, then this may lead to apps not being updated properly or at all. This may be because automatic updates know when to update apps based on when an update is released for an app. And if your date and time are invalid, then automatic updates may malfunction.

So we need to make sure our date and time are correct on our device. 😊

To check to see if your date and time is correct on your iPad, do as mentioned:

  1. Go to your iPad’s home screen and open the Settings app.
  2. Then, tap on General and then Date & Time.

If the date and time are incorrect, then you should update it. If you would like the date and time to stay updated automatically, enable the Set Automatically button (as demonstrated below).

 

 

Now that your date and time are correct, your apps should hopefully start updating again automatically. If they still are not, then don’t worry! We still have another possible solution for you. See the next step for another possible solution on how you can go about fixing the ‘automatic app updates not working on iPad’ issue.

 

 

 

8. Visit Apple’s Services for Status Updates.

If you have tried every other method provided in this article, then there is one last option you could try, and that is checking Apple’s services for possible issues.

On Apple’s ‘System Status’ website, they provide various updates on how Apple’s services are doing. If there are, for instance, issues with the App Store, then they will display that there.

To check Apple’s services, head on over to Apple’s ‘System Status’ website. On that web page, see ‘App Store’. If ‘App Store’ is not green meaning ‘Available’ then there is some sort of issue happening on Apple’s end, and in that case, you will just have to be patient.

 

 

And that wraps up our guide on how to fix automatic app updates not working on iPad. If you are aware of other possible solutions that were not mentioned in this article, then please do feel free to share them in the comment section below! You will be credited once we update this article again afterward.

If after reading all of this article, and you still have questions, then feel free to leave a comment below! 😀

 

If this guide helped you, please share it. 🙂

 

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