iPhone 4s and older models get fresh iOS update

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iPhone 4S with iOS 9.3.6
Your iPhone 4S can’t be obsolete if Apple just released iOS 9.3.6 for it, right?
Photo: Ed Hardy/Cult of Mac

Believe it or not, there’s an iOS update for anyone still using an iPhone 4S, iPad 2, or other Apple devices from 2012 or before. This ensures these classic models can still accurately access the GPS system.

Apple’s support website says:

“Starting November 3, 2019, some iPhone and iPad models introduced in 2012 and earlier will require an iOS update to maintain accurate GPS location and keep the correct date and time. This is due to the GPS time rollover issue that began affecting GPS-enabled products from other manufacturers on April 6, 2019.”

iOS 10 and iOS 9 updates

To deal with this problem, Apple released iOS 10.3.4 for the iPhone 5 and fourth-generation iPad. In addition, the company introduced iOS 9.3.6 for the iPhone 4S, the original iPad mini, and the second- and third-generation iPad models. These updates are only for iPads with built-in cellular connectivity, as WiFi-only iOS tablets don’t have GPS.

Newer Apple handsets and tablets such as the iPhone 5S can be upgraded to iOS 12.4, released yesterday.

To install the update on the classic devices, go to Settings > General > Software Update.

There’s plenty of time. The iPhone maker says “Affected Apple devices are not impacted until November 3, 2019.”