How to update Android apps

Android phones are absolute blessings for the way they let you customise your experience, and the huge range of apps that you can install plays a massive role in that sense of freedom.

However, even with automatic updates it can sometimes take a while for apps to update – even on the best Android phones. If you’d like to keep your apps up to date, here’s how to update apps on Android.

How to update Android apps

The key to updating apps on Android is, as with installing them, the Google Play Store, although it’s not the only place you can get things done. Follow the steps below to update your apps on Android.

  1. Open the Google Play Store
  2. Tap on your profile image at the top-right of your display
  3. Tap Manage apps & device
  4. If you have updates available, you’ll see “Updates Available” and be able to either set them all to update or see further details
  5. Under See details you can expand each update with the down arrow to find out what’s new
  6. Tap Update all to download every update

This will ensure that every app with an update awaiting it gets the latest version installed, and is a great way to kickstart updates if you’re waiting for them.

Since app updates on the Google Play Store have to be certified, there’s a good degree of safety that you can get by sticking to updates that go through the Play Store, rather than trying to sideload your own updates, so we recommend you stick to this method!

Occasionally, if an app like WhatsApp is only rolling an update out to some users, you might find that even a manual update doesn’t change things. In this case, a last resort could be deleting and then reinstalling the app in question.

How to auto-update apps on Android

If those steps seem like busywork to you, and you’d rather get your apps updated automatically in the background, that’s easy to set up too, with the steps below.

  1. Open the Google Play Store
  2. Tap your profile image at the top-right of your screen
  3. Tap on Settings, then Network preferences, then Auto-update apps
  4. Choose whether to have auto-updating on or off, or on certain types of data

This lets you choose to have updates automatically install if you’re on Wi-Fi, but not if you’re on mobile data, which is handy for keeping to data limits if you have them.

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