Download iOS 16 Final for iPhone [Ultimate Guide]

iOS 16 final download for iPhone now available.

iOS 16 final version is now available to download for iPhone users. Here's how you can download it, install it or downgrade back to iOS 15.

iOS 16 Final is Now Available for Download - Here's Everything New in the Update, How to Clean Install, Download IPSW, Perform OTA Update and Downgrade Back to iOS 15

You've been waiting for this day a long time, especially if you didn't try out the beta or public beta of iOS 16. There are a ton of great new features to try out, including the brand new Lock Screen. But, instead of going through all of the features here, we will lay down the entire feature set of the update below.

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New Lock Screen in iOS 16.

iOS 16 Final Features and Changes - Everything New in One Place

Lock Screen

  • Redesigned Lock Screen gives you all new ways to personalize your Lock Screen by showcasing favorite photos, customizing font styles, displaying widgets, and more
  • Multiple Lock Screens can be created, and you can easily switch between them
  • Lock Screen gallery offers personalized suggestions along with Apple curated collections for your Lock Screen
  • Font and color options for customizing the look of the date and time on your Lock Screen
  • Widgets on the Lock Screen display information at a glance like the weather, battery levels, upcoming calendar events, and more
  • A new effect places the subject of the photo in front of the time (iPhone XS and later)
  • Photo styles change the color filter, tinting, and font style of photos on the Lock Screen to complement each other
  • Notifications appear at the bottom of your Lock Screen and can be displayed in an expanded list view, stacked view, or count view

Focus

  • Lock Screen linking connects your Lock Screen to a Focus, so you can activate a Focus by switching to the corresponding Lock Screen
  • Focus filters hide distracting content in apps like Calendar, Mail, Messages, Safari, and third-party apps
  • Streamlined setup makes it easier and faster to get started with Focus, with personalized Lock Screen and Home Screen suggestions that include apps and widgets that are relevant to the Focus you’re setting up

Messages

  • Edit a message for up to 15 minutes after sending it, and recipients see a record of edits
  • Undo send allows you to recall any message for up to 2 minutes after sending it
  • Mark as unread makes it easy to come back to a conversation later
  • SharePlay in Messages lets you enjoy activities like watching movies, listening to music, playing games, and more with friends while messaging
  • Collaboration provides a simple way to invite others to collaborate on a file via Messages and get activity updates in the thread when someone makes an edit to a shared project

Mail

  • Improved search delivers more accurate, complete results and provides suggestions as soon as you begin to type
  • Undo send allows you to cancel delivery of a message within 10 seconds of hitting send
  • Scheduled send for sending an email at a specific day and time
  • Follow‑up surfaces sent emails that have not been replied to, to the top of your inbox so you can quickly follow‑up
  • Remind me lets you schedule a date and time to be reminded about an email

Safari and Passkeys

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  • Shared Tab Groups let you share a set of tabs with others and see the Tab Group update instantly as you work together
  • Tab Group start pages can be customized with different background images and favorites for each Tab Group
  • Pinned tabs in Tab Groups enable you to pin frequently visited websites for each Tab Group
  • Safari web page translation adds translation for web pages in Turkish, Thai, Vietnamese, Polish, Indonesian, and Dutch
  • Passkeys offer support for an easier and safer sign‑in method to replace passwords
  • Passkey syncing through iCloud Keychain makes your passkeys available across all your Apple devices while keeping them end-to-end encrypted

Live Text

  • Live Text video support allows you to interact with text in a paused video frame so you can copy, translate, lookup, share, and more (iPhone XS, iPhone XS Max, iPhone XR, and later)
  • Quick actions let you take action on data detected in photos and videos with a single tap, so you can track flights or shipments, translate foreign languages, convert currencies, and more (iPhone XS, iPhone XS Max, iPhone XR, and later)

Visual Look Up

  • Lift subject from the background isolates the subject of an image so you can copy and paste it into apps like Mail and Messages (iPhone XS, iPhone XS Max, iPhone XR, and later)
  • Visual Look Up adds recognition of birds, insects, spiders, and statues in your photos (iPhone XS, iPhone XS Max, iPhone XR, and later)

Siri

  • Easy Shortcuts setup makes it possible to run shortcuts with Siri as soon as you download an app with no upfront setup (iPhone XS, iPhone XS Max, iPhone XR, and later)
  • A new setting allows you to send messages without Siri asking you to confirm before sending
  • “Hey Siri, what can I do here?” helps you discover Siri capabilities in iOS and apps just by asking (iPhone XS, iPhone XS Max, iPhone XR, and later)
  • Call hang up option for ending Phone and FaceTime calls with Siri by saying, “Hey Siri, hang up.” (iPhone XS, iPhone XS Max, iPhone XR, and later)

Dictation

  • All-new Dictation experience supports using your voice and keyboard together to enter and edit text (iPhone XS, iPhone XS Max, iPhone XR, and later)
  • Automatic punctuation inserts commas, periods, and question marks as you dictate
  • Emoji support lets you insert emojis using your voice (iPhone XS, iPhone XS Max, iPhone XR, and later)

Maps

  • Multi-stop routing supports adding up to fifteen stops along your driving route in Maps
  • Transit cards in Maps let you see low balances and replenish your card when you add transit cards to Wallet, all without leaving Maps
  • Transit fares show you how much your journey will cost in the San Francisco Bay Area, London, New York, and San Diego

Apple Pay and Wallet

  • Apple Pay Order Tracking allows you to receive detailed receipt and order tracking information in Wallet for Apple Pay purchases with participating merchants
  • ID cards in Wallet let you share verified information with apps that require identity verification (iPhone 8 and later)
  • Apple Account supports topping up your account balance from your Apple Account card in Wallet

Home

  • Redesigned Home app makes it easier to navigate, organize, view, and control your smart home accessories
  • Home tab now integrates all your accessories, rooms, and scenes into a single tab for a whole-house view, allowing you to see your entire home at a glance
  • Categories for lights, climate, security, speakers and TVs, and water let you quickly access all the relevant accessories organized by room and displays more detailed status information
  • New camera view displays up to four cameras front and center in the Home tab, scroll to see any additional camera views in your home
  • Redesigned accessory tiles feature more visually recognizable icons that are color-matched to their category and new behaviors for more precise accessory controls

Health

  • Medications feature helps you track and manage your medications, vitamins, and supplements by creating a list, custom schedules, and reminders, and then viewing logging over time
  • Add medications using your iPhone camera (iPhone XS, iPhone XR, and later)
  • Interaction alerts inform you if there is a critical interaction when you add a new medication
  • Cycle deviation notifications alert you if your logged menstrual cycles show a pattern of infrequent periods, irregular periods, prolonged periods, or persistent spotting
  • Invitations for Health Sharing allow loved ones to easily and securely share their health data with you
  • Health Sharing reminders give you transparency and control over the health data you are sharing with loved ones

News

  • My Sports enables you to easily follow your favorite teams and leagues and watch highlights right in the News app
  • Favorites give you easy access to the channels and topics you read the most, in a consistent place near the top of your Today feed
  • New homepages deliver visually updated and easier-to-navigate topic feeds for local news locales, sports teams and leagues, and more

Family Sharing

  • Improved child account setup makes it easier to create an account for a child with the right parental controls, including age‑appropriate media restrictions
  • Device setup for a child lets you use Quick Start to easily set up a new iOS or iPadOS device for your child with your selected parental controls in place
  • Screen Time requests in Messages make it even easier to approve or decline requests from your child
  • Family Checklist gives you tips and suggestions like updating a child’s parental control settings, turning on location sharing, or just reminding you to share your iCloud+ subscription with everyone

Safety Check

  • Safety Check is a new section in Settings to help people in domestic or intimate partner violence situations quickly reset the access they’ve granted to others
  • Emergency reset lets you quickly take action to reset access across all people and apps, including disabling location sharing via Find My, resetting privacy permissions for apps, and more
  • Manage sharing and access helps you review and customize which apps and people can access your information

Accessibility

  • Door detection in Magnifier locates a door, reads signs and symbols around it, and gives you instructions for how to open the door (iPhone 12 Pro and iPhone 13 Pro)
  • Apple Watch mirroring provides full control of the Apple Watch from iPhone and supports the use of Switch Control, Voice Control, or any other assistive features on the iPhone to get the most out of your Apple Watch
  • Live Captions (beta) automatically converts audio into text for users who are Deaf or hard of hearing to follow along more easily with calls and media content (iPhone 11 and later)
  • Buddy controller helps users with cognitive disabilities get support from a caregiver or friend while playing a game, by combining inputs from multiple game controllers into one
  • VoiceOver is now available in over 20 new languages and locales, including Bangla (India), Bulgarian, Catalan, Ukrainian, and Vietnamese
  • Voice Control spelling mode gives you the option to dictate names, addresses, or other custom spellings letter by letter

This release also includes other features and improvements:

  • Fitness app lets you track and meet your fitness goals even if you don’t yet have an Apple Watch, using iPhone motion sensors to give you an estimate of your calories to contribute to your daily Move goal
  • AirPods Pro (2nd generation) support
  • Personalized Spatial Audio uses the TrueDepth camera on iPhone to create a personal profile for Spatial Audio that delivers a more precise and immersive listening experience on AirPods (3rd generation), AirPods Pro (1st and 2nd generation), AirPods Max
  • Handoff in FaceTime allows you to move FaceTime calls seamlessly from your iPhone to your iPad or Mac, and vice versa
  • Memoji updates include more sticker poses, hairstyles, headwear, noses, and lip colors
  • Quick Note adds support for taking a note in any app on your iPhone and adding links to create context and easily find content
  • Translate camera lets you translate the text around you using the camera in the Translate app
  • Duplicate detection in Photos identifies duplicate photos so you can quickly clean up your library
  • Foreground blur for portrait photos in Camera blurs objects in the foreground for a more realistic-looking depth-of-field effect (iPhone 13, iPhone 13 Pro, and iPhone 13 Pro Max)
  • Pinned lists in Reminders help you quickly navigate to your favorite lists
  • Search on the Home Screen enables Spotlight to be accessed directly from the bottom of the Home Screen, making it easy to open apps, find contacts, or get information from the web
  • Automatically send messages in CarPlay to skip the confirmation step when sending messages
  • Rapid Security Response gets important security improvements to your devices even faster, as they can be applied automatically between standard software updates

This release includes even more features and improvements. For more information, please visit this website:https://www.apple.com/ios/ios-16

Some features may not be available for all regions or on all iPhone models. For information on the security content of Apple software updates, please visit this website: https://support.apple.com/kb/HT201222

iOS 16 Compatible iPhone Devices

iOS 16 is compatible with a wide range of devices, but this year Apple has dropped support for some iPhones, including the iPhone 6s and iPhone 7. Make sure your device is on the list before you go ahead with the download.

All iPhone models compatible with iOS 16, according to Apple's website.
  • iPhone 14, iPhone 14 Plus
  • iPhone 14 Pro, iPhone 14 Pro Max
  • iPhone 13
  • iPhone 13 mini
  • iPhone 13 Pro
  • iPhone 13 Pro Max
  • iPhone 12
  • iPhone 12 mini
  • iPhone 12 Pro
  • iPhone 12 Pro Max
  • iPhone 11
  • iPhone 11 Pro
  • iPhone 11 Pro Max
  • iPhone XS
  • iPhone XS Max
  • iPhone XR
  • iPhone X
  • iPhone 8
  • iPhone 8 Plus
  • iPhone SE (2nd generation or later)

If your iPhone is in the list above, you are all set to download the iOS 16 final version.

Free Up at Least 8GB of Space

iOS 16 is a big update, and you will need to free up some space on your iPhone in order to download and install it. If you're low on space, it's best to delete some photos, videos, apps, or games in order to make room. This step is necessary otherwise you won't be able to install the update.

You can go to Settings > General > iPhone Storage to see what is using too much space on your device and take action accordingly.

Backup Everything - Just in Case

Using iTunes, iCloud, or Finder, make sure you have backed up everything to a safe and secure location. Your data must stay protected at all costs in case things go south during installation, but it is extremely rare such a thing will happen. But, just to be safe, take a backup of everything now rather than later.

Download iOS 16 Final Over the Air without Losing Files or Settings

This is the way most of you will prefer to download the iOS 16 final. It is the best and easiest way to experience the update, and it barely takes a few seconds to initiate the download.

Before you go ahead, make sure your iPhone has 50% or more battery life and that you are connected to a working Wi-Fi network. It is best to plug your iPhone into a wall charger or a power bank so that everything goes through as smoothly as possible.

Once that is out of the way, follow the steps below in order to initiate the download:

  • Tap on the Settings app on the Home Screen.
  • Select General.
  • Go to Software Update.
  • Wait for the page to refresh, and the iOS 16 update will show right up. Tap on Download and Install when it does.

There is a very high chance that the update takes a while to install since iOS 16 is a major release. Just leave your iPhone plugged in, and it will eventually be installed onto your device.

Download iOS 16 IPSW Files

Willing to perform a clean installation instead? Then make sure you have the iOS 16 final IPSW files with you. Download the right one from the links below and save it to your desktop.

Clean Install iOS 16 Final on iPhone

Before you go ahead with this method, it is extremely important that you back up everything to iCloud, Finder, or iTunes. Why? Because performing a clean install deletes everything from your iPhone. Once your files are gone, there's no un-deleting them unless you took a timely backup. So, take the time and create a backup now before you read any further than this.

Furthermore, you need to disable Find My on your iPhone in order to perform a clean installation. Go to Settings > Apple ID > Find My > Find My iPhone and turn the Find My iPhone switch off. You will be required to enter your Apple ID password in order to turn the feature off.

Once you've backed everything up, connect your iPhone to your PC or Mac using a USB-A or USB-C to Lightning cable. Your iPhone will be detected instantly. Now follow the steps outlined below:

  • Launch Finder if you have a Mac or iTunes if you have a Windows PC.
  • Select your iPhone from the left. It will show up as a tiny iPhone-like icon. Click on it.
  • You'll see a bunch of options in the middle, including a Restore iPhone button. Click on the button while holding down the left Shift key (Windows) or the left Option key (Mac).
  • Select the iOS 16 IPSW file you downloaded and saved to the desktop.
  • The IPSW file will be extracted and installed onto your iPhone. It may take a while, but once it is done, you can then set up your device from scratch or restore the backup you created before this tutorial.

Clean Install iOS 16 Without an IPSW File Using the Internet

Alternatively, you can also download and install iOS 16 without using an IPSW file. You are still required to take a backup of everything since this will erase your iPhone.

Follow the steps below on how to do that:

  • Connect your iPhone to your PC or Mac.
  • Launch iTunes or Finder.
  • Select your iPhone from the left-hand side.
  • Click on the Restore iPhone button.
  • Finder or iTunes will download the correct IPSW file for you in the background and restore it onto your iPhone.

Downgrade iOS 16 Final to iOS 15.6.1 / iOS 15

Installed iOS 16 and didn't like it, or are you having issues on your iPhone? You can downgrade back to iOS 15 / 15.6.1 because Apple is signing the older firmware (at the time of writing).

First and foremost, download the iOS 15.6.1 firmware file for your device and save it to your desktop:

Once the IPSW file is saved to your desktop, connect your iPhone to your PC or Mac using a Lightning cable and then launch iTunes or Finder. Once your iPhone is detected, select it from the left of the window and click on the Restore iPhone button while holding down the left Shift key (Windows) or the left Option key (Mac). Select the iOS 15.6.1 IPSW file you saved to the desktop when prompted.

Remember, once the signing Windows is closed, and it will be eventually, you will not be able to downgrade back to iOS 15. Either you have to keep on using iOS 16 or just avoid updating to iOS 15 as long as possible.

iPhones that do not support iOS 15 shouldn't have to worry about downgrading at all, as the iOS 16 update won't even show up. But that doesn't mean Apple will completely leave you in the dark. To this day, Apple releases software updates for older devices in order to patch security-related issues and fix bugs. In other words, you're good to go for a year or two easily.

Products mentioned in this post

AirPods
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Airpods Pro
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