The final version of iOS 10 was shown on the new iPhone 7 at the unveiling and will be released later today (usually around 6pm UK time). But you can get the iOS 10 public beta (final release candidate) right now. Here's why you'll want to upgrade to iOS 10, and here's how to get iOS 10 now.

Jump to:

iOS 10 release date: 13 September 2016

The final version of iOS 10 is coming today (13 September), and it will be available on the iPhones and iPads listed below. Expect it to arrive around 6pm in the UK.

If you just can't wait, here's how to install the release candidate of iOS 10 now.

This release candidate is very stable, but since there's just a few days to wait, it's certainly easier to just hold tight until you see the notification pop up on your screen.

iOS 10 supported devices: Which iPhones and iPads will get iOS 10?

iOS 10 will be a free update for the following devices:

  • iPhone 6s
  • iPhone 6s Plus
  • iPhone 6
  • iPhone 6 Plus
  • iPhone SE
  • iPhone 5s
  • iPhone 5c
  • iPhone 5
  • iPad Pro 12.9-inch
  • iPad Pro 9.7-inch
  • iPad Air 2
  • iPad Air
  • iPad 4th gen
  • iPad mini 4
  • iPad mini 3
  • iPad mini 2
  • iPod Touch 6th gen

The following devices are not compatible with iOS 10: Original iPhone, iPhone 3G, iPhone 3GS, iPhone 4, iPhone 4S, original iPod touch, iPod touch 2nd-gen, iPod touch 3rd-gen, iPod touch 4th-gen, iPodf touch 5th-gen, original iPad. iPad 2, iPad 3.

iOS 10 new features: Podcast discussion

iOS 10 new features: What's new in iOS 10? Should I upgrade to iOS 10?

On the surface, iOS 10 may look like previous versions, but a whole load of apps have had major updates, and there are new apps too. Plus, there's a whole raft of interface tweaks that makes iOS even better to use. Another big reason to update when the final version comes out is that Siri  has been opened up to third-party apps. Who knows, your favourite app might get Siri support soon.

Click or tap the links to jump straight to the app or feature in which you're interested:

New emoji

Although it won't be news to emoji enthusiasts, iOS 10 will (as iOS 9 did) include lots of new emoji. Many have been added to be more 'gender diverse' as Apple puts it in a press release. It means there will be female athletes, and other changes include replacing the gun with a water pistol (there has been pressure for a long while from anti-gun protesters to ditch it). However, the middle finger icon remains.

Read more: How to use emoji on iPhone & iPad | What is emoji?

 

iOS 10 release date - new emoji

Moisture detection

In the Developer beta, one of the new features is moisture detection for the Lightning port. If any water is detected then a message will appear prompting the user to disconnect the cable to avoid damage.

 

Lock screen

There's a redesigned lockscreen with rich notifications that also respond to Force Touch

iOS 10 new features and release date

* Raise to wake feature so you can see notifications, plus the date and time without pressing any buttons (only on iPhone 6S, 6S Plus and iPhone SE or newer)

* New 'Clear all notifications' command

Control Centre

* New-look Control Centre and widgets. Control Centre now split over multiple screens, with music and video control on the second screen and shortcuts for HomeKit devices on the third

Keyboard

* QuickType brings Siri intelligence to the iOS keyboard with improved predictive text and suggestions to add relevant pictures and files

* The keyboard also has a new click sound. The alphanumeric keys have a higher pitch click than the control keys such as Delete, Backspace and the Spacebar so it's easier to hear if you mistype.

Photos app

* There's new face recognition for photos, plus object- and scene-recognition

iOS 10 new features and release date

* Memories is a new tab in iOS 10 Photos, and works just like the similar Google feature by bringing together from a specific time or place in an intelligent way. It will also automatically create editable videos of events.

Camera app

* New support for taking RAW photos with the rear camera (iPhone 6S, iPhone 6S Plus, iPhone SE, and the 9.7-inch iPad Pro or newer).

Maps

* Redesigned Maps app, with easy-access controls by swiping up from the bottom of the screen (will also remember where you parked your car)

iOS 10 new features and release date

* Redesigned Navigation UI, which includes traffic en-route. This will also be opened up to developers

Music

* Apple Music is now simpler, bolder and emphasises the features you use every day. There are onscreen lyrics, too

iOS 10 new features and release date

News

* News has also been redesigned and is now broken into sections to make it easier to browse and has new Subscriptions

Home app

* Home for iOS is a new app that will allow you to control your HomeKit-compatible smart devices

Phone calls

* The Phone app has had an upgrade, and you'll now be able to read transcripts of voicemail messages

iMessage

* Messages gets a big redesign in iOS 10, with automatic emoji insertion, message bubble effects, rich links and more, and it will also be opened to developers so you can use apps within iMessages

iOS 10 new features and release date

In July, Apple released new sticker packs in the App Store for iMessage in iOS 10. They're only available to those running the iOS 10 beta right now of course. The iMessage App Store is also now live. Previously you had to search the main App Store to find the sticker packs.

iOS 10 release date new animated emoji stickers

Other new iOS 10 features

* There's a new 'Wake alarm' which attemps to help you go to bed and wake up at the same time every day. It's much like the system that Jawbone uses, and will give you a bedtime reminder if you want one.

iOS 10 new features and release date

* You can now delete most of the default apps, such as Stocks, Mail, Maps, Calendar etc. (You can reinstall them from the App Store.)

iOS 10 new features and release date

* You no longer swipe to unlock your phone. Now you have to press the home button even after your fingerprint is recognised on phones with Touch ID. That will take some getting used to, and we're not convinced we like it. Presumably Apple has a reason for making this change.

* There's a new Unsubscribe button in Mail that lets you quickly stop marketing emails.

* On devices with a 3D Touch screen, you can hard press on the shortcut icons in Control Centre.

What's new in iOS 10

* There's a new option for managing storage: you can tell your iPhone to delete music that you haven't played for a while.

* When exiting an app back to the home screen, the app's icon animates slower into position so you can see where it is on your home screen. 

* The 'Back to..' message has been redesigned slightly, and you'll sometimes see an option on the right-hand side to go 'forward' to a different app:

What's new in iOS 10

Interestingly, rumours suggest there will be a significant update to iOS 10 in 2017 when Apple launches the next iPads. Apparently, the update will introduce much broader support for the Apple Pencil - the stylus that works with iPad Pro models - so that you'll be able to use it in more apps, such as making annotations in Mail, Safari and Messages.

We've been testing the beta on an iPhone 5C, 5S, iPad Air 2 and iPhone 6S Plus. So far we're impressed with its stability. Although there are a few bugs still - as you can expect with any beta software - it is perfectly possible to use it on your main phone. However, we don't recommend doing this unless you have a backup phone just in case.

iOS 10 reader poll

iOS 10 live blog

iOS 10: How to re-watch iOS 10 live stream

Apple held a live stream of its iPhone and iOS 10 event on its website on Wednesday 7 September.

You can watch that video after the event on Apple's site, but you will need certain hardware. Live streaming uses Apple’s HTTP Live Streaming (HLS) technology. HLS requires an iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch with Safari on iOS 7.0 or later, a Mac with Safari 6.0.5 or later on OS X v10.8.5 or later, or a PC with Microsoft Edge on Windows 10. Streaming via Apple TV requires an Apple TV (2nd or 3rd generation) with software 6.2 or later or an Apple TV (4th generation).

 

iOS 10: live launch as it happened

Read next: WWDC 2016 as it happened

Follow Marie Brewis on Twitter