3 Replies Latest reply: Jun 20, 2013 6:38 AM by mackerm
mattybeez Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

The iphone 3gs does not have software update button in the general section of settings, when i search for updates under settings it only gives me 4.2, My kids use the old phone for the apps, but any new apps need a newer IOS, any suggestions.

Thanks In Advance

iPhone 3G, iOS 5.0.1
  • 1. Re: how do i update my 3gs to ios 5.0
    Kappy Level 10 Level 10 (226,805 points)

    See the chart below to determine whether you can upgrade your device and what you can upgrade to. If you do not have a Software Update option present on your iDevice, then you are trying to upgrade to iOS 5 or higher. You will have to connect your device to your computer and open iTunes in order to upgrade.


    IPhone, iPod Touch, and iPad iOS Compatibility Chart


         Device                                       iOS Verson


    iPhone 1                                      iOS 3.1.3

    iPhone 3G                                   iOS 4.2.1

    iPhone 3GS                                 iOS 6.1.x

    iPhone 4                                      iOS 6.1.x

    iPhone 4S                                    iOS 6.1.x

    iPhone 5                                      iOS 6.1.x


    iPod Touch 1                               iOS 3.1.3

    iPod Touch 2                               iOS 4.2.1

    iPod Touch 3                               iOS 5.1.1

    iPod Touch 4                               iOS 6.1.x

    iPod Touch 5                               iOS 6.1.x


    iPad 1                                          iOS 5.1.1

    iPad 2                                          iOS 6.1.x

    iPad 3                                          iOS 6.1.x

    iPad 4                                          iOS 6.1.x

    iPad Mini                                     iOS 6.1.x



    Select the method most appropriate for your situation.


    Upgrading iOS

       1. How to update your iPhone, iPad, or iPod Touch

       2. iPhone Support

       3. iPod Touch Support

       4. iPad Support


         a. Updating Your iOS to Version 6.0.x from iOS 5


              Tap Settings > General > Software Update


         If an update is available there will be an active Update button. If you are current,

         then you will see a gray screen with a message saying your are up to date.


         b. If you are still using iOS 4 Updating your device to iOS 5 or later.


         c. Resolving update problems


            1. iOS - Unable to update or restore

            2. iOS- Resolving update and restore alert messages

  • 2. Re: how do i update my 3gs to ios 5.0
    KiltedTim Level 8 Level 8 (37,815 points)

    It sounds to me like it's a 3G, NOT a 3GS. The 3G can only go up to 4.2.1.

  • 3. Re: how do i update my 3gs to ios 5.0
    mackerm Level 1 Level 1 (95 points)

    There are still lots of apps available for iOS 4.2.1 and earlier.. Here are a few tips and sites for finding compatible apps which are frequently mentioned in the discussion forum:


    Vintapps 3.1.3 - paid app.

    Apple Club - filter apps by iOS version.

    Discussion post by msgarmar - technique to sort apps by date.

    iOS Search - search the iTunes store for compatible apps.