iOS 17 Logo
iOS 17 Logo

Deciding whether to update your iPhone to iOS 17.4 can feel like a big step. With each new update, Apple aims to improve your device’s performance and security. Yet, it’s normal to wonder what changes this new version brings and how it might affect your phone. This article will break down the key aspects of iOS 17.4, helping you make an informed decision.

iOS 17.4: Upgrade Now or Wait?

Reason to upgradeReason to wait
New features: – Streaming game apps – New emoji – Messaging with Siri – Podcast transcripts – Music recognition – New iMessage security protocol – iPhone 15 battery health – Stolen device protection – Stopwatch Live Activity – Call identification – Messages for Business – Apple TV app changes – App Store purchase history – Clock widget – Apple Cash virtual card numbers – Real-time Apple Card, Apple Savings, and Apple Cash budget app integration – Hand gesture reactions in video apps (developers can turn them off) – Hey Siri in French, German, and Spanish – CarPlay instrument cluster update – Next-generation CarPlay support (coming later in 2024)Potential bugs or compatibility issues: – New features might have bugs – Existing apps might not work perfectly with the new iOS version
Security updates: – Fixes vulnerabilities, including two that may have been actively exploited– No reason to not update
EU Features: – Alternative app stores (EU) – New App Store terms (EU) – Alternative payment options (EU) – Third-party browser updates (EU) – NFC access (EEA) – Web Apps (EU) – Necessary to comply with Digital Markets Act in the European Union– Not necessary for users outside the EU

Note: This table is not exhaustive and only includes a selection of the new features and considerations for iOS 17.4. It is recommended to consult Apple’s official resources or trusted tech news websites for a more comprehensive overview before making the decision to upgrade.

iOS updates often come with a mix of excitement and caution. On one hand, they offer new features and fixes for known issues. On the other, users worry about potential bugs or impacts on their device’s battery life and speed. We’ll look at what iOS 17.4 has to offer, including its security enhancements and any new tools or functionalities that stand out.

Key Takeaways

  • iOS 17.4 boasts significant performance improvements, including longer battery life and faster app launches, enhancing the overall user experience on iPhones and iPads.
  • Security enhancements are a cornerstone of iOS 17.4, offering better protection of personal data against hackers, an updated Lockdown Mode to combat spyware, and patched vulnerabilities to keep devices secure.
  • Key user experience updates include improved CarPlay functionality for dual-screen setups, more choice in default web browsers and payment methods in the EU, and the ability to add songs to Apple Music playlists via Siri, making iOS more personalized and versatile.
  • While iOS 17.4 introduces compelling new features and crucial security updates, users should weigh the potential for performance issues or decreased battery life, with some opting to wait for further updates for a clearer benefit assessment.
  • Ultimately, staying updated with the latest iOS version, like 17.4, is crucial for maintaining device security and performance, despite the absence of some anticipated features and the potential for initial bugs or stability issues.

What’s New in iOS 17.4

iOS 17.4 brings a mix of new features and improvements, keeping iPhone users on their toes. First off, performance enhancements and security updates are at the heart of this release. Apple makes it clear that keeping devices running smoothly and securely is a top priority.

Among the headline features, users will find tweaks that make their iPhones more user-friendly. For example, the update tackles an issue causing iPhones to run warmer than usual, a fix that many will welcome. Also, transferring data directly from another iPhone during setup is now more reliable, addressing a frustrating issue for those setting up a new device.

Bug fixes are plentiful in iOS 17.4, ensuring that minor glitches and annoyances are ironed out. Apple’s track record of refining its software with each update is evident here. They’re committed to polishing the user experience, keeping frustrations at bay.

While the update rolls out key features, it’s important to note that not everything announced made it in time for the September launch. Features like AirDrop over the Internet and Collaborative Apple Music playlists were delayed. However, Apple has a history of following up with these features in subsequent updates.

For users pondering whether to hit the update button, iOS 17.4 offers compelling reasons. Enhanced performance, security boosts, and quality-of-life improvements stand out. Yet, the absence of some anticipated features might give pause to those expecting more.

Remember, keeping your iPhone up to date is crucial for enjoying the latest features while maintaining device security and performance. iOS 17.4, with its mix of improvements and fresh features, is designed to enhance the overall user experience. As Apple continues to release updates, staying current ensures that your device remains at its best.

Performance Improvements in iOS 17.4

iOS 17.4 includes several improvements to make iPhones and iPads run better. The update focuses on speed, efficiency, and a smoother experience across devices. One of the main improvements is optimized battery life, which means devices can last longer on a single charge. Apps also launch faster, and switching between them feels more fluid. The update also includes important security enhancements to protect personal data. CarPlay in iOS 17.4 has been improved for a better driving experience. Apple has addressed known issues and improved overall stability in this release.

iOS Logo
iOS Logo

Security Enhancements in iOS 17.4

iOS 17.4 brings important updates that make iPhones safer. It adds new features and fixes old problems to protect personal info. Every update helps, but this one offers even more security for users. People who update will notice their devices work better and stay safer against hackers.

One big change is better protection for private info. Apple improves security with each release. This means, with iOS 17.4, personal data gets a strong shield against unwanted access. It fixes holes that hackers might use to sneak into devices. So, updating helps keep personal info out of the wrong hands.

Lockdown Mode gets an upgrade too. This mode helps fight against spyware—nasty software that spies on what you’re doing. It turns off some features to block these attacks. If someone tries to use spyware, Lockdown Mode makes it harder for them to succeed. This makes iPhones tougher targets for those bad programs.

Security experts say that staying updated is key. iPhones with older software have more risks. Updates like iOS 17.4 close these risks, making devices safer. It’s not just about new features. It’s about stopping problems before they start. This update makes a big difference in keeping iPhones safe.

Updates also mean better security against digital threats. They patch up weak spots that hackers could use. This keeps personal and private information safer. iOS 17.4 is a step up in defending against these threats. It shows Apple’s commitment to user safety.

User Experience Updates in iOS 17.4

iOS 17.4 has some great new features that make using iPhones easier and more enjoyable. The update improves CarPlay for cars with dual screens, making it easier to see important information while driving. Apple Maps now provides clearer directions and allows you to switch between screens. In the EU, you can choose your default web browser when using Safari, offering more options for browsing. Additionally, you can now use third-party apps for contactless payments, providing more choices beyond Apple Pay. Siri can now add identified songs to your Apple Music playlists, and there are new features that Apple hasn’t fully revealed yet. These updates aim to make the iPhone more personalized and user-friendly for everyone.

Should You Update to iOS 17.4?

Considering whether to update your iPhone to iOS 17.4 comes down to a few important factors. First and foremost, security updates are crucial. iOS 17 has been shown to be safer than iOS 16, fixing over 70 vulnerabilities, which is a lot more than the updates in the final version of iOS 16. If keeping your phone secure is important to you, updating to iOS 17.4 seems like a smart choice. Another thing to think about is the new features and improvements that come with iOS 17.4. From improved CarPlay functionality to better control over your Apple Music playlists through Siri, these updates aim to make your experience smoother. Not to mention the enhancements in Apple Maps and web browsing that can make daily tasks easier. However, it’s also important to consider the possibility of performance issues or reduced battery life that some users experience after an update. As seen in a reported case, an update led to a noticeable drop in iPad performance and battery life. This is a reminder that updates can sometimes have unintended side effects. In short, updating to iOS 17.4 has its pros and cons. The security improvements alone make a strong case for making the switch. However, it’s important to think about your device’s current performance and how important the new features are to your daily use. With iOS updates, timing is everything.


Deciding whether to update to iOS 17.4 requires a careful balance of factors. The security enhancements and added features like improved CarPlay and Siri playlist controls make a compelling case for the upgrade. However, users must also consider the potential for decreased performance and battery life. With the iOS 17.4.1 release on the horizon offering a possibly better-suited update, it’s crucial to weigh the immediate benefits against waiting for further improvements. Ultimately, the choice hinges on individual needs and device capabilities ensuring users make an informed decision that best suits their situation.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is it crucial to update my iOS to the latest version?

Updating to the latest iOS version is vital for enhancing your device’s security, performance, and access to new features. Skipping updates might leave your device vulnerable to security threats and performance issues.

Is iOS 17.4 free, or is there a charge?

iOS 17.4, like all previous iOS updates, is available at no cost. Apple provides these updates for free to ensure that all compatible devices benefit from the latest security and feature enhancements.

What benefits do iOS 17.4 updates offer?

iOS 17.4 introduces significant security improvements, patches to vulnerabilities, plus new features such as enhanced CarPlay functionality, Siri controls for Apple Music playlists, and improvements in Apple Maps and web browsing, making it a worthwhile update.

What are the potential downsides of updating to iOS 17.4?

Some users have reported decreased performance and battery life after updating to iOS 17.4. While these issues might be resolved in future updates, weighing these potential downsides against the benefits is essential.

Given the upcoming iOS 18 release, should I wait to update my phone?

iOS 18 will not be released until September 2024 at the earliest. You can choose to wait until then if you like, but we recommend keeping your devices up to date as soon as possible. If you’re worried about the bugs in 17.4 wait until 17.4.1 and update when most of those are worked out.

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