I’m still flabbergasted that many non-techies are totally oblivious to over-the-air iOS updates. I mean, I’ve seen way too many iPhones out there with a badge on the Settings icon denoting a pending iOS update.

When asked why they didn’t act on the notification, the normals usually respond that they couldn’t figure out what it was so they just left it sitting there, consuming valuable storage space.

Turns out that the upcoming iOS 7.1 includes a new feature which allows you to delete these over-the-air installation files from your device without applying the update, in order to free up storage space for apps and media…

As noted by German-language (Google translation), after downloading the iOS 7.1 Beta 3 over-the-air, you can now delete the installation file without applying the update, as depicted on the screenshot top of post.

Just fire up the Settings app and navigate to General > Usage. You’ll see the new iOS 7 Beta 3 item listed in the apps section. If you don’t see it, hit Show All Apps further below.

Tap the iOS 7 Beta 3 entry and then hit the Delete Update button on the next screen to remove the installer from your device.

That wasn’t possible before.

The new feature is especially useful given iOS automatically downloads available over-the-air updates when your device is on Wi-Fi and connected to a power outlet. I mean, folks even wanted to take Apple to court over unwanted iOS 7 install downloads.

Previously, an iOS installer would get delivered over-the-air and saved to your device, but wouldn’t get removed unless you actually applied the update.

Now you can remove the installer, a cool feature for those who may have changed their mind about applying the latest iOS software update.

These installation files tend to be fairly large: in the case of iOS 7.1 Beta 3, we’re talking about nearly one gigabyte of reclaimed storage space on the device.

Do you find this feature useful?

Have you come across another little known iOS 7 feature?

Don’t be shy, drop us a line on and we’ll consider featuring your tip in our ongoing iOS 7 coverage.

  • Stefano

    GOOD! mine downloaded at work and took up a lot of data

    • Nate McKelvie

      It still downloads, eating the data, you can just delete the downloaded file.

      • Stefano

        yeahh, i reread the article and was like, well, heck LOL

      • Nate McKelvie


  • iBanks

    Good! Now I wonder what those whom wanted to take Apple to court about this is going to cry about now.

    • therealjjohnson

      They are the reason this feature exists now more than likely.

  • Nate McKelvie

    I think it’s cool that they now allow it to be deleted, but what they should really offer is the ability to NOT AUTO DOWNLOAD IT! My parents live in the stix and only get 20gb a month of data on their home internet during daytime hours, between all four of their iOS devices auto downloading they lose like 5gb every time their is an update. They want the updates but they would like to choose to download it at night, and the only way to make sure that’s when it happens is to keep their devices OFF of wifi during the day always lol

    • ✪ aidan harris ✪

      With a little know-how you could probably just block the update server…

      • Jonathan

        You sound like my brother. xD

      • SkyFall

        He might be your brother. (Suspense drams playing) Dun Dun Duuun.

      • Jonathan

        *grabs you and takes for DNA sampling*
        We shall see.
        *returns drama music*

      • Kenrick Fernandes

        did you figure it out :p .. its been over 7 hours already

      • ✪ aidan harris ✪

        Hint, I’m not his brother

      • Jonathan

        Are you lying…?
        *grabs for DNA sampling as well*

      • Jonathan

        Mmm. yeah. He’s my bro. He kept refusing to do DNA sampling simply because the fact we looked to close similar. Hair, body shape, longer legs, face.

      • Nate McKelvie

        I could block the server, but users like my parents, not a chance


      “5gb every time theirs an update”. I don’t think so.

      • CaffeinePizza

        “between all four of their iOS devices” “5gb every time their is an update” possible.

      • Jonathan


      • Nate McKelvie

        Well then maybe you should start thinking how many devices they own

  • ✪ aidan harris ✪

    It’s a shame this doesn’t exist on iOS 6 OTA Updates seriously eat up my devices storage space back when it was on iOS 6…

  • Rick Kreuk

    Maybe this is just the first step in allowing iOS downgrades… #irrationalwishfulthinking

    • Nate McKelvie

      Not in a million years will they allow downgrading, because why do you want to downgrade? Jailbreak? If they were going to allow downgrade, they would just allow the jailbreak

      • Rick Kreuk

        Jailbreaking is not the only reason they block downgrades: the iPhone 3GS is stuck on iOS 6.1.3 and thus forever jailbreakable (untethered), yet they still don’t allow downgrades. Same with original iPad. Apple is simply a control freak, and a scary one indeed. I purchased an iOS experience but cannot go back to it. EVIL!!!

      • Nate McKelvie

        I meant more along the lines of the only reason the user would want to downgrade, but your right, I stand corrected

      • Rick Kreuk

        I asked some non-techy people whether they wanted to downgrade to iOS 6 and somewhat surprisingly over half of them wanted to do so.

        The issue is real, Apple should stop being such a pain. We don’t need this much security: when an attacker has physical access to the device it is game over already.

      • Nate McKelvie

        People are afraid of change, and Your right they know how to use iOS 6 so they like it, they are confused with new ios7 features so they dislike it.

      • Rick Kreuk

        I don’t believe that’s true. They were still quite happy with the functions of the device and could still operate the device just fine. There primary concern was the ugliness and whiteness of the UI and their opinion hasn’t changed in over three months.

  • My wifi download speed 250 kb/s it can never download 1 gb lol :p

    • Trenton

      Mine downloads at 20 Kb/s. You think you have it bad? Haha

      • Jonathan

        And I used to complain at 3 MB. My bad.

      • Trenton

        At about 1 am I can sometimes get it up to 100kb/s if I’m lucky.

      • Jonathan

        I guess I should be extremely thankful for college that I am going to attend. 😛
        up to 100 MB download, 30 MB upload. 0_o

      • Damian W

        hmm….but 20000 students using it at the same time will slow it down. Still fast enough. I think my friend downloaded on a 10minutes break an entire real racing 3. I was impressed. More than 1GB in less than 10 min at school.

      • Jonathan

        Nah. I tried it once at 3:00 in the afternoon on a Friday. Got 80 MB download, and 30 upload.

      • Nomaan

        There are ways to get all the bandwidth without letting others know 😉 and they will think the connection is down.

      • aphunex

        Apple retail stores provide a free wifi hotspot for customers like you 🙂

      • Aww 🙁
        250 KB/s feels good now 🙂

      • Nate McKelvie

        I would shoot myself if I got 250kb/s. I complain all the time about my network being too slow and I got 50mb/s

    • Kenrick Fernandes

      noobs … just applied for 16mbps connection and i get over 2.5 mbps download speed. Just kidding about the noob part. But where are you staying? Isn’t internet cheap there?

      • I’m in Dubai UAE n here internet n telecom r very expensive n u noe what if someone sends me 3 MB pic on whatsapp n I forget to on WiFi n start viewing with cellular by mistake then it will cost me 30 dhs (10$) !! just for seeing that pic !!

  • Abdl

    iOS 7.1 is so tempting!! But mheen i hate those round iconic makeovers in phone ui

    • Kenrick Fernandes

      how does ios 7.1 offer anything new to you that is so tempting? No matter how tempting it is i don’t think ill never switch to it because of the stupid iconic makeovers. Looks ridiculous

  • Damian W

    Flabbergasted nice one

  • felixtaf

    What about stop pushing the updates to devices, than giving an option to delete it after downloading it?
    Anyway, its a good feature.

    • WolfgangHoltz

      “good feature” finally the morons at Apple realized something that should have been there from the start.

  • Abdl

    Guys whats the tweak fix for the notification center glitch of a jailbroken phone,someone posted before but i cant remember. Help out pls

  • ConduciveMammal

    Hmmm strange, I don’t recall any of my iDevices ever pre-downloading new iOS updates

    • Kenrick Fernandes

      same here. Never downloaded for me unless i clicked on it.

  • Brandon D

    Why don’t you guys just download the tweak ‘Software Update Killer’ to prevent it from downloading in the first place? It’s available on the BigBoss repo.

    • leart

      Since the iOS 6 jailbreak it’s impossible to upgrade directly from the device after the jailbreak

      • Donovan

        You can still click on it, then it fucks your device. And Software Update Killer preverts downloading of the update, so it wont take as much space.

      • That’s not the case since the evasi0n jailbreak tool was released; it blocks that during the jailbreak process, so, you’ll just be seeing an infinite loading screen when you do that.

      • James

        You sure? Seems like I remember doing OTA updates on jailbroken iOS 6 before. I’d get a notification that there was an update available, I’d wait to hear from iDB that it was jailbreak-safe, then I would update with no problems.

      • leart

        i am sure, the notification was on ios 5 and lower, my iphone is still on ios 6 jb, and when you click for software upgrade, its just search forever without doing nothing

      • leart

        Its stay like this forever

  • Smart capitalist answer to the automatic iOS 7 OTA download lawsuit…tough luck for those who restored their iPhone to get rid of it just to find it installed…firmware freedom is still a pipe-dream.

  • Ted Forbes

    Goodie! Done!

  • Jay Yap

    I don’t think anyone has noticed on ios7 with an iPhone5 that when you text… while it’s sending if you try to switch from landscape to portrait or viceversa it’s really laggy. BUT I discovered something to speed it up a bit.. when you increase contrast, that laggy switch goes away.

    Also I don’t see the point of “Set and Scale” of the iOS when all you can do is go from normal size to big size only. There is a lack of flexibility with that and I think they should fix it. When setting up photos for contacts, instead of just putting the picture as it is, they automatically zoom the hell out of it making the contact picture way too zoomed in. It’s ugly.

  • Didn’t Apple just get sued over auto-downloads a few months ago? I remember that.

  • Stranger x

    I can’t delete it , can u help me please

  • Mark

    Any idea why they are downloading the IOS updates automatically in the first place. I havet he setting turned off for automatic downloads and it continues to download. It just downloaded IOS 8 and is waiting for me to install.

    I am using IOS 7.04 currently due to some email issues I have experienced in the past 6 months on my iphone.

    Can I do what is suggested in this article on 7.04?