Is Your iPhone Compatible with iOS 8?

iPhone 5s with iOS 8
iPhone 5s with iOS 8. Apple, Inc.

When Apple took the wraps off its newest version of the operating system that runs the iPhone and iPod touch, iOS 8, it introduced hundreds of great new features like Handoff and iCloud Drive, user interface improvements, and new built-in apps like Health. 

Unlike in previous years, all devices that are iOS 8 compatible are able to use all features of the new OS. In the past, older devices were unable to use certain advanced features.

iOS 8 Compatible Apple Devices

iPhoneiPod touchiPad
iPhone 6 Plus6th gen. iPod touchiPad Air 2
iPhone 65th gen. iPod touchiPad Air 
iPhone 5S 4th gen. iPad
iPhone 5C 3rd gen. iPad
iPhone 5 iPad 2
iPhone 4S iPad mini 3
  iPad mini 2
  iPad mini

Later iOS 8 Releases

Apple released 10 updates to iOS 8. All of those releases continued to be compatible with all devices in the table above. This is somewhat different than some earlier versions of the iOS, which occasionally dropped support for devices or features as interim OS updates were made.

The iOS 8.0.1 update was notable because Apple withdrew it after reports that it caused problems in the 4G cellular connection and Touch ID fingerprint scanner of the then-recently released iPhone 6 series models. It released iOS 8.0.2, which brought the same features and fixed the bug, the next day.

For an overview of and details on the iOS's full release history, check out iPhone Firmware & iOS History.

Key iOS 8 Features

After the major interface and feature overhauls introduced in iOS 7, iOS 8 wasn't quite as dramatic a change. It nevertheless added some core features to the OS and some valuable improvements to the apps that came pre-installed on it. Notable iOS 8 features include:

  • Health app and HealthKit framework
  • App extensions
  • Family Sharing
  • iCloud Drive
  • Touch ID support in third-party apps
  • Homekit framework
  • Redesigned Notification Center.

iOS 8 Release History

  • iOS 8.4.1 release: Aug. 13, 2015
  • iOS 8.4 release: June 30, 2015
  • iOS 8.3 release: April 8, 2015
  • iOS 8.2 release: March 2, 2015
  • iOS 8.1.3 release: Jan. 27, 2015
  • iOS 8.1.2 release: Dec. 9, 2014
  • iOS 8.1.1 release: Nov. 17, 2014
  • iOS 8.1 release: Oct. 20, 2014
  • iOS 8.0.2 release: Sept. 25, 2014
  • iOS 8.0.1 release: Sept. 24, 2014 (withdrawn due to bugs)
  • iOS 8 release: Sept. 17, 2014

iOS 9 was released Sept. 16, 2015

What If Your Device Isn't iOS 8 Compatible?

If your device isn't on this list, it can't run iOS 8 (in some cases—such as the iPhone 6S series—that's because it can only run newer versions). That isn't entirely bad news. Having the latest and greatest features is preferable, but every device on this list can run iOS 7, which is a very good operating system in its own right (see the full list of iOS 7-compatible devices).

If your device can't run iOS 8, or is one of the older models on the list, it might be time to consider upgrading. Not only will be able to run the latest OS, but you'll also benefit from a ton of valuable new hardware features like a faster processor, longer battery life, and an improved camera.