I’ve been using an Android-powered tablet and can’t figure out how to have it check to see if there’s an update available for the Android OS. What’s the secret?
There’s no actual secret involved in figuring out how to force your Android device to check and see if there’s an update available, actually, though I like the idea of there being a mysterious and arcane knowledge that you could tap into if you were just one of the Illuminati, part of the secret club. Hmm… maybe I should start the Android Insiders Club. Proposed motto: “If you need to ask about joining, you’re not ready to be a member.”
More seriously, though, just like every other operating system, everything you need to know about Android is accessible from the Settings app. And on Android, that app’s icon looks like a couple of sliders in a box.
You can see it’s highlighted in the screen capture below:
If you can’t find the Settings icon because it’s not on any of the main pages, no worries, tap on the button with the six tiny squares within: that shows every single app installed on the tablet, whether they’ve been promoted to one of the home screens or not. (yeah, it’s kinda like Windows 8 in this regard, but I better not say that or all the Android fanatics will get upset with me!)
Tap on Settings and you’ll see a huge number of options:
All well and good, but what you want is actually at the bottom left and sure doesn’t jump out as being something to explore: “About tablet”.
Tap on that option, however, and you’ll see:
Ah, there we go, “System updates”. That’s what you want.
Tap on it and it’ll check with the “mother ship” to see if there are any updates pending. If not:
Easy enough. “OK”.
If there is an update pending, I strongly STRONGLY recommend you plug in your tablet before you begin updating, because it’s really a bad thing to have the tablet die partway through the process.
That’s it. No secret handshake, no meeting room behind the meat counter. Just a few taps.