Apple’s six-year-old iPhone 6s will get iOS 15

The iPhone 6S will turn six years old this September, which is like 106 in phone years. If you’re still rocking a venerable 6S (you’ve replaced the battery at least once, we presume), then Apple has some good news for you — your Home-buttoned techantique will be able to upgrade to iOS 15 when it arrives for the public this fall.

Apple iPhone 6s Plus in Rose Gold anodized 7000 Series aluminum
Apple iPhone 6s Plus in Rose Gold anodized 7000 Series aluminum

Allison Johnson for The Verge:

The iPhone 6S, 6S Plus, and first-generation iPhone SE, which all shipped with iOS 9 (released on September 16, 2015), will be among the oldest devices to receive the OS update.

Six years is an awfully long life span for a mobile device, and certainly puts the 6S in the running for the longest supported phone to date… On the Android side, Samsung has made recent moves to improve its device longevity by offering four years of security support for some of its phones. But six years of OS updates and security support puts the 6S in an entirely different league.

To be sure, there are a lot of new features that won’t work with the 6S’s A9 Bionic processor. Features like the Google Lens-esque Visual Lookup, Live Text in photos, portrait mode in FaceTime, and immersive walking directions in Maps won’t be available to 6S users, since they all require a device with an A12 Bionic chip a la the XS and XR or later… iPhone 6S owners shouldn’t despair, though. They’ll still get potentially useful updates like notification summaries and Focus modes to minimize interruptions throughout the day, video and music sharing in FaceTime, and added privacy features…

MacDailyNews Note: iOS 15 is compatible with these devices:

• iPhone 12 Pro Max
• iPhone 12 Pro
• iPhone 12
• iPhone 12 mini
• iPhone 11 Pro Max
• iPhone 11 Pro
• iPhone 11
• iPhone XS Max
• iPhone XS
• iPhone XR
• iPhone X
• iPhone 8 Plus
• iPhone 8
• iPhone 7 Plus
• iPhone 7
• iPhone 6s Plus
• iPhone 6s
• iPhone SE (2nd generation)
• iPhone SE (1st generation)
• iPod touch (7th generation)


  1. Ahhh, some goods news after the worst WWDC in history a step in the right direction and good news for Apple customers. Longevity for older devices, WooHoo!

    Hopefully spills over over to MacOS, but certainly understand the hardware limitations…

  2. Yay for my little iPhone SE (2016)! I plan to keep using it. And yay for “antiquated” Home button with Touch ID, which is still used on brand new Apple products… iPhone SE (2020), iPad, iPad mini, iPod touch. Efficient, intuitive, and practical.

    For MacOS, my old 2017 MacBook Air will probably be supported into the release AFTER Monterey, because Monterey supports the previous 2015 MacBook Air models.

    1. Yes, yay for my SE second generation and plan on using it for years. Better cameras and a bit faster expensive newer phones does not impress me, have all I need…

  3. Apple has continually closed the Mac OS over the years, Seems like every new OS it becomes a locked down system with no input from developers, and only for Apple to do with what it wants. I can remember when OSX came out, it was fully Open for people to add, change and develop into something interesting, but over the years that ability has been taken away and denied. Something vibrant and full of life has become something Cold and boring.

    1. Apple will still support it with software updates. I have an iPhone 5S. I find it useful (like an iPod touch) so I replaced battery DIY a few weeks ago. I still get period software updates (probably mostly for security) for it, now at iOS 12.5.3. My iPhone SE needs new battery soon; I may use my iPhone 5S as my active “phone” for a few months. It works great now, and still does what I need as my pocket iPad when I don’t have my big iPad. The good thing is NOT getting constant software updates.

  4. The fact that it will run doesn’t mean it won’t slow it to a crawl. iOS 8 left my 4s taking 20 seconds to start a podcast playing – even if it was already downloaded.

  5. The 6S is noticeably faster than the 6 for many tasks and loading games such as Minecraft. My kids are using both of those models as iPod touches and I see a big difference with the 6S. Many of the Minecraft add-ons do not work on a 6 only the 6S. So not surprised by this news.

Reader Feedback

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.