Ways to find the update
Normally, app updates from the internet come out on their own or are reported through a pop-up. If this did not appear or you closed it without paying attention to it, it is possible that it will appear again in the top menu bar, either by going to «Application name»> About … or by going to Help.
If it does not appear in these sections, it is convenient that you try search the developer’s website. There you can check the latest available version and, if it is not the one you have, download it. On the other hand, it is also interesting that you consider the option of contacting the developer directly to report your problem and tell you if there has been a problem with the latest version of their program.
Review privacy settings
As we have already warned, this is not an “official” download route makes the system distrust any executable that is downloaded from the browser. If you had to download a file to update the application, you may get an error when opening it. If you go to System Preferences> Security and Privacy and go to the General tab, you can allow the installation.
However, we recommend that you be careful with this. Although it is true that it may be a harmless file and not contain malware despite the warning, you should be cautious and make sure that it is a trusted application, downloaded from a website that is just as reliable. Therefore, the developers’ own website is always the best bank for this.
Find it in the App Store
There are many programs that are fully reliable and that can only be downloaded from the internet, but there are also others that can be downloaded from both sites. Therefore, and in order to make sure you download the most recent version, it would be interesting that you look in the App Store if it appears there.
If so, it is advisable that this is the version you download, as long as it is not an outdated version. You can check the latter by going to the News tab, where the version history of the application will appear, as well as the date on which each of them were launched.
If it’s from the official App Store
If the application you are trying to update comes from the official macOS application store, the App Store, there are a number of checks that you should carry out in order to locate the possible problem.
Since macOS 10.15 Catalina, Macs have a feature called Use time that allows, among other things, to configure a series of restrictions on the equipment. Therefore, even if you do not remember having configured it, it is possible that you have a limitation for the App Store that prevents the correct download of updates.
To review it, you just have to go to System Preferences> Time of Use and go to the Limits tab for the use of apps. It is also convenient that you check in Options if the possibility of sharing these restrictions between devices is active, since it is possible that it may affect the use of the iPhone or other equipment that you have with the same Apple ID.
Examine the status of the servers
The servers on which the applications and games of the App Store are hosted can crash. It is not the most frequent and in fact it has never happened regularly, but it is an existing possibility. Either for maintenance reasons or any other problem, if these are down you will have difficulties both to update the programs and for other actions within the store.
For this, Apple enables a system status website where you can check its status. If you notice that the App Store appears in orange or red, it is experiencing problems, so you will have no choice but to stay tuned to see if it is resolved. Tell you that, luckily, when these situations occur they are usually corrected quickly.
Check if there really is an update
It sounds absurd, yes, but what if a new version of the app has not really come out? It is possible that you have read or heard of the existence of a new version of a certain app and it really is not like that. It is also possible that for some reason the developers have withdrawn it or that directly has already been automatically updated if you have that option active.
The best thing to do in this case is to search directly for the application in question in the App Store and go to the ‘What’s New’ tab to obtain information about the latest version they have released. Then you must open the application and, in the upper menu bar, click on its name and then go to “About …”, since the version number will appear there and you will be able to see if it matches the latest one.
Find it on the developer’s website
There are many applications that, despite being available in the App Store, are also available through the developer’s website. The normal thing is that they are always the same versions and that the changes introduced in the App Store are also reflected in the other space. Now, there may be the circumstantial case that a developer has decided to stop supporting the App Store (even temporarily) and offers it only on their website.
Therefore, it is convenient that you enter its official website, being the most reliable place to find information. In fact, in this place you can find a way to contact them to resolve your doubts about it, although at this point you should have already been able to find the latest version available.