We’ve seen it time and time again. Bigger, better, faster, more features in the next release of Apple’s IOS software. Apple’s line of mobile devices the iPhone and iPad are really very small versions of their larger computers like the iMac, Macbook and Mac Mini to name a few. So, in turn, the releases of IOS for iPhones and iPads are in actuality tied to the software that runs on their larger brethren. Apples latest release of IOS 8 is related to OSX version 10.10 and receives many new features because of this. One of these is an increase in security such as message-specific encryption and the availability of a passcode lock for an increasing number of apps. A new feature Apple refers to is “Continuity” which allows for Macs, iPads and IPhones to and I quote, “interact automagically”. What does this mean exactly? Some rather nice new capabilities like automatically creating hotspots for iPad and Mac users to use when out of range of a Wi-Fi connection and notifying users how long it will take to make it to an appointment that is set in their calendar. Sounds pretty cool eh? Other improvements include sharing files across devices which appeared in IOS 7 as AirDrop is now called Handoff in IOS 8 syncing files on Mac’s and Iphones that are located in close proximity to one another increasing productivity and user experience.
There are those that are concerned that these features will in effect allow for more security holes in which data can be accessed by parties that shouldn’t have such permission. Think about it, would you want to have highly sensitive data on a business computer that is carefully locked down to prevent leakage of data to unauthorized users shared to a device that may have other security weaknesses or vulnerable to exploits? Probably not!
The developing trend of cloud storage first seen with services like Dropbox and Google drive are now becoming available within Apple iCloud. Files can very easily be uploaded to the iCloud drive by simply dragging and dropping. All of this is blurring the lines between personal data and enterprise IT data and its best practices
As our business focuses primarily on mobile devices, repairing and keeping them working properly for our customers here in Redmond, unless there is some burning desire for a new feature I recommend not to do an upgrade for at least one or two bug fix releases or better yet a major upgrade like 8.1. Reason being there are bugs! With the release of IOS 8 in September users are experiencing issues with bluetooth connectivity mostly with connecting devices to their car’s bluetooth system. One fix to this is to “Reset all Settings” which in some cases blows away iCloud drive data! Other issues include not being able to download App Store purchases and problems with family share. Others can be even more frustrating like decreasing the ability to send and receive phone calls on your device.
Even though the latest and greatest is supposed to work on devices as far back as the iPhone 4S it may not be a good idea to upgrade merely for the performance hit. If you have an iPhone 4 running IOS 7 you know what I mean. It lags horribly and makes the device difficult to use and since there’s no downgrading to an older release you’re stuck with it! As a matter of fact iPhone 4 owners are unable to upgrade to IOS 8. In my opinion be it ever so humble I would advise waiting on system software upgrades and perhaps only do so if you must.