Hello, Standardization: 2/3 of iOS Devices Already Run iOS 7

| Analysis

Apple's iOS 7 was released on September 18, and just over a month later, the company is already seeing the updated operating system running on two thirds of its mobile devices. That means there's big interest in the latest iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch operating system, which translates into better standardization across the iOS platform and less consumer support issues -- two things Google's Android OS can't boast.

About 66 percent of iOS devices are already running iOS 7About 66 percent of iOS devices are already running iOS 7

Company CEO Tim Cook shared that detail during the company's fourth fiscal quarter earnings report on Monday afternoon.

"Last month we launched iOS 7, the fastest software upgrade ever," he said. "Nearly two thirds of iOS devices are running iOS 7, significantly higher than other operating systems."

Considering Apple reported selling 33.8 million iPhones and 14.1 million iPads during the quarter, bringing yearly total sales up to 150 million for the iPhones and 71 million iPads, that's a lot of new devices running iOS 7. Adding in iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch models that were already in user's hands, that number jumps up substantially higher.

Apple made the process of upgrading to iOS 7 fairly easy by letting users install the new operating system without needing to connect their devices to a computer, and by offering the upgrade for free. Along with a redesigned user interface that did away with many of the skeuomorphic elements that defined earlier iOS versions, it also improved overall performance and battery life, improved iCloud file sync support, and made many commonly used features easier to access.

While there have been complaints that the iOS 7 look and feel is "too flat," that hasn't seemed to have had a negative impact on the adoption rate.

Apple's iOS has a leg up on Android adoption on another front, too, since there aren't any service providers controlling the update process. iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch users can update at their leisure instead of waiting for carriers to push OS updates out -- a process that in some cases never happens, leaving some smartphone owners with years-old version of Android and no easy way to upgrade.

Apple's control over the iOS upgrade cycle has benefits both for the company and developers. Since iOS 7 adoption is so wide spread, Apple can focus its customer support on the new OS, and developers have fewer compatibility issues to deal with since the majority of their users are likely already upgrading.

In comparison, it's taken more than a year for the latest Android OS to push up to the 50 percent adoption mark, but that still takes lumping together multiple versions to make that happen. Google grouped together Android version 4.1, 4.2, and 4.3 to show a 48.6 percent adoption rate as of the beginning of October.

In other words, it took Apple about a month to blow past Android's Jelly Bean one-year adoption rate.

There are still devices in the wild running versions far older than iOS 7, but that percentage is below the fragmentation developers deal with on Android. That also fits with Apple's overall design philosophy: Move forward or get left behind. Apple is empowering its users so they can make that choice while many Android users are left unable to upgrade thanks to their carrier's whims.

Comments

palenoue

Did Tim Cook say anything about iOS 7 bricking many 3rd generation iPads?  Ever since I (and many, many others) installed iOS 7 our batteries have been draining in record time.  We have about two hours before they die.

geoduck

There’s been a lot of grousing about the new look and the different functionality of iOS7 among the digital elite. I found iOS7 different but not off-putting, though to read some of the online comments it’s the worst thing since Vista. Seriously some of the twits on MacRoumers have been saying that iOS7 was such a disaster that they wanted Cook and Ives fired. They were that over the top.

What I found most interesting though, was my wife. She’s not interested in tech for tech sakes. She just wants it to work, to play a few games, to surf and e-mail, to run a few specialty Apps, like the MLB App, and get a few other things done. She’d said that she wasn’t interested in having me update her iPad2 from 6 to 7 “Because it works. Why mess with it if it’s working”. A couple of weeks ago I got her an iPhone5C. She loves it and didn’t have any trouble adapting to 7. Then last night I walked into the room and sat down next to her. I noticed the iPad was rebooting and asked her about it. Turned out that she liked iOS7 so much that she not only decided to upgrade the iPad, she did it herself. It went seamlessly too. She’s still not interested in fiddling with tech like I am, but she knows what works for her and what she likes.

iOS7 does both.

Maurizio Mancuso 1

The truth is also that many people who have upgraded to “ios7” are regretted. Want to go back to “ios6” but cannot. I am sure, reading many of the comments, that “ios7” configuring as one of the worst jobs ever made by Apple. The awareness or the fear of this bankruptcy have already pushed, for me, free of some products. The failure of the 5c is just the beginning. I believe that Apple is in need of a return to the past and a new beginning. Who will live will see. I hope I am wrong.

iJack

@ Maurizio Mancuso 1 ~ “Worst jobs”?” “Bankruptcy?” What a load of crap!

wab95

palenoue:

I’m curious about your iPad 3rd gen battery performance. I too have a 3rd gen RD iPad LTE, but my device’s battery life has substantially improved, so much so that I now find, when just used casually, that I frequently end the day with more than 70% - 80% battery life (more if I’m travelling, as now, with no cellular service), and may charge only every other or even third day.

I would be curious, when you look at your settings, if you have several location-services intensive apps running in the background (although iOS 7 should be better at managing these than its predecessor) or are doing game/video intensive work with your device. Perhaps the type of usage is an issue.

geoduck:

My son has an iPhone 5. When he came home on mid-term break, he commented, one morning at breakfast, that iOS7 looked too much like Android for him to go with the upgrade. By the time I finished my coffee, and had explained to him all of the new core features of iOS7, including demoing for him what you could do from the lock screen, the lad had recanted his upgrade opposition, became an instant iOS7 enthusiast and then, to his dismay, found that ‘flatness’ of the icons, particularly given the 3D effect of the background, wasn’t so bad after all.

I also think that one should not under-estimate the level of dissatisfaction at play in the Android community about the inability to upgrade their devices. I have heard this on more than one occasion from Android owners, with more than a little disenchantment. Google could substantially improve the Android user experience if they could address this.

Maurizio Mancuso 1

The truth is also that many people who have upgraded to “ios7” are regretted. Want to go back to “ios6” but cannot. I am sure, reading many of the comments, that “ios7” configuring as one of the worst work ever made by Apple. The awareness or the fear of this fiasco have already pushed, for me, free offering of some products. The failure of the 5c is just the beginning. I believe that Apple needs of a return to the past and a new beginning. Who didn’t thinks so is because use their device to play and not for working…. or cosciouness of useless, bad visibility of iOS7 would be more evident. Luckly i found somebody who gives me his iPhone with iOS6 and i will never “downgrade” to iOS7 anymore.
iOS7 have few good improving and worst interface for working (like clear blue on white and other stupid choosing like this) that are invisibile for who use their device to play.
They could improve iOS6 interface, already excellent, and functionality and result would be much better.
Anyway I think that we will see result in the future. I am sure I will never buy anymore an iPhone with iOS7 after my sad esperience.
I ask to myself how long Apple could ignore many protest that I can read on most famous social network.
Who will live will see.
I hope I am wrong.
Sorry for english but I am italian and I was one of the most fan and Customer of Apple…:-(

mrmwebmax

+

I finally bit the bullet and upgraded my iPad 2 to iOS 7 today. Much to my surprise, after adding an animated wallpaper, I find I actually like the new flat icons more than the old ones, which now look kind of silly in a way.

I still just don’t get the interfaces to apps such as Mail. Flat is one thing, but practically monochrome is another. If women’s soft-core porn can have fifty shades of gray, could the mail app maybe have two or three???

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