Apple’s getting early rave reviews for the preview of iOS 7 it showed off today, but there are few things likely to make the transition choppy for users.
Among other features, iOS 7 has a sharp, attractive new design and features users having been asking for including multitasking across all apps and automatic updating of apps that have already been downloaded from the App Store.
While acknowledging a dramatic refresh to the user interface and updates to iOS was long overdue, Ovum analyst Jan Dawson says it won’t be a completely smooth transition for users.
“The new version is almost unrecognizable, which will make it polarizing,” says Dawson. “Some people will love that their phone feels new and different, while others will be disoriented by the newness.”
For example, he notes that something as simple as finding your Settings app is going to be hard when the icon has totally changed.
Another point Dawson makes is that the changes in iOS 7 aren’t the phenomenal advances Apple makes them out to be.
“Many of the new features Apple added to iOS 7 are fixes to problems rather than dramatic or clever new ideas,” he said. “Notifications, Siri, and multitasking enhancements and the introduction of Control Center all deal with deficiencies rather than providing surprising new features no-one would have thought of.”
Hurry up and wait
And lastly, while developers can start to play with a beta of iOS 7, it’ll be several months till consumers can get their hands on it.
"The fact that iOS 7 isn't coming until the fall is a disappointment from a user perspective,” said Dawson. “But the delay is necessary to give developers time to rework their apps to take advantage of the new operating system and fit in visually.”