Now that iOS 16 has arrived, you’re probably counting down the minutes before you can head over to Settings and get it on your iPhone as soon as possible. But wait! Maybe it’s not a good idea to rush into it. Initial major iOS updates often have significant bugs, and a few of the coolest features not coming until a later release, anyway.
We’ll keep an eye on the general public experience and let you know when it’s a good time to jump in.
iOS 16: Why you should update now
Simply put, iOS 16 is full of great new features for your iPhone. The most obvious of which is the awesome new customizable lock screen. There’s new stuff in Focus, you can edit and unsend iMessages, schedule and recall email in Mail, dictation is greatly improved, there’s a haptic keyboard, you can instantly cut the subject out of any image, and more.
While no release is perfect, Apple has a pretty big and extensive beta test for iOS and word on the street is that the initial iOS 16 release is, while not bug free, in pretty good shape. There’s a good chance that you’ll never experience a major bug at all–at least, nothing that outweighs all the cool new features you get.
iOS 16: Why you should wait
Despite all the beta testing, new iOS releases always ship with a handful of notable bugs. They’re usually fixed quickly (within a couple weeks), so you won’t be waiting forever to update. We haven’t noticed any huge bugs with iOS 16 in our testing, but that doesn’t mean they’re not there.
For example, iPhone 14 Pro users are complaining of a camera-shake bug and slow-opening Camera app after a day-one update to iOS 16.0.1 that fixed iMessage and FaceTime activation bugs. Of course, those users can’t avoid iOS 16 (the new iPhones come with it), but it’s an example of the kinds of bugs quickly discovered and fixed. Another is a sporadic bug where the system asks for permission to paste from the clipboard over and over in the same app. Those bugs are expected to be fixed in an update coming the week of September 26.
It’s commonplace these days for some of the announced features of the new iOS to skip the initial launch and make their debut later in the year, in point updates (e.g. iOS 16.1 or 16.2). Live Activities–a sort of live-updating notification for certain apps–is one of the big features that you won’t even see in the initial iOS 16 release. Support for the Matter smart home standard, the Freeform whiteboarding app, iCloud Shared Photo Library, and a couple of Game Center features are also coming in a later update.
Let’s not forget that iPadOS 16.0 won’t even release at all! The initial public release for iPads will be iPadOS 16.1, likely in October. And macOS Ventura should ship around the same time. So if you’ve got a whole Apple ecosystem, and you want to use everything in harmony all at once, you’ll be waiting about a month or so anyway.
Macworld recommends: WAIT
The safest bet is to wait for iOS 16.1 to ship alongside iPadOS 16.1 and maybe macOS Ventura sometime in October. You’ll get more features and a more stable experience. But even if you’d rather update to iOS 16 sooner, skipping the very first release is often a good idea. At the very least, you can give it a week or two to see if Apple issues a quick iOS 16.0.1 bug-fix release, which is expected to arrive the week of September 26.
If you’re the type to hop on the latest thing anyway, minor issues be damned, you probably have already updated and are just reading this article for fun, right?
Read our comparison of iOS 16 vs iOS 15.