John Carter reports on his experience with updates. "I updated my iPad 4, my iPhone 5, and Jackie's iPhone 4S.
"No problems with my stuff. It took a long time, but everything came up normally.
"Jackie's 4S was a different story. I did that one last.
"The short story is that Verizon was overloaded with updates, and they couldn't keep up. Apple was also inundated, and they couldn't keep up. Hence, during the update process for the 4S, Apple had a hiccup and the 4S was crippled during the update. Not to worry. A fresh start made everything right — almost.
"One thing that happened with the 4S that did not happen with the iPad 4 or the iPhone 5 was right after the iOS7 update completed. I got a notice that a new update was available for the carrier on the 4S. I did that, too.
"When I finally got to use the 4S, it would not connect to Verizon. Getting on the Internet was no problem — but no phone service. A call to Verizon revealed that many people were having the same problem. The fix was to do a complete reset of the phone (wiping all data off) and restore the phone from a backup through iTunes. Oh, yes, I forgot to mention this - MAKE SURE YOU BACKUP YOUR DEVICES BEFORE YOU START THE UPDATE!
"After the 4S was restored (the second time), I was able to validate the connection to Verizon and everything worked."
Take a deep breath, John has more info to share!
"So what's really new with iOS7? I mean, really new? Not just in appearances, but in functionality. The calendar had the biggest surprise. The familiar interface is not only gone, but one of the features is hidden. In order to see your calendar entries as a list, you have to tap on the Search icon. To see the calendar in the month mode, you tap on the name of the month. Then the year shows up where the name of the month was, and tapping on that shows you the whole year. Actually, this is far easier to navigate than it sounds, and I quickly got used to it.
"I tried to take a snapshot of the screen, but the snapshot does not show everything that you can see. So the image below is a screenshot showing both what the calendar looks like (left side) and what you get when you take a screenshot (right side). (Yes, it was tricky getting this shot.)
To enlarge the illustration click on it, then click to go back to the post.
"So what does Jackie think about the update? She was very angry that the phone didn't work, and she had to leave before I got it working again. As for everything else, she's flexible enough to not worry about the changes. Besides, she has me to fall back on.
"I very much like the new Compass. Apple has added a secondary feature to it - a bubble level. Very neat, especially for me when I need to level my telescope mount."
Here's John's report on the OS X update:
"So what about the Mac update to 10.5.8. Quite painless on the Mac Mini, the MacBook Air, and my two MacBook Pros. But one thing happened with Mail that I am not very happy about.
"I have several mailbox aliases below the Toolbar (boxed in red in the image below.) This gives me quick access to my most frequently used mailboxes.
"They were all greyed out. No access. I quickly discovered that I had to remove them and add the aliases back in.
"Then I discovered that NONE of my Rules were active. I had to go through each of my several dozen Rules and reference the action back to the original mailbox that the message was supposed to be moved to (see red circle in image below). The weird part was that when I reset one, that same mailbox showed up as the default location for the next one that I needed to fix."
"I'm quite sure that many people will have a serious problem with this, and I'm very surprised that it didn't show up in the Beta testing."
Here's John's recommendations:
"Do I recommend getting the updates right away? To this I always say, why not? How long do you think you will have to wait before you can know for a fact that you won't have any problems with the update? Can you live without the update? Certainly! But eventually you will be faced with having to update when one or more of your apps are no longer supported with your old operating system— just like when Classic 9 became unusable. And if you trade your device in, you will get the latest operating system anyway.
"To update the iPhone, you have to have your computer to get the update. I recommend updating the computer first.
"One last thing. The iTunes update (11.1) modifies the iTunes library. So if you have more than one computer using the same iTunes library, you're forced to update iTunes on every computer. Besides that, if you are accessing the same iTunes library (or iPhoto library) from different computers, you have to shut down iTunes/iPhoto on one computer before launching iTunes/iPhoto on any other computer. This is such a rare situation that it probably isn't even worth mentioning. But if you have, say, a MacBook Air with a small hard drive and a Mac Mini with a large hard drive, it won't be long before you realize that you should have bought a bigger hard drive for the MacBook Air. This cannot be remedied except by sharing files with another computer or by adding an external hard drive to the MacBook Air - and that uses up one of the only two USB ports on the MacBook Air. And you can't run an external hard drive off of a USB port expander along with any other device, even if the USB expander is powered (or so my experience tells me).
"For the most part, the updates do not change how any non-Apple app looks or behaves. As vendors start providing updates for their apps, this will undoubtedly change.
"For the iPhone, just take a deep breath and get the updates in a week or so when things have settled down at Apple and Verizon.
"For the Mac, get it now."