Since the moment it was unveiled at WWDC in June of last year, I’ve been a big fan of iOS 7. While I certainly understand the people who hate change, I am not one of those people. In technology, I welcome change — especially big, bold changes. At the very least, it shows that a company isn’t afraid to experiment. More importantly, it shows that a company isn’t content to rest on its laurels.
So I embraced the gaudy neon and I entered our newly flat world excited. And I remain convinced that in just about every way, iOS 7 is a huge upgrade over the previous iterations. Except one. And it’s a big one.
The software is so inexplicably and inexcusably buggy.
At first, when you’re testing developer builds, you expect this. Bugs pop up and they get stomped out week after week until you’re left with a polished product. But I would hardly call iOS 7 a polished product — again, a full quarter after its initial release to the public. In fact, it seems to be getting worse.
At least two times a day now, my devices running iOS 7 will simply cease to function and restart themselves. This isn’t a full restart, but rather a relatively quick one. And yet it’s no less annoying. I’ll be grabbing my iPhone to take a picture and crash. I’ll be in the middle of an email on my iPad and crash.
It seems like the launcher is crashing and the speculation is that this is a memory bug. It doesn’t really matter. It’s completely unacceptable for a piece of software that tens, if not hundreds, of millions of devices are now running. And I know this isn’t some isolated incident because it happens every single day on three different iOS devices I use regularly (iPhone 5s, iPad Air, iPad mini). And well, the internet exists for complaining.
And it’s hardly the only bug, just the most common one. A number of times a week my phone will become completely unresponsive to any sort of touch input. A hard restart is required to fix it. Switching between apps also seems to crash the system numerous times a week (in particular on the iPad mini). I could go on.
The Twitterverse tells me that the issues are significantly improved with iOS 7.1 (currently in testing with developers). But I still can’t believe that Apple would release such buggy software into the wild. The parallax bug was annoying, but this restart bug should be considered a showstopper. And yet, here we are.
I know that all software has bugs. But this isn’t just any software. This is Apple software 1, core OS software, on the devices that we use more than any other devices in our lives. Life is actually altered if these don’t work as advertised.
I’m approaching wit’s end here. It has been months and the issues appear to be getting worse, not better. Apple has earned our trust over the years with a commitment to quality. iOS 7, for all its strengths, is not up to snuff.
Update: A number of folks have noted that it could be that these bugs are related to the new 64-bit A7 chip found in the newest Apple devices. That’s entirely possible given that all the devices I mentioned above are using the new chip — though others suggest the bugs are found on older devices as well. Either way, we’re talking millions upon millions of devices with show-stopping bugs.