Considering updates are now OTA, shouldn't Apple be updating phones more frequently?

Shouldn't we have had more OTA updates on our phones by now?

  • Yes

    Votes: 27 42.9%
  • No

    Votes: 36 57.1%

  • Total voters
    63

Calidude

macrumors 68000
Original poster
Jun 22, 2010
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I realize that some people think Apple can do no wrong, but aren't most people kind of taken aback that Apple isn't releasing updates more frequently?

There's a 5.1 in beta right now, and we've gotten a 5.0.1, but shouldn't we have gotten say...3 OTA updates by now, to roll out bugs quickly, rather than wait so long for bugfixes as if we still had to connect our phones to our Mac/PC?

Just wanted to see how many people shared my sentiments.
 
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vitzr

macrumors 68030
Jul 28, 2011
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California
I agree.

However, despite Apple presenting themselves as an "innovator" it only applies to some areas of their business. By virtue of their closed & locked down Eco System, their primary addiction to proprietary wired connections is their expertise.

True wireless, not so much. There's going to be a prolonged period of transition as Apple comes up to speed with OTA. That's just how it is.
 

maflynn

Moderator
Staff member
May 3, 2009
65,443
31,481
Boston
How apple gets the update to you has very little to do with their update schedule. They still have to do the same amount of work needed for updates whether the update comes OTA, or through iTunes.
 

Small White Car

macrumors G4
Aug 29, 2006
10,899
1,125
Washington DC
I get annoyed at companies that e-mail me too frequently.

No matter how easy and update is, it still takes longer to do than it does to erase an e-mail message.

So the bottom line is, no, I don't want to ask companies to pop up and interrupt my daily life even more than they currently do.

True wireless, not so much. There's going to be a prolonged period of transition as Apple comes up to speed with OTA. That's just how it is.
Ok, apparently I'm stupid, so can you please explain to me how the current 'wireless update' on the iPhone isn't actually a true wireless update?
 

Calidude

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Original poster
Jun 22, 2010
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How apple gets the update to you has very little to do with their update schedule. They still have to do the same amount of work needed for updates whether the update comes OTA, or through iTunes.
Yes but with their new OTA system, critical bugs should have been pushed out to users first.

There should have been a 5.0.2 and 5.0.3 update by now considering how many things people have been complaining about.
 

Calidude

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Original poster
Jun 22, 2010
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I get annoyed at companies that e-mail me too frequently.

No matter how easy and update is, it still takes longer to do than it does to erase an e-mail message.

So the bottom line is, no, I don't want to ask companies to pop up and interrupt my daily life even more than they currently do.
Your point is irrelevant. Emails are mostly useless to customers, while updates are among the most useful things a tech company can do.

I'm not saying Apple should be pushing out updates every few days. I'm just saying that Apple should be using the full potential of an OTA system to make their users happier faster. We shouldn't be waiting for a big 5.1 release (that doesn't seem to have any features worth noting) We should be getting 5.0.2, 5.0.3, 5.0.4 and keep the 5.X releases for new features only.

The iMessage bug for example, should have been fixed immediately, but now people's messages are still being sent to other people.
 

Small White Car

macrumors G4
Aug 29, 2006
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There should have been a 5.0.2 and 5.0.3 update by now considering how many things people have been complaining about.
Your plan would really be a kick to the crotch of developers who would find they don't have the time to check their app against each and every update that's being rushed out.

Pretty soon they'll find themselves testing far more than they're actually working on their apps. Instead of testing 5.1 like they are now, you'd have them test several different OS's just to get to the same place.

I can't imagine that workflow being popular with any developers.
 

The Phazer

macrumors 68030
Oct 31, 2007
2,764
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London, UK
I fail to realize HOW an update gets to us, has anything to do with how OFTEN it should get to us.
Being able to implement delta updates rather than pushing the entire OS every time has some quite significant advantages, just in terms of bandwidth alone.

I could certainly see it being a factor.

Phazer
 

Calidude

macrumors 68000
Original poster
Jun 22, 2010
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Your plan would really be a kick to the crotch of developers who would find they don't have the time to check their app against each and every update that's being rushed out.

Pretty soon they'll find themselves testing far more than they're actually working on their apps. Instead of testing 5.1 like they are now, you'd have them test several different OS's just to get to the same place.

I can't imagine that workflow being popular with any developers.
I'm sorry, BUGFIXES would mess up things for app developers?

Updates that actually make something work the way people EXPECT it to work and SHOULD work would be a PROBLEM for developers?

It's fine for an update to be in beta-testing by developers, but only if the update actually adds something that could break their apps, not fix the way something they know about works.

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I fail to realize HOW an update gets to us, has anything to do with how OFTEN it should get to us.
Are you more likely to just press a button on your phone to update or connect it to your computer to receive the update? OTA updates are meant to deploy critical fixes faster to people rather than have them complain about their phone not working the way it should simply because they haven't needed to upload music to it and inadvertently get an update from iTunes.

In other words, it was fine for Apple to take so long to update our phones since we needed to connect it to a computer anyway, but now that they've added delta updates, there's no reason why they should continue to make people wait the same amount of time to get their phones fixed.
 
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Small White Car

macrumors G4
Aug 29, 2006
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I'm sorry, BUGFIXES would mess up things for app developers?

Updates that actually make something work the way people EXPECT it to work and SHOULD work would be a PROBLEM for developers?
Ok, I'm curious now.

Surely there are some developers here. I'm asking: When 5.0.1 came out did you all test your app against it or did you think "eh, it's just a 0.01. What could go wrong?"
 

OneMike

macrumors 603
Oct 19, 2005
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I expected in general that we would've seen faster releases, at least for bugs.
 

JeffreyDJ

macrumors regular
Jun 26, 2010
130
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Ok, I'm curious now.

Surely there are some developers here. I'm asking: When 5.0.1 came out did you all test your app against it or did you think "eh, it's just a 0.01. What could go wrong?"
You're right. In any software development -- a new version of an OS, be it a point release or full release *should* be tested to ensure that a "fix" didn't break something else. To think otherwise shows a complete lack of knowledge as it relates to OS development. Anyone that has truly been a software developer for awhile has been bitten by a "What could go wrong? It's only a small change."

I understand the sentiment, but the reality is that the method of deployment shouldn't speed up completing a quality update.
 

takeshi74

macrumors 601
Feb 9, 2011
4,972
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I realize that some people think Apple can do no wrong, but aren't most people kind of taken aback that Apple isn't releasing updates more frequently?
False dichotomy. Updates should come out as needed and as they're ready -- not based on some random forum user's whim regarding when they should come out. What makes you think that not having OTA was the bottleneck to begin with?

There should have been a 5.0.2 and 5.0.3 update by now considering how many things people have been complaining about.
What are you basing this on? Forum posts? You can't rely on forum posts as any sort of statistical evidence. Keep your day job and leave analyzing statistics to the pros.

I'm sorry, BUGFIXES would mess up things for app developers?
You've clearly never done any serious coding. Everything seems simple when you're blissfully ignorant.
 
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Calidude

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Original poster
Jun 22, 2010
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You're right. In any software development -- a new version of an OS, be it a point release or full release *should* be tested to ensure that a "fix" didn't break something else. To think otherwise shows a complete lack of knowledge as it relates to OS development. Anyone that has truly been a software developer for awhile has been bitten by a "What could go wrong? It's only a small change."

I understand the sentiment, but the reality is that the method of deployment shouldn't speed up completing a quality update.
I'm sorry, but in 2 and a half months, pushing out 1 very minor update just isn't enough. Especially for a company that has full control of the hardware and software aspects of their products, which are few in number compared to similar companies like RIM, Nokia, etc. I don't care if you have to make it beta each time for a week or two before its pushed out so devs can be properly prepared. We should have received more updates by now.

----------

False dichotomy. Updates should come out as needed. What makes you think that not having OTA was the bottleneck to begin with?
As you can see from the threads on these forums, updates are very much needed. What's the bottleneck?
 

interrobang

macrumors 6502
May 25, 2011
369
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How apple gets the update to you has very little to do with their update schedule. They still have to do the same amount of work needed for updates whether the update comes OTA, or through iTunes.
Exactly. It takes Apple the same time to develop and test the updates as before.

All the OTA update system does is make it easier and faster for you to install. It doesn't make Apple's programmers fix bugs any faster, and it doesn't make Apple's testing process any faster. Those are what delays releases.

I'm sorry, BUGFIXES would mess up things for app developers?
Yes, because fixing bugs is complicated, and tends to introduce new, worse bugs.

App developers are usually the first to notice when a new bug is introduced, which is why developers are given access to test builds before they are released.
 

Calidude

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Original poster
Jun 22, 2010
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Exactly. It takes Apple the same time to develop and test the updates as before.

All the OTA update system does is make it easier and faster for you to install. It doesn't make Apple's programmers fix bugs any faster, and it doesn't make Apple's testing process any faster. Those are what delays releases.
Obviously it doesn't make bugs get fixed faster. What I'm saying is that bugs that HAVE been fixed should be pushed out already, instead of waiting for them to get lumped in with other bugfixes yet to be finished.

Yes, because fixing bugs is complicated, and tends to introduce new, worse bugs.

App developers are usually the first to notice when a new bug is introduced, which is why developers are given access to test builds before they are released.
Again, developers can beta test all they want. It doesn't mean users should have to wait for a big pile of bugs to be fixed rather than receive smaller piles of bugs through OTA every few weeks.
 

JeffreyDJ

macrumors regular
Jun 26, 2010
130
0
I'm sorry, but in 2 and a half months, pushing out 1 very minor update just isn't enough. Especially for a company that has full control of the hardware and software aspects of their products, which are few in number compared to similar companies like RIM, Nokia, etc. I don't care if you have to make it beta each time for a week or two before its pushed out so devs can be properly prepared. We should have received more updates by now.

That's a different argument than it should be faster than OTA. The point is that regardless of deployment method, the speed should be the same.

Additionally, I'd rather they actually fix the issues than rush a potentially more bug riddled product out ... Apple is notorious for taking there time on updates -- and there have been two major american holidays mixed in there as well.
 

maflynn

Moderator
Staff member
May 3, 2009
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Boston
Yes but with their new OTA system, critical bugs should have been pushed out to users first.
But the work required to produce those updates has not changed, nor has the fit/gap and regression testing. There's more to bug fixes then fixing a few lines of code. They need to be sure that it introduce any new bugs or cause any other unforseen issues. All of that takes time. The actual delivery of the update is a tiny piece of the puzzle.
 

Calidude

macrumors 68000
Original poster
Jun 22, 2010
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But the work required to produce those updates has not changed, nor has the fit/gap and regression testing. There's more to bug fixes then fixing a few lines of code. They need to be sure that it introduce any new bugs or cause any other unforseen issues. All of that takes time. The actual delivery of the update is a tiny piece of the puzzle.
New bugs and unforeseen issues happened even after we've received updates on iTunes during the 4.X series, even after being minimized by testing and after introducing major features in 4.1, 4.2 and 4.3.

The mode of delivery being changed should bring about a revolution in how those bugs are dealt with.
 

Interstella5555

macrumors 603
Jun 30, 2008
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New bugs and unforeseen issues happened even after we've received updates on iTunes during the 4.X series, even after being minimized by testing and after introducing major features in 4.1, 4.2 and 4.3.

The mode of delivery being changed should bring about a revolution in how those bugs are dealt with.
How so exactly? method of delivery ≠ quicker coding, just as quicker coding ≠ quality code. I'm not sure if you're just confused about how delivery doesn't correlate to production and building, or you think that sending updates OTA is somehow different than people accessing it on the computer, but they are two different things.
 

scaredpoet

macrumors 604
Apr 6, 2007
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The mode of delivery being changed should bring about a revolution in how those bugs are dealt with.
How? Have you noticed how often (or rather, not-so-often) Apple pushes out updates for OS X? Macs have never been subject to the plug-into-another-computer requirement to do an update, and yet that doesn't translate into rapid-fire bug fix updates.

The delivery method isn't the issue here. It's Apple's philosophy. They don't want to push a bunch of middling little updates frequently because it can be annoying, and I tend to agree with that. Microsoft had the same issue before they introduced Patch Tuesday.

I can agree that they might sometimes stretch a bit long with their updates though. Like, it would've been nice to see a 5.0.2 with a second battery fix sooner, if anything to pacify those who are still having battery drain problems. But I don't want the other extreme either: I want my phone to work, not to be down for certain periods of the day while I'm forced to download the latest nightly build of iOS.
 

Calidude

macrumors 68000
Original poster
Jun 22, 2010
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How so exactly? method of delivery ≠ quicker coding, just as quicker coding ≠ quality code. I'm not sure if you're just confused about how delivery doesn't correlate to production and building, or you think that sending updates OTA is somehow different than people accessing it on the computer, but they are two different things.
I'm not confused at all. I'm saying that bugfixes should be rolled out in a more distributed manner, like with Patch Tuesday as described above.