I completely understand the logic behind doing this, but as the old versions get older, less and less people will visit the forums for each version. So let's say someone comes to the iOS 6 forum in about 2 years asking for help with iOS 6 on an old iPod touch. How many people will be visiting that specific forum compared to the forums for both newer versions and the iOS 5 and earlier forum? If the iOS 6 forum were merged into the 5 and earlier forum, there's a higher chance that person would be able to receive help.Rather than merge forums and lose the distinction between them, we moved the iOS 5 and earlier forum and the iOS 6 forum into an Older iOS Versions sub-forum.
When we eventually add an iOS 10 forum, we'll move move the iOS 7 forum into the Older iOS Versions sub-forum. When we add an iOS 11 forum, we'll move the iOS 8 forum. And so on.
The same pattern applies to the Older OS X Versions sub-forum.
It's possible, and you've identified an advantage of doing so.I guess what I'm trying to ask is this- will there ever be a point where forums dedicated to older versions of iOS and OS X become so sparsely visited that you'll merge them into the "X and earlier" forum?
Ahh, gotcha. Yeah, I don't use the New Posts or Spy features, so I kinda forgot they existed. I guess I'm pretty traditional in that I browse through the individual forums, except for the occasional thread in the "Latest Replies" section that catches my eye. Either way, the New Posts and Spy features certainly help increase the visibility of a post or thread regardless of the forum it's in.It's possible, and you've identified an advantage of doing so.
Luckily, users don't find new threads or posts only by viewing specific forums. A good number of users (a majority?) use the New Posts or the Spy features, which display the most recent activity regardless of forum. Also, when you use the Advanced Search page, you can click the top-level iOS forum to search across all of its subforums at once when a specific topic interests you.