Apple MacOS Sonoma
Apple MacOS Sonoma

Any device’s operating system (OS), which includes iOS on iPhones and iPads, macOS on Mac computers, and watchOS on Apple Watches, is its foundation. Maintaining your device’s performance, security, and ability to work with new apps and features requires keeping your OS updated. To know when to improve, though, can be a delicate balancing act. The purpose of this article is to help you determine when to update your Apple operating systems.

How to Know Apple’s OS Update Cycle

Understanding Apple’s OS update cycle is crucial before talking about the “when.” Once a year, Apple typically delivers substantial OS updates:

September is typically when iOS versions for iPhone and iPad are released.

Updates to macOS for Mac computers typically come around October.

iOS releases frequently follow watchOS updates for Apple Watch.

Apple issues tiny updates every now and then that include bug repairs, security patches, and sporadic new features.

Update Right Away: Positives and Negatives

You might be tempted to press the “update” button as soon as Apple releases an OS update. But, it’s important to be aware of both the advantages and disadvantages of doing so.

Quick Update Advantages

Access to New Features: New OS releases often include new features, altered user interfaces, and occasionally even major performance enhancements. By updating right away, you can benefit from these improvements.

Enhanced Security: Each update typically comes with security fixes that shield your device from flaws. As a result, timely updates can maintain your device’s security.

Instant Update’s negatives

Early Bugs: There may be bugs with major updates that weren’t found during beta testing. This may result in difficulties like app crashes, battery loss, or connectivity concerns.

App compatibility: Certain apps might not work properly with the new OS right away since they are not right away compatible.

Factors for Immediate Update

If you’re debating whether to upgrade right away, take these things into account:

Device Age: The new OS may not run as smoothly on older devices as it does on newer ones. You might wish to wait for reviews if your gadget is more than three years old before updating.

App Dependency: Before updating, make sure that any programs you rely on substantially for your job or day-to-day activities are compatible with the new OS.

Bug Tolerance: If you can put up with possible early glitches and are enthusiastic about new features, updating right away might be for you.

Update Postponement: Benefits and Drawbacks

You might think about delaying the OS update if you don’t need to use the newest features right away or if you’d rather avoid any potential first-round issues.

Benefits of Postponing Update:

Bug fixes: By holding off, you give Apple time to fix any issues that early users found.

Little OS upgrades increase the OS’s stability, making for a smoother user experience.

Disadvantages of Postponing Updates

Missed Features: Until you update, you risk missing out on new features and enhancements.

Delaying updates could expose your device to known vulnerabilities, which poses a security risk.

Reasons for Postponing the Update

Consider the following if you’re debating postponing the update:

Crucial Use: It could be wise to hold off on updating your device if it is essential for your job or studies.

App Compatibility: Postponing the upgrade provides app creators extra time to make sure their applications are completely compatible with the new OS.

What Determines When to Upgrade Your Apple Operating Systems?

The choice ultimately boils down to personal preference and requirements. You could opt to update right away if you enjoy discovering new features and are willing to put up with any glitches that may arise initially. But, you can decide to wait a few weeks or even months if stability and app compatibility are more essential to you.

Critical security upgrades should generally be installed as soon as feasible. Waiting for the ‘point one’ update for major OS updates, such as iOS 15.1 or macOS 12.1, can be a wise approach because it often fixes the biggest flaws discovered in the initial release.

Always make a backup of your data before running any big OS updates to guard against potential data loss in the unlikely event that something goes wrong.

You can decide when to update your Apple operating systems by being aware of the advantages and disadvantages of instant and delayed upgrades, taking into account your particular requirements and the capabilities of your device, and other factors. The performance, security, and functionality of your device can only be ensured by remaining up to date.

Eric Chan

Hi! I’m Eric and I work on the knowledge base at  You can see some of my writings about technology, cellphone repair, and computer repair here.

When I’m not writing about tech I’m playing with my dog or hanging out with my girlfriend.

Shoot me a message at if you want to see a topic discussed or have a correction on something I’ve written.

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