Many are saying that Apple's decision to release OS X 10.9 Mavericks, the latest update to the Mac operating system, free of charge makes the decision to upgrade a no-brainer. We think they're almost right. While nothing earth shattering, Mavericks does offer some nifty improvements that many users will enjoy. However, experience tells us that it's not a great idea for business users to take the upgrade plunge quite yet. Why, you ask? Read on!
Wait 3 to 6 Months: A Rule of Thumb
Our rule of thumb for OS upgrades in a business environment is that users should wait 3 to 6 months before upgrading. The reason for this is that no OS update is ever released without a certain number of bugs, and, even if the software itself were bug free, there are always compatibility issues between new OSes and third-party applications on which business users may rely. Waiting 3 to 6 months to upgrade allows time for the OS's provider (i.e., Apple or Microsoft) to fix bugs and compatibility issues through routine software updates. That way, business users don't experience obstacles to their workflow, preventing a loss of productivity and even profitability.
Issues with Mavericks
Mavericks is no exception to the rule. Recently, we posted on compatibility problems between Mavericks's version of Mail and commonly used email services like Gmail and Microsoft Exchange. While we have every confidence that Apple will issue fixes to this and other minor bugs with the new OS, we've seen firsthand how they can be a real pain to business users until the necessary updates are released.
We should point out here that we are not saying that Mavericks is a shoddy OS. We happen to really like several of its new features--like dual monitor capability, the ability to send directions in the Maps app straight to an iPhone, and the improved battery life it facilitates. Bugs and compatibility issues, for better or worse, are pretty standard with any OS release.
Because we're devoted to providing excellent service to our clients, we always test new OS releases to determine when they're ready for implementation in business environments. We look for software bugs, and we test compatibility with all the major applications our clients use to do their work. That way, we can be a resource to our clients, letting them know when it's safe to upgrade.
We know it can be hard to resist the temptation to upgrade to the latest and greatest immediately. Still, we think business users are better safe than sorry here. We'd love to talk with you about whether an upgrade to Mavericks is right for your company.