Yesterday, Apple released its latest operating system (OS): macOS Sierra. Current Mac users will be able to install an upgrade to High Sierra for free, which many will want to do in order to take advantage of some of the great new features it offers.
As helpful or as fun as the new features may be, though, we strongly recommend that users wait at least 3 to 6 months to upgrade to High Sierra, especially if they use their computers for business. Why, you ask, would a technology company be giving this advice? The short answer is that experience has taught us that upgrading to a new OS too soon can affect users' productivity. There are three reasons why this is the case.
1. Every new OS will have bugs. Period.
Sometimes these bugs are harmless, but sometimes they can be pretty debilitating, causing lost time and productivity. Waiting a few months to upgrade gives the vendor (i.e., Microsoft, Apple, Google, etc.) time to release updates and patches that make the OS mature enough for business use.
2. Compatibility with third-party apps and peripheral devices
Even an OS that starts out life with relatively few bugs may still pose an issue for the third-party applications you use to run your business. For instance, El Capitan, an earlier version of macOS, faced some pretty serious issues with Microsoft Office 2016 when it first became available. Furthermore, OS upgrades have been known to cause problems with software that connects computers with peripheral devices like printers and scanners, meaning users might find themselves suddenly unable to print after upgrading.
In a perfect world, vendors would get together and hash out the compatibility issues involved with a change in OS before release. This isn't a perfect world. Again, waiting to upgrade gives third-party vendors time to release updates that address compatibility issues.
3. Learning curves
A new OS often imposes a learning curve on users. Windows 8 was a prime example of this, as the OS fundamentally changed the way users interacted with their files and applications. But even smaller, more incremental upgrades, like that between Sierra and High Sierra, do change certain aspects of the ways people use their devices. Waiting to upgrade allows users to be strategic about allowing time to get used to the changes a new OS brings.
If you're already an Affinity client, rest assured that we will monitor new OSes, including High Sierra, as they progress to assess their viability in your environment, and that we will let you know when it is safe to upgrade. If you're not currently an Affinity client and would like help strategizing when to upgrade, feel free to drop us a line!