Apple Inc. pushed out its new iOS 7 update to iPhones and iPads yesterday, going full throttle on its most major update to the mobile OS since it launched.

While many users will be curious to see the new colourful interface offered by iOS 7 and check out the new features included in it, others may want to wait some time before rushing to install the update. New major version releases can cause some migration problems no matter what the platform, and we can expect some bugs and compatibility issues as the release gets tested by the general public and developers adapt to the new requirements of the SDK.

If you’re trying to decide whether you should jump on the iOS 7 bandwagon yet, here’s some points to consider:

Is my device compatible?

Italian Apple blog, The Apple Lounge provides this handy infographic so you can see what iOS 7 features are compatible with your device. Click for a larger version.

Will my apps work?

Not all apps that worked in iOS 6.1 will be compatible with iOS 7 just yet. Apple released the iOS 7 beta weeks ago and the accompanying SDK for developers to work with to ready their apps. But it appears many aren’t yet updated to work with iOS 7.

While the new OS allows apps to be compiled at a 64-bit runtime, but it also supports 32-bit apps. Of course all apps compiled for iOS to date are 32-bit, so this was a necessity. It’s other changes to the OS that are likely causing problems. For example, the complete user interface redesign mean that apps compiled against the iOS 7 SDK will automatically receive the new appearance for any standard system views. But developers who haven’t compiled against the new SDK are likely to run into compatibility issues.

So how can you tell if your apps will work after the upgrade?

Lifehacker has made an effort to list apps compatible with iOS 7. But it is by no means an exhaustive list of apps that will work. If you’re wondering about a specific app, look it up in the App Store to see if it lists an update reflecting compatibility with iOS 7. Or visit the developer’s Web site to see if there’s information about it there.

Before you make the leap

If you decide you’re going to bite the bullet on upgrading your device, there’s some basic things you should do before installing iOS 7. You’ll want to be insured against disaster just in case all doesn’t go smoothly. Read this guide on GigaOm for a complete guide on preparing for an update. At a minimum, do these things:

  • Back up to iCloud: In your settings tab on your iOS device, tap “Storage & Backup” and turn on iCloud backup and then turn on “Back Up Now”
  • Back up to iTunes: If you have too much storage to backup to iCloud or you want to a double back-up, connect your iOS device to your computer via USB. In iTunes, look under the devices list and select it. Clcik “Back Up Now” on the “Summary” screen.
  • Before triggering the update, plug your device into a power cord and make sure you’re on a WiFi network you can trust to not crash for the next hour.

 

 

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