Apple has typically seen great adoption of its OS updates following release, eliminating many of the hassles that come with a fragmented platform. But early adoption numbers can also be an indicator of consumer interest in the update itself.
Mobile marketing firm Fiksu has released usage numbers of iOS 8 devices running its client’s apps, posting them relative to Apple’s last three major releases (iOS 7, iOS 6, and iOS 5). At the time of this reporting, 46 hours after release, iOS 8 is running on 16.41% of devices with a Fiksu client app. For this same time period after launch, iOS 7 was at 32.14%, iOS 6 was at 22.7% and iOS 5 13.8%.
The most obvious caveat here is that Fiksu can only track devices in its network, and not the total number of devices running iOS 8 (or factor in devices too old to update to run iOS 8, thus skewing the reporting). But mobile ad firm Tapjoy has published similar numbers, indicating that iOS 8 adopting is trending slower than iOS 7, but relatively similar to iOS 6.
There are likely many contributing factors to the adoption disparity, one being that iOS 7 was a much-hyped, visually significant departure from all previous versions, while iOS 8 is a refinement, with many of its most compelling features running behind the scenes, waiting for developers to take advantage. Consumers might also fear the significant update cost in hard drive space, or based upon first-24 sales numbers, perhaps the iPhone faithful are eschewing updates in favour of purchasing an iPhone 6 or 6 Plus.