For years, I have warned my clients from doing software upgrades just because the device manufacturer says you should. The primary reason is that although they usually have good intentions, that is not always the case. Software upgrades are always "beta tested", before release. The problem is they cannot possibly test the new software with over a million 3rd party applications. There are often glitches and problems after the release that result in a newer software "patch" being pushed out. That's why I always google search software problems before updating iPhones or any other Apple product.
Unless you are having a specific problem or have a glaring security vulnerability that a particular update addresses, don't do it! Many times the new update will cause instability. In some rare cases, they can actually take away features with new software updates. I recall an older T-Mobile application that I previously used that allowed me to call Mexico for FREE. About ten years ago, TM pushed me a software upgrade for this AP that I did out of habit. As soon as I tried to call Mexico again, I found it was no longer possible for FREE. After consulting Google on the matter, it was clear that everyone who did this software upgrade immediately lost their ability to call Mexico for FREE. Those who ignored the upgrade could still take advantage of this feature. This is a rare case but an example of how doing an upgrade can also be a liability, not a benefit.
Just when I thought I had seen it all though, Apple's recent admission yesterday that they have intentionally been slowing down older iPhone models (iPhone 6, 6s and 7 series) is despicable and possibly even criminal. Their excuse that they do this to help the battery life is preposterous. Here's what I personally believe - Apple and all the carriers are currently stuck with the iPhone 8 because nobody wants it. They are being forced to give it away. Each carrier has a BOGO (Buy One, Get One FREE) offer for the iPhone 8 and remaining iPhone 7 models. Not surprisingly, nobody has any BOGO deals on the iPhone X. I hope there is a class action lawsuit because this is unethical at best.
Ironically, one of the reasons I moved from my iPhone 6s+ to a Samsung Galaxy S8+ was the fact that my iPhone 6s was slowing down and the battery no longer took me through a day. I did not want to sacrifice my 3.5mm headset jack and did not see any upside to upgrading to an iPhone 7 or an iPhone 8 over my trusty 6s+. The X model cost double what the comparable S8+ did so this was a no-brainer for me.
Most of the updates I used to get were to address features like Apple Pay that I didn't even use. One of the problems with software upgrades is that Apple can be very cryptic when explaining what invulnerabilities were addressed. That's why my philosophy is, If it ain't broken, don't fix it!
Joel Saltzman has over twenty years of wireless industry experience. He is currently CEO and Chief Wireless Analyst for Dr Wireless.