Trusted Reviews is supported by its audience. If you purchase through links on our site, we may earn a commission. Learn more.

Why is Apple iOS 15 adoption way down on iOS 14?

Apple says that 72% of iPhone handsets released in the last four years have been updated to iOS 15, which is a marked drop off from the iOS 14 figures.

The company has released its iOS 15 installation numbers for the first time, following its release in September, and more people than usual are swerving the latest version of the software, four months after it became available.

The January 2022 figures for iPhones compares with 81% of phones from the last four years, when measured in December 2020. So, that’s around 10% fewer upgrades to Apple’s newest software.

Why could this be? Well, Apple has delayed a number of headline iOS 15 features months into its launch. SharePlay and the Digital Legacy features weren’t launched initially, while users are still waiting for Universal Control. So there wasn’t a great incentive to jump aboard with new features immediately.

Also, for the first time, Apple gave users the opportunity to remain on iOS 14 and retain access to all of the key security updates if, for any reason, they were happy with their current software.

At the time the company said: “iOS now offers a choice between two software update versions in the Settings app. You can update to the latest version of iOS 15 as soon as it’s released for the latest features and most complete set of security updates. Or continue on iOS 14 and still get important security updates until you’re ready to upgrade to the next major version.”

Now it appears that Apple is rethinking that strategy. As MacRumors points out, that footnote no longer exists on the software update section of the iPhone or iPad. Following the release of iOS 15.2, Apple got rid of the option to download a security update for iOS 14. The last appears to be iOS 14.8.1 with security updates released in October.

Why trust our journalism?

Founded in 2003, Trusted Reviews exists to give our readers thorough, unbiased and independent advice on what to buy.

Today, we have millions of users a month from around the world, and assess more than 1,000 products a year.

author icon

Editorial independence

Editorial independence means being able to give an unbiased verdict about a product or company, with the avoidance of conflicts of interest. To ensure this is possible, every member of the editorial staff follows a clear code of conduct.

author icon

Professional conduct

We also expect our journalists to follow clear ethical standards in their work. Our staff members must strive for honesty and accuracy in everything they do. We follow the IPSO Editors’ code of practice to underpin these standards.