Even in the fast-paced world of technology, change can be hard to cope with. We are all aware of the proverbial pram-emptying whenever Facebook changes its timeline format, and things very nearly turned ugly when Microsoft got rid of the Start button in Windows 8. We like our tech innovations to stay exactly the way we're used to them - paradoxical, perhaps, but understandable.
With iOS 7, its latest update to iOS, Apple has run into the same mentality. After slowly evolving its interface since the first iPhone OS, the firm's designers abruptly decided to make a visual leap somewhat akin to the switch to colour in The Wizard of Oz. The palette has been transformed from muted to vibrantly acidic; transparency and parallax effects create the illusion of a deep, layered screen; borders, colour gradients and skeuomorphic elements have been banished. It looks nothing like the iOS we know. It's scary. It's new.
How have users responded to the revamp? A few like it, but most find it bewildering, with critics calling iOS 7 everything from gaudy and amateurish to "the love child of Android and Windows". Some find the interface confusing. Others think it's ugly, or flat, or simply gratuitous. As hockey-mom tricoteuse Sarah Palin put it: "How's that hopey-changey stuff working out for ya?" Not great, Sarah. Not great.
But let's give it time. For one thing, it's still in beta, even if iOS 7 beta 6 is likely to be close to the final version (expected to launch on 10 September, alongside the iPhone 5S and iPhone 5C it will run on). But more generally, the success of a computing interface is vastly dependent on familiarity (a principle which cynics might say influenced some design choices made by Apple’s rivals). And those comfortable old trainers are always going to feel nicer than your new pair. You just need to wear them in, that's all.
[Related: Will I be able to update to iOS 7 on my iPhone? | Apple iOS 7 announced at WWDC 2013 | How to update your iPhone or iPad to Apple iOS 7 | Apple iOS 7 for iPhone and iPad preview & first impressions | Massive iOS 6 uptake is good news for Apple's iOS 7 launch]