Generally speaking iOS updates are a no-brainer.
They're free to install, and they add new features and plug security holes. They make your iPhone both more fun and safer to use, and these days they're far more likely to speed up your phone than slow it down, as used to be the case in the bad old days. There are few downsides to upgrading, and I happily allow them to install automatically when available.
Occasionally, however, it's worth advising caution, and turning off auto updates for a short while. And it looks like iOS 14 comes under that category.
Apple didn't manage to spring many surprises at its 15 September Time Flies event, but its announcement that iOS 14 would roll out the very next day gave a few app developers a shock. Normally there's far more notice (usually around a week) between the announcement and the rollout; by Apple's standards this was sudden.
And the general feeling among those app developers is not entirely positive. A lot of them have since expressed their concerns on social media, warning that the software isn't ready - by which they don't necessarily mean iOS 14 itself is faulty, but that a worrying number of apps don't yet work well with it. They simply haven't had enough time to sort out all the issues.
Tim: oh yea btw iOS 14 drops tomorrow— kamilah taylor (@kamilah) September 15, 2020
iOS devs everywhere: pic.twitter.com/25US7dOH7d
A big WTF at Apple dropping iOS 14 tomorrow without giving developers any notice, or final tools to submit their apps 😂— Steve Troughton-Smith (@stroughtonsmith) September 15, 2020
Apple randomly dropping iOS 14 in one day without any prior notice is very on brand with 2020.— Shihab (JPEGuin) (@JPEGuin) September 15, 2020
David Smith reacted by saying it was "quite a bit [sooner] than I was expecting...hoping for", although he later softened this with a reflection that he "kinda like the fast turnaround launch".
Oh boy...that is quite a bit soon than I was expecting...hoping for. pic.twitter.com/4STAa9UL5d— David Smith (@_DavidSmith) September 15, 2020
Guilherme Rambo, an app developer more widely known for his semi-regular discoveries of secrets hidden in iOS code, has gone so far as to flat-out warn iPhone owners against installing iOS 14, "unless you want a lot of your apps to be broken for a while".
Unless you want a lot of your apps to be broken for a while, I do not recommend updating to iOS 14 tomorrow #AppleEvent— Guilherme Rambo (@_inside) September 15, 2020
The developers of the podcast app Overcast took the responsibility for the issue themselves: "Sorry, my iOS 14 features aren't ready yet."
Sorry, my iOS 14 features aren’t ready yet.— Overcast (@OvercastFM) September 16, 2020
Since it’ll be a while before most of my customers use iOS 14, I spent the summer prioritizing bug fixes and my family’s pandemic/school logistics (we’re OK, just busy).
Like you all, I’m just doing what I can this year. More soon.
Another developer was less forgiving of Apple's hasty scheduling. "Having spent countless hours over the past two months for it to end like this must be crushing," said @JPEGuin.
I’m in the very fortunate position to have got my app ready for iOS 14 earlier this week, alongside screenshots. But many were expecting to release next week at the absolute earliest. Having spent countless hours over the past two months for it to end like this must be crushing.— Shihab (JPEGuin) (@JPEGuin) September 15, 2020
The overall consensus is this: installing iOS 14 on the first day it's available would be risky. You may be okay, or you may find that one or more apps you rely on no longer work properly.
If you're unsure, and if you have one or more apps that simply have to work, it's worth getting in touch with the developer and asking how confident they are that it's ready for the update. But we'd be inclined to simply put off the update for a week or two - which means the servers will be less busy in any case, and the update should download considerably more quickly.