One of NCR's partners forwarded me the following email late last night. The gist is that, despite testing Silver, NCR's iOS-based POS software, using the dev tools Apple provided, once the actual iOS 7 update rolled it, there were differences that cause Silver to not function properly.
After further testing of NCR Silver with the official release of iOS 7, we have identified issues that were not able to be uncovered with the pre-release developers version made available to us.
We are hard at work to address the issues, and plan to resolve them shortly with an app update. In the meantime, if you have not already, please do not upgrade a device you are using NCR Silver with to iOS 7 until you receive an update notification from us. This applies for any device that you use Silver on whether it is your primary POS device or a secondary iPad, iPhone, or iPod where you run Silver.
If you have already upgraded your Silver device to iOS 7, it is best to downgrade back to iOS 6 until our updated app is available. We are preparing instructions that will be posted in the Whats New section of our back office help soon. In the meantime, contact our Customer Care team for assistance.
Our Customer Care team is very busy helping those who upgraded deal with this issue, and others. We apologize for the extended wait times and appreciate your patience as we work through the increased call volume. We apologize for the inconvenience, and will keep you posted on our progress. We expect to have an update out to you no later than early next week.
NCR Customer Care
After reading the advisory from NCR, a few things came to mind. First, I wonder how many of the other iOS-based POS systems are having similar issues. If you're a VAR who lost business to an iOS-based POS app, it might be time to visit those clients to warn them and/or save the day and earn their business.
Second, this really underscores the challenge of writing apps for mobile operating systems. Let's face it, a developer can write code for Windows 7 and be confident those machines will stick around for years with minimal changes to the system. Apple also isn't known for rushing updates to market. Imagine developing for Android, where Google is pushing out pretty significant changes at least every 12 months, sometimes more frequently.
Finally, this illustrates why VARs are so important. I'd like to think that Silver VARs would have known that operating system updates aren't always glitch-free (even Apple isn't immune) and would have advised their merchant customers to wait a bit. From what I've heard, the update to iOS 7 takes hours. If a merchant bought Silver directly or through Staples and didn't have the value-added advice of waiting from a VAR, they now have to roll back to iOS 6, and could easily lose another day of having POS functionality.
As NCR's Customer Care team struggles with its increased call volume and has to deal with however many upset customers call in, I hope the NCR brass considers that, if they went to market with Silver only through VARs, it's those resellers who would be handling support calls right now and be dealing with frustrated customers.