Apple has announced that it is to cease support for 32-bit apps across its devices. With the release of the beta of iOS11, suspicions and rumours that 32-bit apps would no longer be supported have been proven to be true, with the new operating system refusing to run them without an update, and the new version of the App store not featuring any 32-bit apps at all. This should come as little surprise to regular users - as long ago as January, the first iOS10.3 beta gave a warning while running 32-bit apps that future versions of iOS would no longer support them. This is bad news for users who wish to reinstall previously downloaded 32-bit apps, as the App store will no longer allow this, and for those who have been relying on 32-bit apps that have not been updated- iOS10 users may find it worthwhile checking their “App Compatibility” tab, which can be found in the “Settings” app, to find out if any of their software will be rendered unusable.
64-bit apps were first supported by iOS with the launch of the iPhone 5S in September 2013, and since 2015 all new apps and app updates have been required to use 64-bit architecture. This means any apps that are still using 32-bit architecture have not been updated for two years. iOS11 itself will only be compatible with devices using a 64-bit chip, which is any chip from the A7 onwards. iOS11 is expected to roll out in autumn of this year.
But it doesn't stop at iOS - at the World Developers Conference, Apple used its Platform State Of The Union keynote to tell developers that as of January of next year, all new apps submitted to the Mac App Store must be 64-bit, and that macOS High Sierra will be the last macOS that can run 32-bit software “without compromises”. By June of next year, all app updates must also be 64-bit only. Users will be warned about 32-bit apps, and then they will be phased out altogether with the release of the next macOS following High Sierra.
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