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Tell HN: All new iPhone apps and app updates submitted must support iPhone 5
31 points by m2mapps on Apr 28, 2013 | hide | past | web | favorite | 26 comments
From Apple: "As of May 1, all new iPhone apps and app updates submitted must support the 4-inch display on iPhone 5."

This has been known for over a month[1].

I’d say it’s good change. Within 2 months of when the iPhone 5 was released, about half of the apps I use most had received updates that optmized for the larger screen. After 7 months though, the remaining apps still haven’t been optimized, even though many of those apps did receive updates in the meantime. As of May 1st, a developer can’t just post a bugfix without also optimizing for all the different iPhone screens.

[1] http://www.macrumors.com/2013/03/21/apple-will-no-longer-app...

I don't know why it has taken this long. It should have been the case as soon as the iPhone 5 started shipping.

>> "It should have been the case as soon as the iPhone 5 started shipping."

That would have been a nightmare. A lot of apps would need to redesign UI's and create new graphics. Let's say it took 2-3 weeks to get all that created, working, and tested. What if they had some urgent bugs they needed fixed before then? Or developers who didn't manage to get the device on launch day and had to wait a few weeks. Are they supposed to release updates which include iPhone 5 support having only tested the iPhone 5 portion in the simulator?

Important note: This also means that you cannot release any updates that support the iPhone 3G (iOS 4.2.1), since you cannot compile for both, iPhone 5 and 3G.

iPhone 5 requires Xcode 4.6, which doesn't allow to build apps for iOS < 4.3.

To support old versions of iOS, one can build an armv6 version using an older version of Xcode and then lipo it to an armv7+armv7s version built with Xcode 4.6 (details: http://stackoverflow.com/questions/12619124/how-to-support-b...)

Thank you, but still, this is considered more or less a hack. The question is how long it'll take until the first apps get rejected that aren't built "properly".

That's probably the only reason that the iP5 requirement was delayed until now.

Apple isn't good about keeping its build tools compatible with older editions of OS/X or of IOS. It's a little tough for them since their systems are built to last for so long with better hardware components.

If it weren't for that irony, the iP5 requirement probably would have gone into effect the day the iP5 was released.

The reason this is an issue at all is that in order to support te iPhone 5 screen you must drop support for everything before iOS 4.3. Many of the apps you see holding out are doing so because they have (or believe they have) a significant >4.3 user base.

This got better when iOS 6 got jailbroken, but it's still an annoying forced obsolescence. The reason they did it this way is unclear as well.

The only devices that can’t run iOS 5 or newer are the original iPhone (2007), iPhone 3G (2008), 1st gen iPod touch (2007), and 2nd gen iPod touch (2008).

Compared to later models, their share of the total iOS devices sold is very low. About 30 million iPhones of the first two generations were sold. About 20 million iPods touch of the first two generations were sold. Out of 550 million total iOS devices, that’s under 10 percent. And of course, many of those older iPhones and iPods touch are not in use anymore.

While my iPhone 3 could run 4.3, it runs like a dog, so I downgraded it to 3.1.3, jailbroken with Whited00r. It means I get some of the extras (root, folders, fast app switching, sharing menu, and video recorder), without the clunky bullshit that the iPhone 3 just isn't powerful enough to handle of the real iOS6. I can't download anything from the AppStore anymore though. It is all 4.3+. Apple are essentially trying to turn my perfectly reasonable device into a brick.

I think you mean you have an iPhone 3G, the 2nd generation iPhone. The ‘iPhone 3’ is the iPhone 3GS, which was released a year later.

The iPhone 3G is a 5 year old model. You can continue to use all the apps you’ve ever bought for it, you just won’t receive updates for them, as you’ve chosen to run 3 year old system software.

This is debatable of course. Even though the 3GS can technically run iOS 6 even, whether it runs it well enough to be usable is sadly another question entirely. I do know I struggle to use my 3GS these days, though I wonder if that's in part due to App developers assuming people are running newer hardware as much as the OS itself...

Either way, many people with older devices choose to keep them on older OS versions for precisely this reason, so it will be an issue for some.

Anecdotal: I'm posting from a 3gs running iOS 6. I upgraded last year from 4.x, and performance has pretty much been a non-issue.

iOS 5 works great on iPhone 3G S. If you’re having performance issues, you might want to free some space on your iPhone 3G S; that has been known to work miracles.

Good to know. For some reason I didn't think iOS used the disk as a memory cache, so didn't think that would matter?

It doesn't use it to implement paging, but many things do use the disk as a cache (URL cache, keyboard cache, icon cache, Spotlight, app-specific caches, etc) and running low on disk space will cause the background cache cleaner daemon to run.

Add first generation iPad to that list.

Nope. All iPads support iOS 5 or higher.


Check your facts.


Bottom of this page.

That's iOS 6, not iOS 5. The original iPad is EOL'd on iOS 5.

The list you were replying to was the list of devices from 2008 and earlier that are end-of-lifed on iOS 4. That is also the list of devices that you basically have to abandon if you begin targeting iOS 6 and iPhone 5.

That's for iOS 6. The first-generation iPad will still run iOS 5.1.1: http://support.apple.com/kb/DL1521

Reaction gifs are seriously discouraged here.

Thanks for letting me know, I’m new here.

There's definitely room for bias in the stats I've seen but virtually everyone reports almost no iOS 4 devices.

http://stats.unity3d.com/mobile/index-ios.html (Below iOS 5/Other: 1.2%) http://david-smith.org/iosversionstats/ (4.3: 1.6%) https://mixpanel.com/trends/#report/ios_frag/

Support for the 5in screen only requires adding an extra default png file to signal support. default@2x~568.png. I don't see where the OS restriction comes in.

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