How to identify all the 32-bit apps installed on your iPhone running iOS 10.3

Posted:
in iPhone edited March 2017
The day is rapidly approaching where Apple will just disallow 32-bit apps from running on iOS, maybe as soon as iOS 11. AppleInsider shows you how to identify which apps installed on your iPhone are 32-bit -- and points out some problems that Apple needs to rectify before that day comes.




Apple has included a new Settings pane in iOS 10.3 to easily check for installed 32-bit apps, and to see if there are updates available.

To check, open Settings. Tap on General. Tap on About, and select Applications. This brings up a list of the installed apps that are 32-bit.



In our device, we've got four apps -- two games and two educational titles -- that are 32-bit with no updates. In our spot-checks, educational and entertainment titles are the heaviest-hit by the shift, as they have historically been.

Not the first time

It is unfortunate that some apps will be left behind in the shift, but every computer user has dealt with a change from on-high affecting software libraries before. The earliest releases of OS X included a Classic OS9 environment that wasn't perfect -- which was killed seven years later in 2007 with the release of 10.5.
Be wary of older apps that haven't been updated in a while.
To facilitate the shift to Intel processors, Rosetta was included with 10.4.4 in 2006, and killed when 10.7 shipped five years later in 2011. These are just recent examples for Apple -- Windows users have the same pain, just sometimes with less advanced notice.

This has all happened to us before -- it happened with the 68K to PowerPC shift, with every big OS migration, and with the shift from PowerPC to Intel. As with any architecture shift, some users get left behind.

None of this is a surprise

Apple is responsible for the safety and speed of iOS and the iPhone. It has told developers for three years, since a note in December 2014, that updates to software needed to include 64-bit support. Apple is clearly not responsible for ensuring that all iOS software works forever, on every combination of iOS and hardware.




Apple has been enforcing the requirements since June 2015. When iOS 9 rolled out, it warned that 32-bit apps could cause slowdowns, with iOS 10.3 now more forceful and straight-out says that 32-bit app support would be discontinued in a future iOS revision -- which is probably iOS 11.

If you have an app that won't make it past the end of the 32-bit compatibility era, blame the developer -- there's been ample warning. If the app is mission-critical, then don't upgrade your hardware's OS revision, and don't plan on moving the app to new hardware.

Apple can still make this less painful, if it chooses

Some of these are 32-bit only, but which ones?
Some of these are 32-bit only, but which ones?


What Apple will not do, is retain 32-bit compatibility forever. Older 32-bit software has been on life support since the A7 processor in the iPhone 5S in 2013.

However, there are a few things it can, and should, do to ease the transition.

At this time, there does not appear to be a way to check apps in iTunes to see if they are 32- or 64-bit -- but that would be helpful. So, for now, the only way to know for sure is to check on your iOS 10.3 device.

The identification tool now in Settings in iOS 10.3 is a good start. However, Apple needs to be more forthcoming about this in the App Store, as well as giving users a clear identification of which apps are 32-bit in iTunes before the support is fully dropped.

For now, before you install new-to-you, be wary of older apps that haven't been updated in a while. This extends even to apps from larger vendors, like "Civilization Revolution 2" in our screen captures.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 33
    This is horrible news as the app I use every day and is the main stain database for me is bento. File maker and it's life years ago by releasing a file maker version which is a significant cost upgrade and not useful to me
  • Reply 2 of 33
    tommikeletommikele Posts: 265member
    lonepalm said:
    This is horrible news as the app I use every day and is the main stain database for me is bento. File maker and it's life years ago by releasing a file maker version which is a significant cost upgrade and not useful to me
    Say what? English or some other identifiable language please!
    mike1cornchip
  • Reply 3 of 33
    iSRSiSRS Posts: 32member
    Tapping Applications does nothing for me. Am I missing something? Or are all 263 of my apps 64-bit?
    mwhitepakitt
  • Reply 4 of 33
    spikebitesspikebites Posts: 1unconfirmed, member
    Seriously, Tommikele? Get a grip. 

    "This is horrible news, as the app I use every day and the mainstay database for me is Bento. FileMaker ended its life years ago by releasing a FileMaker version that's a significant cost upgrade and isn't useful to me."

    Happy?
    john.bbaconstangiSRSspheric
  • Reply 5 of 33
    melgrossmelgross Posts: 31,790member
    I have a total of 689 apps on my iPad Pro 12.9". 234 are listed as not going to work with future upgrades to iOS.

    some of those apps, I've been told by the developers, will be upgraded in time for iOS 11. What percentage of the total will make it? I don't know, but some have obviously been abandoned by the developers, as they haven't received updates for some while, some for years.

    it will be sad for some to go away, because I like, and use them. But for whatever reason, the developers have walked away. Perhaps no one is downloading them any more.

    i know some people are ticked off at this, but if the developers don't care about the users, then I can't blame Apple.
    john.bjbdragonchiadigital_guylolliverwatto_cobra
  • Reply 6 of 33
    SpamSandwichSpamSandwich Posts: 31,309member
    Apple's own "Apple Store" app is among those in the list of apps that need to be updated. Oh, the humanity!
  • Reply 7 of 33
    I lost count after about 100, so of my 422 apps, then when iOS 11 comes out, I'll have more free space on the iPhone. Maybe iPhone 8 by that time.
  • Reply 8 of 33
    AppleZuluAppleZulu Posts: 508member
    "At this time, there does not appear to be a way to check apps in iTunes to see if they are 32- or 64-bit -- but that would be helpful. So, for now, the only way to know for sure is to check on your iOS 10.3 device."

    Boy howdy, one thing that would be really useful in iTunes would be an ability to sort and review iOS apps. If the user could sort not only by which apps are 32- or 64-bit, but which ones are currently on which devices (or on none at all), app size, and by date of last app update, it would make it much easier to thin out the herd. I have to think I'm probably not the only one holding on to a cluttered mess of old apps because doing an app-by-app review never quite makes it to the top of one's priority list.
    stevenozbaconstangcornchip
  • Reply 9 of 33
    john.bjohn.b Posts: 2,720member
    *cough* Google Earth *cough* *cough*
    watto_cobracornchip
  • Reply 10 of 33
    JinTechJinTech Posts: 387member
    Apple's own "Apple Store" app is among those in the list of apps that need to be updated. Oh, the humanity!
    Well they do have an updated version out, that I have been using and that is not listed as incompatible. 
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 11 of 33
    gerry ggerry g Posts: 29member
    if you had only one hundred apps installed and you spent as little as five minuets on each per day that would be eight point three hours of iPad time per day, how you can possibly have more than that, more than the number of the days in the year is mind numbing even just to think about let alone calculate, I presume you operate on the principal "jack of many, master of none"
    jbdragonlolliver
  • Reply 12 of 33
    iSRS said:
    Tapping Applications does nothing for me. Am I missing something? Or are all 263 of my apps 64-bit?
    Means you are fine.
    Same here on my iPad. All apps are 64 bit thus there is no list for apps that need an update. As for my phone there are a few, but nothing critical. Just deleted those. Being a developer myself I exspect apps from other parties to meet a certain level of quality. Gues that stance save me a bit deal of trouble. 
    watto_cobraiSRS
  • Reply 13 of 33
    tyler82tyler82 Posts: 877member
    Wow, Google Earth is still a 32- bit app? Pathetic
    pakitttallest skilbaconstangwatto_cobra
  • Reply 14 of 33
    I won't be able to play Flappy Bird anymore  :'(
    baconstang
  • Reply 15 of 33
    lonepalm said:
    This is horrible news as the app I use every day and is the main stain database for me is bento. File maker and it's life years ago by releasing a file maker version which is a significant cost upgrade and not useful to me
    Bento was great but you should have ditched it years ago.

    Move to Airtable. It's cheap and works brilliantly.
    pakittspheric
  • Reply 16 of 33
    melgrossmelgross Posts: 31,790member
    It's already been said that Apple will be removing these apps from the store. It's said that there could be as many as 250 thousand of what are essentially, abandoned apps.
    edited March 2017 watto_cobra
  • Reply 17 of 33
    mdossmdoss Posts: 22member
    Well, I have an iPhone 5 (yes I am ancient) and when I check on apps that "might slow down my iPhone" it lists out every app I have installed, including Keynote, TestFlight, iAD, App Store (yes), Apple Store,  Calculator, Camera, Compass, FaceTime etc. There are more, I just got sick of listing each one out.

    The funny part is, all these apps were just updated yesterday before installing 10.3.  And there are no updates available for these after the upgrade.

    In addition to these, I have quite a few Apple services that are "incompatible", liked AccountAuthenticationDialog, AACredentialRecoryDialog, AskPermissionUI,  etc.

    Of course there are third party apps like Google Maps, 1Password and many others in that list.

    Funny!

    Cheers
    edited March 2017
  • Reply 18 of 33
    rivertriprivertrip Posts: 117member
    mdoss said:
    Well, I have an iPhone 5 (yes I am ancient) and when I check on apps that "might slow down my iPhone" it lists out every app I have installed, including Keynote, TestFlight, iAD, App Store (yes), Apple Store,  Calculator, Camera, Compass, FaceTime etc. There are more, I just got sick of listing each one out.

    The funny part is, all these apps were just updated yesterday before installing 10.3.  And there are no updates available for these after the upgrade.

    In addition to these, I have quite a few Apple services that are "incompatible", liked AccountAuthenticationDialog, AACredentialRecoryDialog, AskPermissionUI,  etc.

    Of course there are third party apps like Google Maps, 1Password and many others in that list.

    Funny!

    Cheers
    You are disappointed that you can't install 64 bit versions of apps on a 32 bit device?
  • Reply 19 of 33
    pakittpakitt Posts: 156member
    iSRS said:
    Tapping Applications does nothing for me. Am I missing something? Or are all 263 of my apps 64-bit?
    Same for me. I have only 37 apps though...! 263 apps??? do you really use them all? 
    No wonder people want 256GB phones.... pics and docs really are not the issue it seems :) 
    baconstang
  • Reply 20 of 33
    pakittpakitt Posts: 156member
    melgross said:
    It's already been said that Apple will be removing these apps from the store. It's said that there could be as many as 250 thousand of what are essentially, abandoned apps.
    They should clean up their app store big time - it is full of clones, dead apps, zombies, useless apps that try to steal money and so on. The really useful ones, are probably 10% of what is listed.
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