Apple's iOS 11 leaves iPhone 5, iPhone 5c, 4th-gen iPad in dust in 64-bit transition

Posted:
in iPhone edited June 2017
In one fell swoop, this fall's forthcoming iOS 11 update will mark the end of support for not only 32-bit apps, but also legacy 32-bit devices. That means owners still clinging to their iPhone 5, iPhone 5c and fourth-generation iPad will be left behind -- or forced to upgrade.




Though they received last year's iOS 10 update, the trio of devices running the Apple A6 CPU -- the last custom processor the company made with a 32-bit architecture -- will not be making the trip to iOS 11.

The move isn't a surprise, as Apple's recently released Clips video app only supports 64-bit hardware, meaning it cannot run on the iPhone 5, iPhone 5c, fourth-generation iPad, or any devices older than those.

Accordingly, iOS 11 will also mark the end of the line for 32-bit apps, which do not run in the first beta of the mobile operating system. Developers will need to update their apps to 64-bit before the launch of iOS 11 this fall, or else users will need to ditch abandoned apps before upgrading.

Of course, the iPhone 5 and other legacy devices will still function properly with iOS 10.3.2 and earlier if users choose to continue to stick on legacy platforms. But the outdated hardware and software will become increasingly obsolete over time, and there is no guarantee that functions or apps will continue to work as expected.

Such changes every year, and the phasing out of older hardware, are not new. Last year the popular iPhone 4s did not make the cut for iOS 10, and users who continue to use Apple's last 3.5-inch iPhone model cannot update past iOS 9.3.5.

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 15
    tipootipoo Posts: 790member
    ARMv8 is already a pretty clean ISA, not like when AMD64 was stuck together with x86, but I wonder, if iOS and apps will be 64 bit only from now on, if Apple will do the work to even further modify the original ISA for removal of any consideration for 32 bit.

    I don't think the gains would be big, but Apple isn't one to waste a nanometer on legacy.
    cornchip
  • Reply 2 of 15
    lkrupplkrupp Posts: 5,650member
    So you stay on iOS 10 until your device is no longer serviceable. What’s the problem?
    williamlondontjwolfMacProericthehalfbeecornchiplongpathMisterKitargonaut
  • Reply 3 of 15
    In the Platforms State of the Union WWDC session they announced ending support for 32-bit apps for macOS too, January and June 2018 (new and updates). "High Sierra will be the last macOS release to support 32-bit apps without compromises."
    edited June 2017 longpath
  • Reply 4 of 15
    rob53rob53 Posts: 1,765member
    In the State of the Platforms WWDC session they announced ending support for 32-bit apps for macOS too, January and June 2018 (new and updates).
    This is fine with me. Apple has warned developers for a few years this was going to happen so they should have upgraded their apps by now or simply abandoned them, which means we abandon them as well.
    peterhartlongpathwatto_cobraargonaut
  • Reply 5 of 15
    tjwolftjwolf Posts: 186member
    ...
    Of course, the iPhone 5 and other legacy devices will still function properly with iOS 10.3.2 and earlier if users choose to continue to stick on legacy platforms. But the outdated hardware and software will become increasingly obsolete over time, and there is no guarantee that functions or apps will continue to work as expected.
    We're at iOS 10.3.3 already...

    Seems to me that the apps/functions would only become obsolete if they use back end services that no longer support them.  Can you give an example in the iOS world where that has happened?  Standalone apps (e.g. your solitaire app) will probably never become obsolete.
    edited June 2017 Muntz
  • Reply 6 of 15
    seankillseankill Posts: 311member
    tjwolf said:
    ...
    Of course, the iPhone 5 and other legacy devices will still function properly with iOS 10.3.2 and earlier if users choose to continue to stick on legacy platforms. But the outdated hardware and software will become increasingly obsolete over time, and there is no guarantee that functions or apps will continue to work as expected.
    We're at iOS 10.3.3 already...

    Seems to me that the apps/functions would only become obsolete if they use back end services that no longer support them.  Can you give an example in the iOS world where that has happened?  Standalone apps (e.g. your solitaire app) will probably never become obsolete.

    The one I think of are some of the financial apps out there. Seems like they force me to update to the latest version, even if I am behind only one version.
    Muntz
  • Reply 7 of 15
    coolfactorcoolfactor Posts: 1,196member
    That means owners still clinging to their

    Yah, let's not cast disrespect over users. Just because technology moves forward, that doesn't mean that users are "clinging" to devices that may continue to be working just fine for them.
    Solicornchiptipooxamaxpscooter63
  • Reply 8 of 15
    wood1208wood1208 Posts: 1,279member
    It's same as nature. You get old, die, join dust.
  • Reply 9 of 15
    cornchipcornchip Posts: 946member
    lkrupp said:
    So you stay on iOS 10 until your device is no longer serviceable. What’s the problem?

    At least wife & I have iPhones 5s, but the '09 Mac Pro, iPad2 & iPad4 are getting further & further behind every year... That's tech though. Ugh.


    coolfactor said:
    That means owners still clinging to their

    Yah, let's not cast disrespect over users. Just because technology moves forward, that doesn't mean that users are "clinging" to devices that may continue to be working just fine for them.


    Or like us, just not in the budget.
    edited June 2017
  • Reply 10 of 15
    lkrupplkrupp Posts: 5,650member
    cornchip said:
    lkrupp said:
    So you stay on iOS 10 until your device is no longer serviceable. What’s the problem?

    At least wife & I have iPhones 5s, but the '09 Mac Pro, iPad2 & iPad4 are getting further & further behind every year... That's tech though. Ugh.


    coolfactor said:
    That means owners still clinging to their

    Yah, let's not cast disrespect over users. Just because technology moves forward, that doesn't mean that users are "clinging" to devices that may continue to be working just fine for them.


    Or like us, just not in the budget.
    Concerning the budget, it’s all about priorities when it comes to disposable income. People live in crappy houses but drive BMWs. People spend $100 for a manicure but their kids run around in ratty clothes. People buy a cheap POS Samsung phone and live in a mansion. Then there are the people who pay top dollar for Apple gear and then complain about the cost of a branded charging cable. People are nuts. Really nuts.
    StrangeDayspscooter63watto_cobraindyfxargonaut
  • Reply 11 of 15
    wizard69wizard69 Posts: 12,282member
    tipoo said:
    ARMv8 is already a pretty clean ISA, not like when AMD64 was stuck together with x86, but I wonder, if iOS and apps will be 64 bit only from now on, if Apple will do the work to even further modify the original ISA for removal of any consideration for 32 bit.

    I don't think the gains would be big, but Apple isn't one to waste a nanometer on legacy.
    Actually I think this is Apples game plan from the very beginning, that is to get to 64 bit hardware as soon as possible to eliminate legacy hardware support in the CPU complex.    People will argue about the benefits but in the end it just makes life easier for Apples engineers to design efficient and powerful chips.    Since a good portion of the world of IOS is already on 64 bit hardware (except for me) they won't have the confusion nor the user revolt that some platforms have to deal with.   In the long term I see it as a huge advantage for Apple.    Combine a clean 64 bit main CPU with a Apple GPU that is very capable compute wise and they have a tough combination for the competition to beat.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 12 of 15
    wizard69wizard69 Posts: 12,282member

    That means owners still clinging to their

    Yah, let's not cast disrespect over users. Just because technology moves forward, that doesn't mean that users are "clinging" to devices that may continue to be working just fine for them.
    Case in point I'm still using an iPhone 4!    It isn't so much clinging as it is a case of putting my money into other Apple products.   The important thing for me is that the iPhone actually works as a cell phone and can still read my E-Mail and other platform wide files.   This is one reason why I never tried to break into the device to get full access, it just isn't worth it on the iPhone.    Now iPad is a different story, but yeah the idea that we cling to the devices is a bit idiotic, we simply spend our money on other things more important to us.
    xamax
  • Reply 13 of 15
    bestkeptsecretbestkeptsecret Posts: 2,524member
    I'm thinking of repurposing some of my older iPads and am still to come up with interesting uses for them. I now have more obsolete iPads than supported ones!
    watto_cobraargonaut
  • Reply 14 of 15
    MarvinMarvin Posts: 14,138moderator
    rob53 said:
    In the State of the Platforms WWDC session they announced ending support for 32-bit apps for macOS too, January and June 2018 (new and updates).
    This is fine with me. Apple has warned developers for a few years this was going to happen so they should have upgraded their apps by now or simply abandoned them, which means we abandon them as well.
    It does mean some projects won't be able to open. This applies to Apple's own apps including Final Cut Pro 7 and Quicktime Pro 7. If people have Quicktime mov files containing video or audio codecs unsupported by Quicktime X, the file won't be playable once they drop 32-bit support. Projects made in FCP 7 won't be able to be exported or converted to a newer editor. At least there's plenty time to prepare for it but there's no replacement for Quicktime Pro 7, QTX doesn't have the same 3rd party codec support.

    Older software like Adobe CS Suites sometimes have 32-bit support/license components or plugins that will no longer run so for some, that will be the end of their 'perpetual' license.

    People can check if they have any processes on the Mac running 32-bit in Activity Monitor, right-click the subtitle bar and add Kind to the list then order by kind to see 32-bit processes.

    On iOS, being stuck on an older OS means developers with older hardware can't author to their devices for testing. This isn't all that big of a deal though because the newer hardware is cheap enough - $155 for a good condition 64-bit iPhone unlocked:

    http://www.ebay.com/itm/PRISTINE-Apple-iPhone-5s-16GB-32GB-64GB-Unlocked-SIM-Free-Smartphone-Grade-A-/112418218568

    There's not much excuse holding onto old mobile hardware when compatible hardware is that cheap. The iPad costs a bit more but Apple's newest one starts at $329 so used ones will be cheap enough to get.

    On iOS, it's actually a benefit to developers to be able to cut support for older devices because it means no non-Retina devices, no 3.5" phones etc. Unity has some stats on devices used to play games:

    https://hwstats.unity3d.com/mobile/device-ios.html

    The majority of users should all be on 64-bit hardware anyway. The 5S is the most popular there. It also shows the iPad mini models combined have more usage than the iPhone 6 so I guess it sold ok considering the iPhone 6 must have sold at least 100 million units. The original iPad mini will be cut off from iOS 11, they can get an iPad mini 2 for $189:

    http://www.ebay.com/itm/Apple-iPad-2-3-4-Mini-Air-Pro-WiFi-Tablet-16GB-32GB-64GB-128GB-I-GRADE-A-R-/182585625963
    williamlondon
  • Reply 15 of 15
    GeorgeBMacGeorgeBMac Posts: 1,726member
    I just gave a friend my old IPhone 5 to replace her stolen IPhone 6 and it's working very well for her.  (the fact that a simple restore from her ICloud backup got her up and running without missing a beat was SO very impressive -- thanks Apple!).

    But, while the fact that it won't get any OS upgrades after September doesn't bother either of us, does that mean it won't receive security updates either?   If so, that's a problem.   It makes sense that Apple would cut off both functional and security updates together, but since I don't see any discussion about that, it makes me wonder.

    Actually, for me, security is far more important than the functional upgrades -- which tend to be evolutionary rather than revolutionary at this point.
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