iPadOS 17 won't support a few iPad & iPad Pro models

in iPad edited May 2023
Owners of the 9.7-inch iPad Pro and the first 12.9-inch iPad Pro won't be able to use iPadOS 17, a report claims, corroborating an earlier compatibility rumor.

The first-generation 12.9-inch iPad Pro and 9.7-inch iPad Pro
The first-generation 12.9-inch iPad Pro and 9.7-inch iPad Pro

As time moves on, Apple occasionally drops support for older device models for its latest operating systems. For iPadOS 17, it seems that three models in the iPad family won't be able to use the next major release.

According to an "internal source at Apple" for French publication iPhoneSoft, the fifth-generation iPad as well as the first generation of iPad Pro models will not be able to run iPadOS 17, and will remain on iPadOS 16. This would include the first 12.9-inch iPad Pro, as well as the 9.7-inch iPad Pro.

The iPad uses an A9 chip and the iPad Pro models use A9X. The change would therefore mean iPadOS has caught up to iOS in not supporting the chip. Apple dropped compatibility with the iPhone 6s in iOS 16, which also used the A9.

Earlier in April, a rumor spread that iOS 17 would drop support for the A11 Bionic as well as all A9 and A9X hardware, leaving a curious gap in supported chips. A later tip sent to AppleInsider refuted the A11 Bionic claim, meaning the iPhone 8 and iPhone X models were still safe and supported.

Dropping support for models in iOS and iPadOS is usually a byproduct of Apple's new features, with affected hardware left running the previous release generation. They do still tend to receive updates over time, typically for security, but at a fairly low rate.

With iOS 17 apparently intended to focus on stability rather than features, it seems likely that the supported device list will be trimmed. However, it's still entirely possible for Apple to change its mind and continue supporting the models before its WWDC 2023 introductions.

Read on AppleInsider


  • Reply 1 of 3
    Recent OSs have made my 9.7 inches quite sluggish. Bouts of Runaway 3 digit (up to 400, 1-minute) load averages, very sluggish performance, hot case and high battery drain. 

    I haven’t been bothered to debug (via Console on my Mac), as it often self-resolves after 5 or 10 minutes. Sad if they drop support, rather than fixing the bug spawning so many rogue processes…

    Shame, as the iPad Pro still does regular great service and has lovely smooth edges — unlike the recent sharp models, which I tried and returned due to their uncomfortable feel in my hand.
  • Reply 2 of 3
    dewmedewme Posts: 5,551member
    My first Gen. 12.9” iPad Pro only recently succumbed to battery bloat but it was always fast and responsive. At the same time my iPad 2 keeps chugging along with no signs of battery issues. Not the speediest but still usable for some things. My first gen iPad Air lives on as well and serves very well as an ebook reader and lightweight productivity machine. Still impressive. 

    The one feature that I really like in the newer iPads is Sidecar. It’s just so well implemented and responsive. When, not if, my newer iPads find themselves shamed by being put on the “no longer supported” list they’ll still be very useful as secondary monitors, unless Apple deprecates or changes how Sidecar works on the Mac side. 
    edited April 2023 pscooter63watto_cobra
  • Reply 3 of 3
    While I own a modern iPad, I still like the 2016 iPad Pro, and I use it for reading and simple tasks. It's still working great. iOS 15 made it slower compared to 14 though... I blame that to the 2 GB of ram it has... Not sure how the 2015 model fared, since it has double the memory.
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