ALMOST 200,000 APPS will likely be rendered obsolete when Apple rolls out its iOS 11 update later this year.
With iOS 11, set to be unveiled in June at WWDC before it's rolled out to in around six month's time, Apple looks set to remove support for 32-bit apps and will stop supporting those that don't run natively in 64-bit mode.
We first heard about this back in January, when a message was spotted in iOS 10.3 that warns devs that their app will stop working if not updated to support 64-bit.
For example, an alert relating to an app called 'Waterslide' warns: "Waterslide Needs to Be Updated This app will not work with future versions of iOS. The developer of this app needs to update it to improve its compatibility."
iOS 10.3 has now been released to all and appears to include a new tool to that names and shames apps that will be rendered obsolete by the next major update. The tool, found in Settings > General > About > Applications, lists installed apps that don't run in 64-bit mode, and warns: "The apps may slow down your iPhone and will not work with future version of iOS if they are not updated."
SensorTower, an app research outfit, is claiming that Apple's move to stop supporting 32-bit apps will see at least 187,000 apps, or eight per cent of the App Store, rendered obsolete by iOS 11.
It's mainly gaming apps that will stop working, according to the firm's research, with almost 39,000 32-bit only apps still present App Store. This is followed by 'education' tools of which almost 20,000 are out of date, and 'entertainment' apps with 14,000 yet to be upgraded.
While Apple has yet to confirm the move, the firm has required developers to submit new applications with 64-bit support since February 2015 and app updates since June 2015.
A message to developers at the time read: "Starting February 1 2015 new iOS apps uploaded to the App Store must include 64-bit support and be built with the iOS 8 SDK, included in Xcode 6 or later.
"To enable 64-bit in your project, we recommend using the default Xcode build setting of 'Standard architectures' to build a single binary with both 32-bit and 64-bit code." µ
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