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IOS Upgrades Apple

Apple Pushes Developers To iOS 7 336

Posted by Unknown Lamer
from the upgrade-or-die dept.
Hugh Pickens DOT Com writes "Chuong Nguyen reports that Apple is forcing developers to adopt iOS 7's visual UI for their apps, and has advised iOS developers that all apps submitted after February 1, 2014 must be optimized for iOS 7 and built using Xcode 5 ... 'It's likely that Apple is more anxious than ever for developers to update their apps to fit in visually and mechanically with iOS 7, as it's the largest change in the history of Apple's mobile software,' says Matthew Panzarino. 'iOS 7 introduced a much more complex physical language while stripping out many of the visual cues that developers had relied on to instruct users. For better or worse, this has created a new aesthetic that many un-updated apps did not reflect.' Most app developers have been building apps optimized towards iOS 7 since Apple's World Wide Developer Conference in June 2013. Apple has been on a push over the past couple of years to encourage developers to support the latest editions of its OS faster than ever. To do this, it's made a habit of pointing out the adoption rates of new versions of iOS, which are extremely high. Nearly every event mentions iOS 7 adoption, which now tops 76% of all iOS users, and Apple publishes current statistics. In order to optimize apps for the new operating system, they must be built with the latest version of Xcode 5 which includes 64-bit support and access to new features like backgrounding APIs."
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Apple Pushes Developers To iOS 7

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  • Cause I haven't been keeping tabs and I'd hate to miss the JB window for iOS7. And I'm not giving up 6 until the JB is ready.

    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by ganjadude (952775)
      FTA

      Devices that are compatible and are switched on to WiFi will automatically download the latest iOS build and install it without requiring user intervention, a forceful move done by Apple.

      As someone who does not use apple products and havent since the power PC days ( ok I lie, I had an ipod classic for a short period of time) does this mean there is no way to turn off "automatic updates" in an Idevice? I would not be too happy if that were the case, If I am happy with the version I am running, I dont want apple saying too bad and forcing me into another version that will change all my settings / visual cues that I am used to and like

      • by Nerdfest (867930)

        ... don't forget degrading your performance. Can't have you happy with an older version of the OS that runs fast on your old device. Why would you buy a new one?

        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by MightyMartian (840721)

          Yup. My old iPhone 4, which was running perfectly fine with iOS 6 just crawls now. Safari is almost unusable. Other than email, about the most Internet I centric thing I use it for now is tethering to my Nexus 7. When my iPhone finally kicks it, I'm going with an Android phone, probably a Nexus 5. Then I don't need the evil that is called iTunes to copy to the phone, can access the file system and don't have to deal with Apple's ludicrous restrictions.

      • Most jailbreaks turn off autonotification/checking for updates. I don't see why a JB wouldn't just turn off the autoupdate feature.

      • by perpenso (1613749) on Wednesday December 18, 2013 @02:21PM (#45728143)

        ... does this mean there is no way to turn off "automatic updates" in an Idevice ...

        A user of an iOS device does not have to upgrade. The check for an update is automatic, the installation is not.

        Its more of an issue for developers. The development tools sometimes make it difficult to support older versions of iOS. At the moment iOS 6 is well supported so there really is not much of a problem to have your app target both iOS 6 and 7.

      • by jbolden (176878)

        OS and application upgrades are manual. You can choose not to do them.

      • by CohibaVancouver (864662) on Wednesday December 18, 2013 @02:27PM (#45728215)

        Devices that are compatible and are switched on to WiFi will automatically download the latest iOS build and install it without requiring user intervention

        This is untrue. My 4s is at iOS 6.1.3. It has an indicator that iOS 7 is available as a download, but hasn't auto-downloaded it, or installed it. I also need to free up 4 gigs on my 16 gig iPhone to install it, which I'm too lazy to do these days.

      • You can easily turn off the updates, without jailbreaking. I haven't read it, but if TFA says that, it's FUD.

        Settings>iTunes&AppStore> Updates set to off.

      • You don;'t have to apply any patches or updates. The worst that happens is that you have a little red number sitting on your screen telling you that there are available updates. You can decide whether or not to do so.

        Typically, I wait about a week, see just what Apple managed to break and then update if desired. Easy peasy.

      • by LocalH (28506)

        Unless something has changed, the article is wrong. iOS 7-compatible devices will automaticaly download the update when connected to Wifi, the update will take around 3GB of space or so on the device, and worst of all it's the only way to recover that space on a jailed device is to install the update, but it doesn't actually install automatically from what I understand.

      • by Karlt1 (231423)

        As someone who does not use apple products and havent since the power PC days ( ok I lie, I had an ipod classic for a short period of time) does this mean there is no way to turn off "automatic updates" in an Idevice? I

        The article is only half correct. When an update comes, it is downloaded to the device if there is enough space but not automatically installed. Unfortunately, you can't delete the update.

      • by EvilSS (557649)
        You can disable automatic updates of both the OS and Apps in the device's settings. It may still DOWNLOAD the next update in the case of the OS, but it won't install it without your permission. This has some iOS 7 holdouts understandably cranky since it takes up space on the device.
    • by Jeremiah Cornelius (137) on Wednesday December 18, 2013 @02:01PM (#45727901) Homepage Journal

      iOS7 would have gotten Jony FIRED if Jobs were still alive. Give the man a gong, and "Sir" Ives fucks everything to hell.

      The man was a great PHYSICAL designer of cases and objects. Not allowed near software UXD in Steve's lifetime. Now you know why.

      Nothing works well, any longer - shadows and reflections or not. The laundry list of how screwed the music app deserved a post of its own.

      Red chevrons? REALLY? Lotus Notes, Borland SideKick and ccMail.

    • I hope that iOS7 doesn't get jailbroken. It is such a waste of time to put so much effort into things that should just work out of the box. There is no reason for Apple to lock their system down so much.
      • What? Don't jailbreak then. I'll bet your toaster doesn't even have an LCD.

        Your UID suggests you've been here for a while. What happened? You get married or something?

        • People who have the skills to Jailbreak should put their skills to something more useful. It pains me to see so many skilled people in the Jailbreak community wasting their time to implement things that Apple could make useless by flipping a few bytes.
  • Dear Users... (Score:4, Insightful)

    by fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) on Wednesday December 18, 2013 @01:55PM (#45727833) Journal
    Compliance is Exciting and Mandatory! Thank you in advance for your cooperation.
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by gstoddart (321705)

      On the bright side, there should be a fresh wave of people who can't upgrade because Apple abandoned the devices.

      So, the last update I got for my first-gen iPad is the last of these devices I'll own.

      They still support my 10 year old iPods, but after 2 years they no longer supported my iPad.

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by CastrTroy (595695)
        Regardless, Apple seems to be better than everyone else in this regard. With Android tablets it's a mystery as to whether or not you'll get upgrades at all. Sure you have more luck with Nexus tablets over other Android models, but they don't really have that long of a track record with tablets, so it's really hard to tell. For Christmas this year I spent a lot of time researching tablets, and settled on the Surface2. Sure, mock me or call me an MS shill if you want, but it's the only tablet out there tha
        • by mlts (1038732)

          The Surface Pro is a pretty decent piece of hardware. If MS had a decent dock for it that supported Thunderbolt and USB 3.0 so it could be used with a decent monitor, keyboard, and mouse, it would come close to a desktop replacement, although it may not run the latest Crysis iterations at max settings.

          Plus, the Secure UEFI Boot can be switched off to use it as a Linux tablet, should the want/need arise.

          • by CastrTroy (595695)
            The Surface 2 Pro has a USB 3 port and a DisplayPort connector, so It can be used with a decent monitor, keyboard and Mouse. Even the Surface 2 (not Pro) supports USB 3, and Mini HDMI, so it also supports keyboard, mouse, and a decent monitor. You'll need a USB hub to plug in both a USB mouse and keyboard, but that should work just fine. Since it's USB3, you could probably plug in a mouse, keyboard, and large hard disk and completely replace your desktop with either Surface 2 Pro, or Surface 2, depending
      • I've had my iPhone 4 for 3 years. I'll keep it until next year, so that'll be 4 years. I'm sorry that the first gen iPad got the short end of the stick, but it's the exception, not the rule. Android devices work in the other direction--I don't know of any that have been supported with the latest updates for 4 years.

        I think they've properly settled into their groove. If you get a new iPad Air, it'll have a 64-bit processor in it and be fairly future-proof. You'll almost certainly get 3 or 4 years out of that

        • Android devices work in the other direction--I don't know of any that have been supported with the latest updates for 4 years.

          I've been a big fan of the Samsung Galaxy phones. My old phones, and current phone can all be updated to the current and latest releases of android:

          Samsung Galaxy S (soon to be 4 years old), Galaxy S2 and Galaxy S3 can all be updated to 4.3.1 (Jellybean), and will soon have an update to 4.4 (KitKat)

    • by westlake (615356)

      Compliance is Exciting and Mandatory! Thank you in advance for your cooperation.

      Apple sells a high end --- mass market --- consumer product. Its customers have no interest in tinkering under the hood.

      As tech advances, the enthusiast is eclipsed. We've seen this countless times before.

    • by Chemisor (97276)

      Dear developers: please stop playing in Apple's garden and leave it to its natural fate of weeds and cobwebs.

  • by QBasicer (781745) on Wednesday December 18, 2013 @01:57PM (#45727863) Homepage Journal

    'iOS 7 introduced a much more complex physical language while stripping out many of the visual cues that developers had relied on to instruct users.

    Like what? I don't have an iOS device, so I'm not really sure what they're talking about.

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by geek (5680)

      'iOS 7 introduced a much more complex physical language while stripping out many of the visual cues that developers had relied on to instruct users.

      Like what? I don't have an iOS device, so I'm not really sure what they're talking about.

      I'm not sure what "physical language" means in terms of a none physical medium such as software but if I had to venture a guess I would say they are talking about the new "flat" design where buttons and such are not raised but simply look like hyperlinks on web pages. On top of that the previous way you access spotlight is gone, no longer to the far left screen but brought down from the top view swiping in the middle of the screen, while swiping from the top down brings down notifications and swiping up fro

      • Imagine all the gestures you'll want to give when told to re-engineer your apps. That's the "physical language".

    • by jbolden (176878)

      A lot of markings that differentiated buttons from textual content or pressable icons (buttons) from graphics.

  • Typo in headline (Score:2, Flamebait)

    by slashmydots (2189826)
    It's supposed to say "Apple pushes developers to Android"
    By the way, it's around 6:1 now for android to apple phone counts.
    • Re:Typo in headline (Score:4, Interesting)

      by Camembert (2891457) on Wednesday December 18, 2013 @02:19PM (#45728119)

      It's supposed to say "Apple pushes developers to Android" By the way, it's around 6:1 now for android to apple phone counts.

      Yes, that could be since there are so many low end android devices worldwide.
      However it seems that in the US (copied this from Macrumors):
      According to data from research firm Kantar Worldpanel posted earlier this month, the iPhone's market share in the U.S. hit 52.8% in October following the launch of the iPhone 5s and the iPhone 5c. In the previous year, Apple's market share was at 53.3% following the launch of the iPhone 5, and was at 36% and 25% in the two years prior with the launch of the iPhone 4S and iPhone 4, respectively.
      Over here in Hong Kong where I currently live I see more people with Android than with iphone but the ratio is rather 1.5 : 1. From my discussions with friends and colleagues, I think that a number of them may switch back once Apple offers a bigger phone (most people outside Slashdot still give the brand quite some goodwill).
      Also in statistics once again it seems that the iphones are used more for internet activities than the bigger number of android phones - leading me to suspect that the cheaper android devices are first and foremost used as a pure phone with some games etc thrown in.

      • leading me to suspect that the cheaper android devices are first and foremost used as a pure phone with some games etc thrown in.

        And this is bad...why?

    • by perpenso (1613749)

      It's supposed to say "Apple pushes developers to Android"

      And after a few months coding on Android the developer really begins to appreciate Apple.

      By the way, it's around 6:1 now for android to apple phone counts.

      And this is basically canceled out by the fact that the average per download revenue on iOS is 5x what it is on Android.

  • grr (Score:4, Interesting)

    by jollyreaper (513215) on Wednesday December 18, 2013 @02:09PM (#45728001)

    Fuck Apple. I bit the bullet on smartphones with a 4S. I was very pleased with it. The new OS is about as appetizing as being smacked about the face with a rotting donkey dick. It's slow, clunky, and changes everything for the sake of change. It's terrible.

    "So if you don't like it, don't buy it," says the fanboi.

    Hey, I bought what I did like! Apple's changing it on me. If I like a brand of shoes there's always the chance they'll change the line when I need a new pair. Thems the breaks in life. But not even Nike is going to go to my house and fuck up a pair I already own. Apple will. I'm not updating this phone, period. If none of the new apps will work with it, I'm done buying apps.

    Sadly, I don't like Android much either. Windows Mobile can choke on my fuck. IOS5 was the last really good mobile OS. If there's ever another good one, I don't think it's coming from Apple.

    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward

      If you turn the motion off in iOS7 it is no slower than iOS6, and battery life has improved on my 4S.

      http://tweaks.com/apple/65851/turn-off-ios-7-parallax-motion-backgrounds/

    • It's slow, clunky, and changes everything for the sake of change. It's terrible.

      FWIW the latest OS update made it a lot faster.

      Still ugly IMO, but that's a matter of my (and apparently your) opinion.

    • You sound angry. Maybe you should have a nice, relaxing talk with Siri.

  • no iOS 5 love (Score:5, Interesting)

    by psyque (1234612) on Wednesday December 18, 2013 @02:16PM (#45728085)
    I hate how this is breaking support for iOS 5.1.1 only devices like the iPad 1. My mother-in-law is not technically inclined, but uses an iPad1 for banking and watching TV shows. Both apps have broken support for iOS5 in favor of iOS7. This makes a device she paid good money for only a couple years ago a paperweight. My Motorola Xoom I bought at roughly the same time is going strong and running a very current version of Android. This kind of thing is just a normal function of technology every 4-5 years+, but not 2 or less. Unfortunately for Apple her next device will be an Android. Cheaper and obsolescence proof for much longer.
    • by gstoddart (321705)

      That about mirrors my experience.

      Which is why I now have a Nexus 7, because I know Google will try to release for that as long as possible, and it would cost FAR less to replace than the iPad 1 I had which got abandoned by them.

      But if Apple thinks I'd spend the money on another iPad, they're sorely mistaken.

    • by jbolden (176878)

      iPad 1 is April 2010. How is that 2 years or less?

      • by CastrTroy (595695)
        Let's look at actual dates. iPad 2 was released in March 2011, So any iPad bought up until February 2011 would have been iPad 1. iOS 7 was released September 2013. So that gives roughly 2 years, 7 months between the iPad 1 being the current device, and iOS making the iPad 1 obsolete. So it's definitely more than 2 years, but less than 3. Which is a short period of time compare to other iOS devices. Although I really can't fault them. The original iPad only has 256 MB of RAM. The iPad Air (and even 3r
    • by alen (225700)

      your mom can still use those apps at their current versions and if she resets her ipad she can still download the older versions of those apps

      what's the problem? new features need the new API's in the newer version of the OS

      • by mark-t (151149)
        No, actually... they don't necessarily need new API's at all, except to the extent that Apple might enforce the requirement that a new API be utilized to run on the more modern OS, while not necessarily offering any additional functionality that the end user might notice in an application.
    • by ruir (2709173)
      Broken support? As far as I know the App Store nowadays offers you to download the last version supported that works for your device. I have still an iPad from two generations ago that is working like a charm, will see for how long. Quite happy with it, and I really hate android so much I bought an iPhone and gave up my working android phone.
  • What is the story? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Princeofcups (150855) <john@princeofcups.com> on Wednesday December 18, 2013 @02:34PM (#45728291) Homepage

    Normal development cycle. What is the story here? That iOS 7 is successful?

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward

      Normal development cycle. What is the story here? That iOS 7 is successful?

      The story is that if anybody else was doing this it would indeed be a normal development cycle, if Microsoft and Apple do it it's an act of tyranny.

    • Apple's normal development cycle.

      Whereas, I can still run many of my Win32 apps from the Windows 9x era on Windows 7.

      No story here. Apple sells the whole solution. If Microsoft sold hardware boxes they would probably force the API forward more aggressively, too.

  • by craftycoder (1851452) on Wednesday December 18, 2013 @02:40PM (#45728365)

    I've been a programmer for decades and I write my share of mobile apps. I write in many languages and for many platforms so I'm not married to any particular target system. I am in the middle of a project and have some beta testers running an iOS app with OTA updates using a OTA provisioning profile which is a fancy way of saying users can update apps over the air without needing to use the app store. My provision profile, a digital signature like thing, expired in November and the users needed a new version of the app to keep testing. I opened up my MacBook and it informed me that XCode 5 was available and "would I like to update it?" Sure, why not? Well, I can tell you why not. XCode 5 made software written in previous version not work! Significant rewrites needed to be done in order to do any changes and there was no option to compile for previous version. In short, an errant software update created two weeks work. Nowhere in there notice to update did it say clicking YES will cost you $10,000. This is screwed up! Backward compatibility should be available for development. If they want to no longer accept iOS6 apps into the store, that is fine. I should be able to compile old code without error by selecting the correct target device. This sort of thing actually makes their previous devices worthless because if they cannot run iOS7 then no new software can be written for them again. It is a such a waste. I am pissed at these guys.

    I am able to take a previous compiled binary and sign it with a new profile so that the users are still able to work, but now even the most minor change requires a rewrite. These guys seem to forget who made them rich. It was devs making awesome software which made people buy their products in huge numbers. iTunes integration will only sell so many phones.

    • by berj (754323)

      If you are running Lion or earlier you can download old versions of XCode here:

      https://developer.apple.com/downloads/index.action?name=Xcode [apple.com]

      If you've upgraded to Mavericks you're going to have to run Lion in a VPN or compile on an older machine.

    • by perpenso (1613749)
      You should be able to download Xcode 4.6.3 from Apple's dev site. I think the project files are compatible between Xcode 4 and 5, at least I haven't noticed problems bouncing between the two Xcode versions on a couple of my projects. These are projects created under Xcode 4.
  • So what about app developers that do not use Xcode 5? What if they use Mono or Embarcadero's Delphi or C++? Is this there way of killing of developer system competitors?

    • They just need to support the same things XCode 5 does (like 64 bit ARM). Most of them use XCode 5 under the hood for final builds I believe, so I'm not sure it's even an issue.

  • If developers are forced to update their apps, then owners of old iPad, Pod, and Phones will be forced to upgrade as well. My Ipads have been left at ios5 with no upgrade path available. Eventually, I will no longer be able to buy apps in the app store.

    • by Karlt1 (231423)

      If developers are forced to update their apps, then owners of old iPad, Pod, and Phones will be forced to upgrade as well. My Ipads have been left at ios5 with no upgrade path available. Eventually, I will no longer be able to buy apps in the app store.

      An app must support iOS 7 != it can't support older devices. IIRC, the latest version of XCode supports back to 4.3.

  • There's an old story (and a song, as I recall) about an old woman who finds a sick snake and takes it home to nurse it to health. After the snake is healthy, it bites her and when she complains tells her to stop complaining because she knew what it was when she took it in. Same goes for Apple devs in the current situation. This is SOP for Apple and has been for years. If you're going to develop apps for Apple machines you gotta be ready with your snake-bit kit at all times.
  • by Aaden42 (198257) on Wednesday December 18, 2013 @03:18PM (#45728743) Homepage

    Summary is an over simplification based reading T.F.Email from Apple. Nothing that Apple is doing at this time will prevent developers from targeting older devices than they previously have been able to target. I *think* the current oldest supportable iOS given their requirements is iOS 5, but I haven’t verified that with the latest Xcode build.

    All apps published after the cut-off date must be built with the latest version of Xcode and must have imagery & design that will support iOS 7 devices’ look & feel. They must use iOS 7 as the Base SDK, but they are not required to use iOS 7 as the Minimum Deployment Target. The minimum target supported by latest Xcode is the one thing I’m uncertain of right now, but I’m pretty sure it’s iOS 5.something.

    The two settings on your project (Base SDK and Min. Deployment Target (MDT)) control the newest and oldest features you have access to, respectively. An app with a newer Base SDK will still run on an older device (down to MDT). Any features added to an iOS release that’s newer that the MDT will be weak linked. The developer can check at runtime whether particular functionality is available. Unavailable classes will return nil when you try to access them (which you can ignore or check for depending on your needs), and newer methods will be unavailable on old devices (so check with respondsToSelector: or similar before calling). Additionally, when running on an older device, you keep the old device look & feel. You don’t suddenly start looking like iOS 7 on an older device.

    As for what developers must do to comply with the new requirements:

    1) Make sure all artwork, screen layouts, etc. are available in the higher resolution / size needed by the larger iPhone 5+ screens & Retina iPads.

    2) If changing the MDT, update any code referencing methods/classes that were deprecated in between whatever the previous MDT was and the new one. Any methods/classes deprecated between the new MDT and the Base SDK version can stay unchanged,since in many cases, the newer method/classes wouldn’t be available at runtime on the older devices.

    Apple has definitely cut off older devices in the past. It’s currently Very Difficult to target 3GS or earlier devices as the current Xcode doesn’t generate ARMv6 code any more. It’s still possible to make that work if you’re very dedicated by building an ARMv6 binary with an older Xcode, ARMv7(s) with the latest Xcode, and manually merging the binaries with the `lipo` command. Anecdotal evidence suggests Apple will still approve such binaries, though I’ve not personally tried to submit one.

  • by MMC Monster (602931) on Wednesday December 18, 2013 @03:35PM (#45728907)

    I was an iPad early adopter. It won't upgrade beyond iOS 5.x. I'm not upset about that. I understand that newer versions of an OS have more advanced hardware requirements.

    My problem is the issues it causes with the walled garden of apps:

    All apps are now going to require iOS7 to be installed. If I have iOS5.x I can't upgrade. This isn't the problem.

    The problem is, if my iPad needs to get wiped for whatever reason, I cannot reinstall older versions of the apps from the Apple Store, since they will not allow download of old versions of apps, even if the newer version is not compatible with my hardware.

    • The problem is, if my iPad needs to get wiped for whatever reason, I cannot reinstall older versions of the apps from the Apple Store, since they will not allow download of old versions of apps, even if the newer version is not compatible with my hardware.

      Apple recently changed this policy if NoMaster's comment [slashdot.org] is to be believed.

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