Every year Apple is releasing the new version of iOS. It is always a huge event, especially for the users who are awaiting new functionalities and possibilities they will have with the brand new software. For mobile developers, it is a challenge to make sure everything will be working as expected in a day of iOS release. This year may be harder for these companies which apps are not built for 64bit architecture. In iOS 11 Apple will not allow these apps to be executed. Check how to make sure your app will not be added to this list of shame.
iOS 64bit revolution
iPhone 5S, introduced in September 2013 was the first iPhone ever with the 64bit chip. With completely rewritten iOS 7 in place, supporting new architecture, Apple started its way into faster more modern hardware components. The process itself is not anything new for the company. They went through the similar process on Macs with OS X operating system.
During the years following iPhone 5S release, Apple gave a couple of yellow flags, indicating that at some point apps created using 32bit architecture won’t be supported anymore. Every new app submitted to the App Store after February 2015 had to support 64bits. Since 1st June 2015, Apple extended that requirement to all apps submitted – both new and the updates.
iOS 32bit blockers
Current betas of iOS show that Apple is preparing a special mechanism which will block 32bit apps from working after the update. It will be probably introduced in a full state in iOS11. Based on the information provided before, if you haven’t updated your app since mid-2015, there is a risk that your app may not be ready for the changes. The sooner it will be checked the better. If you have an app which doesn’t require constant updates, at some point it may leave you in the state where the app which was working for you and your clients will simply stop working.
How much work is needed?
The common question asked is how much work is needed to move your app into 64bit architecture. There is no simple answer for that as it all depends on the list of the libraries your app is using, dependencies and used technologies which were used in general. For simple apps, it shouldn’t be complicated, but in some cases, it will require more software development and much more testing, as every single user scenario and test case should be verified. If you don’t have test cases for your project, ask your software house to provide it. Without them, it may be really hard to test the app in a streamlined way.
The bottom line is, if you are not sure if your app is ready for 64bits, check it as soon as possible. In the constantly changing mobile market, it’s a good practice to think forward and be prepared for the changes that will be introduced in the near future. If you have any questions regarding your current app, we will be happy to look into that and suggest the best possible approach to preparing your app (and business) for the final change.