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iOS 11 doesn’t just kill off old apps, it might leave your iPhone for dead

Updated Jun 6th, 2017 9:20AM EDT
iOS 11 Features

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Apple on Monday gave the world its first look at iOS 11, the company’s next-generation mobile operating system. In doing so, Apple showed iPhone and iPad users all of the exciting new features they’ll have access to this fall, once iOS 11 is released to the public. Of course, eager iOS device users also have the option to sign up for the public iOS 11 beta, or they can even install the developer beta right now quite easily, though that would be ill-advised since it’s quite buggy at this stage.

New features such as a revamped Messages app, Siri enhancements, and a completely redesigned Control Center have users excited for iOS 11’s upcoming release this fall. But unfortunately, it’s not all good news. While Apple obviously chose to focus on iOS 11’s key additions during its WWDC 2017 keynote presentation, there are also some things eliminated by iOS 11 that many users are bound to be upset about.

Following Apple’s WWDC keynote on Monday, we told you all about the most exciting new features coming to iPhones and iPads in iOS 11. There’s a whole lot to be excited about, and you can see all of the coolest new iOS 11 features right here. We’re particularly excited about the new Control Center and Apple Pay features, and we can’t wait to see what Apple does with augmented reality on the iPhone 8.

Looking beyond all of the great new features Apple added to iOS 11, there are also some things that Apple removed. First, as was rumored ahead of Apple’s big event on Monday, Apple’s mobile platform will no longer support 32-bit apps beginning with iOS 11. That means older applications that haven’t been updated in years will no longer be able to run on iPhones and iPads with iOS 11 installed. Plenty of people still rely on old apps — even we use some old 32-bit apps on a fairly regular basis — so this will undoubtedly ruffle some feathers since many of these apps won’t be updated to 64-bit by their developers.

Of course, the App Store is packed with newer apps, so users should be able to find alternatives in most cases. Much more of a fuss will likely be made over something else that Apple removed from iOS 11: Support for three different iOS device models.

Apple is much better than its rivals at providing support in the way of software and security updates for legacy devices. iPhones and iPads continue to receive updates for years before they’re made obsolete. Still, Apple can only offer updates to older devices for so long, and three different devices are on the chopping block this fall.

If you own an iPhone 5c, an iPhone 5, or a 4th-generation iPad, your device has reached the end of the road. It will continue to function come September, of course, but it will not receive Apple’s iOS 11 update or any subsequent updates. Device compatibility is listed on Apple’s iOS 11 preview page, and those three devices are absent. Interestingly, they’ve also been removed from Apple’s list of devices compatible with iOS 10, though they are all indeed supported.

Zach Epstein
Zach Epstein Executive Editor

Zach Epstein has been the Executive Editor at BGR for more than 10 years. He manages BGR’s editorial team and ensures that best practices are adhered to. He also oversees the Ecommerce team and directs the daily flow of all content. Zach first joined BGR in 2007 as a Staff Writer covering business, technology, and entertainment.

His work has been quoted by countless top news organizations, and he was recently named one of the world's top 10 “power mobile influencers” by Forbes. Prior to BGR, Zach worked as an executive in marketing and business development with two private telcos.