Apple Winding Down 32bit Support with iOS 10.3
Samuel Wan / 2 years ago
One of the big trends going on in the mobile industry is the transition from 32bit to 64bit computing. As one of the major innovators in this space, Apple was the first to start the transition and it appears they will also be the first complete it. Starting with the beta iOS 10.3, the OS will start warning users of 32bit apps that their apps will no longer be supported in future versions of iOS.
According to various sources, these warnings are only popping up for 32bit apps and not the 64bit version. This suggests that iOS 11 may require 64bit apps only and remove backwards compatibility with 32bit apps. Since February 2015, all new apps have had to be 64bit and updates apps since June 2015 have had this requirement as well. This means these 32bit applications are older than a year and are unlikely to see recompilation into 64bit and will likely longer be functional with iOS 11 forever.
Due to their control of both the SoC, OS and app store, Apple has been able to make a strong move towards 64bit. Android has also been chugging along with 64bit adoption but without consistent updates, the majority of users are still on 32bit versions of Android. It’s unlikely Android will see a forced 64bit ecosystem for a very very long time. Likewise, Windows still continues to offer a 32bit version though it is seldom used except for compatibility reasons.