If you're a user of the iPhone 6, iPhone 6 Plus, iPhone SE or iPhone 5S… look away now, as a rumor has suggested that Apple's new iOS 13 won't be coming to your phone.
And the bad news doesn't stop there – if you've got an iPad Mini 2 or the iPad Air, you'll be equally disappointed, as a large swathe of devices are reportedly going to be consigned to the 'un-updated' bin from 2019.
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The unpleasant report comes from iPhonesoft.fr, citing a developer 'friend' who works with Apple on the app plans – so, as ever, this news can't be confirmed until WWDC 2019 rolls around and we hear it from the mouths of the Apple executives.
It would make sense though, as Apple supported the iPhone 5S on iOS 12 when many expected it to fall by the wayside due to its age. Moreover, by dropping the iPhone 6 this year, it's essentially jumping back onto the 'schedule of obsolescence' that it's been using for years, losing phones five years old.
However, it would equally be surprising given the efforts Apple made to highlight how it wanted to support older devices – although getting software updates for four years isn't too bad for a phone that was discontinued in 2016.
The quality conundrum
The thing is, Apple's older phones hold their value incredibly well and even when they're discontinued by Apple, they still are sold by third-party vendors in relatively high numbers, so the Cupertino brand would be making life difficult for itself by dropping the iPhone 6 (which was one of the most popular iPhones yet).
Then again, it's fair for a brand to stop supporting older models if it wants to introduce new, power-hungry features that only newer devices can handle – after all, with the smartphone market contracting Apple needs to make sure that the iPhone 11 is a big hit.
Giving it fancy new features, whether that's in augmented reality (AR) or smarter image processing capabilities, will require more power and could degrade the experience of the older phones.
We'll need to wait another month to see what emerges at WWDC, but it wouldn't be a surprise to see the list of iPhones supported for iOS 13 stops at the iPhone 6S.
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