Apple will officially take the wraps off of its iOS 9 mobile operating system at the WWDC event next month. However, a lot of features of the iOS 9 have leaked over the past few months. For instance, it will bring a new default font called San Francisco, a new Home app to manage HomeKit devices, an improved mapping service, and split-screen viewing mode for iPads.
Apple takes ground-up approach with the iOS 9
None of these would excite older iPhone and iPad users as much as a new report that iOS 9 will support their old devices. Apple has historically released iOS updates with all the bells and whistles, but dropped support for devices that are more than a couple of years old. Now Mark Gurman of 9to5Mac has learned from inside sources that the Cupertino company is going to change its strategy.
Sources told Gurman that Apple has taken a ground-up approach with the iOS 9 by first designing a core version of the operating system for older devices before adding more features for newer devices. It would work smoothly with the iPhone 4 and iPad Mini and newer models. This strategy is quite surprising, especially for a company that relies on selling newer devices for its growth.
iOS 9 support for older iPhones aimed at emerging markets?
So, why is Apple changing its strategy with the iOS 9? Telsyte managing director Foad Fadaghi says it would help the company retain brand loyalty. Its high-priced newer devices may not fit everyone’s budget. If you force them to upgrade, they may considering switching to Android or other platforms. While the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus have generated record sales, older devices that are relatively lower priced are still selling well in many countries.
Offering support to older models would also help Apple strengthen its position in emerging markets where people don’t replace high-end phones every time a new version arrives. Apple’s trade-off of making older iPhones ‘new’ again with iOS 9 means there won’t be a lot of new features. Sources told 9to5Mac that this time Apple would focus on quality and bug-free experience rather than introducing a lot of new features.