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Apple to shut down its online services for devices running older software

Apple’s services are deeply tied to the company’s operating systems, such as iOS and macOS. But even with new software bringing new features, Apple still keeps its online services running on older software. But this may soon change, as the company is about to shut down its services for some older software.

Devices running iOS 11 may lose access to Apple services

According to the leaker known as StellaFudge, virtually all of Apple’s online services except for iCloud will stop working on devices running iOS 11, macOS High Sierra, watchOS 4, and tvOS 11. The leak claims that users running this software will be notified about the upcoming limitation and to update their devices if possible.

In the past, StellaFudge has correctly leaked actual photos of the AirPods MaxAirTags, and details about products like the M1 iPad Pro and the iPhone 12 lineup.

But as noted by MacRumors, there’s something else that backs up this leak – and it comes from Apple itself. The company published a new support article last month explaining that “older software versions will no longer support Apple Services like the App Store, Siri, and Maps.”

Right now, even if you have a device as old as an iPhone 3GS, you can still use services like iMessage. Similar to that, iPhone 4 users can still make FaceTime calls. Of course, new features are not supported by these devices, but they never lost their original capabilities.

The reasons behind this decision are unclear, but Apple could be working on a major upgrade under the hood for its online services that would break support for some old software. WhatsApp, for example, blocks older devices from accessing the app every year due to lack of updates and new features.

Of course, the number of users running old Apple software is really low. According to Apple, only 8% of iOS devices still run software prior iOS 15. This means that the impact of limiting services to newer devices may not be huge. Still, it would be the first time Apple has ever done this.

iOS 17 rumored to drop support for more devices

iOS 17 and iPadOS 17

According to another report, iOS 17 and iPadOS 17 will drop support for iPhone 8, iPhone X, the fifth-generation iPad, and the first-generation iPad Pro. This would come after iOS 16 dropped support for multiple devices last year, including iPhone 7, the first-generation iPhone SE, and the last iPod touch model.

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