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iOS App Store offering last compatible versions for download


As Apple prepares for the next update to iOS, users are noticing that older devices are being offered an alternative when trying to download apps that are not compatible with those devices. This is the first time Apple has allowed previous versions of apps to be downloaded. If an app was updated, users had to maintain copies of older apps if they ever needed to reinstall them and an updated app was added to the Apple App Store.

After trying to update a newer app on an original iPad, a message appeared indicating: “Download an older version of this app? The current version requires iOS 6.0 or later, but you can download the last compatible version.” The user can choose download to install the last usable version for that device or cancel the request.

While many users will upgrade to iOS 7 soon after it is released, older devices like the original iPad and the iPhone 3GS will not be compatible with the newer version. This will help extend the life of those devices. Users will be able to maintain usage while not worrying about losing an app if their device needs to be reset. Without this option in the past, a user would need to either purchase a new device or go without an app that may have been useful.

Older devices can still be good for emergency calls or even introductory devices for children. This app opportunity will help keep those devices in useful shape for a while longer.

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