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iOS 5 testing going back to iPhone 3GS, 3rd-gen iPod touch

updated 06:35 pm EDT, Sun May 1, 2011

iOS 5 testing as far back as iPhone 3GS era

Further anecdotes of iOS 5.0 device testing have suggested Apple is once again going back about two years for device support. While it was already known to be going back to last year's hardware, 9to5 has seen instances of the iPhone 3GS and the third-generation iPod touch. The crash longs generating the reports wouldn't guarantee support but suggested that iOS 5 was at least being designed with 2009-era hardware as a factor.

iOS 4 was the first Apple mobile platform to start cutting off device support and excluded both the original iPhone and iPod touch. Apple eventually dropped the iPhone 3G and second-generation iPod touch from iOS 4.3, presumably after new features became too demanding. A cutoff at the iPhone 3GS would mirror this for iOS 5 and could see the older phone miss out on speed-dependent features.

Most expect iOS 5 to be shown in beta form at WWDC in June and ship along with the next iPhone in September.

by MacNN Staff



  1. Inkling

    Joined: Dec 1969


    iPhone 3GS

    I'll certainly be ticked off if my 3GS isn't supported. The "S" means speed. It has about 80% of the speed of a iPhone 4. Twenty percent is certainly no reason to cut it off. And it'd help if Apple wasn't be so secretive about this sort of thing.

    Comment buried. Show
  1. facebook_Clarence

    Via Facebook

    Joined: May 2011


    Toxic waste

    These phones are to be disposed of every 2 years. If you're still using a 3 year old device, you might as well be using a rotary phone.

  1. jay3ld

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Grammar check

    "The crash longs generating"

  1. Inkling

    Joined: Dec 1969


    To the Unfortunate Toxic Waste

    Hey, my car's over 30 years old and is still runs fine, my bike's creeping up on 40, and my quiet hilltop apartment was built in the 1920s. I'm quite happy with all of them. My fully functional iPhone 3GS (bought used for $125) is one of the newest things I own. With pre-pay T-Mobile my phone bill runs about $6 a month.

    Buy new every two years if you want. But don't knock those with more laid-back lifestyles.

  1. dagamer34

    Joined: Dec 1969


    About CPU speed

    CPU speed can only be fairly compared across the same line. The 600Mhz ARM Cortex A8 chip is similar but still different from the ~800Mhz Apple A4.

  1. Gazoobee

    Joined: Dec 1969


    actually ...

    It's not only *not* certain that the support will extend to 3Gs' based on crash logs, but this year is probably the most likely year for Apple cut off more of the older hardware than in previous ones. There is a great divide in terms of the processor between the 3G's and 3Gs' and the iPhone 4. I would not be surprised at all, if iOS 5 supported only iPhone 4 and above.

    Apple guarantees that any iPhone you buy will support the current OS and all the point upgrades, as well as the first upgrade to the next OS. All for free.

    The 3G's and the 3Gs' came with iOS 3.0 so there is absolutely no guarantee these phones will be upgrade-able to iOS 5.0 and it basically "said so on the box" (metaphorically, it was actually in the agreement you clicked through), when they were bought.

  1. Sabon

    Joined: Dec 1969


    "Hey, my car's over 30 years old…"

    "Hey, my car's over 30 years old and is still runs fine, my bike's creeping up on 40, and my quiet hilltop apartment was built in the 1920s. I'm quite happy with all of them. My fully functional iPhone 3GS (bought used for $125) is one of the newest things I own."

    Let's compare you iPhone to cars. If you ONLY look at iPhones and not other phones, which I'll call horse and buggy phones, your 3GS is comparable to the 1940s or the 1950s car wise, the original being turn of the century - pre Model T - and the iPhone 3G being the Model T through maybe the 30s. Your 3GS is about the 1940s to 1950s and the iPhone 4 is up through the 70s.

    That said, your iPhone 3GS is "older" than your car or anything else you own based on generations of that specific kind of device, which in this case is Smart phones.

    You've heard of internet/web years. Well those are long compared to Smart Phone years.

  1. Cronocide

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Just Upgrade

    Or stop whining. Speed is the issue here, and if they have to cut off the 3GS, so be it. Just keep runming iOS 4. You wanted it when it came out, if you don't want it anymore, than you don't want your iPhone anymore. I, for one, will be upgrading to the iPhone 5.

  1. delete

    Joined: Dec 1969


    4.3 Demands?

    Yeah that demanding battery percentage readout in the status bar was enough to hold back supporting the 3G.

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