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Official iPhone 4 support to come to a halt with iOS 8

updated 04:31 pm EDT, Mon June 2, 2014

Signature device was already feature-limited

Once iOS 8 launches this fall, Apple will officially drop compatibility with the iPhone 4. The information was touched on just briefly during today's WWDC keynote in the form of a slide. The oldest compatible iPhone will thus become the iPhone 4S; for iPads the minimum will again be the iPad 2, while for iPod touches it will be the fifth-generation model.

The change was expected insofar as the iPhone 4 has already been struggling with iOS 7. The release of v7.1 alleivated some performance problems, but the device still lacks support for features that are now de facto on most iOS hardware, like AirDrop and Siri. It's even incapable of some of iOS 7's visual effects.

The iPhone 4 is in some ways Apple's most recognized device. It helped expand the iPhone's reach in the US and internationally, and created the design language used in every subsequent iPhone. Even the 4.7-inch iPhone 6 -- likely to ship with iOS 8 onboard -- is expected to keep at least some elements intact.




by MacNN Staff

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  1. bjojade

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: 06-07-07

    "The iPhone 4 is in some ways Apple's most recognized device. It helped expand the iPhone's reach in the US and internationally, and created the design language used in every subsequent iPhone. Even the 4.7-inch iPhone 6 -- likely to ship with iOS 8 onboard -- is expected to keep at least some elements intact."

    Huh? The basic design of the phone hasn't changed since iPhone 1. That's the one that set the design language, more than anything. While the 4 and 5 are similar in that they both have a flat back surface, that's about as far as the similarities go with the design language. The design elements that are going to remain in iPhone 6 likely were not introduced in the iPhone 4.

  1. DiabloConQueso

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: 06-11-08

    I thnk they mean more along the lines of "form factor," not design elements. With the exception of height, the iPhone has retained the same form factor and design starting with the iPhone 4, continuing through the iPhone 4S, iPhone 5, and finally, iPhone 5S. No other iPhone model has kept the same form factor through 4 iterations of the hardware. In fact, the only other iPhone that shares a common form factor is the iPhone 3G and iPhone 3GS.

    It's the distinctive all-glass front and back with metallic bezel all the way around. Design-wise, other than the connector, antenna breaks, location of the headphone jack, and TouchID (all very minor changes, aesthetically), nothing external has changed at all through the last 4 versions of the phone.

  1. coffeetime

    Mac Enthusiast

    Joined: 11-15-06

    I am glad the large background image is back when someone calls! I can't stand the tiny circle image on iOS7...... what were they thinking?

  1. slapppy

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: 03-23-08

    I actually enjoy the iPhone 4/4S design. Yes both sides are glass and stainless steel band. The band is much tougher than current aluminum body, and the glass never broke on me. Despite dropping it and skidding across cement a few time. It did tear up the films, but the glass didn't break. I would love for Apple to bring that design back in a much thinner form factor.

  1. bdmarsh

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: 02-17-06

    I'm more surprised the iPad 2 support was continued than the iPhone 4 was dropped :) Both will soon be 4 years old and with the pace of mobile OS development, that is a long time. Until recently the average OS support window was about 3 years. (with some exceptions like the iPad 1 and original iPhone)

    as for the iPhone 4/4S design, while it was ok, it was heavy, and the extra glass on the back acting as an insulator does affect performance. (I only managed to crack the front glass on about the 9th or 10th drop when it hit a rock) The iPhone 5/5S just refined the design for thinner, lighter and more surface area to radiate heat

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