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Apple may kill one of its most important iPhones with iOS 17

Apple’s WWDC 2023 is just a few weeks away, which is when we expect the company to unveil new software updates for iPhone, Apple Watch, iPads, Mac, and more. This means we’ll be seeing a preview of iOS 17, watchOS 10, iPadOS 17, and macOS 14 during the conference. However, a new report seems to hint that iOS 17 and iPadOS 17 will drop support for devices that were released between November 2015 and November 2017.

According to MacRumors, a source with a proven track record for upcoming software updates reports that iOS 17 will drop support for the following devices: iPhone 8, iPhone 8 Plus, iPhone X, the first generation 9.7-inch and 12.9-inch iPad Pro, and fifth-generation iPad.

Apple iPhone X screen upright on a table.
Julian Chokkattu/Digital Trends

If this is the case, it shows that Apple will be dropping support for devices with the A11 Bionic chip or older with the new iOS 17 and iPadOS 17 updates. But it seems that there will be some rare exceptions, like the 6th-generation and 7th-generation iPad models with the A10 Fusion chip, as well as second-generation 10.5-inch and 12.9-inch iPad Pro with A10X Fusion chips.

Right now, any iPhone or iPad that has an A5 through A11 chip has a bootrom security vulnerability that cannot be patched by Apple. That’s because the bootrom only operates in a read-only state. Due to this exploit, these particular devices have been able to be perpetually jailbroken on multiple versions of iOS, which makes it possible for users to modify the iOS file system.

Last year’s iOS 16 release dropped support for some older devices too, including the iPhone 6s, iPhone 6s Plus, iPhone 7, iPhone 7 Plus, original iPhone SE, last iPod touch, iPad Air 2, and iPad mini 4. So, iOS 17 dropping support for the iPhone 8 and iPhone X devices isn’t entirely surprising — they’re already five years old. Apple still supports software upgrades for older devices better than most Android manufacturers. Still, it’s notable to hear that the iPhone X could finally be put to pasture, considering how impactful the phone has been over the years.

Expect to see iOS 17 and the other software updates at WWDC taking place on June 5.

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Christine Romero-Chan
Christine Romero-Chan has been writing about technology, specifically Apple, for over a decade. She graduated from California…
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