Apple’s iOS 17 operating system will be compatible with all iPhones that are capable of running iOS 16, claims a previously reliable source with alleged contacts within Apple, contradicting yesterday’s rumor.
On Tuesday, a separate source with a good track record for predicting the general release window of upcoming Apple software updates suggested that iOS 17 will drop support for the iPhone 8, iPhone 8 Plus, and iPhone X, while iPadOS 17 will drop support for the first-generation 9.7-inch and 12.9-inch iPad Pro, and fifth-generation iPad.
However, in direct response to the claim about iOS 17 dropping support for the above iPhone models, a reputable leaker has asserted otherwise, saying that it is “simply incorrect.” According to a post on the MacRumors forum by the anonymous tipster, all iPhones that support iOS 16 will indeed support iOS 17, including all devices powered by A11 chipsets (i.e. the iPhone X and iPhone 8/8 Plus).
This counterclaim comes from the same leaker that last year accurately revealed the presence of the Dynamic Island on iPhone 14 Pro models ahead of their official launch. More recently they also claimed that the upcoming iPhone 15 Pro models will use a new ultra-low energy chip allowing the new volume, power, and “Action” solid-state buttons to remain functional when the handset is powered off or out of battery, and that iOS 17 will include a new sensitivity setting for said buttons.
This source is said to have a “man inside” Apple’s development team who occasionally reveals hardware details about upcoming iPhone models if the physical features require software development to complement them.
If their latest claim is accurate, it would not be the first time that Apple has maintained the same list of compatible devices between major iOS releases. For example, iOS 15 is compatible with all devices that can run iOS 14, although some iOS 15 features are not available on older iPhones. In contrast, iOS 16 dropped support for some older devices, including the iPhone SE, the iPhone 6s, the iPhone 6s Plus, the iPod touch, and the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus.
It is also worth noting that yesterday’s rumor was not the first time it has been suggested that iOS 17 could drop support for the iPhone X and iPhone 8/8 Plus. The argument does make logical sense because these models are now five years old – an elapsed timeframe previously used by Apple to drop software support for some earlier devices. They are also the only iPhones powered by the A11 chip, which is vulnerable to a bootrom jailbreaking exploit that Apple is unable to patch. However, whether Tuesday’s rumor was the result of pure extrapolation along these lines remains unknown.
Unless the latest rumor by our anonymous forum tipster is corroborated by another source within the next two months, we will simply have to wait until June 5 to learn if it is true, as this is the date that Apple is expected to announce iOS 17 at WWDC.