Devs slow to update Apps for iPhone 5?

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by -FlyAuburn-, Sep 23, 2012.

  1. -FlyAuburn- macrumors regular

    Jun 2, 2010
    Disclaimer: I'm not a developer so I have no idea what it does or doesn't take to re-code an App for a larger screen size.

    Having said that is it really all that difficult? Maybe I'm just impatient or my expectations were off, but I feel like:

    1. More Devs/Apps should have been ready with day one updates for the new screen size.

    2. After a couple of days I would have expected more updates to start rolling out and it seems like there are almost none....

    So what gives? Any devs have any insight on this?
  2. mrjinglesusa macrumors newbie


    Sep 20, 2012
    Remember, Apple has to approve not only new apps, but upgraded apps as well. Also, no devs had iPhone 5s to test on before Friday.

    Give it time. The next week will see MANY more apps being upgraded to support the iPhone 5.
  3. jetlitheone macrumors 6502a

    Sep 16, 2012
    I sure hope so. The boxes on top and bottom are annoying.
  4. markyr17 macrumors 65816


    Apr 8, 2010
    I expected apps to be updated quicker as well. I know we need to give the devs more time, but it seems almost painful now using tapatalk without the whole screen!
  5. nepalisherpa macrumors 68020


    Aug 15, 2011
    You need to give devs some time. Making iPhone 5 compatible not only means extra code, but, new graphics as well. That takes time. Plus, Apple's approval process takes time as well. Just be patient.
  6. zeyank macrumors member

    Nov 16, 2009
    Hey guys, I'm a developer, so I thought I would offer up a bit of insight.

    It takes time. Depending on the complexity of the application, this could take anywhere from a day to a few weeks (or more) of programming and testing. If the applications have custom graphics, the developer might have to hire graphics artists to provide new (larger) images. This takes time.

    Now once the programming, graphics updates and testing is finally done, we upload the application to Apple. It can take anywhere from 7-15 days to get that application reviewed and approved by Apple. Because tons of developers are rushing to get their apps updated for the new device, the approval delay could be even longer due to the bottleneck.

    One final word: Developers don't like to update apps without testing them on real devices. This means that if you are lucky, the developer of your app just got their iPhone 5 within the last few days and is testing the app on it now. I'm sure many developers are still waiting for their iPhone 5s to arrive, and will undoubtedly be waiting to update the app so they can properly test it first.

    Don't blame the developers, Apple is a secretive company and we aren't in the loop until you are. I would guess you will start seeing updates come through next week and the bulk of them within a month or two.
  7. Julien macrumors G4


    Jun 30, 2007
    ...but it was over 180,000 seconds ago.:D
  8. -FlyAuburn- thread starter macrumors regular

    Jun 2, 2010
    Thank you! Exactly what I was looking for.

    I guess after all the waiting for the iPhone 5 and a bigger screen size it just kind of sucks that there is more waiting...

  9. dagamer34 macrumors 65816


    May 1, 2007
    Houston, TX
    Updating for Retina on the iPhone 4 was easy if you were observant of leaks, Gizmodo pretty much confirmed the doubled resolution 2 1/2 months before the iPhone 4 was released. And as soon as the term "retina display" was coined, a studious developer making a new iPad app should have had retina-ready assets ready to go (I certainly did).

    However, changing aspect ratios is a completely different kettle of fish because how it affects both the 3:2 ratio and 16:9 ratio. There's no "prep" work a developer can do, even if we knew for a fact that the iPhone 5 was going to have a different resolution back in March. Since it involved actual code for any app, it's going to take time to develop and fully test any changes.

    And to be honest, with the kinds of changes an aspect ratio change can cause, it really is better for developers to wait for an actual device. All it takes is a adding a 1136x640 splash screen jpg to enable the taller screen in most apps that are just lists (like Mail), but when I was testing my app, it actually broke some significant functionality, so I definitely said "no way" to shipping an update without testing on real hardware.
  10. Oppressed macrumors 65816


    Aug 15, 2010
    Over 9,000!!!

    Sorry I had to. I was actually thinking how fast most of the major apps have been updated considering its been out for two days. I would think that information apps like flip board and Facebook would be easy compared to say games.
  11. -FlyAuburn- thread starter macrumors regular

    Jun 2, 2010
    Maybe that's what it is... Meaning I remember when the iPhone 4 came out App updates came out same day; almost all the ones I used on a regular basis..

    I guess I incorrectly expected the same this time but your explanation makes perfect sense.

  12. sulpfiction macrumors 68030


    Aug 16, 2011
    Philadelphia Area
    I want updated apps as well, but u gotta have some patience. Devs didn't know for certain what the 5 was going to be, just like we didn't. So I'm sure they didn't want to devote a ton of time, effort and cost programming for a resolution & screen size that they weren't sure of. We will have slews of updated apps in a couple weeks.

    Relax. It's been 2 days. Geeze.
  13. flipshot macrumors 6502a

    Jul 30, 2007
    Hertfordshire, UK
    You also need to remember there was a longer gap between the announcement and release of the iPhone 4. 17 days vs 10 days for the iPhone 5
  14. Halon X macrumors regular

    Sep 22, 2005
    Malibu, CA
    Still waiting for a phone isn't really an excuse! If I was a developer I would have done everything in my power to get an iPhone on launch day!

    Although not a developer, it was awesome to see iFixit fly to Australia to ensure they had their content up to date as soon as they possibly could!
  15. Robb. macrumors member

    Sep 20, 2012
    Dev weighing in.

    - Only a handful of developers were given specifications to update, since Apple is strict with their security of unreleased products
    - Apple normally takes forever to approve an application
    - There's probably quite a few apps going in for review right now, so the approval system is going to be backlogged for a while
    - Being a developer does not guarantee access to hardware

    I didn't get a phone on launch day because UPS claimed my address didn't exist. I got it the following day, but that was after a lot of work on my part with UPS.
  16. dagamer34 macrumors 65816


    May 1, 2007
    Houston, TX
    You're not a developer. The worst thing on every developer's minds is shipping an update that break's your app and a bunch of people leave 1-star reviews. I've had that experience and it is nerve-wracking as sales visibly diminish the next day.

    Developers should not ship 1/2 tested updates. It's too easy to screw up.
  17. Jman13 macrumors 68000

    Aug 7, 2011
    Columbus, OH
    I'm also anxiously awaiting updated apps. I said it earlier in another thread, but there are a few things I'm either surprised or waiting for.

    The biggest surprise to me is that Rovio didn't have Angry Birds updated by launch day. I know it's a fair bit of work, but they already have all the art (lots of 16:9 Android phones), and I would have sworn that they'd be one of the developers that Apple gave early access to the phone for. I'm also surprised that Box has their app updated, but Dropbox doesn't. (I use both, but Box much more since I have a free 50GB account with them, and they now finally have desktop syncing).

    My biggest desires are Dolphin and Tapatalk to be updated. These shouldn't require artwork, so should be relatively easy to adjust (heck, Geekbench, Linpack and Wordpress are updated...)

    I know they'll be coming soon. By this time next week, I would imagine that a good portion of my most used apps will be updated. I also understand that a lot of games might take a while before they're updated. That's fine. I'm not upset waiting for them to update, but I am anxious...the screen is so nice, so it's an inconvenience when they're not taking full advantage of it.
  18. meganator macrumors member

    Sep 14, 2012
    Funny you say that because tons of my apps have updated already. I've been super impressed with how quickly they've gotten things changed. I guess it just depends on what kinds of apps you have.
  19. -FlyAuburn- thread starter macrumors regular

    Jun 2, 2010
    Yeah, Angry Birds was a surprise to me also. After seeing a 16x9 version running on an Xperia Play, I figured as you said that they had it ready to go since they already had all the artwork.
  20. Halon X macrumors regular

    Sep 22, 2005
    Malibu, CA
    I agree 100% which is exactly why a developer should do everything they can to get the updated iPhone as soon as possible. The sooner they can start testing on the actual hardware, the sooner they can ensure everything is happy on it and comfortably release the needed update.
  21. -FlyAuburn- thread starter macrumors regular

    Jun 2, 2010
    Which ones? Just curious.


    I'm relaxed. Like I said I'm not a developer so I was just curious. No need to hate. :)
  22. flipshot macrumors 6502a

    Jul 30, 2007
    Hertfordshire, UK
    On mine I have Facebook, Twitter, Tweetbot, Kindle, Evernote, Deliveries, Clear, Flipboard all running at the new resolution.

    The only apps I am really waiting for are Things, YouTube and Chrome. Not really fussed about the others.
  23. DDustiNN macrumors 68000


    Jan 27, 2011
    Well I can give you an example that might help, speaking solely from my personal experience.

    I did not think I would have to update my app, since I am using standard iOS views (my app is very similar to the Contacts app, as far as layout and simple functionality - list and detail view). So I assumed my list views would automatically adjust, and simply show more of the list.

    Not so.

    I got my iPhone 5 on Friday, downloaded my app, and sure enough... it was letterboxed.

    I fixed it last night (thanks to some help from fellow forum members), submitted the update to Apple, and now I'm just waiting.

    And to give you an idea... once you submit an app (new, update, doesn't matter), it usually takes about a week for Apple to approve it.

    As for apps that are built for specific screen sizes (like games), those interfaces will have to be completely redone, so that may take a while. Mine was a very simple fix, so you may see simple apps like mine getting their updates pretty soon.
  24. Compile 'em all macrumors 601

    Compile 'em all

    Apr 6, 2005
    Developer here. It really depends on the app, the current state of development and what the dev had already in the pipeline. For example, with our app,TodoMovies, we won't release a version just to support iPhone 5. We have been working already on the next update for quite a while, so optimizing for the iPhone 5 will be incorporated into the next update (as opposed to rushing out a separate update just for that). And it isn't as easy as flipping some button, it required some major changes, and we had to rewrite a lot of code.

    Also support for iPhone 5 wasn't present in Xcode only until recently (as opposed to iOS 6). That being said TodoMovies 1.2 will look bombastic on the big screen :).

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