iOS 9 ‘App Thinning’ could breathe new life into 16GB iDevices

A barely publicised feature of Apple’s upcoming iOS 9 could spell great news for owners of 16GB iPhone or iPads.

The increasing size of not only iOS itself but also apps has left owners of Apple’s entry-level devices with little room to play with, forcing many to pick and choose what apps they have installed and limit the amount of music, photos and movies they store on their machine.

However, ArsTechnica reports that iOS 9 will take several steps to make life easier for such owners.

For instance, the space requirement for users to download and install over-the-air firmware updates has been reduced from 4.6GB to just 1.3GB. Bigger news, though, comes in the shape of a new feature called ‘App Thinning’.

The increasing number of different iOS devices mean that a typical download contains a whole load of assets that a user doesn’t actually need (such as both 32-bit and 64-bit binaries and assets for all the various iPhone screen sizes) because they aren’t relevant to their particular handset or tablet.

Developers will also now be able to tweak their apps so that a download only contains the files needed to run the software on a specific handset, cutting the clutter and significantly reducing app size. The process devs need to follow to implement this sounds incredibly simple, too.

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