App Thinning Now Works On iOS 9

Apple recently fixed an iOS 9 issue which reduce the amount of storage space apps take up on your iPhone and iPad.

Application developers can now use iOS 9’s app thinning feature, also called app slicing, which reduces the file sizes of the apps downloaded by their consumers. Reported a few weeks ago, this bug caused users to download full versions of iOS apps – not device-specific ones – of an app, causing it to take up more storage space than usual.

Delayed arrival

It was originally slated to come out with the initial version of the iOS 9, but it was delayed due to a bug concerning iCloud backups. The update is now available to users who will download iOS 9.0.2 and above – but this will only apply to apps whose developers have taken advantage of it.

If you have recently downloaded an application from the App Store before the iOS 9.0.2 update went live, it has not been “thinned” yet, meaning you have downloaded the app’s files which have nothing to do with the device. For example, if you downloaded Facebook on your iPhone recently, you have also taken in the app’s files which are associated with the iPad.

With it, your device will ignore files which is does not need. With it, an iPhone 6s will no longer download app files which are exclusive for the iPad.

App thinning saves storage space

The app thinning feature will allow a little breathing room for most users with 16 GB devices, especially the iPhone 6s. It is worth noting that the iPhone 6s’ new features, particularly Live Photos, can fill up the phone’s hard disk in a hurry. The iOS 9 also occupies less space compared to its predecessor.

This feature is not available in earlier versions of the iOS 9 and previous operating systems. The entry-level iPhone 6s only has 16 GB worth of storage space, which is minuscule compared to other devices. This non-upgrade is a disappointment, considering as of 2014 91% of iPhone users are getting by on a small amount of storage space for their files – this also makes app thinning a must.

Apple’s iCloud

Apple's iCloud - its own online storage service.
Apple’s iCloud – its own online storage service.

This move is seen as a way for users to take advantage of Apple’s iCloud service which is noticeably outmatched by its competitors like Dropbox, Microsoft OneDrive, and Google Drive. iCloud provides only five gigabytes of free storage space and is comparably more expensive than its competitors, despite iCloud prices recently going down.

Apple vice president Phil Schiller emphasized that cloud storage options have lessened the need for large built-in storage systems. He also argued that most users store most of their files and documents on the cloud. Android phones mostly have 32 GB as the minimum amount of storage space their devices should have.

iPhone 6s models and storage

The new iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus 16 GB models are expected to not store a lot of files. The new models have upgrading cameras, catching up to their competitors – a 12 megapixel camera at the back and a five megapixel front-facing camera. Higher definition cameras mean photos and videos take up more storage space. The Live Photos feature is estimated to take at least occupy three times as much storage space compared to normal stills. It is basically like a GIF which takes the 1.5 seconds before and after the photo was taken. This is on by default, which means users will need to disable it to help free up some space.

The new iPhone is also capable of taking ultra high definition videos. This means video files will take up more space than usual, putting iPhone 6s 16 GB users in a quandary.

Due to the many features of the iPhone 6s models, the app thinning feature of the iOS 9 is a welcome addition to Apple’s inventory and will guarantee that users will be able to make the most out of their devices.

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