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iPad support – new apps or upgrades?

June 1, 2010

Application developers have two main options when it comes to iPad applications. Either produce a completely new application (e.g. Account Tracker “HD”) that will be charged for in the normal way, or produce what is called a “Universal” application that will support the iPad as well as current iPhone and iPod Touch devices. A universal app would typically be an upgrade for existing users.

My initial thoughts on this would be to produce universal updates, to get each of my apps working and taking advantage of the iPad’s bigger screen. However there is a slight issue. The development tools that you need to produce such an application no longer support iPhone OS 2.2.1 or below. If I went down this route, existing users with older iPod Touches would not be able to upgrade at all, and would therefore be stuck at the current versions.

How big an issue is this? All iPhone users can update their iPhone OS free of charge, but there is a nominal charge from Apple for older iPod Touch users (in the UK this is £2.99).

I would welcome your comments, especially if you are running an older iPhone OS version.

  1. Nick Collins
    August 28, 2010 at 7:36 am

    Any more thoughts on developing a universal app. I have recently purchased an iPad as well as an iPhone 4. To be able to use the app on the iPad would be a bonus. (I understand this would require a backup and transfer of data though).

    Any thoughts on incorporating “cloud” storage of the transaction information? This would make multi device usage really easy.

    • August 28, 2010 at 11:12 am

      HI Nick, I assume you mean for Account Tracker as I have already converted and released my other two apps. Yes, its on my todo list, I just have a couple of other features to add first before doing an iPad version. I am aware that some apps use Dropbox for storing files and data, and this is something I should look into.

  2. June 11, 2010 at 8:30 pm

    As part of the iPhone 4 and iOS4 keynote from Apple the other day, they announced that OS upgrades would now be free for iPod Touch users. This basically makes it an obvious choice, i.e. that I should provide universal updates. 🙂

    • July 5, 2010 at 11:02 pm

      Just to add to this, Apple are no longer accepting apps that are targeted at iPhone OS 2.x. I guess everyone has to upgrade!

  3. June 1, 2010 at 9:25 pm

    Hi Graham,

    I’m an iPhone 3.0+ and iPad user so would technically be out of the equation.

    However, if I was using an old iPod Touch, I’d rather pay to upgrade the OS than pay for one app. I’m sure others would agree that a universal app would be the way forward.

    Hope I help a bit,


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