Apple to alert users of 32-bit apps in latest macOS dev release

With the release of the latest macOS developer beta, Apple will begin to alert users that they are using older, 32-bit apps, instead of the more modern 64-bit apps, the company told me today. The macOS beta will be released to developers on Wednesday.

At this point, the alert is more of a gentle reminder to users that their apps are out of date. You will receive an alert once per 32-bit app, so it won’t be an annoyance, but certainly something you should pay attention too.

Further alerts will happen when the next-generation macOS is released, most likely later this year.

Apple said they aren’t announcing a timeframe for cutting off support for 32-bit apps in macOS, but clearly that time is coming in the next year or so. This is a way for the company to start making people aware of the change, giving them plenty of time to make the necessary arrangements to update their apps.

While the alerts are only in the latest beta version of macOS, end users will start seeing them when version 10.13.4 is released to the general public. That will most likely happen in the next few weeks.

Developers were made aware of this change at WWDC last year, so none of this is new to them. If you see an alert, you should check to see if there is an updated version of that app.

  • Kriztyan

    I am not sure if I use any 32-bit apps at this point. I don’t use a lot of old software and the two main software developers that I use are subscription/maintenance based, so I always have the latest version.

    • I’ve got Dropbox (not the main app, but some of its internal helper apps) and BBEdit. BBEdit has a 64-bit version in beta.

  • Mo

    Aunt Tillie might be in for a bit of trouble if Favorite Niece updates her OS without checking apps first.

    • Didn’t they put some sort of confirmation on the iOS update?

      I think I heard about it. I didn’t hit it because I didn’t have any 32-bit apps left by then.

      • Mo

        I don’t think an advisory will be something Aunt Tillie sees when Niece reboots and favorite apps get broken.

        • True. The hope is Niece slows down and gets permission first, but generally speaking the younger Niece is the less likely that is to happen.

          • Mo

            Family tech support isn’t always necessarily thorough tech support.

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  • I’ve got a lot of 32-Bit software on my machine, including a disturbingly large amount of Adobe stuff, and some apps I use all the time, like Quicktime 7 and Levelator, that won’t work under the latest OS. One of the reasons why I’m in no hurry to update.