Own an iPhone 5? It's time to retire it if you want the latest iOS 11 apps
USA TODAY's Jefferson Graham gives his take on the latest Apple mobile operating system update.
LOS ANGELES — If you have an old iPhone 5 model you've been using for several years, now it's time to upgrade.
Apple's new mobile operating system update, iOS11, will be released later this month, and it includes new features that won't work with some older iPhones. The cutoff is the iPhone 5, the phone that was first introduced in 2012 and pulled off the market 12 months later, and the 5C, released in 2013.
Any phone afterward — iPhone 5S, 6, 6S, 7 and SE — can run the latest operating system. But the very niftiest features, particularly the augmented reality apps that will bring Pokémon Go-type digital overlays onto your physical world — will only work with later model phones.
If you're hanging on to an original iPhone 5, here are some of the new operating system changes you'll miss. Also note that later operating systems are more secure from cybersecurity breaches.
—Apple Pay for friends. Riffing off the popular Venmo app, where millions of students split pizza bills and rent notices via the peer-to-peer app, Apple is bringing the same technology to its text message network, Messages. The advantage over Venmo: no app to install, and Apple already has your banking information on file.
—Do Not Disturb. To help curb distracted driving, Apple's new feature lets you turn off notifications and other disturbances while you drive. First you have to agree to turn it on.
—New filters and compression for photos. Always running out of room to take new pictures on your phone? IOS11 introduces a new system that effectively makes the file size of your photo smaller, but retains the quality, enabling you to take more photos. Apple also has new filters to jazz up your image.
— A redesigned lock screen that promises to do a better job keeping all our notifications in one place.
—A new, expandable keyboard that Apple says will let you "select one-handed typing, and the keys will instantly move closer to your thumb."
Most non-Apple apps won't work unless you have a recent iOS version installed. That's at least iOS 8 (Waze, Spotify, Uber, Facebook Messenger) or 9 (Gas Buddy, YouTube, Instagram, Snapchat.)
The iPhone 5 came installed with iOS6. So if you've somehow been eking it through, it's just in time. The phone won't get you much in resale—Gazelle.com is offering $35 for good condition used iPhone 5 models — but you may find it works well enough repurposed as a remote, alarm, or home camera.
Finally, the iPhone 5 isn't the only model taking it on the chin. The biggest feature for iOS11 is the introduction of thousands of new augmented reality apps, which put animation into real life. They won't work on the iPhone 5, 5S or even the 6—only the 6S, 7 and 7 Plus, the new iPhone 8 and 8 Plus, and the economy priced $349 SE. s that will be announced on Tuesday.
So here's the reality: if you have an old iPhone and want new features, it's time.
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