Friday, September 25, 2020 [Tweets] [Favorites]

iOS 14 Update Could Permanently Remove Fortnite

Fortnite Status:

Fortnite iOS players updating to iOS 14 may lose access to Fortnite. If the message “Temporarily Remove Apps to Install the Software Update?” is accepted, it may result in Fortnite being deleted. Fortnite cannot later be reinstalled due to Apple preventing users from doing so.

Via Nick Heer:

Apple does not explain how iOS selects which apps to temporarily remove in order to free up space, but an educated guess suggests that it removes the largest apps first. Games like Fortnite have massive bundle sizes, so that’s why it is likely to be removed for an update. Apple’s UI copy indicates that it is temporary but, because Fortnite is no longer on the App Store, it is effectively permanent.

Unfortunately, apps are not included in iCloud backups, and iTunes can no longer back up and restore iOS apps, either. You have to download them from the App Store. That can be a problem if you want to revert to a previous version or restore an app that Apple has removed.

Previously:

4 Comments

On the previous "There’s No iOS Backup Feature" blog post from 2015, there's a link to an Apple support page, "Recovering iCloud contacts, calendars, and bookmarks from an iTunes backup of an iOS device".

That's now a dead link. Sometime between March 2015 and February 2016, Apple changed it to redirect to the support.apple.com front page, according to archive.org. Their first crawl of it was November 2014, and the bottom of the page said it was modified "Oct 6, 2014".

Apple's latest iOS runs on iPhones that are entering their 6th year. Some of their documentation, though, is lucky to last 6 months.

I've found that the "Temporarily remove apps" feature has never worked for me. When I see a request like that, I cancel the update. I manually uninstall some apps, perform the upgrade, and then reinstall. That always works.

The only catch is to make sure to do it to apps that store their state in the cloud, not on your device, since the on-device storage gets blown away by this process. Fortunately, I've got a few large-ish games that store their state in iCloud, which are completely unaffected by this process.

Apple probably sees being able to restore an app from your computer as a vector to installing things without their app store. so no surprise it's gone.

It seems Apple are opening themselves up to yet another damages claim is they say they will "Temporarily remove apps" and then delete data that cannot be replaced because they actively stop it from being replaced.

I don't think that matches anyones definition of “Temporarily”.

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