Guideline for iOS 11 SDK and iPhone X Compliance

As of July 2018, mobile app owners and developers have to meet compliance with iOS 11 SDK and iPhone X display in order to submit new apps and updates to the App Store. If they fail to do so, their apps will not be published in iOS app stores or cannot be updated. And they will be out of the game. Therefore, it’s absolutely critical for product owners to know what the new set of requirements are and what they really have to do about it.

IS YOUR APP READY FOR iOS 11 SDK AND iPHONE X?

With the iOS 11 update, Apple introduced some new innovative features like ARkit, new camera APIs, and Apple Music integration with mobile applications. In May 2018, following the iOS update, Apple announced that starting July 2018, there would be 2 requirements for all app submissions including updates and hotfixes:

1- iOS 11 SDK COMPLIANCE

All iOS app updates submitted to the App Store must be built with the iOS 11 SDK. The projects which are not developed with Xcode 9, cannot be published or updated in the App Store. So, all projects should complete their transitions to Xcode 9 before the deadline.

2- iPHONE X COMPLIANCE

Another regulation is that mobile applications must support the iPhone X Super Retina display.

iPhone X resolution support must be included if Auto Layout support is not available in the mobile application. Firstly published in iOS 6 update and launched with the iPhone 5, this technology allows the user interface to adapt to different screen resolutions.

The periods while the screen resolution is less varied, we could use a simpler method such as auto-resizing, but with the iPhone X this feature became compulsory for many application screens. It is because iPhone X has 9:19,5 aspect ratio screen unlike iPhone 5, iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 plus that have 16:9 aspect ratio screens. This means that applications that do not have Apple’s auto layout support will no longer work like the old solution which is displaying on high-resolution devices such as the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus in the 320×588 resolution that the iPhone 5 devices have.

At the moment, applications that have not been edited are displayed on iPhone X as a black letterbox at the top and bottom. If applications already have Auto Layout support, adding Safe Area support seems to be sufficient.

Apart from all these innovations, the iPhone X Design Guideline needs to be followed to get iPhone X compatibility. You can see our checklist below:

  1. Enable full-screen native resolution by setting project’s base SDK to iOS 11 and using Launch Storyboard or adding iPhone X launch image.
  2. Use Auto Layout or Autoresizing Masks at all views to adapt different screen sizes.
  3. Use safe area guides or layout margins at all views.
  4. Avoid assuming a value for the status bar height.
  5. Keep content and controls away from the corners, sensor housing, and home indicator so they remain clearly viewable and tappable at all times.
  6. Avoid using gesture interfering with system wide screen edge gestures used for access to Home screen, app switcher, Notification Center, and Control Center.
  7. Verify that your content such as images and video scales and is positioned correctly for different screen aspect ratio.
  8. Test your app in landscape orientation.
  9. Verify your Touch ID code works for Face ID.
  10. Supply high-resolution 3x scale factor images for all artwork in your app.
  11. Use wide color to enhance the visual experience.
  12. If your app currently hides the status bar, reconsider that decision for iPhone X.
  13. Insert full-width buttons.
  14. Don’t hide or call special attention to key display features such as device’s rounded corners, sensor housing, or indicator for accessing the Home screen.
  15. Allow auto-hiding of the indicator for accessing the Home screen only for passive viewing experiences like playing videos or photo slideshows.

WHAT’S NEW IN ANDROID?

There is also a similar situation for Android.

The Google Play guidelines require that the target SDK should be at least Android 8.0 (API level 26). The deadline is August 2018 for new applications and November 2018 for the updates of the existing applications’. With the showing change from project to project, various regulations will have to be made on from notification channels to new restrictions for back-end services.

COMMENCIS’ Approach to iOS 11 SDK and iPhone X Compliance

For us, it is critical to build the competitive products we designed for our partners and go live with agility. Therefore, our technology teams constantly follow and act on new announcements and technological developments. And we plan development timeline with the minimum impact to the targeted project timeline.

Since the new requirements will also affect our projects, we have taken the following steps:

· Potential impact of new requirements have been evaluated and shared with Commencis and client teams.

· All projects including the ones that we continue our support service and their timelines have been assessed, and prioritized in a way to have the minimum impact on project timeline.

· A realistic timeline and budget estimation have been prepared and shared with stakeholders.

· Squad teams for development and test have been mobilized.

As the transition being longer than the estimated, we suggest product owners to plan similar actions immediately.