SmartGo Kifu Going iOS 7 Only

by Anders Kierulf


When I recently asked SmartGo Kifu users on Twitter whether they were still on iOS 6, I found that most had happily switched to iOS 7. However, I also learned that many iPad 1 users had not realized that they were already missing the latest updates. The current version requires at least iOS 6, and the last iOS version for the iPad 1 is 5.1.1.

So if you’re on the iPad 1, your version of SmartGo Kifu will continue to work, you just won’t get any new updates. Sorry about that. Ideally, I would make the newest version of SmartGo Kifu run on all devices, old and new. However, there are a number of reasons why I recently required iOS 6, and will require iOS 7 in the next version:

  • Reduce development time: With iOS 7 looking very different from previous versions, any new code will have to be checked on all iOS versions. Sometimes no extra work is needed, and what looks good on iOS 7 looks at least acceptable on iOS 6, but often it requires extra code to make it look and work right.
  • Reduce testing time: Supporting iOS 6 means testing it on both iPhone and iPad. With an app of the complexity of SmartGo Kifu, that takes time, time that could be better spent (a) making sure it’s rock solid on the platform most people use, (b) working on other features, and (c) making progress on the Mac version.
  • Resource-constrained devices: All the devices running iOS 7 have at least 512 MB of RAM. Loading a library of 76,000 pro games already pushes the limits of the device; listing all the positions matching a specific joseki (a feature that will be in the next version) would move even closer to the edge. It can be done, but again, that takes time.
  • New iOS capabilities: Taking advantage of the newest capabilities of iOS is much harder when supporting older versions.

As a one-person company, time is my most critical resource, and restricting SmartGo Kifu to iOS 7 will help.

SmartGo Books has much less UI, and is not as resource-intensive as SmartGo Kifu, so I will try to keep it running on iOS 5 and the iPad 1 as long as possible.