A Bloomberg report late last year said that one of the highlights of iOS 12 and iOS 10.14 might be a new way for developers to design apps. Specifically, apps created for iPhone or iPad would work on Mac and vice versa. That only sounds exciting if you’re rocking both an iPhone/iPad and a Mac. Sadly, it looks like the cross-platform app support feature isn’t ready for a 2018 reveal, and it’ll be pushed back to 2019.
(3) Unlike on your iPhone or iPad, you can run and see multiple apps side by side on your Mac. (4) Using AppleScript across such Desk Touch Apps could really extend their usefulness. That only sounds exciting if you’re rocking both an iPhone/iPad and a Mac. Sadly, it looks like the cross-platform app support feature isn’t ready for a 2018 reveal, and it’ll be pushed back.
The news comes from Apple enthusiast John Gruber who learned from well-informed “birdies” that the Marzipan project is real, even though that might not be its actual name:
There is indeed an active cross-platform UI project at Apple for iOS and MacOS. It may have been codenamed “Marzipan” at one point, but if so only in its earliest days. My various little birdies only know of the project under a different name, which hasn’t leaked publicly yet. There are people at Apple who know about this project who first heard the name “Marzipan” when Gurman’s story was published.
Gruber also has a few details on how this cross-platform app support would work, although he still doesn’t have a clear picture of it:
If you don't install iPhone apps on the M1 MacBook Air, Pro, Mini, you're missing out. Apple's new Macs can run the same apps that you use on your iPhone. IPhone and iPad apps on Mac can now be used in full-screen mode. Reported by The 8-Bit (via MacRumors), you can now run iOS and iPadOS apps in full screen on an Apple silicon Mac.
I don’t have extensive details, but basically it sounds like a declarative control API. The general idea is that rather than writing classic procedural code to, say, make a button, then configure the button, then position the button inside a view, you instead declare the button and its attributes using some other form. HTML is probably the most easily understood example. In HTML you don’t procedurally create elements like paragraphs, images, and tables — you declare them with tags and attributes in markup. There’s an industry-wide trend toward declaration, perhaps best exemplified by React, that could be influencing Apple in this direction.
The blogger does say that he’s “nearly certain” Marzipan won’t make it into this year’s WWDC announcement and will be postponed for macOS 10.15 and iOS 13 in 2019.
What to expect: When you get your brand new M1 Mac, you may enjoy using some of your favorite iPhone apps on it. However, be aware that you may experience some compatibility issues at first. Apple reminded developers to make updates if necessary, but automatic placement in the Mac Store might lead to some overlap.
Earlier this week, Apple unveiled the latest MacBook Pro, MacBook Air, and Mac Mini, powered by its new M1 SoC. Aside from being the most powerful silicon, Apple has created, the architecture will now allow iOS apps to run on macOS out of the box, but not without some tweaking on the developer side of things in some cases.
Apple said that the vast majority of iPhone apps would work on M1 Macs with the help of Big Sur. The placement of iPhone apps on the Mac App Store is automatic in most cases. The only ones excluded will be software from developers who have opted out, such as Google and Facebook. Apple will also exclude some location reliant apps.
Nlite windows 7. However, this automatic transition creates a slight compatibility issue for some applications. Those apps using features exclusive to iPhones such as the TrueDepth camera, accelerometers, touchscreen gestures, or the cellular modem are problematic and will not work. Apple advises developers to tweak their code to make the app compatible or opt-out of having it placed in the Mac Store.
'To make sure that Mac users have a great experience, confirm that your apps work well on this platform and don't rely on iPhone or iPad features not available on Mac. If needed, update their availability on Mac in App Store Connect.'
For the most part, the onus is on the developer to make an incompatible app unavailable in the Mac Store. The one exception is with applications that use the Core Location API. Since this API will not reliably work on Macs, which do not have GPS, Apple will exclude these apps without developer intervention.
Apple will also add clarifiers to apps listed in the Mac Store—'Designed for iPad' and 'Not checked for macOS.' After developers have tested and verified that their mobile app works flawlessly in macOS, they may request removal of the 'not-checked' notice.