Apple recently released iOS 13, the newest version of its operating system, with a wide range of enhancements and new features. The complete list can be found here, but we want to highlight some breaking changes and guideline updates that app owners must be aware of. Ignoring these might cause your app to be rejected or removed from the AppStore.

Sign in with Apple

Apple created a new "Sign in with Apple" button, which allows iPhone users to quickly register and log in. They announced that it will be required later this year for apps using third party log in buttons (like Facebook or Google):

  • "It will be required as an option for users in apps that support third-party sign-in when it is commercially available later this year." (source)

This button focuses on user's privacy and security, meaning apps will have a harder time collecting user's information. Only name and email will be available, and if the user chooses to, Apple can even generate a random email address that will be passed to the app and then redirects emails to the user's real address.

Location Privacy

Users now have more fine-grained control over their location sharing. They can choose to share a location when the app needs it, only once or only while using the app. If your app uses location you might need to update it to take into account these options.

Even when the user allows your app to access location, they will be periodically alerted on the data being requested by the app, so they can choose to stop location sharing at any time. Also, restrictions have been applied to apps that use Wi-Fi and Bluetooth to find a user's location and to the location being obtained from photos' metadata.

Dark Mode

The new system-wide dark mode changes everything throughout the system, from the background and font colors to the wallpaper. Even though the system automatically tries to convert the app into dark mode this is unlikely to work on complex apps. Developers will most likely have to redesign the app so it supports both light and dark mode. Currently, Apple allows developers to disable Dark Mode support in their apps while they work on the new design, however dark mode is expected to become mandatory soon.

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