iCloud backup is not enough as an iOS developer

Not enough storage
Why Apple, why?

More often than not, I find this alert greeting me: I’ve reached my iCloud storage limit again.

You get 5GB free, but you share those for all the devices tied into your Apple ID. In my case, here’s the list:

  • 32GB iPad mini – testing device, but used for reading, browsing, videos,… while not working
  • 32GB iPhone 4S – main phone so far
  • 32GB iPhone  5 – next main phone, used to test the iOS7 betas this summer
  • 8GB iPod 4G – testing only
  • MacBook Pro

That’s not counting the older devices I never use anymore.

Backups don’t include the OS or the installed Apps, but the rest of the data can easily surpass 5GB with this many devices. You can opt to not backup some parts like your Camera Roll or iBooks, but then what’s the point of backing up. The other option is to pay for more storage.

iCloud storage plans
iCloud storage plans

I don’t think the storage plans are that expensive (although they are, compared to Dropbox and others), but considering I roughly buy a new iPhone and iPad each year, that’s over $1000 for Apple. If you renew your computer every 2-3 years, duplicate that (those new retina MacBooks are expensive). Throw in another $100 for the developer program, although that’s peanuts compared to the hardware cost.

It’s not crazy to think Apple could offer you an extra 5GB for each new device. Even expiring the extra space after a couple of years would be enough.

Then again, a lightning cable is more expensive than the 10GB plan.

A good explanation on iOS moving to 64-bit

Reading John Gruber’s review of the iPhone 5S and 5C, I found this very interesting part that I hadn’t realised before:

ARMv8, the architecture upon which Apple’s new A7 is designed, is a clean break. ARM’s previous instruction set dated back 20 years. ARM has always been designed for low power consumption, but 20 years ago is forever in this industry. Rather than simply add 64-bit instructions to the old ISA, ARMv8 is a clean break designed for today’s — and the future — world.


[…]the biggest reason for the performance and power consumption improvements going from the A6 to A7 is the switch from the ARMv7 to ARMv8 architectures, not 32- to 64-bit. ARMv8’s improved instruction set alone has resulted in 15-20 percent performance gains while simultaneously using less power, from what I’ve been told by informed sources. And though Apple could have gone to ARMv8 while remaining 32-bit only, it made no sense not to go 64-bit.

I was wondering where was the need for 64-bit on smartphones, but that sounds really cool.