After flipping the server-side switch to start blocking M1 Mac owners from side-loading unsupported iPhone and iPad apps, Apple has now reverted its original decision. As a result, you can once again side-load an unsupported iOS app on a Mac powered by Apple silicon.
9to5Mac today updated its original story with this:
Apple has reverted this server-side change, and it is once again possible to side-load unsupported iPhone and iPad apps on an M1 Mac. We don’t expect this to last long, so if there are any iPhone or iPad apps you want on your Mac, download them sooner rather than later using iMazing.
There you have it.
Apple’s change of heart
As a result of Apple’s change of heart, people can now use the iMazing app to download iOS app installers (.ipa files) to their Mac, and then launch the downloaded binary in macOS. Apple has said right the beginning that one of the side-effects of having a shared CPU platform across mobile and desktop devices will be the ability to run iOS apps on M1 Macs.
However, this requires developer support. It is up to the developer to decide whether they’d like to make their existing iOS apps available to download through the Mac App Store. If a developer doesn’t tick a box, their app won’t appear on the Mac App Store, and vice versa.
Saving your from bad apps
For the sake of completeness, you’ve always been able to side-load iOS apps. Side-loading refers to installing an app’s .ifa file onto an iOS device through Xcode, Apple Configurator or some of the jailbreak methods. As 9to5Mac notes, Apple is probably going to flip the server-side switch sooner than later to disallow using unsupported iOS apps on M1 computers.
“The apps are technically vetted through the iOS App Store, but Apple wants that official support for users,” the publication explains. This is to protect you from sub-par experiences caused by opening an unoptimized mobile app such as Instagram or Netflix on an M1 Mac.
Image credit: /Apple