Apple increases OTA download limit for Apps by 50%

It is undoubtedly frustrating when you want to upload an app to your Apple smartphone, only to get that dreaded message telling you that it’s more than 100MB so it can’t be done (except over wi-fi, of course).

The good news is that the firm has just increased that limit to 150MB.

The reason for the limit originally being implemented is that most cellular providers started phasing out unlimited plans, so Apple was actually protecting you from steep data charges. The only way to download apps bigger than that limit was if the developer offered incremental downloads.

With unlimited data plans once again becoming popular, an Over the Air limit no longer makes such a lot of sense – hopefully this is the beginning of the end, and it will eventually be phased out.

Apple revealed the news about the 100MB to 150MB upgrade in a rather concise announcement on its developer’s portal.

At a time when apps are becoming bigger and bigger, with even gigabytes of data sometimes involved, 150MB will of course not really go a long way. What it will do, however, is to make it possible for developers of bulky apps to break down their downloads into fewer bundles.

Although Apple could certainly have increased the OTA download limit a lot more, one should probably be thankful for small mercies. But don’t expect your next Metal 2, Machine Learning or ARKit app to fit into a 150MB package. Hopefully, in time, Apple will eventually respond to realities on the ground and increase the limit to something more realistic such as 500MB.

Apps are, after all, getting bigger all the time. The new 150MB limit is still not enough for some of the smaller apps on the App Store, and a few years from now even a 1GB limit might in retrospect appear to have been totally ridiculous.

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