Apple has disabled the ability for people with M1 Macs to unofficially install iOS apps.
First spotted by 9to5Mac, the change means that the only way to install iOS apps is through the Mac App Store. Developers are still able to allow their iOS or iPad apps to run on the new M1 Macs, which use Apple Silicon and the ARM architecture that iPhone and iPad chips are based on. However, if developers haven’t enabled this ability for their apps, then they remain unavailable to M1 Macs.
For a few months now, M1 Mac users could use a workaround to install any iOS app they own to run on their Mac. Unsurprisingly, this rendered the developer toggle moot and it’s not surprising that Apple has disabled the capability.
On macOS 11.1, users will get an error message telling them to “try again later” when installing an unsupported app. However, 9to5Mac notes that the macOS 11.2 beta includes a more specific error message that says, “the application cannot be installed because the developer did not intend for it to run on this platform.” The new warning better lines up with the existing developer toggle that allows M1 Macs to install iPhone apps.
The Verge notes that for now, iOS apps that have already been installed appear to work. The change only prevents the installation of new apps. Still, there’s no guarantee that installed apps will continue working.
It’s sad to see Apple shut down the workaround. Sure, many of the apps weren’t designed for use on a Mac — which becomes apparent when you install and run them — but having the option to run any iOS app on a Mac was nice.