appstoreEver since the App Store launched in 2008, Apple has imposed a limit on how big an app file that is downloaded from the App Store can be. While apps and games could expand upon installation, the initial download could not exceed 2GB. That size limit has for the most part been adequate, but as iOS hardware improves and new frameworks like Apple's Metal allow for more graphically intensive games, the app files are bound to blow up right alongside it. It has become more and more common that an app, and especially a game, would sit beyond the 2 and even 3GB level once installed on a device.

As our sister site MacRumors notes, Apple today has officially upped the size limit of App Store downloads, doubling the limit from 2GB to 4GB. This, in Apple's own words per the announcement on their developer portal, will allow developers to "include more media in your submission and provide a more complete, rich user experience upon installation." Apple also notes that this announcement does not affect or change the current 100mb over-the-air download limit that was introduced in 2013.

You may recall that Apple has tested the waters with an increased download limit with the launch of Disney Infinity Toy Box 2.0 [Free] late last month, which weighs in at a whopping 3.8GB when downloaded from the App Store. Since Apple has close ties to Disney, and since Infinity Toy Box 2.0 uses Apple's Metal framework to provide a rich graphical experience, it kind of made sense they would relax the rules a bit for that particular app. However, now it seems like that was more of a test case as the increased limit has been made available to everyone.

[MacRumors]

  • mzinn

    Fantastic!!!

  • Kenan2000

    Great!

  • RampageDeluxe

    It's on like Donkey Kong!!

  • fenderbendr

    Here we go!

  • PlannedObsolescence

    it won't effect gaming since all that's released these days are 8-bit games under 100mb. i'm more interested in apple's demand that developers start using the 64-bit hardware that iOS products have had for two years now. they realize lazy devs are effecting hardware sales.

    • http://mobotstudios.com/ Fletcher

      Lazy devs or just normal people who enjoy making games. However you wanna look at it. If anything there are more high end games than two years ago. The little free games are always gonna be around because people enjoy them.

      • http://twitter.com/JaredTA Jared Nelson

        Don't pay attention to that troll, he's been saying the same stupid shit for years.

      • http://mobotstudios.com/ Fletcher

        In a way, I envy people who most likely haven't wasted entire days trying to unlock every single dude on crossy road. It's like a religion at my house ! haha

      • http://twitter.com/JaredTA Jared Nelson

        Games come in all shapes and sizes, as far as I'm concerned if you're having fun playing *anything* you're doing it right! 🙂

      • bones boy

        Best mod post ever!

    • Luciano1084

      I love my 8 bit games under 100mbs.. And if you think those are the only games being developed then you obviously don't spend much time here.. Every week several console/pc quality games are being released..

    • cloudpuff

      You could try making games yourself if what's on the market now doesn't appeal to you.

    • ttyRazor

      You do know that nothing on the App Store is actually 8 bit, right? Any ARM executable is at least 32 bit, and merely compiling as 64 bit has nothing to do with what a game looks like or how big of a download. The thing you're actually objecting to is art assets. Pixel art is just a style that emulates old 8 bit games in appearance, it doesn't mean the actual game code is eschewing modern CPU and GPU features. The real constraint preventing everything from looking like the AAA quality you think 64 bit means is the far more limited art budget and personnel of mobile games. Just look at the number of people in the credits of a game that looks up to your standards and imagine paying that many people with the typical App Store prices.

  • sivad

    Nice, now we need some external storage devices 😉

    • Dailon Huskey

      Would think that would not be too much to ask after all more space more games more money more revenue.

    • Stormourner

      of course I really need external storage devices to move any games that have been removed from the appstore

  • Amenbrother

    I could of swore I did a download over 100 mb on LTE the other day...

    • unlimitedfury

      I think some games/apps don't have you download the whole file so that may be. I've downloaded 100 mb app update in 10 seconds!

  • brerlappin

    Hopefully XCOM will get a nice update with more textures and some of the missing DLC!

    Who knows, maybe Shadowrun Hong Kong will be released for iPad now.

    • Based Xatu

      I was just thinking it would be nice for an X-com graphic and content update.

  • Goggles789

    ⊂_ヽ
      \\ Λ_Λ
       \( 'ㅅ' ) Oh! That App Store!
        > ⌒ヽ
       /   へ\
       /  / \\
       レ ノ   ヽ_つ
      / /
      / /|
     ( (ヽ
     | |、\
     | 丿 \ ⌒)
     | |  ) /
    ノ )  Lノ
    (_/

    • nini

      Hey, you're not Maglor!! Why do I smell burnt toast, which way is up?!

      • dingdongfootball

        Yeah I don't know about this non-Maglor cat....

  • William Fuchs

    Now if they would just list the actual dl file size and instillation size on the ap store id be happy

  • volcanopele

    Finally!!! Best gaming news all year.

  • klink

    I hope this will usher in entry-level devices with more than 16 GB of storage. Oh wait, I'm talking about Apple so forget it.

  • Anonomation

    Gangstar vegas had hit the 3.1 limit before being forced down. Then there's that Uncharted ripoff thingy.

    • curtisrshideler

      Fahrenheit is 3.1 installed, but compressed on the App Store it is only 1.8. Infinity Blade 3 also had the same thing happen. So, now the installed sizes might go way up!

  • mr_bez

    So if I want to download one of these games directly to my 16GB phone, I'll need 8GB of free space? And I have under 12GB to play with because the OS takes up so much space, so I can have a max. of 2 at a time even if I delete literally everything else on my phone.

    Feels like they should sort out their default hardware options before raising the limit.

    • Xenomorphking

      I agree that the minimum device size should be raised to 32 GB. That's how it is with the iPod touch 5 gen. Unfortunately it is looking like Apple might not make any iPod's since it has been about 2 years.

      • vicsark

        They killed the 32 Gb for last year products, making the jump directly from 16 to 64.
        So hopefully, 64 Gb will be the new base memory some day.

    • Rip73

      Well I'd say it's more a case that if people plan on playing big games, just buy the appropriate device.

      People have been asking for it to be increased on here with an age now and certain devs have requested it many times as well.

      The target audience for the 16gb device is pretty clear and it's pretty clear its not the gaming audience.
      It is for those that want the "low cost" option and won't be doing any gaming or installing lots of apps and just want the iPhone and the default options it offers out of box.

      It's also pretty clear why the mid range option was increased from 32gb to 64gb at the same price point with the last launch. It should also be pretty clear why the 128gb option is there.

      So in reality, they did sort out their default hardware options before making this change.
      It's more a case that people should think through their options and sort out what they are going to use their device for before choosing one.

  • sinagog

    Bet 2k wish they'd known this would happen when they were porting Bioshock...

    • Alexythimia23

      Defo! Man that would be great if they released a more advanced version update, and also sorted dragon quest 8, ive been waiting for this day to come, trust me.... You watch some of the great games we get released this year... Cannot wait till the restriction goes even higher! Lol. On a side note i have the 16gb version of air 2, and its always sufficed for me personally, as i like to play one game at a time to really immerse myself, but i think its time to upgrade my 16gb to the max, the only reason i never did before and this might sound stupid?? But i thought if i have an air 2 that is 132 gb or whatever? If i used most of that which i could with not much effort, would my device handle all that memory as well as the same device but a 16 gb model?? Silly i know, because they obviously made the higher gb models because it can handle it, but yeah my twisted logic made me purchase a 16gb. Oh well, time to upgrade.... All for a good cause though lol

      • lll Anubis lll

        You would have no trouble at all unless you tried to run everything at once.

        If 16GB is enough for you, stick with it and save yourself the money.

  • Jake7905

    It should be very interesting to see how this effects future console/PC IOS ports, and how long it takes for developers to take advantage of the increase in size. As always, time will tell.

    • ltcommander_data

      So with the new 4 GB max .ipa size from the App Store, the new effective max app size on device on initial install after unzipping is something like 6 GB. That's pretty comparable to Xbox 360 games that ship on 1 dual layer DVD. In fact, early Xbox 360 games reserved a substantial amount of disc space for DRM, so 1 dual layer DVD only have 6.8 GB available for game content. With this new 4 GB .ipa size and the A8X in the iPad Air 2 legitimately comparable to the Xbox 360 CPU/GPU, the technical capabilities are now in place for the often claimed "console-quality" game albeit previous-gen equivalent and presuming you can make a financial case of course.

      • vicsark

        So financial case will tend to more previous gen ports of Xbox 360 and PS3 iconic games and best sellers.
        If they don't focus too much on FPS, we could have a lot of great console games of the last 5 years coming to iOS.
        I'll still play Radical though 😉

  • worldcitizen1919

    Awesome.

  • curtisrshideler

    4GB compressed means bigger games are-a-comin! Just wait until it uncompresses and the install size is 6-8 GB. Bring on more console games!

    • one.sixty.four

      Console games are on average 30GBs. But ps2 era game would work! I'd be cool to see some of those.

      • one.sixty.four

        *games. Also didn't mean to like my own post.

  • jdc

    This news is great. this is starting apple device can describe console quality games. i just wanna many good game's ports and new games as good as console quality. especially, i want see perfect unreal engine in apple device such as bioshock,xcom pc or console quality.
    Beyond air 2 , iphone 6 this dream will come true. but, when people buy new apple device they must buy over 64GB device.

  • Supermarioooo

    I hope this means we get Final Fantasy 7, 8 and 9 on iOS, I can't see any reason for these games to be ported to iOS finally

  • http://batman-news.com TIH

    skyrim and gta IV, please come