Apple reverses sideloading change on M1 Macs

Macbook Air M1
Macbook Air M1 (Image credit: Daniel Bader / Android Central)

What you need to know

  • You can currently sideload unsupported iPhone and iPad apps onto an M1 Mac.
  • It's unclear why Apple has re-enabled this, after shutting off the measure.

Reports state that M1 Mac users are currently able to sideload unsupported iPad and iPhone apps following a server-side change.

Previously, Apple brought an end to sideloading with server-side changes that meant it was no longer possible to use apps like iMazing to add unsupported iPhone and iPad apps to your Mac. Now, the workaround is back. From 9to5Mac:

Update January 19, 2021: 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.

AppleInsider says it has also confirmed the procedure works, both note that they do not expect the change to last long, however.

An end to sideloading on M1 Macs first became apparent in a macOS beta last week. From that report:

As reported by 9to5Mac, the latest betas for iOS and macOS might kill the ability for users to sideload iOS on their Apple Silicon Macs.Based on internal code that is shared between recent iOS 14.4 beta versions and macOS Big Sur 11.2, Apple is implementing a new system that will block some iOS apps from running on the Mac. This, of course, will not affect the apps available on the Mac App Store.According to the outlet, code found in the beta reveals that, if the developer does not make its iOS available on the Mac App Store, it will not be able to be manually installed on the Mac.

Stephen Warwick
News Editor

Stephen Warwick has written about Apple for five years at iMore and previously elsewhere. He covers all of iMore's latest breaking news regarding all of Apple's products and services, both hardware and software. Stephen has interviewed industry experts in a range of fields including finance, litigation, security, and more. He also specializes in curating and reviewing audio hardware and has experience beyond journalism in sound engineering, production, and design.

Before becoming a writer Stephen studied Ancient History at University and also worked at Apple for more than two years. Stephen is also a host on the iMore show, a weekly podcast recorded live that discusses the latest in breaking Apple news, as well as featuring fun trivia about all things Apple. Follow him on Twitter @stephenwarwick9