It looks like our old trick of adding old console and other unapproved apps to our non-jailbroken iOS devices is going to be stopped with iOS 8.1. Users have been taking advantage of this 'Date Trick' for a long time, but now Apple is taking action to stop it, meaning that playing your favorite Game Boy and SNES games will be much more difficult.
For a long time the only method of installing apps and emulators that weren't approved by Apple was to jailbreak your device and use a third-party app store, such as Cydia. However, for the sake of playing a few games, many thought this was just too much trouble.
When the 'Date Trick' was discovered by developers it changed everything: this allowed the installation of unapproved apps without hacking. All you had to do was roll back the time and date on your iOS device and download apps via Safari. This became the most preferred way of getting access to apps like Popcorn Time and GBA4iOS without losing things like support from Apple and other software updates.
But now the team behind GBA4iOS say that Apple has blocked this loophole in its latest iOS 8.1 beta.
The Date Trick fuels the emulator communities nowadays, iEmulators.com relies on this to continue distribution. Without it, everything looks bleak. Without GBA4iOS 2.0, everything seems… well, sad. Will iOS 8.0.2 become our perpetual purgatory so that we can continue to enjoy these things? says Dario Sepulveda - GBA4iOS beta tester
And, yes it does. We all knew this would happen sooner or later; Apple has been consistently trying since 2007 to put a stop to jailbreaking (when the iPhone first debuted), so it didn't seem likely that the Cupertino company would just ignore this. But it really is a shame.
So, if you're not into jailbreaking and you're invested in the Super Nintendo titles or others that require running emulators on iOS, then don't update to iOS 8.1 right now. But if you're hanging out to use Apple Pay which is coming with iOS 8.1, then you're going to have to choose between these two worlds.
How To Install SNES SiOS Emulator On iOS 8
We figure there are three ways that the stock firmware crew can get emulators:
- Try to get an approved app with secret emulator functionality and ensure you grab it prior to Apple pulling it;
- Accept one of the web-based emulators and acknowledge that the experience is not going to be mind-blowing;
- Work with one of the emulators that exploit an expired enterprise certificate using the 'Date Trick';
The last one in our list has been shown, historically, to be the most reliable by far. All you do is go to gba4iosapp.com; go to your phone's date settings; roll the clock back, and now you can install the emulator. It's fast, it's simple, and it's the simplest way for non-developers to download things onto their phone that are not approved for sale on the App Store.