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Apr 12, 2001
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Code in the iOS 13.4 beta released this morning suggests that Apple is developing an over-the-air recovery feature designed for the iPhone and the iPad.

osrecoveryios134.jpg

There are references to a hidden "OS Recovery" option in the update found by 9to5Mac, which appears to provide a way to restore an iPhone, iPad, Apple Watch, or HomePod without the need to connect to a computer.

Right now, if you have a malfunctioning iPhone or iPad, a Mac or PC needs to be used to restore the firmware, which is inconvenient as some people no longer even use computers and Apple has made efforts to remove the need to operate iOS devices with computers.

Devices like the Apple Watch and HomePod don't even have options to restore the software because there are no connectors, a problem that the OS Recovery feature could solve. There is a similar macOS Internet Recovery option that has been available for some time, allowing Macs to be restored with software downloaded over the internet.

It appears the feature will allow for a restore to be conducted over-the-air or by connecting a device to another iPhone or iPad using a USB connection.

Article Link: Apple Developing Over-the-Air Recovery Feature for iOS Based on Code in iOS 13.4
 

cmaier

macrumors Core
Jul 25, 2007
22,658
27,048
California
Wonder how you tell it what network to use. I guess you still need to use some functioning device to control the non-functioning device and tell it to restore?
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If you still need to connect it with a cable, then how is this Over the Air?

The original report says you CAN connect with a cable, not that you NEED to.
 
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JPack

macrumors 604
Mar 27, 2017
7,251
12,271
Wonder how you tell it what network to use. I guess you still need to use some functioning device to control the non-functioning device and tell it to restore?

It could work by connecting to another iPhone with an open Hotspot.

It will probably automatically connect to Apple Store networks.
 
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cmaier

macrumors Core
Jul 25, 2007
22,658
27,048
California
It could work by connecting to another iPhone with an open Hotspot.

It will probably automatically connect to Apple Store networks.

I figure it can connect to another apple device the same way as airdrop (ad hoc-style) and the interface we are seeing is what appears on the “working” phone to tell the other phone to begin recovery, but I’m guessing.
 
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benshive

macrumors demi-god
Feb 26, 2017
688
6,013
United States
Looks like they're gearing up for that port-less iPhone. It's also possible they're pushing this because jailbreaks like checkra1n only work through USB. A pretty cool feature nonetheless, especially if it works like internet recovery on macOS.
 
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kycophpd

macrumors 6502a
Jun 7, 2009
776
891
Louisville, Kentucky
“The original report says you CAN connect with a cable, not that you NEED to.”

I guess I should have went to 9to5mac instead of relying on the words in this particular posting before it was edited. Thanks.
 
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ksnell

macrumors 6502a
Aug 26, 2012
694
1,201
Texas
Yep! This is the major feature they needed to make it happen

I just figured they would leave the Lightning port for diagnostics. This would certainly allow them to get around the EU ruling I would think.
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I guess at some point I will have to get use to wireless charging.

It is fantastic...unless you want to use your phone while it's charging.
 
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CWallace

macrumors G3
Aug 17, 2007
8,610
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Seattle, WA
What if you can't boot into recovery mode over the air?

Perhaps that is handled by the "can be connected to another iOS device". So if the main device cannot connect over the air, it can be connected to another iOS device and recover from it.

What will be interesting to see is if this can be any iOS device (so essentially the other device acts as the recovery node and transfers the OS to the problem device) which would allow people with other iOS devices to do a self-recovery or if it will require the problem device be taken to an Apple Store and connected to a dedicated "iOS Recovery" device.
 
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IIGS User

macrumors 6502
Feb 24, 2019
463
1,141
If you still need to connect it with a cable, then how is this Over the Air?


Air is just a snazzy word to use. Everyone likes "air".

Air plane
Air Play
Air Power (er, scrap that one)
Air Supply
Air Fleet (Aeroflot)

I think this is due to the new EU charging cable thing. It may have been brewing, but now it's become a priority.

I still like the idea of being able to plug my phone into a cable and charge it, though. Something basic about it, especially when it's kaput.
 
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mdorais

macrumors regular
Apr 28, 2008
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Thank you for reminding me that I won't be buying a new iPhone once they drop the port. Courage.
 
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Doctor Q

Administrator
Staff member
Sep 19, 2002
38,685
5,237
Los Angeles
Right now, if you have a malfunctioning iPhone or iPad, a Mac or PC needs to be used to restore the firmware, which is inconvenient as some people no longer even use computers...
Is there really a statistically significant percentage of people who have iPhones but don't have access to a computer for purposes like this?
 
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