Apple confirms iPhone updates can be triggered remotely over network?

iPhone Atlas “previously speculated that Apple is somehow triggering or unlocking iPhone functionality over the EDGE network (or perhaps over any IP-based network, including WiFi connections). The reason for the postulation: the addition of a ‘Send to Web Gallery,’ button that appears in the Camera and Photos applications when clicking the share button (lower left corner when viewing a photo) that did not exist for any iPhone owner prior to August 7th, and did not require any iTunes-based software/firmware installation.”

iPhone Atlas reports that Apple has now addressed this issue in Knowledge Base article #306272:

If the Send to Web Gallery option does not appear on iPhone, and you have installed iPhone Software 1.0.1 or later, press the Home button to exit Photos, wait an hour before you tap Photos, and then try again. During that hour, it’s OK to use other features of iPhone.

iPhone Atlas reports, “This essentially confirms that some sort of network-based trigger — not a time-based mechanism — invokes the ‘Send to Web Gallery’ option… Apple is still not revealing, however, whether the update trigger happens only over EDGE, or can occur over any type of valid network connection. Nor is it saying whether any actual application data is being transferred over the network, or just a unlock trigger.”

Full article here.


  1. This does not confirm anything. Just some speculations.
    Apple doesn’t say anything definite.

    It is possible that it was a timed released feature.
    iPhone update 1.0.1 was released just a week and some hours before Apple Special event.

  2. You don’t have to set .mac as the default email account for this to work. I do have a .mac account and I do have this enabled on my iPhone, but it is not my default account (my Gmail account is) and my send to web button is active.


  3. That doesn’t prove it’s over a network. That could be many things, including maybe it’s still time based, but doesn’t check constantly, the system does a check periodically and adds the button if it’s after a certain date/time.

  4. You will only get this option if you have a .mac email account set up on the phone. I saw word of this last week and checked to see if I had this function. I did not until I added a .mac email account.

  5. Um, if a network connection were required, wouldn’t the knowledgebase article state that you must be connected to the EDGE network? The fact that it DOESN’T say that seems to be proof that it’s NOT network based. Otherwise there’d be some pissed off people who have their iPhone in airplane mode waiting forever for the feature to show up.

  6. Fiddling around ….seems messages created outside of the iPhone Mail app, such as sending a link, or an image, will be “sent” from the default account. It says as much on the Mail Settings window (at the bottom).

    Somehow the sending of an image to your Web Gallery can only be sent (unless you send to the designated email address from any account) from the .mac account.

    Odd, to say the least.

  7. Has anyone noticed a new pop-up the first time they open an iLife 06 program?? I’ve been getting not-so-gentle reminders to upgrade the first time I opened iPhoto, iTunes and iWeb after the iLife 08 announcement.

    Was this part of the “Security Upgrade” that was released right before the announcement last week? Or a timed announcement? Or was there some trigger for the desktops over the Internet?

    Remember, just because you’re paranoid doesn’t mean they’re NOT coming after you…

  8. Is this really all that surprising? T-mobile has been performing OTA updates on the Sidekicks for years now, including adding apps and complete system software upgrades… I’m not sure why this is seen to be such an amazing deal. I fully expected Apple to include this sort of functionality from the beginning. Seems like a no-brainer.

  9. @ Brandon Russell:

    This actually *does* confirm it’s a network trigger, but not whether it is EDGE only as the article says.

    If it was a timed event it would have happened at a set time. If this timed event is waiting for a network signal as you describe, then it’s basically waiting for a “network trigger.”

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