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Apple found a way to update iPhones in stores before the boxes are even opened

Published Oct 16th, 2023 8:52AM EDT
iPhone 15 Pro and 15 Pro Max retail boxes.
Image: Jonathan Geller, BGR

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Apple discovered a clever way to update iPhones in stores before the boxes are even opened, which could help prevent some issues with people needing to download a new operating system version right after they open their iPhones for the first time.

According to Bloomberg‘s Mark Gurman, in his Power On newsletter, Apple is planning a new system for its retail stores to update the software on iPhones before sales. The journalist explains that the company has “developed a proprietary pad-like device that the store can place boxes of iPhones on top of it.”

With that, the system can then wirelessly turn on the iPhone, update its software, and then power it back down. Gurman says that all of this can happen without the phone’s package ever being opened.

So far, the journalist expects the company to roll out this new process before the end of the year, which could also help smoother sales and first setups of the devices during the holiday season – the busiest period of the year for Apple.

Since the company offers an in-store setup of devices, not having to update an iPhone to its newer version before transferring iCloud data would definitely improve how long people would need to stay at the store to set up their phones.

With the iPhone 15, for example, Apple released iOS 17.0.2 to users before releasing the device. With that, existing iPhone owners had to update their new phones to this version before transferring iCloud data. Those who ignored this setup process couldn’t finish setting up their new iPhone and had to start all over – which likely became a problem not only for Apple but also gave customers the impression that setting up an iPhone isn’t as smooth as it could be.

Since this new process will roll out soon, it’s possible that by the time you purchase a new iPhone, the setup process will be more straightforward. BGR will let you know once this process is rolled out.

José Adorno Tech News Reporter

José is a Tech News Reporter at BGR. He has previously covered Apple and iPhone news for 9to5Mac, and was a producer and web editor for Latin America broadcaster TV Globo. He is based out of Brazil.