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OTA app updates to be made available for iOS?

To date, the only way to perform updates on any iOS-powered device is to hook it up to iTunes and let Apple's application work its magic, right? Well, it seems that things are about to change for the better, except that it is highly unlikely that Apple will be surprising anybody when it officially announces its new feature, and for good reason. Apparently, word has it that the description in a recent iTunes update all but gave away the game that Apple is set to enable some form over-the-air or OTA updates for iOS devices soon.

We have been reading about hints of Apple planning to imbue future versions of the iOS operating system with the capability to receive over-the-air (OTA) updates, but this latest slip-up from Cupertino might just be the clearest sign that the feature might be coming even sooner than what many iOS owners will have expected. Apparently, a well-known Apple-centric website known as MacRumors has discovered that the Cuptertino company has accidentally gotten a little too far ahead of itself when it released an update to its iTunes application with a short description claiming that owners who have Automatic Download enabled on their iOS-powered devices will be able to update their apps without having to sync the device through iTunes first.

Now, any feature which allows users to update their smartphones or tablets without the need to connect it to a computer first is always highly looked up upon, except that there is one little problem with the description Apple has posted for its iTunes update. Apparently, there is no such feature available in iOS at this point of time, and this has led Ars Technica to speculate on the possibility of Apple planning to include Automatic Download in the upcoming iOS 5 operating system, which will reportedly be previewed at the WWDC keynote address that will be taking place this week at San Francisco.

Of course, this is nothing more than speculation, and Apple has since removed the additional line from the updates page for its iTunes application to cover its little slip-up. Still, it does open some doors for discussion as to how seriously the Cupertino company intends to push its Automatic Download feature for iOS: will it be limited as a tool designed purely to enable OTA updates for apps only, or will it see greater use as a means for Apple to push full iOS firmware updates to users without the need to go through iTunes? We can only wait and see.

Source: MacRumors via Ars Technica

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