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Portless iPhone 13 may launch this year as Apple tests wireless data recovery feature

Since the portless iPhone won’t have a Lightning port at all, Apple has tried something called ‘Internet Recovery’.

Apple iPhone 12 Pro.
Apple iPhone 12 Pro. (Unsplash)

There have been several rumours out there talking about the iPhone 13 series, their features and the looks. However, what we are hearing for the first time is that there will be a ‘portless’ version of iPhone 13, coming later this year. This news comes exclusively from the Appleosophy website. The website also highlights how the company plans to solve the recovery process for that portless iPhone 13.

For now, users can easily recover lost iPhone data by connecting them with a PC. This is usually done by using a lightning to USB Type-A cable that connects to the laptop port. But since the portless iPhone won’t have a Lightning port at all, Apple has tried something called ‘Internet Recovery’.

Apparently, Apple’s upcoming iPhone 13, which will heavily rely on wireless charging and wireless audio connectivity, will be working on both hardware and software level when it comes to ‘Internet Recovery’. “They tasked certain developers to create a reliable and Apple-level safe way for users to recover their devices at home. I am being told that developers are looking at using one of a few methods,” states McGuire Wood of Appleosophy.

Also read: New Apple iPhone 13 display feature revealed by tipster, re-confirms 120Hz support

Users are supposed to manually place the device into recovery mode, which will trigger an Internet Restore broadcast feature. That will enable “an update to iTunes/Finder to scan for devices in the Internet Recovery state," adds Woods. Once the iPhone is found, it will be added to iTunes/Finder. Users will then get prompts to guide through the process.

The report adds that Apple may have a second solution as well that would require the device to go in recovery mode automatically instead of manually. The third, an least preferred option, is to get an internet recovery prompt using Bluetooth. But as mentioned in the report, this method was found to be insecure, unreliable and slow.

On the hardware part, Apple is asking teams to "integrate wired data by means of pogo pads." We have seen this in Apple Watch.

“This is the same tech Apple uses to restore the Apple Watch using the little hidden port behind the band attachment area using iBUS. The current options are a custom SIM card tray cable that would interface with hidden pads in the back of the SIM slot, or possibly using pogo pads on the board which would obviously require the device to be opened. This task has proven rather daunting as the team is not (to the extent of my knowledge) allowed to make housing modifications to hide the pads behind a door like on the Apple Watch,” adds Woods.

Also read: Apple may launch iPhone 13 Mini despite sluggish 12 Mini sales, can skip ‘SE’ this year

However, the report does mention that this is a prototype tech working on a prototype device. But Apple’s developers seem ‘confident in the tech’.

Although Apple has been taking careful steps towards a wireless ecosystem when it comes to iPhones, we haven’t heard a lot about the portless iPhone yet. Majority of the leaks coming from prolific tipsters and analysts have been around the design, screen refresh rate and the foldable iPhone that may arrive in the next two years. But considering the company removed 3.5mm headphone jack, brought wireless charging and is indirectly pushing users for it by removing the charger from the retailer box, does make us believe that a portless iPhone will surely see the light of the day either this year or by next year.

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