iPhone Wi-Fi sync is an upcoming app which does exactly what the name suggests. It allows you to sync your information from your desktop computer (Apple or Windows) via iTunes, with your iPhone, iPod touch or iPad (and visa-versa), much the same way that you can do right now via USB. It will never be as fast as USB, but it’s certainly a convenience people will want, definitely usable, and something other platforms have had for a while now.
Without actually trying the app out, or without any technical details, we can’t with absolute certainty say whether or not it breaks any of Apple’s iPhone Development rules. But on the surface of it we cannot see any reason why it should.
Apparently there is a desktop client and an iPhone app, and the two work together to talk to iTunes, and spoof it into thinking it is connected to a device via USB in some way. There are various ways this can be done. But then end effect is an iPhone or iPad is talking to iTunes using the protocols it is supposed to. Unlike the Palm hacks to get their non-Apple smart-phone to spoof iTunes into thinking it is an iPod.
Being pessimistic I can certainly see Apple taking a close look at how this desktop client bridges the connect between iTunes and the iPhone, and how the files are transferred. But it is certainly possible it is not breaking any rules that Apple has set, or are that concerned about enforcing. But app approvals are a rocky unpredictable road sometimes with Apple. And reasons given for rejection are not always very clear or transparent initially.
Bearing in mind Apple have not provided this functionality themselves it would seem unfair to block an app of this sort. But that may be a reason for them doing exactly that under the guise of SDK rules related to the sand-boxing of Apps and how file transfers are done. Plenty of other apps on the iPhone do allow file transfer between the iPhone and Safari for example. But most rely on specific API calls that Apple prescribe.
The developer, Greg Hughes, a 2nd year Computer Science student at the University of Birmingham, says via his Twitter account that it doesn’t “break any rules”.
On his website he states he will submit the app to the App Store shortly. And we wish him the best of luck with it!
Do you think this App will be approved? Let us know in the comments.
Wi-Fi Sync: Wirelessly sync your iPhone with iTunes