Carrier Update

What's a 'carrier update' for iPhone or iPad and why do we get them?

If you've had an iPhone or cellular capable iPad for an extended period of time, you've undoubtedly received a notification about a carrier update. Some are mandatory and don't give you an option to say no or remind me later. Others just hang out and bug you occasionally until you actually perform the update. One of the biggest questions we get asked here at iMore by you, our readers, is what exactly is a carrier update and what does it actually contain?

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Verizon iPhone gets carrier file update

Welcome to iOS, Verizon iPhone users -- Apple is sending a carrier update your way! We don't know what it does yet but typically carrier update files control carrier-specific features like personal hotspot, tethering, links, network settings, etc.

Have you gotten the Verizon iPhone carrier update yet? Notice any differences?

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AT&T iPhone MMS Carrier Update Now Available via iTunes!

The AT&T Carrier Update (v5.5), required to enable MMS on the iPhone is now live and can be installed via iTunes. Just plug in your iPhone and if it doesn't pop up immediately, hit the check for updates button.

Note: You need to be running iPhone 3.1, so if you haven't updated your firmware yet, do that first.

Once loaded, reboot your iPhone and then head on over the Messages app and you should see the new (for the USA!) camera icon on the bottom left.

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UPDATED: Apple Releases iPhone Carrier Update: Adds AT&T MicroCell Support

UPDATED: Comparing the before and after states of carrier.plist, iambored8907 reports in the comments that the update added PNG graphics for AT&T's new MicroCell (Femtocell) service:

AllowPrefixMatching

CarrierName
AT&T MicroCell
DefaultImage
DefaultCARRIERATT M-Cell.png
FullScreenOpaqueImage
FSOCARRIERATT M-Cell.png

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