Wi-Fi Sync for iPhone - Jailbreak app review

Update: This app seems to break core functionality, read my article here on uninstalling Wi-Fi Sync. Until the developer decides these issues need to be addressed, I can't recommend anyone pay for this application, or until another workaround is found. The developer has been completely unresponsive when I've tried to contact him about the issue and at this time, I have no current easy solution to resolving broken backups and upgrades.

Wi-Fi Sync for iPhone is a jailbreak app that allows you to wirelessly sync with iTunes as opposed to having to plug in your phone.  It found it's way into Cydia after it was rejected by Apple.

As of now, Wi-Fi Sync is only Mac compatible.  The developer is currently working on a PC version which he states on his website should be complete in about 8-10 weeks.  If you have a Mac and want to try it out, simply click here to get the Mac desktop software, then go in Cydia and purchase Wi-Fi Sync [$9.99 - Cydia Link].

After you've installed Wi-Fi Sync on your Mac and your iPhone, you should now be able to pair them.  The first time you do this, you'll need to be by your Mac as it'll ask you to accept the connection.  You'll see this new icon in your Mac task bar (far left).

From that menu you have a few settings.  One being to disable backups.  I did this, as backups typically take a while and obviously, over wifi, your syncs will not be as quick as they are via traditional USB connection.  It'll definitely make your battery take a hit with backups enabled as the time it takes to sync drastically increases.  To disable backups, just click that little icon and click to disable backups.

Now I don't know if it was just me or if it's a bug but my Mac kept asking me to accept the connection everytime, or wouldn't find it sporadically.  There was also a couple times it would boot me off and my iPhone would tell me I had no wi-fi connection.  As this app is in it's newborn stages, we will see how it progresses in terms of stability and feature set.  As far as I see, you'll also need to tell your phone to sync automatically if you plan on using this app while not directly in front of your computer.  If that setting isn't there, you'll physically have to be in front of your computer to hit sync, which to me is somewhat counter-productive.

In my opinion, it's a nice tool but I don't know if it's worth $10 at this point.  I personally encountered a few more bugs than I would have expected for an app with this type of price tag.  We'll see what the developer does to refine it in the coming months.

Pros

  • Ease of use
  • Convenient
  • Uses same familiar syncing process users are already accustomed to

Cons

  • Drains battery pretty quick
  • Must have automatic sync enabled for this to be useful
  • Price tag is somewhat high
  • Mac Only (for now)
  • Breaks backups within iTunes
  • Breaks the upgrade/restore process within iTunes

TiPb iPhone 1-star rated

Allyson Kazmucha

Help and how to editor for iMore. I can take apart an iPhone in less than 6 minutes. I also like coffee and Harry Potter more than anyone really should.

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There are 39 comments. Add yours.

Neal says:

Does anyone know how to get this working on the iPad? I keep seeing people post that you just need to buy it on the iPhone first, but I think they are leaving out a step. If anyone has accomplished getting it on the iPad please post how. Thanks!!! Fwiw I really do like it on the iPhone, have not experienced any bugs and it was well worth the price to me.

Boots says:

"Must have automatic sync enabled for this to be useful"
No you don't...

Carolinamic says:

It looks like a great app but I'll hold off on getting until the price goes down.

Greg Braddock says:

I've been hoping for something like this for a while now... sucks that Apple rejected it and I'm not a jailbreaker and nor do I want to be. Oh well...

Boots says:

@Greg, you will never even get to use 50% of the iphone's potential then

mediyoga#IM says:

Apple is rather obstinate. They have to do things their way. Really, Apple you have to open up or you will be an island. I cant see one single reason to ban this app.

macharborguy says:

@Boots: "No you don't"
Actually, yes you do. Without "Automatic Sync", you would have to be near the computer anyway to initiate the sync manually. If that is the case, there is really no reason other than your USB ports are all used up, to NOT use the dock cable. It would sync MUCH faster, and it would charge while it was doing it.

Allyson Kazmucha says:

@Rob, you should only have to pair initially I believe. Launching the app on the phone I thought was supposed to trigger a sync? Maybe I'm wrong. I only messed with it for a bit as the bugs started frustrating me. It kept kicking me off, but I'm pretty sure setting a device for automatic sync allows you to sync WITHOUT being in front of the computer.

Frank says:

@Greg: hahaha, jailbreaking your iphone doesn't send you to hell or anything... I don't get this stigma of "I will never jailbreak my phone"... everyone makes it sound so dirty and illegal.

DataCentre says:

And Apple wonders why people Jailbreak??

Allyson Kazmucha says:

@Mitchell - talk of piracy or ripping off devs will not be tolerated. period.

Chris says:

I would hate to have to buy this twice, once for my iphone and again for the ipad. I wonder if the license allows for installing on multiple devices like app store apps do.

  • Chris
Tom says:

I jailbroke and my 3g which is already slow on OS 3.1.3 came to a crawl so I reverted back

kayno says:

Does anyone know if this also backs up ur phone only syncs???

Jonezed7 says:

I have the same case. niceeeeeeeee

Dodswm says:

Here's an interesting article from the BBC about the guy who wrote the app: http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/rorycellanjones/2010/05/stillheretheteenageapp_tyc.html
Sounds like he's doing ok from it :)

Dodswm says:

Oops, seems to have messed up my URL! Try http://is.gd/ceQW5
@Damien - it works exactly as it does, if you plug it in via usb.

Boots says:

Yea it backs up too. And the reason your hailbrokrn phone is slow is because 3.0 really isn't designed to run on the 3g. It turns them into turtles.

Boots says:

Jailbroken* stupid autocorrect.

ROb says:

Took 2 hours to do back-up with phone 10 feet away... normally take 1/4 that time at most.... to slowwwww!! Turned off backups but still pretty slow and drains battery... ya what a great app. And yes you do have to have automatic turned on to be usefull

Allyson Kazmucha says:

@Boots if you don't have automatic sync turned on, it's pretty useless. if you had to be by the computer why would you want this app? do you like to drain your battery for no reason? lol if you're right there, why wouldn't you just plug in via USB to sync and save your battery.

SuperflyTNT says:

Paid user. Full review here. Wi-Fi Sync installs no problem on the iPad. When it synced (more on that later), syncing was quicker than I expected and lost no more than a couple of percentage points throughout the whole process. What people don't realize is that the whole advantage of this app for the iPad is that you can't sync and charge at the same time - the iPad requires 10v which most USB ports don't deliver (I'm told some Macs do, but none of my PCs do). So if you're charging your iPad nightly, it might be nice to sync without having to plug the iPad in twice (once in your computer to sync, then again in your outlet to charge). The only real problem is that the Windows server portion of Wi-Fi Sync does have some issues with iTunes on your PC. Sometimes iTunes will report an error and hang until you physically click OK, which is a problem if you're syncing via wifi from another room and wondering why it's taking so darned long. Once the author works out the iTunes/PC problem, I'm sure the app will be a winner. In the meanwhile, I would suggest trying this out regardless because I have an extraordinarily large library so I personally encounter all sorts of iTunes issues that mere mortals never experience. So your millage may vary, and mine wasn't all too bad.

Jose says:

How do I remove the wi-fi sync icon from the menu bar on Mac OS X? I deleted the app but the icon stayed on the menu bar and I can't find a way to remove it from there.

alan says:

same problem How do I remove the wi-fi sync icon from the menu bar on Mac OS X?

asa says:

This is a crap app. No way to delete the application from mac plus it won't allow you to restore your ipod. What a waste of time and now I still am working to delete the app....any suggestions????? The terminal script he wrote doesn't work for crap.

Che says:

This App is crap. To Slow and unreliable. I Cant delete it either. Im on Mac OSX 10.6. The terminal script he wrote doesn’t work for me either.

Allyson Kazmucha says:

@Asa you have to go to getwifisync.com and Download the uninstaller. Stupid I know. Not really sure why the dev didn't include it in the bundle.
Anyone having issues uninstalling, make sure you are re-enabling device backups before uninstalling and that you completely reboot your machine.

Belen says:

Considerably, the write-up is basically the freshest on this notable topic. I concur with your conclusions and will thirstily appear forward to your next updates.I will immediately grab your rss feed to keep abreast of any updates.

Kenneth says:

Qs: How do you revert back to using the USB cable when the apps failed to work properly? After installing Wifi Sync, my iphone4 failed to connect to iTunes... Paying for trouble !!!

Dave says:

Hi!
I have the same problem with wi-fi sync. I can't remove it to use the usb again.
If you have a solution, pls help me!

real1 says:

This app doesn't work, i get an error, and it doesn't recognize iphone, i've sent several help emails to them with no answer... don't waste your money!!!! i've been sacked

Paul says:

BUYER BEWARE! I have not been able to get this app to work correctly. After contacting the developer 2 months ago I have received NO refund or even a response. Save your $10 and stay away from this app

Ryan says:

Do Not Buy This! Does Not Work!
Waste of Money!

Bill says:

All I get is that this and "unsupported device" Huge rip off!!!

Bill says:

I get and error message with my Ipad too... boy this guy is either lazy or a theft .. fix the software.

Brandon says:

WiFi Sync SUCKS! Don't give this worthless developer any of your hard earned money. If the app doesn't work for you, expect ZERO support.

Earl941 says:

i can not get on my phone keep showing image

apple ipad 2 wi-fi tablet says:

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Nikki Cutcher says:

Turn off your pass code lock stuff and then try again