iOS 5 – what now? Wi-fi Sync and Home Sharing

Oct 16, 2011

iPhones and iPads are pretty easy to break, or lose. And sometimes there is a software problem that requires a full restore.


When this happens, you’ll be glad that you have a recent back up. Makes it a snap to get back all your app, songs, movies, and data.


You do have a recent back up, don’t you?


The iPhone and iPad are backed up automatically when you connect then via USB cord to their ‘mother’ computer. This is also when updated apps, new songs and podcasts that you have downloaded or purchased are uploaded to your iDevice. 


However, many people only rarely plug their Phones into their computer (Cathy), and therefore rarely back up.


iOS5 enables ‘iTines wi-fi sync’, which enables backing up whenever your iPhone and iPad are on the same wifi network as their home computer. This is ‘a good thing’.


To set it up, follow these steps.


1. Plug your iPhone into its mother computer via the USB cord (the old fashioned way). It will back up and update.

2. In iTunes, select your iPhone in the menu on the left side, (it is under the heading ‘Devixes’)

3. Click the ‘Back Up via Wifi” checkbox.


4. Click Apply (bottom right)

5. When the Back Up and Sync is finished, you should be able to unplug your iPhone and it should still be visible in the Devices list.


That may be all you need to do.

It worked for me on one computer and its baby devices, but not on the other, even though they were on the same network.


You can check if it worked by opening Settings on your device. and selecting General>iTunes Wi-Fi Sync. If the Sync now button is greyed out, you may need to follow these next steps.


6. Restart your iPhone/iPad (turn it right off by holding down the Sleep button until the Red slider appears, and then ‘Slide to Power Off’)

7. Restart the mother computer.


8. If this still doesn’t work, it can sometimes help to turn your modem/router off and back on, and (perhaps) repeating steps 6 and 7.


Once you have it working, your iPhone will back up and sync automatically when you plug it into a charger while it is on your home network. You can make it back up and sync when it is not plugged in to a power supply by by opening Settings>General>iTune Wi-Fi Sync and pressing the Sync Now button.


It is worth setting this up. Let me know in the comments if you have any problems.

While you’re at it, you should enable Home Sharing on your iPad or iPhone. Go to Settings>Music and enter your AppleID and password. On each of the computers running iTunes, in the Advanced >Enable Home Sharing menu, enter the same AppleID.

Then, in the Music App, click on the More Tab, and select Shared. You’ll be able to steam music or videos from your main iTunes library to your iPhone/iPad. Cool.

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