References to Next-Generation AirPort Extreme and Time Capsule Found

Earlier this evening, Apple released version 5.5.3 of AirPort Utility. This small update to the AirPort Extreme Base Station and Time Capsule administration software contained a few bug fixes, but also a bit of a surprise. Readers in the MacRumors Forums (neek and jonnyz) found references to unreleased 4th Generation Time Capsules and 5th Generation AirPort Extremes.

In the weeks leading up to the WWDC keynote, there had been reports of dwindling Time Capsule and AirPort Extreme stocks, suggesting an imminent refresh. It seems that Apple has been working on next-generation devices, but hasn't yet released them.

time capsule leap forward

Also found were references to Software Updates being stored on devices, but these references are not new as the same text has been found in older versions of the software dating back to at least 2010.

"bsUP.productName" = "Store Apple software updates on this %@";
"bsUP.description" = "Apple software updates that are copied to this %@ are available to anyone using this network.";

These findings were also reported by 9to5Mac, which had previously detailed that upcoming Time Capsules would be offering a Software Update caching system:

What we do know is that Apple has been internally testing Time Capsules to cache Software updates for both Mac and iOS devices. The way we've heard it works is that the new Time Capsule learns which devices connect to it via Wifi. It then goes out to Apple's servers and downloads Software Updates for those products.

When the user wants to install the software update, the Time Capsule, which is also the router, routes you to the locally stored update, rather than downloading the whole thing over the Internet.

Given the fact that these Software Update references were also present in the old firmware, it's not clear when Apple is planning on launching this features, especially in light of the recent iCloud announcements. Apple has also been rumored to be redesigning its Time Capsules and AirPort Extremes around the same A4/A5 processors used in the iPhone and iPad.

Top Rated Comments

thejadedmonkey Avatar
129 months ago
Basically anyone who is 100% Apple is in for a real treat.
Score: 10 Votes (Like | Disagree)
erictooth Avatar
129 months ago
I'm really looking forward to this. I've never had an airport extreme/time capsule, and I'm getting tired of my DD-WRT router..
Score: 7 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Jerome Morrow Avatar
129 months ago
Basically anyone who is 100% Apple is in for a real treat.

I need to postpone my flight to Titan for this.
Score: 5 Votes (Like | Disagree)
colmaclean Avatar
128 months ago
I need to postpone my flight to Titan for this.

Two weeks later...

I postponed my flight to Titan for THIS??????
Score: 4 Votes (Like | Disagree)
gekko21 Avatar
128 months ago
I am getting mad of waiting... practically everything is don't buy!

Agreed. I've been waiting since earlier this year to push the button on a new home theatre solution. Was going to go Mac Mini but it's been months of rumours as to when that will get refreshed. Recently, I've changed tack and pretty much decided to go Time Capsule, Apple TV, iPad. I've been waiting for the TC refresh (looks like soon) and now there are more rumours about new iPad updates later this year (not sure I believe those at the moment though). You really can't win and in the meantime, I've held off for months waiting to see what sort of media server solutions Apple would put out this year.

I think there comes a point where all the endless speculation backfires a bit for the company as my credit card has been secure in my purse for six months now due to it never being the right time to press the button. Also, I need a network backup solution fast due to an aging iMac that's crippled by copious amounts of media. If I don't order something by the end of this week, my other half has threatened to take me to the Apple store and ask for an upgrade :(.
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)
monty77 Avatar
129 months ago
..a new A4 powered AEBS with built in iTunes server to act as a home media hub (very much in keeping with the home sharing concept) would be amazing - I currently have a Mac Mini doing this and it's pretty wasteful. VPN support would be good too.

Dream on I guess though.

Monty
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)

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