Here's What Apple Retail's New Machine to Update iPhones in the Box Looks Like

Apple retail stores are now receiving information about the company's new system for wirelessly updating iPhone software prior to sale, iGen reports.

Apple Store Vancouver Canada
Last week, Bloomberg's Mark Gurman reported that the new proprietary system, called "Presto," will begin operation across the U.S. in April. Gurman first reported on the wireless system in October, describing it as a "proprietary pad-like device" upon which retail store staff can place a sealed ‌‌iPhone‌‌ box. The system wirelessly turns on the ‌iPhone‌ inside, updates its software to the latest available version, and then powers it off.

Presto features small lockers that can accommodate six ‌iPhone‌ boxes simultaneously. There are markings to ensure that boxes are correctly positioned for NFC depending on their size. Once correctly positioned, the ‌iPhone‌ will update within 15 to 30 minutes. iGen has now shared a still from a video showing two of the machines stacked one on top of the other:

apple presto
Presto was developed by Apple's Backstage Operations team, which designs tools for technicians and retail store employees. The company developed "Presto" as a way to avoid selling iPhones in retail stores with outdated software. For example, the iPhone 15 series shipped with iOS 17, but Apple subsequently released iOS 17.0.1 before the devices launched. The update was required to fix an issue that prevented the transfer of data directly from another ‌iPhone‌ during the initial setup process.

Apple apparently intends to have the technology in all U.S. retail stores by early summer. Retail locations outside the U.S. are also now receiving information about how Presto works.

Tag: Retail

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Top Rated Comments

klasma Avatar
16 weeks ago
I wonder if this will be made available to collectors so that they can keep their sealed iPhones in original packaging up to date.
Score: 24 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Fuzzball84 Avatar
16 weeks ago

I’d guess that this is not much more than magsafe + some NFC chip that the iPhone “knows” means to turn on and automatically connect to wifi + download the latest update
What security mitigations are in place? If you can tamper with a device that still has tamper proof seal in place

Anyone could do anything to it. What if government uses it as a way to change settings to an iPhone going to a certain politician, or business person, or anyone?
Score: 17 Votes (Like | Disagree)
vegetassj4 Avatar
16 weeks ago
Will the new iPhone come in 6” and foot long versions




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Score: 14 Votes (Like | Disagree)
jarman92 Avatar
16 weeks ago

I admit I am no expert on this topic, but how is this not a potential security issue?

In other words, how can Apple guarantee that someone (e.g. the NSA) won't build/steal/buy a similar machine to update phones to a new, custom OS (that NSA created) that is less secure?
Because the machine doesn't install the software, it just turns the phone on and the phone connects to Apple's servers for the update. Unless Apple's servers are compromised, this isn't an issue (and if they are, we have far bigger issues).
Score: 12 Votes (Like | Disagree)
clayj Avatar
16 weeks ago
This is very smart. In my last position, I often had to deal with users getting "new" phones -- new in box, but they'd been that way for a while -- where the first thing we had to do was update iOS to the latest version. This wouldn't have helped me, since it's only for Apple Stores, but nice to see that any phone you buy in a store should always be on the latest iOS as soon as you take it out of the box.
Score: 12 Votes (Like | Disagree)
klasma Avatar
16 weeks ago

Anyone could do anything to it. What if government uses it as a way to change settings to an iPhone going to a certain politician, or business person, or anyone?
They would need Apple’s signing keys. IPhones only accept updates signed by Apple.
Score: 11 Votes (Like | Disagree)