Wireless iTunes Sync Wi-Fi in iOS 5 is Slower Than USB Syncing! – Performance Comparison Shows

by Jawwad in Guides, iPad, iPhone, Mobile | 1 comment

We have heard a lot of praise about the wireless syncing feature in the iOS 5 the way it allows to seamlessly and wirelessly sync all the music, apps, movies and other data between your iPhone/iPad and iTunes on the PC. As we mentioned before that this feature indeed has been borrowed from a paid Cydia app although it has to be said that Apple implementation is more polished and works more seamlessly. There are a number advantages to the Wi-Fi Syncing as compared to the traditional data syncing with the iTunes using the USB cable. First main advantage is that it happens in background and you can keep using your iOS 5 device even during the process. Secondly it will automatically sync when the device is connected to a power source. You can even initiate an automated wireless sync as we described earlier.

But I am sure that there are many people waiting to see some performance benchmarks just to evaluate that how fast is Apple’s Wi-Fi Sync feature. But no need to wonder anymore as our job is made easier by the guys at LifeHacker, as they have conducted some performance benchmarks to evaluate the performance of the Wi-Fi Sync as compared to the traditional USB syncing of the iOS device. The performance tests that they have run are on an iPod-Touch with of course the iOS 5 installed. Here are some of the results that they got:

Music and Movies Syncing Using Wi-Fi and USB

iosmoviesync | Wireless iTunes Sync Wi Fi in iOS 5 is Slower Than USB Syncing!   Performance Comparison Shows

Music  and Movies is a combined test where they Synced four albums and a two and a half hour movie using both the Wi-Fi and USB syncing. And as you might expect results are not very good for the wireless syncing as it completes in little over 20 minutes as compared to the USB syncing which finishes in close to 2 minutes! This is a huge difference. But if you want to sync less albums this waiting time may be less painful. In other words, wireless syncing may not be the best idea if you have a lot of data to sync!

Apps Syncing Using Wi-Fi and USB

iosappsync | Wireless iTunes Sync Wi Fi in iOS 5 is Slower Than USB Syncing!   Performance Comparison Shows

In this benchmark 7 apps were synced both wirelessly and over USB with each app between 10-20 MB and results are presented here. USB syncing took a minute while Wi-Fi syncing finished in around 2 minutes times. So surprisingly not that much time difference as in the previous result. This might be attributed to the fact most of the time is actually spent on decompressing and installing the app than on the transfer. And that part is not depend on the transfer speed of the method employed. So moral of the story is if you are going to just sync a lot apps then Wi-Fi sync is pretty fine for this use case.

Please note that these tests were performed 802.11g Wi-Fi network. If you have a wireless network with the latest 802.11n standard then the wireless syncing performance of your iOS device with the iTunes might be faster than shown here.


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