IPhone jailbreaking now a thing of the past?

Jailbreaking allows unauthorized applications to run on an iPhone, breaking Apple's stranglehold.

Apple seems to have, for the moment, stopped experimenters from "jailbreaking" its most recent shipment of iPhone 3GS handsets. How long this situation will last is anyone's guess--Apple must hope it's forever.

Jailbreaking allows unauthorized applications to be loaded onto the iPhone. A related hack, called "unlocking," allows an iPhone to operate on other carriers' networks, such as T-Mobile in the U.S.

The hackers' defeat was first noted in a post yesterday on iClarified.

Together, jailbreaking and unlocking defeats Apple's stranglehold on its iPhone platform. Since the iPhone's release, the company has tried a number of methods to block jailbreaking but to only temporary advantage.

Apple has claimed hacked iPhones could damage the cellular network.

The newest weapon in Apple's arsenal is a change to the iPhone "bootrom," which is software that checks the phone's software status before it is allowed to turn on. If it senses a problem, the phone may not operate properly and certainly cannot be broken into.

Hackers previously used an exploit called "24kpwn" to beat the bootrom, but the hack reportedly no longer works on shipments of iPhones that began arriving in stores last week.

Those handsets feature a new bootrom, nicknamed "iBoot-359.3.2," the new devices appear unsusceptible to the 24kpwn attack. If the phone cannot be jailbreaked, it is thought unlocking may be impossible, as well.

Hackers are suggesting purchasing older stock or refurbished phones as a workaround while they develop a new exploit to match the new bootrom.

Previously, every Apple effort has been defeated by a new hack. It will be interesting to see how long the new bootrom remains secure.

David Coursey tweets as @techinciter and can be contacted via his Web site.

Join the Good Gear Guide newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags AppleiPhonesmartphonesiPhone 3GSjailbreaking

Our Back to Business guide highlights the best products for you to boost your productivity at home, on the road, at the office, or in the classroom.

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

David Coursey

PC World (US online)
Show Comments

Most Popular Reviews

Latest News Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Azadeh Williams

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

A smarter way to print for busy small business owners, combining speedy printing with scanning and copying, making it easier to produce high quality documents and images at a touch of a button.

Andrew Grant

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

I've had a multifunction printer in the office going on 10 years now. It was a neat bit of kit back in the day -- print, copy, scan, fax -- when printing over WiFi felt a bit like magic. It’s seen better days though and an upgrade’s well overdue. This HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 looks like it ticks all the same boxes: print, copy, scan, and fax. (Really? Does anyone fax anything any more? I guess it's good to know the facility’s there, just in case.) Printing over WiFi is more-or- less standard these days.

Ed Dawson

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

As a freelance writer who is always on the go, I like my technology to be both efficient and effective so I can do my job well. The HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 Inkjet Printer ticks all the boxes in terms of form factor, performance and user interface.

Michael Hargreaves

Windows 10 for Business / Dell XPS 13

I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.

Aysha Strobbe

Windows 10 / HP Spectre x360

Ultimately, I think the Windows 10 environment is excellent for me as it caters for so many different uses. The inclusion of the Xbox app is also great for when you need some downtime too!

Mark Escubio

Windows 10 / Lenovo Yoga 910

For me, the Xbox Play Anywhere is a great new feature as it allows you to play your current Xbox games with higher resolutions and better graphics without forking out extra cash for another copy. Although available titles are still scarce, but I’m sure it will grow in time.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?