Last month I mentioned that a new USB dongle called PS Jailbreak had surfaced that promised to jailbreak your PS3 without having it open the chassis or void your warranty. The flash drive plugged into the USB port on the PS3 and hacked the console to allow you to play games off the hard drive directly.
A new Apple patent application could see future devices from the company automatically lock themselves, alert their owners or even Apple should they be either used by an unauthorized person or modified in a non-permited way. Spotted by ArsTechnica, while the patent abstract describes a security-minded application - unauthorized use of the device, such as an iPhone, resulting in its rightful owner being notified via email, voicemail or other service - the full text also suggests that hacking, jailbreaking, unlocking, swapping SIMs or moving the device away from a preset area could also trigger either lock-downs or selective feature blocks. In addition to full or partial blocks of this sort, the device could also take a photo of the person using the handset.
Apple has reportedly come up with a fix for the remote PDF exploit that led the German government to issue an official warning about iPhone security. The exploit is the loophole used for the Safari-based jailbreak launched at the weekend; as well as allowing Apple devices to be hacked for unofficial third-party applications (and the first step in the path for unlocking locked handsets), it also leaves the door open for malicious attacks which could potentially get root privileges on the device.
There were lots of iPhone users out there that did a little dance of joy when jailbreaking was tossed into the DMCA as fair use. This is a good thing for users who want the freedom to do with their handsets as they wish.
A new unlock solution for the iPhone 4 has been released, promising to cut the ties between the Apple smartphone and AT&T (or, indeed, any other carrier the handset may be locked to). The handiwork of the iPhone Dev Team, the iPhone 4 unlock is integrated into the latest version of their ultrasn0w tool.
Yesterday's news of a simple, webpage-based Jailbreak solution for the iPhone 4, iPad and iPod touch took most of us by surprise, but the fact that over-demand crashed the JailbreakMe.com servers didn't. Now they're back up, but if you managed to run your device through the jailbreaking process early yesterday then you might find a few issues remaining: namely, problems with FaceTime video calling and MMS messaging.
Jailbreaking your iOS device may be officially permitted under the DMCA, but that presumes there's a jailbreak out there to run. Happily, anyone with an iOS 3.1.2, 3.1.3, 4.0, 4.0.1 or iPad 3.2.1 device now has a super-straightforward way to jailbreak, thanks to comex's new JailBreakMe site.
After yesterday's landmark DMCA ruling, all eyes were on Apple to see how the company would respond now that jailbreaking and unlocking devices is explicitly legal. Unsurprisingly, they're not throwing open the doors and welcoming in the iPhone Dev Team with open arms; in a statement to Cult of Mac, an unnamed Apple PR person reiterated that the Cupertino company recommends users do not jailbreak their iPhone or iPod touch, and that doing so will violate their warranty.
The Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) has been seen as a double-edged sword by many, offering small content producers a legitimate way to defend themselves against copyright theft, but also throwing into doubt things like fair-use excerpts, jailbreaking of devices like Apple's iPhone, and unlocking handsets. Now, in a new set of exemptions pushed for by the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF), the legal rights of those looking to do those things have been made clearer and - dare we say - more palatable. That includes the proviso that jailbreaking a device to run an app that has been made incompatible by the handset manufacturer is fair use, as is bypassing copy protection on media (such as DVDs) to excerpt sections for derivative fair use works.
iPhone (and PS3) hacker Geohot has been showing off his freshly jailbroken iPhone 4, but he also apparently has no plans on releasing it. So far the bulk of the jailbreak work has been done by the iPhone Dev Team; Geohot - or George Hotz as he goes in real life - says his reasoning for not releasing the jailbreak isn't technical but motivational, since he believes users will then simply move on to demanding the next step in the unlock chain.