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Apple and its CEO Steve Jobs can gloat -- they've once again foiled iPhone unlockers via a firmware update, this time to the bootrom shipping on new units.  (Source: Telegraph UK)

A screenshot of the new bootrom was posted by unlocker Mathieulh. The new bootrom began shipping this week.  (Source: iClarified)
Apple's strikes again, sending jailbreakers on their heels

Apple plays what its CEO Steve Jobs once likened to a game of "cat and mouse" with iPhone unlockers and jailbreakers.  Jailbreakers, like the iPhone Dev Team, try to release the iPhone from being limited to the official iTunes app store and other firmware restrictions, while unlockers, such as George Hotz, use the jailbreaks and other techniques to unlock the phone, allowing it to run on any hardware-supported network.

Usually the unlockers/jailbreakers seize the day, but occasionally Apple will win a round.  Apple has tried many approaches -- everything from "bricking" unlocked iPhones to denying jailbroken iPhones access to the iTunes store -- to halt the spread of unlocking in the U.S. and force people to use AT&T, despite the hardware being capable of working on other carriers such as T-Mobile.

Now, Apple has managed to gain an upper hand over the persistent hackers according to iClarified, thanks to the release of a new bootrom, iBoot-359.3.2.  The phone firmware, which shipped on new iPhone 3GSs starting this week, closes previously used doors to exploits.

A user named "Mathieulh" first noticed the new bootrom and took a screenshot.  It was subsequently confirmed by Muscle Nerd of the iPhone Dev Team that the loss of the 24kpwn exploit would render the iPhone unjailbreakable for the time being.  This means that the unlocking fixes, such as the utility released by George Hotz, also won't work anymore as they rely on jailbreaking as a preliminary step.

For users wishing to jailbreak, iPhone jailbreakers are hard at work trying to find alternative exploits that could be used to unlock the phone.  They suggest, in the meantime, that users purchase older stock of iPhones or buy refurbished units.

The iPhone 3GS was unlocked as soon as it was released, thanks to unlockers with iPhone Developer connections.  George Hotz used the iPhone Dev Team's exploit, along with his own methods, to publish a route to jailbreaking the phone just weeks later.



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RE: Correction
By Alexstarfire on 10/14/2009 1:47:12 PM , Rating: 1
Point us to something that is unhackable, that hasn't recently been put on the market, and I'll gladly just send you my computer for free. Go ahead... I'll give you a couple days to think about it then give up.

Only stipulation is give you is that it must be something in use. I believe the quantum computer is supposedly "unhackable" but that's in lab tests and can not be purchased.


RE: Correction
By barnie on 10/15/2009 5:22:07 AM , Rating: 2
NDS encryption as used by Sky UK has been THE most lucrative TV encryption standard to break for many years. The hardware's all in your hands (decoder, smartcard, there are even open-sourced CAMs emulating NDS decoding with a valid smartcard), but unlike most other satellite broadcasts out there, Sky's is not watchable without a smartcard. Some go as far as saying it will never be broken.

Do you really think a similar scheme can't be used to decode updates sent to a device?


RE: Correction
By dark matter on 10/15/2009 9:47:40 AM , Rating: 4
The reason that hasn't been cracked as it much more easier to crack cable. Hence all the resources have been poured into that.

Why spend all that effort to crack Sky when customers will just go out and buy a eurobox and watch all of skys programs for free on cable anyway?

:)


RE: Correction
By RivuxGamma on 10/16/2009 6:23:04 PM , Rating: 2
OK. How about the center of the Sun? I'll take my free computer now. ;-)


RE: Correction
By lazylazyjoe on 10/16/2009 11:09:28 PM , Rating: 2
My ipod classic still isn't hackable. If it was then maybe I could have rockbox on it.
(I Think theyre close now with the nano 2g though.)


RE: Correction
By Darrington on 10/21/2009 2:38:08 AM , Rating: 2
My NES is unhackable. I'd love to play Pong on it.


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