Customers Cheer, Apple Weeps, After Getting Defeated by iPhone Unlocker Yet Again
November 3, 2009 2:20 PM
comment(s) - last by
Poor Apple. It must hurt, to get outsmarted yet again by George Hotz, a prolific iPhone hacker.
(Source: On the iPhone)
Apple's hardware team can't seem to keep their close platform closed
Apple has a big headache. That headache is
iPhone unlockers and jailbreakers
. With iPhone jailbreaking, the powerful handsets are no longer constrained to only run the apps that Apple allows. And with unlocking, users can jump onto other networks, leaving Apple's partner AT&T and its
patchy 3G network
Apple has long and unsuccessfully waged war with the unlockers. It has tried to
brick their iPhones
. It has tried to
release new firmware versions
to try to lock them out. But ultimately, time and time again, Apple's best hardware and software engineers are finding themselves outwitted and befuddled by the persistent hackers.
Leading the crew is George Hotz, a 20-year-old New Jersey native who goes by the aliases
online. When he was just a teen, he became the first to develop a procedure to jailbreak the iPhone allowing its use on other networks. The move
netted him a hot car
, extra iPhones, money, and fame. Now slightly older and a month out of his teenage years, Hotz continues to be among the most prolific iPhone unlockers, consistently
Now Hotz has released his
, blacksn0w, a free unlocking utility that works with the latest iPhone 3G and iPhone 3GS hardware (the latest 05.11.07 baseband, which locked out previous hacks). The unlock works with a new version of Hotz's popular purplera1n jailbreak hack, dubbed blackra1n. Together the hacks can both free the phone from the AT&T network and Apple's app restrictions.
Blacksn0w is available through the
renegade app store Cydia
, which specializes in apps Apple has rejected. Full support for Tiger and Power PC Macs has been added with the latest version of blackra1n, blackra1n RC3. The process for Apple and Windows users is detailed in easy tutorials
One can only wonder if Apple is truly trying to defeat the unlockers. If so, how can the schemes of its seasoned engineers continually be foiled by Hotz and his legion of young iPhone hackers? On the other hand, if it doesn't truly oppose unlocking, why would it lobby the government to outlaw the practice, claiming it
supports terrorism and drug dealing
Regardless of whether Apple truly opposes unlocking/jailbreaking or not, the work by Hotz, et. al is welcome as it introduces the iPhone to the free market of multiple app stores and networks. It also allows tethering -- a feature
by Apple and AT&T (be careful with this one, though, you can run over your data limits and get charged an arm and a leg -- we warned you!).
This article is over a month old, voting and posting comments is disabled
RE: Out smarted by a kid
11/3/2009 8:00:59 PM
This George Hotz has admitted that he spent rather a lot of time (many many weeks) working on his first crack. It became almost an obsession for him over the summer break. Nowadays I guess he is just using everything he found as needed, whilst continuing to dig around regularly in the firmware to discover new opportunities as needed.
This isn't something he cooked up over a weekend. It was originally the result of many weeks of hard work, and whilst he may package it up as one click tools like "blackra1n" now, there is probably months of work behind these cracks now.
What amazes me is why Apple continue to lock the iPhone/iTouch platform, even when third-party products are often so much better (SBSettings anyone?).
I'll never ever update the OS version on my iTouch again until I am 99% certain I'll be able to jailbreak it, as jailbreaking it makes it so much more flexible.
RE: Out smarted by a kid
11/4/2009 8:06:46 AM
zeroes and ones my friend. On the other I have more important things to do, like obtain a computer science degree and HELP community projects like *BSD, Linux, etc.
Thanks for helping George!
"This is about the Internet. Everything on the Internet is encrypted. This is not a BlackBerry-only issue. If they can't deal with the Internet, they should shut it off." -- RIM co-CEO Michael Lazaridis
Apple Kills Jailbreaking in Newest iPhone 3GS Shipments
October 14, 2009, 10:05 AM
AT&T says "No Tether for You" to iPhone Users
October 8, 2009, 10:28 AM
Apple Genius Considers 30 Percent NYC Call Drop Rates Normal
September 30, 2009, 4:54 PM
Cydia App Store Frees iPhone Users From Apple's Restrictions
August 9, 2009, 5:02 PM
Apple Urges Government to Outlaw iPhone Unlocking Over Terrorist, Drug Dealing Risks
July 29, 2009, 4:00 PM
IPotty and iPad Tot Seat Ignite Controversy: Brilliant or "Destructive"?
December 10, 2013, 6:22 PM
Quick Note: Sleek White Second-Gen Nexus 7 Goes on Sale for $269
December 10, 2013, 4:55 PM
Illinois Considers Ban on Google Glass While Driving
December 10, 2013, 10:21 AM
EU to Nokia: Don't Even Think About Becoming a Patent Troll
December 9, 2013, 10:29 AM
Apple's "iBeacon" Tracks Customers Inside Apple Stores for Enhanced Shopping Experience
December 6, 2013, 11:26 AM
Apple Says 74% of Its Mobile Devices Now Run iOS 7
December 6, 2013, 10:06 AM
Most Popular Articles
Hackers Nab 2 Million Login Credentials from Facebook, Gmail, Twitter
December 5, 2013, 1:00 PM
Experts: Masturbation Prevents Cancer, Diabetes, Insomnia, and Depression
December 6, 2013, 2:01 PM
Thieves Steal Truck with Cobalt-60 Onboard in Mexico, Will Die "Without a Doubt" from Exposure
December 5, 2013, 12:04 PM
Man Arrested for Using 5 Cents Worth of Electricity to Charge Nissan Leaf at Middle School
December 4, 2013, 8:00 PM
New Reversible "Type-C" USB Plug Coming in Mid-2014
December 4, 2013, 10:38 AM
Latest Blog Posts
Justice Leaks Details of Next HTC One Two Flagship Phone
Dec 5, 2013, 4:04 PM
Global Cyber Espionage Concerns Reveal Growing Cyber Armies
Nov 29, 2013, 11:04 AM
Is The Period Becoming an Expression of Anger?
Nov 26, 2013, 2:02 PM
NSA and Congress -- You Will Never Kill the Constitution, It's an Idea
Nov 10, 2013, 2:00 PM
AT&T Explores $100B+ USD Deal to Acquire Vodafone's European Operations
Nov 4, 2013, 7:34 AM
More Blog Posts
Copyright 2013 DailyTech LLC. -
Terms, Conditions & Privacy Information