On hacking the iPhone

Alright, it’s only been two weeks since the pricing uproar and now the hacking community is in a tizzy because Apple has basically said, if you hack your phone, we’re not going to replace it if it becomes a brick.

The guys at the “iPhone Dev Team” (which has nothing to do with Apple) said that they will try and restore your phone to factory state so a new firmware update from Apple won’t brick it. Now people are pissed because Apple is seen as limiting their phone.

Um, Apple sells iPhones that work in the US only, as of this writing. If you buy a phone and break the EULA and hack around on it, you assume the risk of bricking it. Period.

In the US, it is legal to unlock your phone.

However, Apple does NOT need to support these customers, and shouldn’t. Why should they replace your bricked phone because you went tooling around inside the guts?

If you want to do something unauthorized to your iPhone, go right ahead. Just make sure you can afford the $399 if you need a new one.

This is no different than accessing designer mode on a HDTV and accidentally resetting the 256 settings to 0 by pressing the wrong key combo. Toshiba will not come out and give you a new TV because you were twiddling with hidden settings you found access to on the Internet.

Don’t ask me how I know about that anecdote.

I finally replaced that TV. Never did get it to look right again.


  1. Totally agree with what you say. I also think “iPhone Dev Team” needs to change their name. It gives the appearance that they are a part of Apple, which they clearly are not. It needs to be clear that iPhone Dev Team makes a product that may the terms of your contract.

    iPhone Dev Team is all about some sort of “Freedom!” (picture Mel Gibson on horseback with blue painted face riding up and down a battlefield here) and that’s fine. People just need to understand that Apple is not beholden to fixing a phone bricked by unauthorized mucking about with the phone innards. Do so at your own peril.

  2. iPhone Update 1.1.1 is out, iToner is broken. Some people say their phones got bricked, others say they work just fine.

    Interesting to note, hackers said the iPod Touch has been very hacker proof, and they have not been able to get 3rd party apps running on it. Rumor has it that Apple moved this locked down setup into the iPhone with the 1.1.1 update. Even Ambrosia Software has said the new update is making them tough to get iToner working again.

    On the other note, the iTunes Wifi store is great! I did a few searches, hell found a song I heard the other night! Download and done. Nice!

    Not sure if this is a 1.1.1 feature, but I just noticed I can now change the sounds made by incoming SMS messages….

    The double click the home feature is nice. I use favorites a lot. It would be nice if they allowed iPhone apps however, IE mail, etc.

    Speakerphone is definitely louder. Some what distorted at max volume.

    Overall, I like the update.

    New Features include:

    • iTunes Wi-Fi Music Store
    • Louder speakerphone and receiver volume
    • Home Button double-click shortcut to phone favorites or music controls
    • Space bar double-tap shortcut to intelligently insert period and space
    • Mail attachments are viewable in portrait and landscape
    • Stocks and cities in Stocks and Weather can be re-ordered
    • Apple Bluetooth Headset battery status in the Status Bar
    • Support for TV Out
    • Preference to turn off EDGE/GPRS when roaming internationally
    • New Passcode lock time intervals
    • Adjustable alert volume

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