If you’re still on the fence about jailbreaking or not, this might help you decide.
Is it safe?
You mean, will it brick my iPhone or iPad? As they say, there’s nothing certain but death and taxes, but jailbreaking tools have come a long way in terms of ease of use and bug-free quality. There’s always a chance you could get into an accident when you drive to work, but that doesn’t keep you home the whole day every day of your life.
Bottom line: It’s relatively safe. Your phone will continue working. Globe or Smart will not cut your service. You can still sync with iTunes and buy apps from the App Store and get them working on your iPhone or iPad.
Is it hard to do?
Not at all. For the new Absinthe jailbreak tool (for iPhone 4s and iPad 2 only), it’s basically a one-click process. After you’ve downloaded the software (links for the Mac, Windows, and Linux versions below), just run it, plug in your device, and click the Jailbreak button and wait for the magic to happen. Then tap on the Absinthe icon on your home screen and wait for it to load the Cydia app. Once you have the Cydia app, you’re done.
Owners of older devices (iPhone 4 and older) will have to use a different tool, sn0wbreeze or redsn0w (links below). As with previous versions of this tool, you will have to enter DFU mode, but the software prompts you exactly what to do and when so it’s almost as straightforward as using Absinthe.
You mean I have to buy apps from the Cydia store???
Jailbreaking isn’t meant primarily for installing cracked apps (though you’re free to do a little bit more research on that if you want to). It was originally meant to allow you to install apps that, for one reason or another, aren’t available on the iTunes App Store.
As on the iTunes App Store, some apps are free, and some are for sale. Prices are roughly within the same range (cheapest one I bought was $0.99, and the most expensive was $9.99). You also need to create an account on the Cydia store, using your Google log-in, and you have the option to pay using PayPal or Amazon credits. I’ve bought perhaps a dozen apps over the last three years and haven’t had any problems with fraudulent charges or transactions so far. And the nice thing is that it’s easy to restore all your previous purchases when you upgrade to a new device.
And what if I need to bring my unit in for repair or servicing?
You always have the option of wiping out everything on your iPhone or iPad, including the jailbreak software, and restoring it to factory condition via iTunes.
Final caveat: As with any other process not officially supported by Apple and its partners, you’re pretty much on your own if you jailbreak your device. The authors of the jailbreak tools don’t offer any official support either. But there’s a large and helpful jailbreaking community out there that you can turn to for more information and help.
If you’re happy with the jailbreaking experience, you can show the team that created the tools your appreciation with a donation via PayPal (link shown when you run their apps to start the jailbreaking process)
And, finally, jailbreaking is not the same as unlocking, so SIM-locked units will remain locked to their original carriers. If you’re looking for an unlock, do not upgrade your firmware or jailbreak until there’s a sure unlock solution.
Links to jailbreaking software
Absinthe iPhone 4S, iPad 2 jailbreak for Linux now Available
Absinthe iPhone 4S, iPad jailbreak for Windows released! Download it here!
UPDATED: Untethered iPhone 4S, iPad 2 jailbreak out now! Grab it here!
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