bit-tech.net

Apple patents anti-jailbreak system

Apple patents anti-jailbreak system

Apple's patent reveals techniques for detecting jailbroken iPhones - and even seeing who's using them.

Despite the courts ruling jailbreaking - the act of subverting DRM in order to install third-party apps on a smartphone handset that you own - legal in the US, Apple isn't giving up on the fight: the company has filed a patent which appears to detect and disable jailbroken iPhones.

The patent - spotted by The Register - is entitled "Systems and Methods for Identifying Unauthorised Users of an Electronic Device," which at first glance sounds like a wonderful tool for detecting stolen or malware-ridden systems.

Reading past the headline, however, reveals some worrying wording within the patent - and a clue as to how seriously Apple is taking the breaking of its walled-garden apps ecosystem: the patent details various techniques for detecting "hacking, jailbreaking, unlocking, or removal of a SIM card" (our emphasis) - giving Apple the means to tell if you've been procuring your apps in a way that doesn't give it a cut of the proceeds.

The countermeasures detailed in the patent application - and it's always worth remembering that this isn't necessarily how such a system would be implemented, if it is indeed ever actually implemented - include taking a series of geotagged photographs with the in-built camera and e-mailing them to Apple in order to identify the miscreant.

While a lot of the patent appears pie-in-the-sky - such as voice-print analysis to identify legitimate users, and the use of a heartbeat sensor - the fact that it specifically identifies jailbreaking as an unwelcome activity should give iPhone owners cause for concern, even if the techniques detailed never make it into production.

Are you surprised that Apple would continue to try to block jailbreakers following the court's decision to legitimise the activity, or does this just highlight the lengths that the company will go to in order to protect its control of the iOS platform? Share your thoughts over in the forums.

49 Comments

Discuss in the forums Reply
fingerbob69 23rd August 2010, 10:28 Quote
I have long been bemused as to why the iphone is so desirable. This article does nothing to alay that bemusment.
liratheal 23rd August 2010, 10:32 Quote
I used to jailbreak iProducts where applicable, just because.

I rapidly ran out of reasons to, it never seemed to add anything I genuinely cared about.

As such, this patent filing doesn't even begin to bother me in the slightest.
eddtox 23rd August 2010, 10:36 Quote
Surely if the activity in question is deemed legal by the courts then Apple has no legal grounds on which to include such invasive protections mechanisms?

IMO, it's more likely that apple is planning it's own security and anti-theft system for the iDevices in order to minimise damage done by theft of said devices and facilitate recovery. It's also a great way to combat jailbreaking, because if you decide to do it, you would have to forego the protection of their anti-theft system. Rather than combating jailbreaking directly, they going at it in a more calculated way.

I.e: if you go out of the garden, we won't protect you.
kenco_uk 23rd August 2010, 10:38 Quote
Last para '..the company will got to in order..'

Tbh, I love the use of the tech there! Taking a geotagged photo of the user and emailing it to Apple, nice one :)
proxess 23rd August 2010, 10:42 Quote
This is why you get android phones...
Stotherd-001 23rd August 2010, 10:53 Quote
This has been done on a similar level on android, through several different apps, except the pics get sent to YOU. I can text my phone to tell it to a whole bunch of random things, many of which the user wouldn't be able to tell it was doing.

Geotagging and sending it to apple is actually something I'd be pretty worried about. Next thing you know they'll have their own iphone recovery team wandering about the world recovering stolen iphones... they already have a police force in their pocket.
crazyceo 23rd August 2010, 11:01 Quote
Judge "Mr Apple, what are you trying to get me to outlaw?"

Mr Apple "The iPhone users right to download content that wont make me any more money"

Judge "Does the user actually own the iPhone?"

Mr Apple "Yes but we want to control them all damn it!"

Judge "Do you give these iPhones to the users for Free?"

Mr Apple "Hell No! we squeeze as much as possible out of them when they first buy them around £500 and then charge them for every downloaded content through us for what ever we feel like and we make **** loads for it!"

Judge "I see, get the hell out of my court room!"

Some days later.....

Mr Apple "Screw that Judge, let's just f&%k them all anyway! Susan, get me the number for our patent guy and see if he can squeeze a few lines into the current patent hes working on"
MSHunter 23rd August 2010, 11:08 Quote
Just an other company preparing to sue paying customers for using their hardware in ways it "was not meant to be use" thereby enlarging the companies customer base oh NO!!!
mecblade 23rd August 2010, 11:35 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by crazyceo
Judge "Mr Apple, what are you trying to get me to outlaw?"

Mr Apple "The iPhone users right to download content that wont make me any more money"

Judge "Does the user actually own the iPhone?"

Mr Apple "Yes but we want to control them all damn it!"

Judge "Do you give these iPhones to the users for Free?"

Mr Apple "Hell No! we squeeze as much as possible out of them when they first buy them around £500 and then charge them for every downloaded content through us for what ever we feel like and we make **** loads for it!"

Judge "I see, get the hell out of my court room!"

Some days later.....

Mr Apple "Screw that Judge, let's just f&%k them all anyway! Susan, get me the number for our patent guy and see if he can squeeze a few lines into the current patent hes working on"

+1 and Rep for complete trueness
Elledan 23rd August 2010, 11:36 Quote
Didn't you know that you didn't buy a physical product when you got that iPhone, but only a license to use it? Silly people...

:)
Bob1234 23rd August 2010, 11:38 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by crazyceo
Judge "Does the user actually own the iPhone?"

Mr Apple "Yes but we want to control them all damn it!"

And theres the key to the next step.

To circumvent the issue of jailbreaking the phone will be leased to you, that way you dont own it and therefore cant legally jailbreak it.

When your contract ends, you can either keep it "for a fee" or return it and get a new model.
SpeedLegion 23rd August 2010, 12:01 Quote
I'm not too worried about what they are putting in this pretty fair fetched patent given this is the company that says you have to agree not to use itunes to create weapons of mass destruction in its itunes licence agreement!

Anyway surely taking photos of you without your permission and distributing them back to apple is highly illegal?
[USRF]Obiwan 23rd August 2010, 12:09 Quote
HTC and XDA-Developers. Is all I have to say today :)
Quote:

To circumvent the issue of jailbreaking the phone will be leased to you, that way you dont own it and therefore cant legally jailbreak it.

When your contract ends, you can either keep it "for a fee" or return it and get a new model.

If I would buy a Iphone of the secondhand market. Does the license still holds? If I then jailbreak or place my own sim into it. Will the Original own get a lawsuit?
ryall 23rd August 2010, 12:19 Quote
Apple, Oracle, Google.... You know times are pretty f**ked up when Microsoft starts looking like the good guys.
Bob1234 23rd August 2010, 12:24 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by SpeedLegion
Anyway surely taking photos of you without your permission and distributing them back to apple is highly illegal?

Depends, by accepting the contact, and terms of use, you would be giving them permission.
Quote:
Originally Posted by [USRF]Obiwan
If I would buy a Iphone of the secondhand market. Does the license still holds? If I then jailbreak or place my own sim into it. Will the Original own get a lawsuit?

Depends on the original licensing terms, if it says "you may not resell or otherwise give to a 3rd party" the terms have already been broken, so chances are they would shut down your phone for you.

All comes down to the enforceability of EULAs or other contract terms.
StoneyMahoney 23rd August 2010, 14:18 Quote
IANAL, but last time I checked the idea was that you owned the hardware but were merely licensed to use the software that's on it. If you could completely wipe the software before agreeing to it's terms and conditions you could quite happily replace it with whatever legally developed alternative you like.

Legally developed alternative... oh wait...
maximus09 23rd August 2010, 14:31 Quote
how many viruses and malware do you think would be developed for the iPhone if the OS wasn't a closed system? Just a thought......

And their probably going to increase now due to this new law in the US.
DeathAwaitsU 23rd August 2010, 15:07 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by maximus09
how many viruses and malware do you think would be developed for the iPhone if the OS wasn't a closed system? Just a thought......

And their probably going to increase now due to this new law in the US.

About as many as any other os mobile platform, aka: not many :) (and none that cant be stopped through you know, intelligence)
TSR2 23rd August 2010, 17:38 Quote
And that's one of the reasons why, if I owned an iPhone, I'd jailbreak it anyway out of principle. As for the whole licencing thing, surely jailbreaking is only the same as the software being 'corrupted' by other means?
Jehla 23rd August 2010, 18:42 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by fingerbob69
I have long been bemused as to why the iphone is so desirable. This article does nothing to alay that bemusment.

I'm using the iphone 4. I chose it over an android hand set because:

1) Nice solid feel to it compared other mobiles.

2) Well engineered package. Battery life for instance compared to hot android phone at the time the Evo.

3) I got the impression that the interface was superior

4) Long term updates and no having to wait for my phone maker to put their own skin on.

I'm sure I'll swap to android in a few years time, but at the moment their is no real competition in my mind.
wuyanxu 23rd August 2010, 21:22 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jehla
I'm using the iphone 4. I chose it over an android hand set because:

1) Nice solid feel to it compared other mobiles.

2) Well engineered package. Battery life for instance compared to hot android phone at the time the Evo.

3) I got the impression that the interface was superior

4) Long term updates and no having to wait for my phone maker to put their own skin on.

I'm sure I'll swap to android in a few years time, but at the moment their is no real competition in my mind.
don't forget ease of jailbreaking. (aka rooting)

if i cannot jailbreak my iPhone, i won't buy it. it's simple as 1+1. i've grown accustomed to wifi-sync, SBsettings, activator, advanced notifier and many others.

a jailbroken iphone is superior to android phone for above reasons plus it is as flexible as android phones. an unjailbroken iphone is the worst smart phone (if it can be considered smart).
crazyceo 23rd August 2010, 23:08 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jehla
Quote:
Originally Posted by fingerbob69
I have long been bemused as to why the iphone is so desirable. This article does nothing to alay that bemusment.

I'm using the iphone 4. I chose it over an android hand set because:

1) Nice solid feel to it compared other mobiles.

2) Well engineered package. Battery life for instance compared to hot android phone at the time the Evo.

3) I got the impression that the interface was superior

4) Long term updates and no having to wait for my phone maker to put their own skin on.

I'm sure I'll swap to android in a few years time, but at the moment their is no real competition in my mind.

I've just picked up two. One for my Wife and the other for my Daughter. I've set up both and can hand on heart say that I am completely happy I don't need one. Yes they can do this and that but I'm not convinced at all by the Apple BS and the BBC presenters and Homosexual entertainers who keep saying we need more Apple products in our lives.

I'm sorry but I just don't!
robots 24th August 2010, 01:31 Quote
I don't get all the iPhone hate here, I think they are great.

I had an iPhone 3gs so I knew what I was getting myself in to. Last week I had an opportunity to get ANY phone I wanted on the market. I thoroughly researched pretty much everything out there for the past few months, and I decided on the iPhone 4 simply because for me at least, it's better than everything else. I love Flash games, so I was desperate to get the HTC Desire instead and for that to work for me. But it just didn't. Flash games don't work well on it, and the site I use for games only has a tiny selection available to mobile devices (not to mention that the screen looked terrible in direct sunlight). So for gaming, the iPhone 4 is still the best I could find. I have Plants Vs Zombies, Final Fantasy, The Quest, Civilization Revolution, Angry Birds, Peggle, Driver, and loads of other great games, so I'm happy. It plays films which I can convert myself and put straight on the phone and look amazing. Same goes for MP3's, and it's great for browsing the web. There is nothing more I could want, so I think it's great.

As for the jailbreaking, I think if I added up how much I had spent on all the stuff I use and play, it's probably about £20 or so. So I don't care about jailbreaking. It's not like I'm being shafted by Apple. The average game is about 59p, or 1.39 or so, so it doesn't exactly break the bank. The only thing which I would consider jailbreaking it for, would be TomTom, but I'd rather not start messing around with my otherwise legit phone just for 1 app.
Bakes 24th August 2010, 02:02 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by robots
As for the jailbreaking, I think if I added up how much I had spent on all the stuff I use and play, it's probably about £20 or so. So I don't care about jailbreaking. It's not like I'm being shafted by Apple. The average game is about 59p, or 1.39 or so, so it doesn't exactly break the bank. The only thing which I would consider jailbreaking it for, would be TomTom, but I'd rather not start messing around with my otherwise legit phone just for 1 app.

Jailbreaking isn't just about pirating apps - there's a whole ecosystem of applications that are slightly unorthodox, ie Apple have refused to let them be distributed in the app store for various reasons. Mostly, they're extremely useful. Think of them as tools rather than games or normal applications.

Some of the ones I like are:
WiFi Sync - allows you to sync your iPhone over wifi, eliminating the need for a wired connection.
My3g - iPhone thinks it's on a wifi network, you can use facetime, appstore >10mb downloads whilst on a 3g network.
MyWi - automatic wifi tethering
Intelliscreen - puts stuff like calendar, email, sms, etc on the lockscreen. Just lets you know without having to unlock.
Poof! - lets you hide applications you don't use. Who uses Stocks (or Contacts on an iPod Touch)?

Unfortunately, portrails of jailbreaking by the media tend to correlate 'jailbreaking' with some kind of illicit activity, in this case piracy. Unlike (say) the Nintendo DS, where R4 homebrew is really the cover story and noone actually does it for the 'intended' task, jailbreaking actually has a use - ie allowing the use of more creative applications, although a majority of people probably use it for slightly less developer-friendly pursuits.
azrael- 24th August 2010, 08:04 Quote
Reading the previous comments it continuously baffles and irks me, how much slack people are cutting Apple considering the amount of crap they're pulling.
crazyceo 24th August 2010, 09:04 Quote
During this Apple lovein, let's not forget why we are all argueing about Apple.

Unless it can make them money, they don't care about it or your desire to use a specific app. The list of Apps rejected by Apple is huge and some of those Apps would really useful and unfortunately may lose Apple money. The App selection process is so far up it's own ass that it will gladly provide you an app if you are a homosexual looking for casual sex and want to find the nearest cruising homosexual to you. However, you want to use a phone App that goes over the internet connection and not the contracted phone usage and you have no chance. Most people who use IP phones are for family members living abroad and just want to get in touch every now and again. That's just one example that I know about and we've had loads of articles on this site about companies in absolute chaos because Apple's App selection process has rejected their App for no apparentl reason.

As for the "I'm not getting shafted by Apple!" quote. How much did you spend on your iPhone4 again? How many years are you locked in for? Wake up dude!
mecblade 24th August 2010, 09:24 Quote
Dream Phone: HTC Branded, with Apples iphone interface + Retina display + The amount of apps itunes have but instead, most of em are free + 1.5 Ghz Dual core snapdragon processor + Massive battery + 4G.

:(
robots 24th August 2010, 10:42 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bakes
Jailbreaking isn't just about pirating apps - there's a whole ecosystem of applications that are slightly unorthodox, ie Apple have refused to let them be distributed in the app store for various reasons. Mostly, they're extremely useful. Think of them as tools rather than games or normal applications.

Some of the ones I like are:
WiFi Sync - allows you to sync your iPhone over wifi, eliminating the need for a wired connection.
My3g - iPhone thinks it's on a wifi network, you can use facetime, appstore >10mb downloads whilst on a 3g network.
MyWi - automatic wifi tethering
Intelliscreen - puts stuff like calendar, email, sms, etc on the lockscreen. Just lets you know without having to unlock.
Poof! - lets you hide applications you don't use. Who uses Stocks (or Contacts on an iPod Touch)?

Unfortunately, portrails of jailbreaking by the media tend to correlate 'jailbreaking' with some kind of illicit activity, in this case piracy. Unlike (say) the Nintendo DS, where R4 homebrew is really the cover story and noone actually does it for the 'intended' task, jailbreaking actually has a use - ie allowing the use of more creative applications, although a majority of people probably use it for slightly less developer-friendly pursuits.

I can sympathise with that kind of thing. Apple run too much of a tight ship, which is annoying. I still can live without all that stuff though, so I'm still a fan of the phone. I would prefer it was run differently though of course. I would prefer to have Flash player and more freedom to unlock the true potential of the phone. But even without that, I still think it's a great phone and there is nothing else I would prefer. Yet.

The HTC Desire came close, and I read that there is a dual core HTC coming in around 6 months or so. In a year I can choose another phone, so maybe then there will be a better alternative to the iPhone. For now though, I'm happy, even if Apple are Nazis.
crazyceo 24th August 2010, 17:28 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by mecblade
Dream Phone: HTC Branded, with Apples iphone interface + Retina display + The amount of apps itunes have but instead, most of em are free + 1.5 Ghz Dual core snapdragon processor + Massive battery + 4G.

:(

It will be called a Windows Mobile 7 and it's out in a few months!

(Sorry, I'll get my coat)
fluxtatic 25th August 2010, 05:42 Quote
Why doesn't it get more play that Apple has overtaken MS in the evil department? This, the patent found a while back that would force you to respond to ads on your iFail devices or lock them down until you did, the whole IOS/iTunes ecosystem...ryall has it dead on.

Is it just that their marketshare in desktop PCs is still so pathetic that it isn't worth considering? Something about Jobs and the turtlenecks? (Why always the turtlenecks? WHY?) That their industrial design department had two good ideas they've been recycling lo these many years? I like shiny, just not so much that I'm willing to pay double so Jobs can make even moar money and get bumped ahead on the transplant list.
DeathAwaitsU 25th August 2010, 12:48 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by robots
I can sympathise with that kind of thing. Apple run too much of a tight ship, which is annoying. I still can live without all that stuff though, so I'm still a fan of the phone. I would prefer it was run differently though of course. I would prefer to have Flash player and more freedom to unlock the true potential of the phone. But even without that, I still think it's a great phone and there is nothing else I would prefer. Yet.

The HTC Desire came close, and I read that there is a dual core HTC coming in around 6 months or so. In a year I can choose another phone, so maybe then there will be a better alternative to the iPhone. For now though, I'm happy, even if Apple are Nazis.

If you jailbroke youd have frash :) I do ;)
(and no thats not a typo, thats what flash is called for iphone :))
robots 27th August 2010, 09:27 Quote
That would be nice but I doubt I would get much use for it unless it could play Kongregate games.
Nexxo 27th August 2010, 10:04 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Elledan
Didn't you know that you didn't buy a physical product when you got that iPhone, but only a license to use it? Silly people...

:)
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bob1234
And theres the key to the next step.

To circumvent the issue of jailbreaking the phone will be leased to you, that way you dont own it and therefore cant legally jailbreak it.

When your contract ends, you can either keep it "for a fee" or return it and get a new model.
What do y'all think is happening now? You buy a physical product that is subsidised by the telco network it is registered on (you didn't really think that level of tech only costs £100,-- did you?), with an OS on it that you don't own but are licenced to use. The wireless services it hooks into are leased.

So yes, the silicon and plastic is yours. Everything else that makes it a smartphone is leased. It is like that with all smartphones. And it has never been a problem --not for me anyway.
Quote:
Originally Posted by crazyceo
During this Apple lovein, let's not forget why we are all argueing about Apple.

Unless it can make them money, they don't care about it or your desire to use a specific app. The list of Apps rejected by Apple is huge and some of those Apps would really useful and unfortunately may lose Apple money. The App selection process is so far up it's own ass that it will gladly provide you an app if you are a homosexual looking for casual sex and want to find the nearest cruising homosexual to you. However, you want to use a phone App that goes over the internet connection and not the contracted phone usage and you have no chance. Most people who use IP phones are for family members living abroad and just want to get in touch every now and again. That's just one example that I know about and we've had loads of articles on this site about companies in absolute chaos because Apple's App selection process has rejected their App for no apparentl reason.
You own your own dick so Apple doesn't care where you stick it (and neither do I, frankly). But you are leasing the use of the internet connection and telco companies (not Apple!) object when you suck data down in huge chunks to use VoiP or tethering. Blame them --they are setting the limits. Apple just enforces them because otherwise, like Microsoft did with the Kin, it ends up with a Smartphone that cannot find a telco company to connect to.
Quote:
Originally Posted by crazyceo
As for the "I'm not getting shafted by Apple!" quote. How much did you spend on your iPhone4 again? How many years are you locked in for? Wake up dude!
I upgraded from my 3G to the iPhone 4 for £40,-- (iPhone 4: £219,-- minus recycled 3G: £179,--). For that privilige O2 has me locked into a 2 year contract, not Apple. O2 feels (not unreasonably) that it can do that because it paid two thirds of the cost of my £600,-- device for me. It now charges me a handsome monthly fee for my phone and data services. Apple has nothing to do with it.
Quote:
Originally Posted by crazyceo
It will be called a Windows Mobile 7 and it's out in a few months!

(Sorry, I'll get my coat)
We can but hope; I really like what I have seen of the Mobile 7. But I am in no doubt at all that it will be marketed with the same draconian control on price and use as the iPhone.
eddtox 27th August 2010, 11:15 Quote
Do you ever feel that nobody has even bothered to read your post?

And when did this turn into another Apple bashing thread?
Nexxo 27th August 2010, 15:22 Quote
Sorry. Back to your post:
Quote:
Originally Posted by eddtox
Surely if the activity in question is deemed legal by the courts then Apple has no legal grounds on which to include such invasive protections mechanisms?

IMO, it's more likely that apple is planning it's own security and anti-theft system for the iDevices in order to minimise damage done by theft of said devices and facilitate recovery. It's also a great way to combat jailbreaking, because if you decide to do it, you would have to forego the protection of their anti-theft system. Rather than combating jailbreaking directly, they going at it in a more calculated way.

I.e: if you go out of the garden, we won't protect you.
I think that is most likely what is happening. But it is also important to consider that just because a court deemed a particular use of a product legal does not prevent a manufacturer from making it impossible --it is not illegal to do it, but it is not illegal to prevent people from doing it either. It is perfectly legal to tether or use VoiP over 3G but the Telco companies prevent smartphones from doing either where possible, unless for a substantial additional fee.
nuc13ar 28th August 2010, 01:42 Quote
apple is just wasting its time. they are like sony and the psp... they should concentrate on freeing their customers from having to deal with att...
ubiquity 28th August 2010, 11:02 Quote
I jailbroke my 3G when it was out of contact and while it opened the door to applications that Apple had deemed 'inappropriate' it also made the phone much less stable.

I do find it amusing, however, that Apple does not properly check all the apps that go through the store. I purchased a 59p flashlight app that has WiFi leathering hidden away in the code... tee hee hee!
eddtox 28th August 2010, 14:49 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by ubiquity
I jailbroke my 3G when it was out of contact and while it opened the door to applications that Apple had deemed 'inappropriate' it also made the phone much less stable.

I do find it amusing, however, that Apple does not properly check all the apps that go through the store. I purchased a 59p flashlight app that has WiFi leathering hidden away in the code... tee hee hee!

I think apple only checks the application's documented functionality and security - I'm not sure they require the developers to submit their source code. Even if they did, they would have to hire programmers to sift through all those lines of code and understand what each one does. In short, I don't think this is the last time we will see "hidden functionality"
thehippoz 28th August 2010, 18:07 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by crazyceo
it will gladly provide you an app if you are a homosexual looking for casual sex and want to find the nearest cruising homosexual to you.

sign me up for that! that's easier than looking for the walk and red hair

even though I like the iphone.. to tell you the truth all I ever use a smartphone for is google

I don't store videos of naked cowboys on my phone like everyone else seems to do.. I still remember one guy saying- if you show me the videos you got, I'll show you mine.. like it was some sort of club, I felt so out of the loop :D and according to nexxo iphone users are banging around like sheep
ubiquity 28th August 2010, 19:15 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by eddtox
I think apple only checks the application's documented functionality and security - I'm not sure they require the developers to submit their source code. Even if they did, they would have to hire programmers to sift through all those lines of code and understand what each one does. In short, I don't think this is the last time we will see "hidden functionality"

I certainly hope its not the last time we see 'hidden functionality' ;)
AstralWanderer 4th September 2010, 14:51 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by robots
I don't get all the iPhone hate here, I think they are great.
It's not about the device, it's about the company.

Apple have a long history of control-freakery over their users (which is why I will never touch an Apple product, despite having starting in computing with an Apple ][) and in the case of the iPhone, it is clear that they intend to make more money from users by pushing advertising in their faces (iAds).

This is where jailbreaking becomes a problem for Apple - those phones won't be earning iAds money, so Apple have a financial incentive in stopping jailbreaking and they have several ways to do it (on-air updates to disable jailbroken phones, having iTunes silently revert firmware, adding firmware verification on any supplied iPhone software). Jailbreakers should therefore expect increasing levels of hassle and inconvenience, courtesy of Apple's consumer-contempt policy.
Nexxo 4th September 2010, 15:33 Quote
I don't fully agree. My experience of iAds is that they are very unobtrusive. You can click on them or ignore them --your choice. They only appear on freeware apps so if you don't like them you delete them.

Apple indeed makes no money from jailbreak apps (or the ads copiously spread in those) but it would be shortsighted of Apple to block jailbreaking for that reason. Jailbreaking increases the potential user base by offering more choice and possibilities in how to use the product. As such Apple stands to sell more devices and associated services and makes more money.

I think that Apple's stance towards jailbreaking is more to do with its concern about the (perceived) user experience of its products. Jobs wants people to see Apple products as elegantly designed, beautifully engineered and above all easy and reliable to use products. Jailbroken devices mar that because like most modded devices they are inevitably a bit more complictated, flakier and more 'Heath-Robinson' in appearance and use. Just look at the Android devices --they are extremely polished but you never know which app will run on what device, some open source apps are suspect and there are all sorts of other technical aspects that would confuse the noob. That doesn't bother us geeks (in fact we prefer it that way) but it is daunting to the casual user who just wants an easy to use, reliable smartphone.

Of course they can simply exercise their choice not to jailbreak their device. But Apple is not worried about the customers it already has, but all the other potential customers looking over their shoulders at them using the product. If the custom GUI looks garish, if it looks a bit flakey and there are all these jailbreak hacks at work, it all looks a bit complicated and inelegant. And not knowing that they are not actually looking at a representative example of an Apple device (the noob knows nothing about jailbreaking) they decide it's not for them and to check out the Blackberry instead.

The thing with smartphones and other social network devices is just that: they are social devices. People see you using them. You show them to other people. It's not like your desktop PC which most people (outside from your geeky mates here) will ever get to see. So it doesn't matter how complicated or obtuse it looks. My non-geek friends look at my home-built liquid-cooled dual Opteron and are awestruck. They barely dare to touch the thing. Never mind that it is no different from their generic HP laptop at home in daily use (although generally a bit faster). They could do anything on it they could do at home. It is a low maintenance machine; there are no fans or pump speeds to regulate and no temps to monitor --I deliberately made it that way. Its Fluorinert coolant means that it is fill and forget; the coolant loop needs no maintenance. But it looks complicated so they approach it like the chimps did the black monolith in 2001.

Expect Microsoft to go the same way with their Windows Mobile 7. But is it such a big deal? I've jailbroken my phone and found that in reality there has been very little it has added to the device's functionality for me.
AstralWanderer 4th September 2010, 15:58 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nexxo
I don't fully agree. My experience of iAds is that they are very unobtrusive. You can click on them or ignore them --your choice. They only appear on freeware apps so if you don't like them you delete them.
Even given that to be the case now, how long do you think it will continue? Internet advertising generally has become more and more intrusive and if you consider AOL's software (back when they were a proprietary network with their own client - a closed garden quite similar to Apple's) that also increased its ad presence over time. Apple have clearly gone down this route to increase income so it seems likely they will try to maximise that income as time progresses.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nexxo
...it would be shortsighted of Apple to block jailbreaking for that reason. Jailbreaking increases the potential user base by offering more choice and possibilities in how to use the product. As such Apple stands to sell more devices and associated services and makes more money.
However Apple would make more money with a non-jailbroken iPhone, receiving a portion of the network-operators' revenues as well as advertising. There are clearly other reasons also (for example, Apple modified the firmware on iPods to block use of third-party software which had no financial impact), but the money factor is one that is likely to increase in future.
Nexxo 4th September 2010, 16:39 Quote
Again I must disagree. It would be diametrically opposed to Jobs' product design philosophy to allow advertising to become intrusive and interfere with the simplicity of it's GUI. iAds is a closed garden too --for advertisers.

Apple would not make more money on a jailbroken phone unless jailbroken apps compete with Apple store apps. They obviously don't; jailbroken apps exist because there are no Apple alternatives (with the exception of Wifi tethering which is what Apple's problem with jailbreaking may also be about. Network operators see revenue disappearing with free tethering apps. Apple has to keep the network operators on side).
outlawaol 4th September 2010, 16:51 Quote
Did someone say Apple and jailbreaking in the same sentence?! I dont really care one way or the other cause I dont care for Apple products at all. I am by no means a proponent of the android OS, but it does rock. However Motorola ( I am sure) has received tons of flack for their release of the droid x and droid 2 with a bootloader that checks the OS constantly for legitimacy. I stand back and say 'wtf? I thought android was open source for a reason'. Although it dosnt matter much now cause they have already rooted both phones.

But even as comparing both phones is quite literally comparing Apples to androids, I see more of a the geek community going to android just because of open source. And being a geek myself I would not want something so closed, it just comes across as someone wanting to control me and how I can interact with their model of a user - I refuse to conform to such mind sets.

Now to get back to my Windows 7.... ;)
AstralWanderer 4th September 2010, 17:25 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nexxo
It would be diametrically opposed to Jobs' product design philosophy to allow advertising to become intrusive...
Maybe, but for how long would such a philosophy last when put against a (likely) increasing financial incentive? Jobs isn't going to be there forever and Apple have done clunky designs in the past (iTunes itself can be described in such terms depending on the criteria applied).
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nexxo
Apple would not make more money on a jailbroken phone...
I presume you meant to say less there - I would just note that a jailbroken iPhone would not be locked to a particular carrier (so loss of network revenue shares) and would not need to use the Apple store (loss of distribution fees - how many developers would stay with the store if jailbroken phones started to make up a significant portion of the userbase?).

There are doubtless other reasons too, as you indicate, but the advertising issue is one that would seem most likely to increase in importance.
Nexxo 4th September 2010, 17:40 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by AstralWanderer
Maybe, but for how long would such a philosophy last when put against a (likely) increasing financial incentive? Jobs isn't going to be there forever and Apple have done clunky designs in the past (iTunes itself can be described in such terms depending on the criteria applied).
iTunes is a bit clunky on Windows because it was ported there, rather than developed on it.

As for Jobs being swayed by financial incentive: not likely. Apple could be making a lot more money by making products of a slightly lower standard and lowering the prices to suit. But it doesn't; it creates high-end hardware with high-end prices. It is happy being in that niche because a high-end reputation earns money in the long run.

And if once Jobs leaves Apple decides to stray off the path, well, Android and Windows Mobile 7 phones should just have come into their own by that time. :)
Quote:
Originally Posted by AstralWanderer
I presume you meant to say less there - I would just note that a jailbroken iPhone would not be locked to a particular carrier (so loss of network revenue shares) and would not need to use the Apple store (loss of distribution fees - how many developers would stay with the store if jailbroken phones started to make up a significant portion of the userbase?).

There are doubtless other reasons too, as you indicate, but the advertising issue is one that would seem most likely to increase in importance.
Yeah, I meant 'less'; I was hung over and posting from the tiny screen of an iPhone... :) Of course the carriers have a valid concern. Mine for instance has just sponsored two-thirds of the cost of my shiney new iPhone 4 (about £400,--). I can't blame them for wanting to see some return from that. If you don't want to be tied to a carrier, just buy the iPhone from the Apple store for its full £600,-- whack and shop for your own contract.

Many app developers would choose to stay with the Apple store because the vast majority of iPhone users are muggles who don't even know what jailbreaking is. What's more, they don't even care. If you can buy an app for as little as 60p in the knowledge that it will work and is secure, then what do you care about jailbreaking? Only us geeks do --and we are by far in the minority.
AstralWanderer 4th September 2010, 17:47 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nexxo
...I was hung over and posting from the tiny screen of an iPhone... :)
Masochist... :p
Nexxo 4th September 2010, 17:51 Quote
I like to think dedicated to the cause of geek. :D
Log in

You are not logged in, please login with your forum account below. If you don't already have an account please register to start contributing.



Discuss in the forums