Also, the iPad 2 running the iOS 5 update has been jailbroken, as demonstrated in the following video:
Both jailbreaks come by way of the iPhone Dev Team, arguably the best known of the iDevice jailbreaking programmers, responsible for the “sn0w” series of carrier unlock software programs for iOS devices.
However, as iPhone Dev Team hacker Musclenerd notes on his Twitter account, the jailbreak program isn’t ready for public release yet.
“(Huge missing pieces prevent public release. LOTS of work left),” Musclenerd tweeted.
The new jailbreaks come exactly two weeks after the iPhone 4S was made available in retail locations on October 14 and sixteen days after the iOS 5 update was released on October 12.
That’s the fastest time yet that a new iPhone has been jailbroken by two days.
A jailbreak of the iPhone 4 was demonstrated on July 2, two weeks and two days after the device was released on June 24, but the public release of the jailbreak tool didn’t become available until August 2.
Now, in the case of the iPhone 4S jailbreak, it’s up to the iPhone Dev Team to get to work on making the tools publicly available.
But if their precedent is any indicator of how they’ll do on this, it shouldn’t be long. The hacker collective released a public jailbreak program, redsn0w 0.9.9b5, for older iPhone 4 and 3GS models just hours after iOS 5 was released. Other jailbreaks for older devices running iOS 5 have also been published in the weeks after the operating system went public.
And it’s not just hobbyists who are interested in removing Apple’s controls over the iPhone. iPhone jailbreaking is becoming a very big business. The biggest alternative, unauthorized iPhone app store, Cydia, earns $10 million a year in app sales from 4.5 million annual users, according to a report in the Washington Post published in April. Major advertisers like Toyota have reportedly even begun putting ads alongside jailbroken apps.
Even high profile celebrities such as Justin Bieber have been unabashed about their use of jailbroken iPhones.
Apple tried in vain in early 2009 to fight attempts to change existing law that classified jailbreaking as copyright infringement, but after looking at the issue, the Copyright Office disagreed, saying jailbreaking was legal in July 2010.
Still, Apple automatically voids the warranty of all customers with jailbroken i-Devices.
Lately, the company has been taking a different route to cut-down on jailbroken devices, in a common Silicon Valley approach that can be characterized as: “If you can’t beat ‘em, get ‘em to join you.”
In August, it was revealed that Apple had hired Nicholas Allegra, aka Comex, the iPhone Dev Team hacker behind Jailbreak.me, for an internship.
In September, the company took the hacker Musclenerd on a tour of its Cupertino, California headquarters, spurring rumors that he too was being recruited for a job or internship. (Facebook too has adopted this strategy, hiring PS3 hacker GeoHot in June.)