Monday, August 9, 2010

Why Jailbreak Your iPad

The main reason why folks jailbreak their iPads is simple: they want to have access to other sources for apps than Apple’s App Store. The Apple App Store has thousands of great iPad apps, but all these apps have to follow very strict rules, such as:
  • The apps cannot change the basic behavior/layout of the iPad
  • The apps cannot allow any kind of tethering
  • The apps cannot provide a desktop-like experience
  • The apps cannot necessarily use the video output of the iPad
  • The apps cannot contain any adult/R-rated content
  • And so on…
Because of these restrictions, a large chunk of iOS developers saw their apps rejected by Apple, had to cripple their apps to get approved, or did not even want to go through Apple’s approval process. And this gave birth to the largest independent iOS apps repository, Cydia. In a nutshell, Cydia’s primary intention is to provide jailbroken iPad, iPhone and iPod users with software and operating system tweaks unavailable on the Apple App Store.

Hundreds of independent apps are available, mostly utilities, games, and adult-related apps. iPad Jailbreaking also allows you to customize the iPad’s interface, something that Apple does not allow with non-jailbroken iPads. Many themes are available, and you can completely change the way your iPad looks, including the individual apps icons.

For power users, a terminal connection via SSH is also provided, if you need to have access to the guts of your iPad (most people will not need this feature though!). You can also password-protect the access to individual apps.

Down Side...

Jailbreaks tend to reduce the security of your device, as they offer features like terminal access via SSH. My advice... go to Cydia and change the default root password of your iPad as soon as the jailbreak is done. Also, you can install a local firewall if you feel like turning your iPad into Fort Knox.

If you have a jailbroken iPad, do not update it to a new iOS release, as the update will likely erase the jailbreak, as well as all your customizations. Simply wait for updated jailbreaks to be available first, otherwise you will be in for a bad surprise. Jailbreaks are usually available very shortly after the release of a new version of iOS, so you will be able to enjoy the update quickly after it’s out.

Finally, piracy. A large chunk of users jailbreak their iPads only to be able to install pirated apps coming from the official App Store. In our opinion, if you love your iPad and its apps, you should pay for them! iOS development shops are often small outfits, their developers work long hours to build the apps you love...they deserve to be paid for their work.

No comments:

Post a Comment

iPad, I'm Lovin' IT!