With iOS 4 and iPhone 4 Apple has again closed the functionality gap, but is it enough to retire Jailbreak once and for all?
iPhone 4 and iOS4 brings with it many welcome additions that some users have obtained via jailbreak for years now. While iOS 4 Jailbreak is no possible for some older devices, it will likely be a while before it's possible on iPhone 4. Geohot has claimed he has an exploit and no doubt the iPhone Dev Team is also hard at work. For most of us, we'll just have to wait patiently for them to announced something.
But the question on some people's minds is, "so I still have a need to jailbreak?" Well, to be quite honest - it's really going to be unique to each user. For myself, I know I'll continue to jailbreak until Apple gives me the complete functionality iPhone users should natively have.
Apple has always been known to have a streamline interface and a clean UI. But to be honest, that isn't what "all" users want. Some want to customize and tweak. I'm one of them. Hit the jump to see some of my own opinions on why I'll most likely still continue to jailbreak.
This is an area I've felt Apple has been lacking for a very long time. Jailbreak apps such as LockInfo and Intelliscreen have been great stand-ins for functionality that should already be present. I'm personally not a huge fan of Android or WebOS but their notification systems are far superior to that on the iPhone. I don't even think I'd call what Apple currently offers a notification system at all. I can't even tell if I have an e-mail without sliding to unlock my phone. Even apps like Notifier, which is free, will show if I have new e-mails, missed calls, voicemails, or texts in the status bar by the battery indicator. Even that's a better solution than what Apple has implemented.
If you get a text, then a Twitter push notification, then a Beejive push notification, the only thing you'll see is the Beejive notification until you unlock your phone and see new badges. To me, this isn't a solution at all. When it comes to notifications - BlackBerry, Android, and WebOS still blow the iPhone out of the water.
Now this is an area I'm not too sure about yet. I'll have to use iOS4 for a while before I decide whether or not fast app switching can solve texting being so intrusive. My biggest peeve about texting is that if I'm doing something such as reading RSS feeds or playing a game and receive a text, I have 2 options, close it out (and I'll then forget about it because it removes the badge), or click Reply and leave what I'm doing to respond. It's been rather annoying and it's one of the main reasons I continue to jailbreak. Jailbroken apps like QuickReply and iRealSMS solve this problem.
Sure, Apple allows us to change our wallpaper in iOS4. It's a step in the right direction, but nowhere near what I'd like to see. What about custom fonts and color schemes? Would it really be that hard to allow us to change the colors of chat bubbles? Anyone else get tired of gray and green? I know I do. Theming and customizing was one of the very first reasons I jailbroke my iPhone. That was in December of 2007 on the first gen.
Another thing you have to keep in mind is the jailbreak community has somewhat been borrowed from. A lot of the ideas that come out of jailbreakers somehow end up in a future OS in some form or another. The biggest thing that comes to mind is the App Store. If you want to be technical, Cydia really "was" the first mobile app store. The first gen iPhone came with stock apps and no more. Cydia supplemented that. I remember downloading games and apps before the app store even existed. And coincidentally, if you had more than 1 page of apps, you got dots on the bottom of your home screen so you could flip through pages. Does that sound familiar to you? It should. Apple implemented it in OS 2.0 back in 2008.
Everyone has their own opinion on jailbreaking, but to me, Apple still leaves something to be desired. As long as there are young creative minds out there willing to step up and come up with innovative ideas to solve those problems, I'll continue to jailbreak and support them. Thoughts?