iOS 7 and the state of the jailbreak: Is there still a need?
When Apple announced iOS 7 last week at WWDC, I wasn't surprised to see that many jailbreak concepts had again made their way into stock iOS. If anything, this year more than ever, Apple took lots of cues from jailbreak tweaks new and old and made them their own in a way that only Apple can do. iOS 7 is one of the biggest overhauls we've seen since its inception and that may leave a lot of people wondering if there's a place for jailbreak anymore.
This year a few different staple jailbreak tweaks got sherlocked by Apple. Let's take a look at which ones did, which ones didn't, and where that leaves the state of the jailbreak when it comes to iOS 7.
The most obvious jailbreak tweak that made an appearance (finally) in iOS 7 is SBSettings, which has been redesigned and refined by Apple in the form of Control Center. SBSettings has been around almost since the inception of jailbreak itself and it's typically one of the first tweaks any veteran jailbreaker installs.
Not only does SBSettings give jailbreakers access to basic settings toggles, it also allows you to install more based on what you need. You can then organize them, delete ones you don't need, and more. Control Center is pretty much SBSettings in Apple form. It's a place where you can have quick access to common settings without having to actually go into the native Settings app. While SBSettings does offer a few more options than Control Center will, such as managing memory, odds are most users will be happy enough with Control Center that they'll have no need for SBSettings unless it's somehow tweaked to work in conjunction with Control Center.
Then there's Auxo. When Apple showed off the updated version of multitasking, I instantly thought of Auxo. For those not familiar, Auxo is a neat little tweak that will show live previews of the apps you have open in multitasking. Auxo makes it possible to see a saved state than looking at an app icon that told you absolutely nothing about what you were doing inside that app.
In usual Apple form, the multitasking that will make an appearance in iOS 7 looks very much like Auxo but with a better coat of paint and larger preview windows.
Outside of Auxo and SBSettings, a lot of iOS 7 dealt primarily with updating the interface and adding new visual elements.
So what does that mean for jailbreak?
It most likely means that jailbreak will probably still play a real role if and when an iOS 7 jailbreak is released. I say this mainly because some of the things we want to be able to do with iOS we still can't, unless we jailbreak. Items such as quick reply messaging are still MIA in stock iOS and it's something apps like BiteSMS have been able to solve. As far as Notification Center goes, there is still a lot of work to be done on Apple's part. While they've managed to segregate it a little better, I still don't have the fine tuned control over it like I do with jailbreak apps like IntelliscreenX or LockInfo.
Then again, Apple has only released one beta so far and a lot could change from now to public release.
Regardless what the public release brings in its final form, one fact remains the same; as iOS continues to improve, so do jailbreak tweaks and apps. Our wants grow larger and we find new things that we want our devices to be able to do. More often than not, it's jailbreak developers that find a way to implement those wants before Apple releases them to the masses. Sometimes the gap between jailbreak and iOS offerings can even span years.
If anything, I'm not disappointed by iOS 7 gaining functionality, I'm excited to see what jailbreak developers make of it and to see the interesting things they'll be able to create.
With all this being said, do you still plan to jailbreak iOS 7 when it becomes a viable option? Why or why not?
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iMore senior editor from 2011 to 2015.
Ios7 - I'll jailbreak just to skin it and maybe get rid of the icons and maybe a less flat skin. Note: featurewise i'd be cool not jailbreaking. but not fond of the ios7 looks.
I can't imagine not using the 'Data Counter' app any more either. It gives you a real time data download speed in the title bar. So useful when that annoying web page doesn't want to load but the network says 3G. Sent from the iMore App
I also enjoy being able to easily download and set ringtones via unlimited tones.
Yes, definitely, I will jailbreak.
I've never felt the need to jailbreak, but have enjoyed watching the cat and mouse game between JB'ers and Apple.
I have no doubt we the regular joe users have benefited from Apples addition of various JB functions.
iOS 7 looks sensational and I'm very excited about getting it on my "i" stuff, and will continue to have absolutely no desire to JB my devices.
Those of you who feel the need to JB please continue to do so coz it appears a lot of the good stuff you pioneer ends up standard on iOS. Thanks :)