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Jailbreaking Now Legal in the USA

**Update 1: Apple has officially responded to this via Cult of Mac:

“Apple’s goal has always been to insure that our customers have a great experience with their iPhone and we know that jailbreaking can severely degrade the experience. As we’ve said before, the vast majority of customers do not jailbreak their iPhones as this can violate the warranty and can cause the iPhone to become unstable and not work reliably.”

We have some great news for our neighbours down South. It’s now legal to jailbreak your iPhone thanks to a government ruling that has been approved. Users are no longer legally liable for jailbreaking their iPhones.

From the WSJ:

The decision to allow the practice commonly known as ”jailbreaking” is one of a handful of new exemptions from a 1998 federal law that prohibits people from bypassing technical measures that companies put on their products to prevent unauthorized uses. The Library of Congress, which oversees the Copyright Office, reviews and authorizes exemptions every three years to ensure that the law does not prevent certain non-infringing uses of copyright-protected material.

The exceptions are a big victory for the Electronic Frontier Foundation, which had urged the Library of Congress to legalize several of them, including the two regarding cell phones.

Jennifer Stisa Granick, EFF’s civil liberties director, said the rules are based on an important principle: Consumers should be allowed to use and modify the devices that they purchase the way they want. ”If you bought it, you own it,” she said.

This is fantastic news and I agree wholeheartedly with the EFF–if you bought, you own it! Let the iPhone Dev Team continue with their amazing work.

Founder and Editor-in-Chief of iPhoneinCanada.ca. Follow me on Twitter, and @iPhoneinCanada, and on Google+.

  • raids

    YES!

  • funk

    now that it is legal. lets hope apple just makes it easy for everyone to unlock their phones. i mean why would they even care? more sales

  • rorypiper

    Great news! Apple never really went after jailbreakers before, but now they can't, even if they wanted to. I think we're a long way off from seeing iOS as an “open” platform, though. Could you imagine, though? An OTB, “jailbroken”, unlocked iPhone? In my opinion, that would take all the fun out of the whole “cat and mouse” game. :)

  •  Xaroc

    Makes me wonders about those “Hackers” that had their Itunes accounts banned because they played a big roll in the jailbreak community.

    In any case this is a big step forward for the JB Community. Im waiting to see how Apple plays their cards. will they step up the game by adding more security then ever before? or will the security become more relaxed, and Apple just say “Jailbreaking now voids the warranty, so if a 3rd party app ruins your phone your on your own.”

    Some strongly believe that jailbreaking already voids your warranty today, but that simply isnt true. i have had many discussions about it, and the fact there is no way to find out, unless your unable to restore for what ever reason.

  • gtasscarlo

    The reason in the states it's only sold for AT&T is kickbacks for apple everymonth they get money for each account that has a iPhone

  • Vartanarsen

    who cares….im gettin Factory-Unlocked baby wahoooooot!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  •  Xaroc

    A 2nd thought: I think jailbreaking has become the greatest thing for Apple on the iphone/pod/pad because not matter if apple admits it or not, it dose put more focus on the iphone when it comes to freedom of use, more tricks your phone can do the more fun it is.

    But i think apple should relax the security, but Put a strong hold on “AppSync” i know some of you may want to shoot me for saying that, but me thought is if the Iphone becomes so easily hacked, and Everyone is getting paid apps off torrents, some of our better App and Game Devs will start to stray away due to lack of legal sales.
    That would seriously hurt the iphone come christmas time we dont see much game production anymore. Stuck with the same old apps n games.

  • Codeblue009
  • skull

    jailbreaking is not just to unlock the phone, but also to install unapproved software

  • Roby145

    Gary,

    Do you think that if I line up at my local rogers plus store at around 6 to 6:30 am, ill have a high chance of getting the iphone 4, doesn't matter how many gigs there is, do you think this time would be correct?

    Also, do you think that the iphone 4 16gb will be most likely sold out before the 32gb or vice versa cause of pricing?

    Lastly, if i do get an iphone 4 on launch day, will Rogers give me a micro-sim and is it possible for them to use my current cell number on the new micro sim or would it have to be a different number? Would they be able to activate it as well, right then and there so that I know that it works?

    Thank you in advance for you reply

    This will be highly appreciated

    Roby145

  • http://www.iphoneincanada.ca Gary

    You'll get a good chance–if the carrier systems don't go down. Earlier the
    better.

    They should switch you over to a microSIM free of charge.

  • ComputerStriker

    Gary,
    I have a question: Can I order the iPhone 4 Friday morning online instead of going to a nearby Rogers Store? And what time do you think I should check to order it? Midnight or 6-7ish?

  • TeenWolf

    I have a friend who manages a Rogers kiosk in west Edmonton mall and he told me he's getting %10 of the stock he got last year for the 3GS release. Last year he got 50 units at launch. This year he's getting 5-10. Food for thought. Don't know if it's the same everywhere else but you might wanna line up early.

  •  Xaroc

    lol Who's more thirsty for it? Show up at 2AM to find 20 people in tents with a BBQ having a tailgate party lol

  • http://randex.org/ Mark Wickens

    1. Headline is wrong. Jailbreaking is now now longer a violation of DCMA.
    2. Your purchase of an iPhone involves agreement with a license agreement. If the terms of that agreement don't allow jailbreaking, then you've violated a contract between you and Apple.

    See also:

    http://gigaom.com/2010/07/26/what-the-new-dmca-

  • Noahattic

    not any more.. the kickbacks thing from at&t is only for the original iphone (1st gen) and when the iphone 3g came out, apple changed its strategy to the normal subsidy model, just like the other phone manufacturers.

  • radovich

    I've got an article that “Jailbreak/unlock iPhone 3GS for iOS 4 on Mac” in ifunia iphone column just like this one, which are clear that they will install unapproved, third-party applications after Jailbreak it. But i want to know what's mean of “iOS 4 Jailbreak”, not “Jailbreak/unlock iPhone **”.

  • iPhone4crazy

    Just because it is legal dosen't mean apple won't honor your warranty if you do it, and believe me they can findout. Also when will it be “legal” in Canada?

  • PotentPotable

    Not to be an off-topic stickler, but isn't it “ensure” and not “insure”? While both may have interchangeable meanings, I always believed that to insure was to protect against damages, while to ensure was to make certain of. I think Apple prefers to make certain that their customers don't screw up their iPhones, rather than to protect their customers' iPhones against damages (although both are ideal, of course).

  • Nomail

    Of course, it will still violate your warranty. So most people won't do it. I don't really think the “legality” of jailbreaking was ever really restricting anyone from doing it anyway.

  •  Xaroc

    It doesn't void the warranty. Once you restore there is No way to find
    out. It's purely software. Trust me, I have sent previously
    jailbroken phones to apple before, they can't tell.

  • http://squarewheelgames.com/ SquareWheel

    “Everyone is getting paid apps off torrents”

    I should hope not! Torrents are a very poor place to find cracked applications.

    “That would seriously hurt the iphone come christmas time we dont see much game production anymore.”

    This has been going on since the app store came out. Actually no, even Installer-only games in firmware 1.x were pirated through pirate repos. This is nothing new, and it happens on every platform (except maybe PS3?). Devs won't stop making apps because people pirate them, that's just silly.

    Not that I condone pirating, but I certainly don't think that unless Apple implements more DRM, devs will stop making applications. If anything, more DRM will just give Apple into a bigger PR hit.

  •  Xaroc

    The point being if jailbreaking becomes so easy that anyone can do it
    with a single click. (which it almost is) and I was pulling 1000 sales
    a month, dropping down to 200 a month due to the large number of
    hacked phones getting my app for free might make me Stand back and
    rethink my work if this is a primary income or secondary.

    That's all i was touching on

  • http://steph2176.pollsgalore.com Stephanie Summers

    Jailbreaking can void your warranty… unless if there is a way to reverse it (undo the jailbreak) then it's probably all right because Apple would never know that you have jailbreak your iPhone before.

  • Noahattic

    agreed, i did that,2. whenever you want to send your jailbroken phone to apple, just restore it before you go.

    they ran through a series of tests, i was sure what it is, but it pretty much checks your call history, if all the parts of the phone function properly…etc…however, as long as the phone in front of them isn't jailbroken, they just cannot refuse you.

  • GZ2001

    Where did you get those numbers from. 1000 down to 200 sales due to pirateing. If were just making up statistics, what about 1000 down to 900. Would you still develope apps if you only lost 10% of your clients?

  • http://twitter.com/Xaroc  Xaroc

    Was just an example I threw up in the air. Quite a while ago too lol

  • Stu

    So you’ll find some other way to make money won’t you?? There’s plenty of folks ready to fill your void that are equally talented and looking to make a name for themselves by developing and releasing overpriced apps that will also be cracked!! Developers are like grass, as soon as you cut it, it grows back. Sure you may see a seasonal change that stops the grass from growing for a short time but eventually the developers will again do what they do; develop!!

  • https://plus.google.com/u/0/108837104756408823233/posts Tom Gray

    Changes nothing.