A lot of people complained about the iPad’s closed-off software. But no one did anything about it — until now, apparently.
A well-known hacker of the iPhone, who previously defeated Apple’s restrictions on developers, has claimed in a video to have hacked the iPad. Just a day after release, the hacker, who goes by “MuscleNerd” online, said that he has gained root access to the iPad, a process known as “jailbreaking.”
“Jailbreaking” is a technical term which refers literally to limits on software placed on an operating system and more figuratively to the feelings developers have about such restrictions. An Apple device that’s been “jailbroken” can run any code, not just company-approved software available through its online stores. But such jailbreaking is a violation of Apple’s terms of service, which may mean Apple Stores will refuse to fix broken devices.
The iPad jailbreak technique is similar to an exploit of the iPhone operating system known as “Spirit.” Hackers have shown time after time that they can break into Apple’s security software for new iPhones, often within a day of release. One motivation: getting access to pirated software. It’s not known how much piracy happens as a result of jailbreaking, but it’s believed to be considerable.
Here’s MuscleNerd’s account: