John Paczkowski

Recent Posts by John Paczkowski

iBrokeIt (Updated)

ugotzibrick.jpgTurns out “irreparable damage” was a fairly apt description for what Apple’s latest iPhone firmware update does to modified or unlocked iPhones. Issued yesterday afternoon, iPhone 1.1.1 update does indeed play havoc with modified iPhones, particularly those that have been hacked to work on non-AT&T networks. It wipes out all unsupported third-party applications and disables the Jailbreak hack used to install them. And it bricks unlocked iPhones. “The update will work OK in unlocked iPhones, but it will return your iPhone to the activation screen,” explains Gizmodo. “From there, no activation is possible. The iPhone doesn’t get bricked but, if you want to keep using it, don’t update your iPhone.”

Actually, it does get bricked out. Sources at Apple tell Ars Technica that the activation limbo into which unlocked iPhones are sent is the company’s definition of “bricking”: “Current attempts to reactivate across the Web are failing and therefore [a hacked] iPhone cannot be used to do anything–no phone calls, no Safari, no iPod, nothing. An unlocked iPhone that runs firmware update 1.1.1 is unusable no matter what SIM is in it.”

UPDATE:The Unofficial Apple Weblog (TUAW) reports that Apple Stores around the country are restoring bricked iPhones. “We’re not sure whether they’re doing a low-level reflash or just swapping units out,” TUAW explains. “We have reports of at least four customers who walked in with iBricks and walked out with iPhones. It is unclear at this time whether these customers unlocked their iPhones or not–we’re also receiving reports of iBricks from people who never unlocked or modded their units.”

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