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iPhone 4: Now with added jailbreaky fun

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iPhone 4 and Windows Phone 7 owners can now jailbreak their handsets.

Users of Windows Phone unhappy to find themselves at the end of Microsoft's phased rollout of its latest update can now hack themselves a fix, and upgrade when they want to, rather than when Microsoft tells them to.

Meanwhile, Apple customers who have jumped to iOS 4.3.1 can also bypass their platform provider in jailbreaking their devices to install any software they like, as long as they don't have an iPad 2.

The two hacks come from respected developer camps, PwnageTool and RedSn0w from the iPhone Dev Team, who have so effectively broken the security on previous iOS devices, while the Chevron updater comes from the chaps who previously created a jailbreaking tool for Windows Phone 7 devices.

That tool was withdrawn at Microsoft's request, which came accompanied by a promise to work with the Chevron chaps to create a legitimate homebrew option for Windows Phone users (a promise that has yet to yield fruit). Those with a Windows Phone 7 handset still can't install software that lacks Microsoft's seal of approval, but at least they can install the latest OS version without waiting for Redmond.

The iOS jailbreak is the first to allow rebooting without having to unlock the device again; but it won't work on the iPad 2 which, according to CNET, seems to be better secured than previous hardware, showing that Apple hasn't given up the fight for simplification through control.

That fight will certainly continue, though it is not just a technical battle as Apple and Microsoft work to make jailbreaking (and unlocking) less desirable as well as more difficult. Security is never impenetrable, but it can be designed to be more effort than it's worth. ®

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