Apple Blocks Access to Cydia in its Stores

Cydia Apple Store

The battle against the jailbreakers has always seemed to be an uphill one for Apple; it takes hackers just days to break into the latest iOS releases, and last year federal regulators said that it was no longer illegal to hack or jailbreak an iPhone. However, there is one thing Apple can but a definite stop to, and that’s accessing Cydia using its Wi-Fi networks in Apple retail stores.

If you try accessing Cydia on a device connected to one of Apple’s Wi-Fi hotspots, you’ll be surprised to see Apple’s website load instead.

Although this isn’t going to deter jailbreaking one slight little bit, it’s still rather funny.

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  • OnlineShoppingUk

    The way it works is that they just blocked that web page. they hooked up there system so it redirects to the apple website. all that really happens when you open cydia is it opens a web page it is just NSWebView for the devs like myself..

  • Chris

    no more jailbreaking iPads inside the Apple Stores ;)

  • trrosen

    Please stop repeating the false assumption that jail-breaking is legal. It is NOT. The Library of congress exemption is for the purpose of running a phone on another network nothing else. breaking the DMCA to unlock the phone is legal Jail-breaking is not.

  • techymarc

    I don’t want to be too pedantic but it’s a UIWebView ;)

  • Andrew

    I think this is to prevent people from unjailbreaking right before seeing a genius. Can’t you revert to non-jailbroken right from the phone? Hence keeping it jailbroken up until the last moment.

  • techymarc

    You’re over-thinking it. You can’t un-jailbreak on the phone, you would need to restore the the software using iTunes. This almost certainly has nothing to do with the Genius bar

  • Allan

    @trrosen – read the Library of Congress ruling here:

    http://www.copyright.gov/1201/

    Sections 2 declares it’s legal to jailbreak to run software. Section 3 declares it’s legal to unlock phones to run on another network.

  • prof_peabody

    This whole article comes across as a bit juvenile. I mean who cares?

    Did you really expect them to let you connect to Cydia while you were browsing on the new iPad in their store?

    And again, it isn’t actually “legal” to jailbreak an iPhone, it’s just legal as long as you aren’t doing it for illegal purposes. Since stealing software is still the number one reason people jailbreak, in most cases, it’s still 100% illegal and everyone knows it.

  • dnyank1

    Uhhh no. It is legal, ok?Jailbreaking only allows uncertified apps to run, like unlocks, saying unlocks are legal but jailbreaking isn’t is like saying driving is legal with a liscence, but having a licence is illegal. WTF. Ur wrong.

  • David

    @Allan The article that your link referenced, was essentially the opinion of the Librairian of congress. If you read the first paragraph, you will see tha neither legislature nor the courts were involved in the statement. It’s simply the librarians interpretation of the law. It’s akin to an attroney general’s opinion of a law, as it may be good advice, but carries no legal weight. This particular opinion may or may not be upheld by the courts if the law is challenged.

  • David

    Having said that, I wouldn’t be too concerned about the legality of jailbreaking. I can’t imagine that it would actually be declared illegal.

  • CharliK

    Correct. if you aren’t pirating software, or doing it on other folks stuff for them or distributing how to do it, you are fine.

    that said, they likely blocked it to keep someone from doing what they did last year and going around jailbreaking the demo models.

  • trrosen

    No it’s like saying driving without a license is illegal but driving someone to the hospital while they’re having a heart attack is overlooked. Sorry but exemptions are not blanket excuses. They are for specific uses only.

    Remember that all iPads are unlocked by default so any jailbreak of an iPod or iPad is by definition illegal. And of course jailbreaking a phone still under contract is illegal also and almost no one pays for the noncontract phone.

  • Britta

    According to Reddit commenters, this totally isn’t specific to Cydia — “Anything not in apples whitelist takes you to apple.com. Go to apple and try reddit. You’ll end up at apple.com.”

  • Britta

    This has more details about the exemptions and their actual legal status: http://www.eff.org/press/archi… – “EFF Wins New Legal Protections for Video Artists, Cell Phone Jailbreakers, and Unlockers”

  • Britta

    Blocking the viewing of the Cydia website would really do nothing to prevent jailbreaking floor models, because Cydia is not the tool you use to jailbreak a device – it’s what you use after you jailbreak it, in order to install new packages.

    (And as I quoted above, a bunch of people are saying “Anything not in apples whitelist takes you to apple.com. Go to apple and try reddit. You’ll end up at apple.com.”)

  • iHate_Is_Back

    You’re all over thinking this. This is Tim Cooks brilliant idea to try and sell more products to jailbreakers so they can have more fun trying to jailbreak different types of Apple products. Brilliant move on Tim Cook’s part.

  • Schmeedel

    Man there real h8rs no?

  • Barbara

    I work at a university computer store and I’m sick of having to flash iPads & iPod Touches because some wanker thinks it’s funny to jailbreak our floor models. I’m not against jailbreaking. I think you should be able to do whatever you want with devices you’ve purchased, but it’s a waste of my time to wipe and restore iOS devices.

  • dnyank1

    Do you know what jailbreaking is? It allows out-of-market apps to be run on your phone. Unlocking it allows it to go to another carrier. Actually, if you want to leave (by UNLOCKING not jailbreaking) you would have to pay for the ETF. thats like 350 bucks, so you cover the costs of your device. Jailbreaking usually means that you stay on your carrier, that isnt jail, the on-device app restrictions are the “jail” we break out of.

About the author

Killian BellKillian Bell is a freelance writer based in the UK. He has an interest in all things tech, but most enjoys covering Apple, anything mobile, and gaming. You can follow him on Twitter via @killianbell, or through his website.

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