Weekend Open Forum: Do you jailbreak/root your smartphone?

By on January 20, 2012, 7:30 PM

Today a hacker team known as "greenpois0n" released the first working untethered Jailbreak for Apple devices powered by the A5 processor, namely the iPhone 4S and iPad 2. While the practice is officially discouraged by Apple and may cause some unintended consequences if you don't know what you are doing, jailbreaking is entirely legal and essentially enables smartphone and tablet owners to customize their devices and run unsanctioned software from third-party app stores such as Cydia.

The practice is not uncommon among Android users either, who often turn to rooting their devices in order to load the latest version or a customized build of the OS rather than wait for an official update -- which sometimes never comes, unfortunately.

But then there's the other side of the coin: despite the benefits of jailbreaking, some people just can't be bothered with the whole backup-upgrade-jailbreak-restore cycle every time something better comes out. I used to jailbreak my iPhone but don't anymore after realizing I rarely even used unofficial apps.

So our question for those of you with smartphones is, do you jailbreak or root your device? If so, tell us about the custom ROMs and 'unofficial' apps you run, as well as the tweaks you can't live without. Also, has this caused any security or instability issues for you?




User Comments: 63

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Guest said:

I don't have a smartphone.

Guest said:

yes. just applied the jailbreak to iphone 4s and ipad 2. reason - i use SBSettings so I get easy access to switches that are normally buried under multiple screens in ios. things like turning off wifi, blue-tooth, etc. on the iphone 4s specially, i can now turn off 3g and still have data enabled so I don't have to recharge the phone's battery too often. this particular feature was removed in the iphone 4s under ios5+.

Afroaggie said:

I have done my iPhone 3G and my touchpad because it just gives a more personal experience. But I haven't done my iPhone 4 because they are still pushing updates to it. But when the updates no longer include this model I will do it as well :p The jailbreaking community is full of very talented individuals that are happy to share, and that is a very rare thing nowadays.

dustin_ds3000 dustin_ds3000, TechSpot Chancellor, said:

I cant because i have an HTC EVO 4G+, its only available in Korea. i haven't found a way to Root it yet.

Guest said:

I have rooted and modded my Android phone, because Gingerbread is not officially available for my handset. And, I'm happy with the result even though it took a lot of work to get it done.

However, I decided to use my iPad as is since iOS looks and feels well-finished and polished. I haven't got reasons to jailbreak it yet.

jmet said:

Android - Rooted

I root all my Android phones to get rid of the bloatware and add wireless tethering capabilities....however, I will more than likely get the iPhone 5 when it is released and jailbreak it...

Panda218 Panda218 said:

I have both my Galaxy Tab 10.1 and Sprint E4GT rooted and I wouldnt have it any other way. I wish I could jailbreak my ipad and iphone, but they are for work so I cannot do that I miss a lot of the features with SBSettings...

Staff
Matthew Matthew, TechSpot Staff, said:

I've done it to my 3GS in the past but it doesn't really benefit me enough for the additional effort required so I don't bother anymore.

Guest said:

i currently have a rooted DROID 3, but when i did have my droid 2 it was rooted for 3 reasons.

1. a rooted app allowed me to take screen shots

2. making WiFi hotspots without being charged (no longer possible with gingerbread update)

3. underclock/overclock the CPU in an effort to save a VERY quickly draining battery, and also give me a little boost when gaming

in my opinon, these 3 are very good reasons to root my device, which is currently, but only used for screen shots. Sadly motorola did a good job of leaving out a basic feature they could probably have easier added.

free WiFi hotspots, i can understand why they woulnd't want this. but my goodness! as if the bill isn't expensive enough.

though rooting voids the warranty, A simple unroot make it like it never happened =]

motrin said:

rooted my droid x2 to remove bloaware and use superuser apps. once I did I finally felt like I owned a smart phone.

Justgivemeaname said:

I've been considering rooting my android but I don't know as much about phones as I do about computers so I would have to research how to do it before I even tried it. Currently running froyo and sometimes its slower than you would think is possible.

Kibaruk Kibaruk, TechSpot Paladin, said:

Justgivemeaname it's a very very very simple process, you first backup your user data and apps, then download an application to server your model and... that's pretty much it.

Yup, mine is rooted. Not because I wanted to put a mod, mainly for superuser aplications.

Tekkaraiden Tekkaraiden said:

Nope, can't be bothered though I have had to wipe and reload my phone.

Guest said:

HTC Incredible with Cyanogenmod 7.1. It's great!

Guest said:

I would try XDA if I were you. Ask a question or they already might have something developed for your phone. Cheers

trparky said:

Yep... rooted my Android. When I buy my next Android phone the question definitely will be "Can I root it? If not, I don't want it!"

Guest said:

No i don't root.

Not found any reason to

There is no app that i need to root for

So nop.. there is nothing that ( atm ) i need my cell or Tab to do that i need too root 4

My droid is open enough for me too..... live whit as is

Now, my friends iPh......... thats another story

Justgivemeaname said:

trparky said:

Yep... rooted my Android. When I buy my next Android phone the question definitely will be "Can I root it? If not, I don't want it!"

I may be wrong, and if i am please feel free to correct me, but I was looking up how to root my android and from what i read, any android phone can be rooted.

Guest said:

I bought a Galaxy S that had been rooted and reset to factory default for the sale. It now has issues, such as a black screen (need to remove battery to reset), the internet not working (need to reboot) and the phone just behaving weird in general. I would recommend NOT rooting your phone.

marinkvasina marinkvasina said:

Yeah but something is wrong with app sync these days, it checks web for data or something

Guest said:

Nope, My TracFone works just fine...thanks.

OUTLAWXXX said:

LG Optimus S, my first android phone.

Archean Archean, TechSpot Paladin, said:

I haven't, but I thought about doing it on my SGS (which I discarded recently) but figured out that it was not worth the effort.

Guest said:

nah, i have never owned any smartphone.

i'm still using my nokia 7210 and nokia 5320 xm though i'm looking to purchase one of the cheapest smartphones out there, samsung galaxy y, currently sold at about 120$ in a local retailer.

Guest said:

Until my phone grows a vagina, there wont be any root.

St1ckM4n St1ckM4n said:

Custom ROM on my Xperia x10. Makes the phone MUCH faster.

Custom ICS ROM on my Xoom. Faster than the official ICS, ability to overclock, and official isn't available in Australia yet.

gwailo247, TechSpot Chancellor, said:

I started messing around with it one evening, but after downloading a bunch of programs and looking at surprisingly poor instructions, I left it alone. Cell phones are pretty expensive, and unsubsidized here, don't want to screw this one up and have to replace it.

Guest said:

Haha @Guest above, you must be an Aussie! ;D

Don't think these Yanks get the term 'root'...

Guest said:

i do root my android to get some apps to work

also im using some unofficial ROM wish needs root to be installed

although root is not the same as jailbreak .. as far as i know

jailbreak will allow you to install hacked (paid) apps for free

slh28 slh28, TechSpot Paladin, said:

Here are some Cydia apps I can't live without:

Activator, bitesms, callme, folderenhancer, infinidock, ischeduler, sbsettings, springtomize, winterboard.

I only update the iOS version for every major upgrade (about once a year) so it's not really much effort at all to get the phone working as it should be.

p51d007 said:

First thing I do to a phone is root it. Why? To lock out/delete the junk that is usually on the phone, even with a non carrier phone. Then to install a root call blocker to block the telemarketers from calling LOL.

fimbles fimbles said:

Going to attempt to jailbreak my friends iphone 3gs today.

No idea where to start but what the hell, is it possible to kill your iphone doing this?

CryVer CryVer said:

Considering to rot my Galaxy Nexus to get OpenVPN working. When it comes to updates I don't think it ill make a difference.

Leeky Leeky said:

I rooted a previous Droid in order to run it with Gingerbread, but I've not bothered with my last two phones, a Sony Ericsson X10 Mini Pro, and its replacement, the 1GHz Xperia Mini.

I've just ordered (yesterday) a Galaxy S2, and I doubt I'll be rooting that either. The only need I have for it is to run more up to date Android releases, and since the S2 will get ICS in due course it doesn't make much sense for me.

gcarter gcarter said:

I buy and sell smartphones frequently secondhand on ebay. Rooting allows you peace of mind, when phones are sold as "locked to a network" because...

a) It means you can snag a bargain by not having to find a phone which matches your current provider

b) As has been mentioned before, some phones comes with excessive carrier software which cannot be removed by the end user, and in some cases, such as the budget Orange Sanfrancisco, slows down the phone!

Rooting also allows you to run the beloved adblocker app (android) meaning your not plaugued with ads on the screen :-)

Technochicken Technochicken, TechSpot Paladin, said:

I don't have a smartphone, but I did jailbreak my iPod touch.

Leeky Leeky said:

I buy and sell smartphones frequently secondhand on ebay. Rooting allows you peace of mind, when phones are sold as "locked to a network" because...

a) It means you can snag a bargain by not having to find a phone which matches your current provider

I thought rooting, and phone unlocking were two different things?

I didn't realise that a rooted smartphone was also then unlocked to all networks.

Captain828 Captain828 said:

Yes. I have my SGSII rooted and loaded with the Cognition custom ROM.

Did it to remove some bloatware and get superuser permissions for Chainfire3D.

rvnwlfdroid said:

My wife and I were out shopping and we stopped by a Verizon kiosk and I purchased a Thunderbolt along with the HTC extended battery. We walked 6ft and took a seat at a table. My wife went to get lunch while I installed my micro SD card (with custom rom .zip already located on it) into the Thunderbolt, took out my laptop and within 3 Min I had it rooted and another 5-10min I had the Cubed rom installed. All this before my wife got back with the the food.

My wife and I have had several Android based phones and everyone has been rooted and all of mine have had custom roms installed.

Our big reasons for rooting it are Titanium backup, apps with the ability to wifi tether or hotspot (without paying a second fee), Adfree. Being able to get rid of the bloat ware.

And for me it's just fun to play around.

rvnwlfdroid said:

And a side note: The Verizon employee who helped us stopped by after we were finshed eating and was curious if I was able to root it. (by the way while purchasing the phone we were talking about phones, rooting, the dangers of doing it, custom roms, cool apps avalable to rooted phones) I helped him root his Thunderbolt before we left the mall.

RH00D RH00D said:

technochicken said:

I don't have a smartphone, but I did jailbreak my iPod touch.

Same. I also jailbroke my (at the time) girlfriend's iPod Touch. I restored my iPod Touch and returned it within the 30 days though because I wanted the money instead.

Guest said:

I hate to break this too ppl who root/jailbreak their phones. DOING IT VOIDS THE WARRENTY!!

If you do this you void any manufacter or extended warrenty. I had to find this out the hard way. If you do root/jailbreak your phone and you break it, prepare to pay full price to replace it. Cellphone companies take a VERY firm stance on rooting and jailbreaking. And god help you if your still under contract when you break it. They wont replace it. And you either continue to pay for a service you cant use or eat a hefty 300$+ Early Termination Fee. IF you want to root or jailbreak your phone PLS PLS PLS wait till you are available to get an upgrade on your phone. Then do it.

trparky said:

Some are easier to root than others.

bexwhitt said:

lg optimus 2x . This phone can be bought cheaply sim free, so now its rooted with cm7 , runs sweet as a nut

BMfan BMfan said:

I've rooted my SGS2 just to see what I can do with the phone fortunately it has everything I need so i went to what they call a frankenstien OS on xda and I just update it when there is a new version.

Atham said:

Guest said:

I don't have a smartphone.

Same here.

My friends do this though.

rvnwlfdroid said:

Guest said:

I hate to break this too ppl who root/jailbreak their phones. DOING IT VOIDS THE WARRENTY!!

If you do this you void any manufacter or extended warrenty. I had to find this out the hard way. If you do root/jailbreak your phone and you break it, prepare to pay full price to replace it. Cellphone companies take a VERY firm stance on rooting and jailbreaking. And god help you if your still under contract when you break it. They wont replace it. And you either continue to pay for a service you cant use or eat a hefty 300$+ Early Termination Fee. IF you want to root or jailbreak your phone PLS PLS PLS wait till you are available to get an upgrade on your phone. Then do it.

It does void the Warranty but if you pay the replacment insurance then you are set as long as you can live without a phone for a couple of days. If you end up having a problem just (break the phone) to a point where it is not able to boot to any kind of a screen. No questions asked.

I had to do that once early one. I took the phone to a verizon store in the morning and I had a replacement the next day Fed-Ex.

Guest said:

Yes, I do indeed.

techanswers1 said:

I used to jailbreak my ipod touch but it broke down after a year and when i upgraded to an iphone 3gs it never worked so i stopped jailbreaking and that was the best 2 years of my life

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