Siri Port For Non-iPhone 4S Devices Won’t Be Released Anytime Soon


iPhone 4S - Siri

Couple of days back, iPhone hacker and developer – Steven Troughton-Smith along with chpwn (developer of jailbreak apps such as InfiniboardInfinidock, InfinifolderProSwitcher, VoiceActivator) had figured out a way to get Siri working on a jailbroken iPhone 4 and iPod touch by bypassing the authentication issues.

This had raised hopes that they would eventually release the Siri port for non-iPhone 4S devices. But we have some bad news at least for the time being.

chpwn has just written a blog post to explain why they won’t be able to distribute the port or the procedure they had used. He starts of by explaining the fundamentals of how copyright laws work:

Apple owns the copyright on the software, images, and data used inside iOS: they created them. Because of that, they have the ability to decide what other people can — are licensed to — do with them: copy, distribute, adapt, modify, or any number of other protections of their works. Pretty simple. But this does lead to one important, if somewhat counterintuitive, fact: just because a piece of data is available freely on the internet does not mean that you have the rights to redistribute that data (or any part of it) without an applicable license. In practice, that means that just because certain files are freely available on a device or inside a firmware (.ispw) file freely downloadable from Apple’s website, it does not imply that those files can legally be distributed by anyone else.

He then goes on to explain what does the copyright law mean in the case of enabling Siri on non-iPhone 4S devices:

In the context of Siri, this means that the resource files, images, and code that makes up Siri cannot be freely shared. These frameworks and plugins that work together to build Siri are not included on other iOS builds besides the ones running on the iPhone 4S. Therefore, these files must be copied from a running iPhone 4S, or from the iPhone 4S’s firmware (.ipsw) file. The first method requires you to own an iPhone 4S to copy the files from, so it is not useful for most people: if you already own an iPhone 4S, you already have Siri. The issue with the second method is more technical: the firmware files are distributed encrypted, and we do not yet have the decryption key to access the Siri files inside of the iPhone 4S firmware file.

Just from that, you currently must already own an iPhone 4S to install Siri on it without a blatant copyright violation. But even that’s not all: if you do all of that, there’s still a few more reasons why Siri won’t just work.

He also goes on to comment on people claiming that they have managed to port Siri on non-iPhone 4S devices:

Many people have managed to display the Siri UI on the iPhone 4; it is, in fact, reasonably trivial with access to the files copied off an iPhone 4S (as explained above). But only Steven and myself — yes, I know there are others that claim to have: I’ll tell you this, they haven’t 😉 — have managed to make Siri successfully contact the Apple servers and receive responses. Why? Here, the answers become slightly more murky. Partially this is because I don’t want to reveal too much about the procedure to try and ensure that you all will be able to use it in the future, and partially because it requires a jailbroken iPhone 4S, something which is currently not publicly available. Anyway, the general gist of it is that you almost certainly need the access provided by the a jailbreak to extract all of the information necessary to get Siri working on another device, and that’s not yet availble. (And, no, I don’t know when it will be. You can follow along with me while we wait, though!)

But he goes on to explain that if they manage to decrypt the iPhone 4S files then Siri on non-iPhone 4S devices can become a reality:

Anyway, I hope that clears up some of the technical and legal reasons why distributing a build (or instructions) to run Siri on older hardware isn’t possible at the moment. When we have the ability to decrypt the encrypted iPhone 4S firmware file — to extract the Siri files legally, without the need for an iPhone 4S — and we have an iPhone 4S jailbreak to obtain the other nececssary information at a mass scale, hopefully this can become a reality and everyone can try out Siri on their older devices. Until then, showing you a video that it is possible is the best we can do.

As always, we’ll let you know as soon as it is available in the App Store, so stay tuned here at iPhone Hacks or join our Facebook Fan page or follow us on Twitter or subscribe to our RSS feed.

[via chpwn’s blog]

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  • Paradox

    @ Steven

    Good job for figuring it out. It proves Apple is using Siri to sale the new iPhone, and it has nothing to do with actual hardware. A business move on their part, bold, deceitful yes, but business decision none the less. It may sour some people towards Apple for treating their customers like that, but sales are what keeps the company alive and developing new products. Sooooo… whats the lesser of the evils?

    A lot of people will beg you to release it, to cross the lines of ethical hacking and just pirate it. A lot will berate you and call you bastard. But my hats off to you for what you achieved and for keeping your boundaries in what’s right and what’s wrong.

    • Paradox

      @ chpwn

      You too … LOL .. sorry Steven’s name jumps out in the article. missed yours… my bad …

      Hats off to you as well.

  • hxclos

    Correct me if I’m wrong but doesn’t this mean that all they can legally do is provide the steps as to how to extract the Siri files from the firmware onto your non 4S device? Otherwise they could just “share” the files they already have. This way they are not redistributing Apple’s software which is freely available. If this is correct, then don’t expect it in Cydia unless it’s through an unofficial repo.

    • Rob

      The reason they aren’t releasing the steps for doing this is because as he said you either need a jailbroken iPhone 4s or decrypted iPhone 4s firmware which neither are available to the public. Also I think they are going to save it so that they could instead of giving you the specific files or steps they can use redsnow to do the process for you. All you will have to do is download the iPhone 4s firmware file and redsnow will do the work for you when you are jail breaking your iPhone 4.

      • axe

        Distributing a decrypted files is illegal but a tool for decryption is legal.

        • Rob

          I am aware of that. I meant it in that redsnow would decrypt the iPhone 4s firmware and then extract the necessary files.

    • Jacko

      Seriously. Give us a untethered iOS 5 jailbreak. No one cares about this until we can upgrade to iOS 5!

      • crap

        why dont you produce the break then?

  • Richy33

    I can’t understand why they hack Siri, say it out loud, and then say that no, we won’t release it. what’s the point ? Glory or something ?

    • Aecon12

      EXACTLY! Bunch of f’ing TOOLS. WTF? Why bother releasing ANY information and do nothing with? Besides, them SAYING they can do something DOESN’T prove SH!T! Just that they are a bunch of TOOLS! LOSERS!

      • siriously

        Yeah, but they also posted videos of it working. Besides, they could end up getting sued or something if they’re not careful.
        Just be grateful for their efforts. Maybe they’ll release instructions someday; maybe they won’t. Chances are, if you act like an *******, they won’t.

        • crap

          totally agree. just be grateful they are even willing to ‘risk’ it to show it online or whatever. if not, go learn how to hack and diy rather than being an a-hole crying out loud for a jb.

    • tetra

      ditto

    • Apple

      Why would you even make it public that it’s even possible for Siri to be ported to other apple device if you’re not going to show us how?

      Might as well keep it to yourself, there is not point of teasing us about it.

      Teasing us just make you looking like fucking dicks. (oh look at me I have something that you want, but I’m not going to share it)

      • Paradox

        As I posted above… They didn’t report it to tease us. They reported it to show that it can be done, and it works fine. That apple is lying to us by saying its a hardware issue. This may put pressure on apple to release it later to us

        • mohgui

          you got a point here but i doubt Apple will release Siri to devices prior to the iPhone 4s.

  • fas

    That is a real bummer! ;-(

  • Dogz

    İ bet you its apple that scared theese people cos if jailbreaking is legal then wyh should this be ilegal.

    • crap

      you should try reading up more about the legal tussle on jailbreaking and also what is posted above before commenting. 🙂

  • Mike

    Why are they wasting time on this where the jailbreak for this ios5 , man get with the program , do what needed an play later

    • Brandon

      There already is an iOS 5 jailbreak.

      • crap

        i salute you brandon, you actually understood what the heck the person posted! Kudos! *_*

        -mike, no offense, but you gotta improve that eng of yours, if not it is hard to even figure out which of your words goes first…

    • Michael

      Does no one remember what Musclenerd said? They Will release an untethered jailbreak once the kinks are out of the OS because after a new iOS there are always problems so they will wait for apple to fix them with an upgrade (most likely iOS 5.1) then release the jailbreak rather then waste their time and exploits

  • JrBob

    I fail to see how decrypting the firmware is acceptable to apple but copying files across devices is illegal. Great work by the devs, but it just sounds like they’re not releasing it solely because they’re scared of apple.

    • crap

      Jrbob, if you are the son of some billionaire and also has the talent as any of the hackers out there developing such jb for iphones, i am quite sure you will not be afraid of any implications with apple that may result in legal tussle. Just feed them with greens and matters solved. But truth is, these hackers are just like the most average joes out there holding normal jobs and i doubt they will want to get into any trouble since they may not have the capacity to resolve any legal matters.

  • Frank

    So many idiots… if u are in a hurry for the jailbreak then do it yourself……as for siri it’s junk unless u need to dictate documents to a secretary I am sure not gonna be talking to it in public as don’t need others hearing what I am doing I don’t even use the google app voice command unless I am home. A lot of people think it’s nice new TOY but will get bored after a while and stop playing with it. O wait let me use dirty words to see what it does…………..

    • Kevpor

      Freak you sound like a android user

  • Kevpor

    This is some dumb shit where the hell is the jailbreak for the iPhone 4s dammmmm

  • Zed Sefi

    Let’s focus on the jailbreak for iPhone 4S now and forget the damn Siri for a little while, shall we?

    • Kevpor

      Right

  • Zoxxx

    Wow some Honest hackers. Where is this world going 🙂

  • Frank

    The guys who worked on this are not the same guys doing the jailbreaking .

  • Kitty

    Guys you re hackes or apple devs ? It looks like a advertisement of siri and 4S.

  • dR435t4

    ….talk about playing hard to get!

  • moe

    lame. why even talk about it if your not gonna give it to us, idiots. you guys just want fame, nothing more….

  • JoeJoe

    forget this lame ass Smith guy. Do us a big big favor and keep you trap shut until you release it to the world. Until then, this is NOT news, it’s completely worthless info.

    • bodimo

      this

    • Rob

      Get off your high horse just because you don’t care for this news doesn’t mean there isn’t others that do. Also no one is forcing you to read it and he doesn’t owe you any favors either. Now I hope Siri doesn’t get released for the iPhone 4 so grateful lame asses like you won’t get the pleasure to use something this guy worked to make sure your fat lazy cheap ass could get a feature that people actually paid to use by buying an iPhone 4s.

      • bodimo

        @Rob

        I hope it doesn’t get released either you FUCKING DORK! LOL!

        • yeah right, you know you both want it

          • Rob

            Actually I don’t care since I own an iPhone 4s.

  • mediascape

    These guys are not the smartest people alive so don’t worry, someone, somewhere will release a tutorial on porting siri to other devices soon (not just the GUI). Remember these guys are getting a lot of publicity about this currently, that is the number 1 motivation for being coy about the process. I bet, right now these guys have been offered jobs in the six figures as a result. They will milk this, after all – wouldn’t you?

    So wait. Be calm, it will come.

  • Devol

    I think you should all just stop bitching like little girls and sac up and go get the 4s. Lol. “Wah wah wah, I don’t want to have to spend my money on a new phone. I wanna have someone else do the work so that I can use all the functions of the new device without it costing me any kind of investment whatsoever. Wah!”.

    • give me $850 and I’ll get the 4s

  • The Warden

    I’m sick and tired of you Apple. I’ve decided to give up on you! Time to move on to another brand where you are not limited to any improvements without crossing the “Legal Line”. Myself have owend a Iphone 1, Iphone 3G, 3GS, and an Iphone 4. I will not buy an Iphone 4S at $600 just for Siri. Furthermore, Competition has catched up Apple, and its time to realize that if you want to stay in the game, yous should consider stopping the fact of cheating your customers and make them want to stay with your products. Give us Siri or make us pay a small price, don’t make us change our 4G!!

  • What a pansy… just release the files already “incognito” and get it over with. You don’t see the creators of install0us crying “copyright.”

  • dayne

    well .. siri still on beta stage.
    maybe apple just release it to 4S to test out how stable their callhome server is.
    they can’t just simply release it to older devices cos it might bogs down their server.
    just imagine millions of users over the world calling back at one go,it might took minutes for siri to reply back to your request

  • Dice

    Guys guys, trust, siri isnt all that, funny sometimes, but is very very limited to the functionalty. I just like many others wanna have the latest and greatest, but siri was a major let down. And ive posted before, iphone 4 owners are not missing out on much.

  • I guess it is worth checking with siri infrastructure as apple just using a software tool to promote their whole new hardware and they are making good sales out of it instead of that you see iOS 5 works same as it works in iPod 4 or iPhone 4 the only thing they upgraded is camera pixels and Siri nothing else…. so I don’t call it note worthy and if iPhone 4 users can have Siri on it I guess it’s worthy… as Dev team has worked on many other things always deserved an applause and still do, I wait for Siri but it could be later first jailbreak of 4S as many are waiting in que… Thx

  • @iTaos

    Well darn. . .

  • silverwin

    the time SIRI will come out to the public (non-iphone 4S), people ask/want for something new. Better than SIRI for sure.

  • Who cares?

    Even if they release it I bet it wont work 100 percent cuz usually everything in Cydia crashes or harm or battery so dont give publicity to these guys cuz we don’t even know if it will work properly or if something bad will happen later to or phones to get them brick so Any news of this until it release it to the public and the public confirms it works 100 percent

  • jap

    dont you people get it? its not about siri, its not about jailbreaking, its not about unlocking, its about freedom, and how apple restrict our freedom, porting, hacking, jailbreaking is to show people who want to hold back your freedom that we will not let them, its not about giving someone somewhere something they havent got, its about letting the people like apple know you cant restrict us, we will find a way to work around tour restraints

    • You Rock

      You sir, are a motivator. Apple is taking it out on the world for what Microsoft has done to them, Laughs…

  • ItsyourBoy

    So fucking pussy it’s so easy to just fucking upload it somewhere and put out the links ever herd of torrents I really don’t understand y not now I gotta wait till the 4s jailbreak comes out i bet I could figure it out, if all it takes is placing files into the i4, those devs are gay

    • Rob

      Yeah so that like people you go bitchin and crying when they fuck up and brick their phones. Better they wait then have douches like you go crying to them cause you fucked up. And who the fuck would want to waste their own bandwidth on a torrent that will lead to a bunch of noobs downloading and start bitching on forums and tweeting them about how to fix their phone cause they couldn’t fucking wait. And obviously you are a noob thinking it only takes placing files into your iPhone 4 for it to work.

  • Um, if you really want Siri – just go to the app store and download Vlingo. It’s free and has all of the same functionality as Siri.
    By the way the commercials for Siri are SERIOUSLY over dramatic and a blatant lie – Siri does not do all of that crap or work that good at all.
    If they put the true Siri on a commercial no one would give a crap because it would show a ton of people cussing Siri out and Siri replying with “Please Wait” or “No match found” LoL.
    As far as people griping about a jailbreak for IOS 5 – it exists it’s just a tethered JB right now, but BibBoss released semi-tethered so it works even better. Quit crying about crap and nagging the devs who d all this cool crap for us and read once in a while damn.

    • Rob

      I own a iPhone 4s and I can tell you Siri work just how it is shown on the commercials just watch some YouTube videos of people using it.. Of course it not perfect and the results are not going to be the same everytime after all it is in beta and it is an AI. But for the most part it really does work that well, most of the time at least.

  • jetblac

    Am I the only one here that thinks the ONLY news here is that this guy somehow has a Jailbroken 4S, yet doesn’t mention it as an achievement? If you need a jailbroken 4S for it to work and he made it work, then he must have a jailbroken 4S, or he is talking out of his ass.

    • Rob

      yes he has a jailbroken iPhone 4s, the dev team has already announce they have jailbroken the iPhone 4s but they need to work out the kinks and package it before they release it. This guy is part of the dev team

  • Mr. C

    Why not just release it as anonymous? Then nobody gets sued.

    TADAAAAA……