iPhone Glossary

What is Jailbreaking?

Jailbreaking is a process that allows iPhone and iPod Touch users to run any code on their devices, as opposed to only that code authorized by Apple. Once jailbroken, iPhone users are able to download many applications previously unavailable through the App Store via unofficial installers such as Cydia and Rock you;. A jailbroken iPhone or iPod Touch is still able to use and update apps downloaded and purchased from Apple’s official App Store.

Jailbreaking is distinct from SIM unlocking, which, once completed, means that the mobile phone will accept any SIM without restriction on, for example, the country or network operator of origin. Please not that jailbreaking voids Apple’s warranty on the device.

What’s a Baseband?

The ‘baseband’ is the generic nickname given to the internal components of the iPhone that handle the phone calls and Internet access. This ‘baseband’ is a tiny and unique independent computer system that runs inside your iPhone, it is separate to the main system that handles the applications (such as email and google maps) and it talks to the main part of the phone over an internal communications network.

Think of it like a cable modem or other peripheral that is attached to your home PC that needs occasional updates. When a software update is released and presented to you within iTunes the baseband is sometimes updated (to fix bugs or add new features).

What does ‘tethered jailbreak’ mean?

Tethered means that the jailbreak needs to be reapplied every time you power down your iPod touch 3G. If you let the battery run out or restart your iPod touch then you will need to reapply the jailbreak by connecting to your computer (tethering).

This is applicable to the new iPhone 3GS models and the iPod Touch 3G (third generation).

What does Hacktivation mean?

Hacktivation is nothing else than activation.

There is only one slight difference. Activating your iPhone is done through iTunes in order to use it with an official carrier. Check out “Activation” in our iPhone terminology.

Hacktivation is its equivalent for iPhones that don’t work with an official carrier and therefore need to be activated with a jailbreak tool.

What is a bootloader?

The bootloader is the first thing that is executed when the iPhone is powered on. Bootloaders perform an integrity check on data and prevent unsigned, non-apple code from being loaded. They essentially police the iPhone’s iOS, making sure everything is the way Apple want it to be. PwnageTool, WinPwn and QuickPwn patch out integrity checks from the bootloaders, allowing unsigned code to be executed.