updated 02:08 am EDT, Fri May 4, 2012
Exploit is not ready for public release yet
Following up on a report from earlier this week, iOS hacker pod2g announced on Twitter late yesterday that he had succeeded in getting his iPhone 4 running under iOS 5.1 with an untethered jailbreak. While no tool for other users has yet been announced, the breakthrough means that those wanting to run the latest version of iOS and unofficial apps should be able to do so in the near future. There is no word yet on whether the exploit is limited to A5 devices like the iPhone 4 or not.
The member of the Chronic Dev team announced last weekend that he had uncovered a pair of exploits that could be used for injecting the altered boot ROM information that allows iOS devices to run unsanctioned and unofficial apps. A tethered jailbreak (meaning it requires re-installation every time the device is reset) already exists for iOS 5.1, but most users find this unsatisfactory and have stayed at iOS version 5.0.1, which offers an untethered (semi-permanent) jailbreak. Others have reported some success with jailbreaks on iOS 5.1 but so far have kept them private.
The successful exploit could lead to software that would be able to jailbreak newer devices such as the iPhone 4S and the 2012 iPad, both of which run a newer variant of the A5 chip called A5X. Jailbreaking older iPhones is also popular with those who want to modify the appearance or functionality of the device once it is out of warranty. Unlocks for the A5 and later devices remain elusive.