Why Jailbreak an iPhone?
Some software is not authorized in certain operating systems. In order to install an application you want, but is not allowable by your OS, you will need to jailbreak your device. In simple terms, Jailbreaking is the process of bypassing the restrictions inherent in the OS, allowing you to install any software compatible with your device. It also gives you access to the phone on the root level. This access is otherwise hidden or unreachable by users. So, by Jailbreaking, you will be able to manipulate most, if not all aspects of your phone or other device.
iOS from Apple, in particular, is a very closed system to any changes by the user. You must adhere by their strict guidelines. Some of Apple’s restrictions are there to protect the user, but others exist to keep users from being able to use unofficial apps and customize their device. Jailbreaking is limited to Apple devices; it cannot be done with Android devices. Of course, risks come with Jailbreaking. Your device becomes open to attacks and malware that would have been protected by iOS. There have been complaints of other types of instability including increased data usage and decreased battery life. You have to assess the cost-benefit depending on your needs.
The Cydia App
Once your phone is Jailbroken, you will have access to a variety of unofficial apps. Many of these can be found using Cydia. Cydia is the alternative app store to Apple’s App Store for Jailbroken iPhones, iPads, and iTouches. Created by Jay Freeman, aka “saurik”. Cydia gives users a platform to download apps to fully customize devices. You will see the Cydia app icon clearly on your device’s home screen after Jailbreaking.
Some of the apps available in Cydia allow users to do some basic things iOS restricts. These include being able to sync over WiFi, creating your own ringtones, creating custom themes, bypassing the restriction on allowing your iPhone or Pad to video out in order to connect to TV, and downloading files directly to your device.
Even though Cydia is obviously not endorsed by Apple, it is a very dynamic application. New and innovative, and often free, apps are available for download at any time. Prominent tech magazines and websites offer useful advice on the best Cydia apps and informative articles for your Jailbroken device.
Hiding Cydia – Why?
Hiding Cydia is ideal for people who want to keep the fact that their phone is Jailbroken unknown. The Cydia app can only be downloaded if the phone is Jailbroken, so the app icon being visible makes that fact obvious. People using spy or monitoring software apps will obviously want to hide the Cydia app. You should have a look at ReflexSoftware here for detailed information about cell phone monitoring apps such as StealthGenie and Mobile Spy – you’ll see why hiding the Cydia app is important to many parents. It’s fairly easy to hide the app without uninstalling it. Only you will know it’s there, and you will have access to it when you need it.
How to Hide Cydia on Your iPhone
First, you need to open Cydia and download an app called “SBSettings.” This app allows you to hide icons from any of your apps, among other functions. SBSettings is not the only app that allows you to do this. Use Cydia to shop around for other applications – such as Poof.
Install the app and open immediately. Press “settings” followed by “more”. Then, click “hide icons”. All of your apps should be listed with a slider next to them saying “on” or “off.” Find Cydia, and slide to the “off” position. You can use this opportunity to hide any other apps including the SBSettings App icon. You can now exit the app.
Your Cydia app should now be hidden from your home screen, and the app will still be installed.
It’s really as easy as that, but hiding your Jailbreak trail completely can be more involved. Cydia offers a few tweaks to trick other applications into thinking your phone is not Jailbroken. Some easy research and advice on some of the Cydia forums can help you find ways to do this. As always, use some discretion when making any modifications to your Jailbroken phone. Without the safety of the original iOS, your device and personal information is susceptible. Listen to more experienced users, and make sure any changes you make are tried and true. If you take these precautions, you can enjoy your new apps without worrying about anything malicious being installed on your device.