iPhone unlock hackers promise to fight Apple updates

The programmers who wrote free software that unlocks Apple Inc.'s iPhone Tuesday disputed the company's claim that their hacks can damage the device, and they promised to battle any attempt by Apple to "brick" modified phones.

In a message posted to the on the Hackint0sh Web site, someone claiming to represent the iPhoneiPhone Dev Team said the group would answer the firmware update expected this week with a tool of its own that would return any unlocked phone to a factory-fresh condition. That will prevent the iPhone from being "bricked," or incapacitated, when the update is applied. Alles zu iPhone auf CIO.de

"We will provide you with a tool in the next week which will be able to recover your 'nck' counter and 'seczones' and even enable you to restore your phone to a factory-like state if you are really [determined] to update your phone," said someone identified as "sam." [Ed. note: punctuation added and grammar corrected.]

He also said the iPhone Dev Team takes exception with AppleApple's contention that modifications can break the device. "[Apple speaks] of 'damage' done to the firmware and 'unauthorized access' to our own property," the message said. [But] Apple [has] now announced [that] the next firmware update, [which] we may expect later this week, will possibly break the handsets of all of us free users in the world intentionally," the message said. It went on to say of Apple's claims, "we know better" and said the unlocking software "is not causing 'damage' as they want to make us belive [sic]." Alles zu Apple auf CIO.de

The iPhone Dev Team is responsible for creating anySIM, a free open-source utility that lets users make and receive calls on networks other than that of AT&T, currently the only authorized carrier for the iPhone. The anySIM software is one of several unlocking hacks now in circulation.

The hackers' manifesto is just the latest in what Apple CEO Steve Jobs called a "cat-and-mouse game" between his company and those who want to make unauthorized changes to the iPhone. In London a week ago to tout the smart phone's Nov. 9 launch in the U.K., Jobs implicitly that Apple would counter attempts to unlock the iPhone.

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