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  • iPhone Jailbreaking = Job Opportunities


    For one tech-savvy student at George Mason University, iPhone jailbreaking has provided a great opportunity to break the bank. Kevin Lee, a senior studying computer science, says he works full-time as an iPhone jailbreaker, earning upwards of $50,000 a year hacking iPhones that belong to his "customers" - a pool that is widening by the week.

    From a simple ad on Craigslist to a full-fledged business, Kevin Lee was profiled nationally yesterday in The Washington Post because of his successful and lucrative operation. “To be honest, when I first started, I did it for my friends, myself, but it has snowballed from there,” said Lee. “I was getting five to 10 customers a week, now it’s 30 to 40. I just had one customer from the Mongolian embassy who was moving to the capital of Mongolia, and he wanted to use the iPhone there.”

    One has to wonder if all this attention will somehow result in Apple "contacting" Mr. Lee in some fashion about his extracurricular career.

    Still, The Washington Post piece went on to detail how the jailbreak industry is "losing its anti-establishment character." One example of this newfound reality is the recent Toyota campaign that offered a free program on Cydia’s store, promoting the company’s Scion sedan.

    Adding insight to the piece was MMi co-founder Kyle Matthews: “We’ve seen expansion across the board. The Toyota ad and theme, to me, meant there was a turning of the tides and that jailbreaking is becoming more mainstream,” Kyle said. “The industry just keeps increasing; there are even repair stores that will jailbreak for you.”

    To read the full Washington Post article, click here.

    Source: The Washington Post
    This article was originally published in forum thread: iPhone Jailbreaking = Job Opportunities started by Michael Essany View original post
    Comments 288 Comments
    1. feidhlim1986's Avatar
      feidhlim1986 -
      Quote Originally Posted by Dark Syn View Post
      "Once upon a time, a hacker successfully found a way to "open" the iPhone/iPod touch. We call this today jailbreaking. With jailbreaking you can download neat themes, tweaks, and other nifty things all for free!"
      Remember 1.0+? I remember my first gen iPod jailbroken on 1.1.1. I remember a time when there were no "premium apps". Everything was free!

      Nowdays, there's nothing in cydia that can have useful and free in the same description. The free themes are a piece of **** and the other tweaks are useless unless you're running on anything below 4.0. Why is this? Because developers have found a way to make money off of these things. As we all know, money drives everyone...look at Sony.

      Am I calling devs greedy? Sort of in a way. The point of jailbreaking is basically ruined, it's not what it was three years ago. People would rather have money than to do something for the fun of it. They didn't do these things for money years ago so why do it now? It's screws other people over who cannot donate or cannot donate often. Not to mention it's given birth to piracy. Sure there are a small amount of people that can get them for free But the majority who'd rather go the honest way it's a pain.

      For people who will reply to this thread with bursts of outrage, please remember what it was like when you had your first jailbroken device then watch the evolution of the cydia store. Soon we'll see 90% of the cydia store filled with "premium Apps" and maybe they'll even charge for jailbreaking.
      So what you're saying is, you think everything should be given to you for free in Cydia?

      That the "point" of jailbreak was to get free tweaks, themes, apps etc?

      So those people who work hard creating sophisticated software for iPhones should not be allowed to charge for their product?

      Well done conveying an extreme sense of entitlement.

      Quote Originally Posted by Dark Syn View Post
      My services are free. I only charge people to fix hardware issues (screens, etc)
      its not unrealistic...I just still believe in past ways. Will it ever happen? probably not...it's a shame though. Cus the little people get screwed when they can't purcahse something.
      Oh a few years ago someone fixed my phone screen for free. I think you SHOULD fix peoples screens and other hardware issues for free now too!
    1. i.Annie's Avatar
      i.Annie -
      Quote Originally Posted by zeroskater61 View Post
      I hate that.. Sucks when something that should only take a few minutes turns into hours..
      Yep. Imagine if I did it for free. I'd either have to say hey here's your phone back I don't feel like fixing it or I'll have to take time out of my day that I could've taken to do something pertainig to my own life. What do you get after you spent 2 hours...here's your phone back I fixed it, thanks see you later. I don't believe that people would not charge to do a jailbreak. Maybe not for family/close friends but certainly nobody goes on craigslist and posts "call me, I jailbreak phones for free!"

      Quote Originally Posted by feidhlim1986 View Post
      Oh a few years ago someone fixed my phone screen for free. I think you SHOULD fix peoples screens and other hardware issues for free now too!
      Midas fixed my mom's AC in her van for free once bc they come to our restaurant and she is super generous to them. But we don't waltz into Midas every time we need something done and expect them to do it for free. Just because they did it before doesn't mean we should expect it. I totally agree with you on this.
    1. Ace01xc's Avatar
      Ace01xc -
      I have been getting money off the jailbreak since Firmware 1.01 lmao, The Rabbit Hole.
    1. fmbar00's Avatar
      fmbar00 -
      Quote Originally Posted by feidhlim1986 View Post
      So what you're saying is, you think everything should be given to you for free in Cydia?

      That the "point" of jailbreak was to get free tweaks, themes, apps etc?

      So those people who work hard creating sophisticated software for iPhones should not be allowed to charge for their product?

      Well done conveying an extreme sense of entitlement.



      Oh a few years ago someone fixed my phone screen for free. I think you SHOULD fix peoples screens and other hardware issues for free now too!

      Fuuny! I laughed
    1. Co1d Night's Avatar
      Co1d Night -
      Quote Originally Posted by Kyle Matthews View Post
      Why?

      And I'm not sure any of the haters in this thread even have a point.

      I just opened Cydia, and did a little experiment to test this thread's point. Just started at the top of the Changes tab and scrolled down. Of the first 25 packages which weren't themes/bootlogos/ringtones (in other words, actual apps/tweaks), 3 were paid, 22 were free.

      What's the issue?

      Apparently you're not getting the point so I'll guide you to it!

      The free apps are usually worthless. I know only a few free apps that are useful such as winterboard, sbsettings, and fakecarrier to name a few. Other apps (lockdown pro, firewall, etc) are PAID. They actually are useful.

      So the point here is that I don't think it's right for people to start charging others for something that was once free.

      Sent from my iPod touch using ModMyi
    1. Co1d Night's Avatar
      Co1d Night -
      Quote Originally Posted by feidhlim1986 View Post
      So what you're saying is, you think everything should be given to you for free in Cydia?

      That the "point" of jailbreak was to get free tweaks, themes, apps etc?

      So those people who work hard creating sophisticated software for iPhones should not be allowed to charge for their product?

      Well done conveying an extreme sense of entitlement.



      Oh a few years ago someone fixed my phone screen for free. I think you SHOULD fix peoples screens and other hardware issues for free now too!

      Lets not be arrogant. You're not getting it.

      I've been fixing screens for quite a while and I've always charged them...they were never "free" unlike cydia apps. So why should my service be free when it was always a paid one?

      Sent from my iPod touch using ModMyi
    1. Co1d Night's Avatar
      Co1d Night -
      Quote Originally Posted by i.Annie View Post
      Yep. Imagine if I did it for free. I'd either have to say hey here's your phone back I don't feel like fixing it or I'll have to take time out of my day that I could've taken to do something pertainig to my own life. What do you get after you spent 2 hours...here's your phone back I fixed it, thanks see you later. I don't believe that people would not charge to do a jailbreak. Maybe not for family/close friends but certainly nobody goes on craigslist and posts "call me, I jailbreak phones for free!"



      Midas fixed my mom's AC in her van for free once bc they come to our restaurant and she is super generous to them. But we don't waltz into Midas every time we need something done and expect them to do it for free. Just because they did it before doesn't mean we should expect it. I totally agree with you on this.

      Actually I enjoy jailbreaking others devices. I welcome others anytime! Just like I enjoy fixing other peoples things. That's why I won't charge people money unless it needs a part replaced.

      For an example:

      Someones 2nd gen itouch's screen cracked. They generally go for $5-15. I'll charge them maybe $20 if im buying a $10 screen. $10 for myself and $10 to pay for their own item.

      Simple.

      Sent from my iPod touch using ModMyi
    1. Simon's Avatar
      Simon -
      I'm thinking you are the one not getting it. Back when jailbreaking was in its infancy most things were free 1: because there was no real payment system in place and 2: People were just learning how to make apps/tweaks for idevices. Not much was really worthy of being charged for, there were exceptions and some did require payment (Kate from ripdev comes to mind).

      Nowadays, the apps/tweaks/themes available are much more polished and can do a great deal more than before. So I see no reason why it shouldn't have evolved into the current system that we have today.
    1. Kyle Matthews's Avatar
      Kyle Matthews -
      Quote Originally Posted by Dark Syn View Post
      Apparently you're not getting the point so I'll guide you to it... I don't think it's right for people to start charging others for something that was once free.
      Heh thanks for guiding me to the point.

      Which apps are paid that the developer used to charge for?
    1. Cowboy's Avatar
      Cowboy -
      Quote Originally Posted by Dark Syn View Post
      Actually I enjoy jailbreaking others devices. I welcome others anytime! Just like I enjoy fixing other peoples things. That's why I won't charge people money unless it needs a part replaced.

      For an example:

      Someones 2nd gen itouch's screen cracked. They generally go for $5-15. I'll charge them maybe $20 if im buying a $10 screen. $10 for myself and $10 to pay for their own item.

      Simple.

      Sent from my iPod touch using ModMyi
      If you got the part for free would you still charge 10 dollars?

      And if your complaining for someone to charge 10-20 dollars for a jailbreak then why arent you charging the 10 dollars just for the part and give them your time and energy to fix it for free????
    1. Jay316's Avatar
      Jay316 -
      Any idiot can jailbreak an iPhone, it only takes about 30mins to learn all the do's & dont's of iPhone jailbreaking I used to do it for my friends, but after about a month they'd all learned how to do it themselves
    1. Co1d Night's Avatar
      Co1d Night -
      Quote Originally Posted by Westerman View Post
      If you got the part for free would you still charge 10 dollars?

      And if your complaining for someone to charge 10-20 dollars for a jailbreak then why arent you charging the 10 dollars just for the part and give them your time and energy to fix it for free????

      Nope. If I have an old 2nd gen iPod that has a working screen I'll replace it using the screen free of charge ^^

      Sent from my iPod touch using ModMyi
    1. Co1d Night's Avatar
      Co1d Night -
      Quote Originally Posted by Kyle Matthews View Post
      Heh thanks for guiding me to the point.

      Which apps are paid that the developer used to charge for?

      Lockdown "pro"....and of course 96% of themes

      Sent from my iPod touch using ModMyi
    1. Co1d Night's Avatar
      Co1d Night -
      Quote Originally Posted by Jay316 View Post
      Any idiot can jailbreak an iPhone, it only takes about 30mins to learn all the do's & dont's of iPhone jailbreaking I used to do it for my friends, but after about a month they'd all learned how to do it themselves
      That's what happened to me...actually I taught my friends how to jailbreak their devices.


      Sent from my iPod touch using ModMyi
    1. Cowboy's Avatar
      Cowboy -
      Quote Originally Posted by Dark Syn View Post
      Nope. If I have an old 2nd gen iPod that has a working screen I'll replace it using the screen free of charge ^^

      Sent from my iPod touch using ModMyi
      Okay then why are you doing it for 10 dollars more than the part cost?
    1. 2006yamahaR6's Avatar
      2006yamahaR6 -
      Quote Originally Posted by Jasonlboggs View Post
      I see no issue with charging to provide a service. At my work we charge 15-20 dollars to install a battery in a customers car. Could the customer do it on their own? Probably. Many cars come with very common tools, enough to install a battery anyway. However, societies laziness and/or lack of intelligence is what keeps people making money. Time IS money, even if it's just 5 minutes. If I just did free battery installations all day, why would I even offer the service to begin with? What is one to gain for offering free services? Think of it in the business stand point of view. Why even offer your service if you're always doing it for free? Obviously this is all regarding services to complete strangers, and not family/friends. And who's to say $25 is too much? If a customer wants to pay me a hundred to jailbreak his phone, that's his/her choice. It's his/her money, and his/her decision if $100 is too much, not your decision.

      I also disagree with the necessity to donate. Sure it would be a nice gesture to occasionally donate, but not a necessity. Do I pay my auto shop teacher every time I make money from something he taught me? No.

      Mr. Lee is selling his TIME and KNOWLEDGE, and not free software. Who knows, maybe he had to buy a separate phone to keep in contact with all his customers, keeping business and personal phone numbers separate. He certainly won't be able to pay for that phone if he doesn't charge for his time and effort.

      in a way you are actually somewhat correct, but if one were to draw a parallel from your example and apply it to the dev team, they should charge for the 20 or so jailbreak tools they've released.
      Yet they didnt.... think about why not


      and your example about your shop teacher is actually incorrect. Your parents paid taxes, which went towards the education system. Also, If you lived in a home, your parents paid property taxes at the end of the year which would go to the schools.... some of which would be used to pay teachers salaries, including your shop teacher.

      There is nothing wrong with charging someone for work you have done (i.e.- devs that charge for their apps/tweaks). I would prefer them to be free by all means, but if they charge there is nothing wrong with that. To take a jailbreak utility that someone has spent weeks and months developing, then out of the kindness of their heart given to the community at no charge, to attempt to capitalize on a donation, i think is an extremely selfish, greedy act.
    1. i.Annie's Avatar
      i.Annie -
      Lol this is just going in pointless circles. Ok, let's just allow those who feel they are capable of programming today's themes and Cydia apps/tweaks even though they clearly can't to speak like theyre justified.

      I'm a CIS major for software development and I've just begun, but I can see how difficult programming is. So the matter of the fact is, it's hard work and takes time to create. People who sit there and say "I do jailbreaks for free because I like to" that's fine, but you didn't develop anything. You're just following instructions, you didn't come up with any bright ideas or develop a tweak to make it a better jb tool. Not much work done on your part compared to a software developer.

      I'll say this, nobody will win a dispute against ignorance and lack of logic. I say we all quit and go support our developers while anyone who thinks good hard work should be free can sit alone in the corner and wish day and night for things in life to be free.
    1. Kyle Matthews's Avatar
      Kyle Matthews -
      Quote Originally Posted by Dark Syn View Post
      Lockdown "pro"....and of course 96% of themes.
      Sounds like Lockdown (never heard of that app) has a pro and a free version? I can say with 100% accuracy there has /never/ been a free theme from the ModMyi.com repository which became paid, and in fact all three major repo owners and saurik have an often-discussed policy where NO free package can move to paid. In order to do so even as a new package, the free one must remain, and the new package must have significant enough differences to warrant being a separate package (hence lite and pro versions - similar to software on all sorts of OSs, including iOS and OS X).

      Quote Originally Posted by i.Annie View Post
      Lol this is just going in pointless circles.
      No worries.. that's the point of a forum is to discuss things.
    1. Stray's Avatar
      Stray -
      Quote Originally Posted by Dark Syn View Post
      Lockdown "pro"....and of course 96% of themes

      Sent from my iPod touch using ModMyi
      Do you know how hard it is to make a theme. It can take months to complete and most themers only want 1-3 dollars for it. Is that too much to ask. Oh just so you i charge 25 to.jailbreak. Yeah crazy right. If someone is too lazy to do it themselves and they come to me. They will always agree to the price. I think i may have to GUIDE you
    1. Co1d Night's Avatar
      Co1d Night -
      Quote Originally Posted by Westerman View Post
      Okay then why are you doing it for 10 dollars more than the part cost?
      The extra $10 would cover shipping costs (if any) and for the service of the product.

      Sent from my iPod touch using ModMyi