For example, Apple doesn't allow you to customize the general user interface of your device. Thanks to the jailbreak community, there are many jailbreak tweaks that completely change the way your device looks, whether it be changing icons, hiding icon names, adding more than four applications to the dock, customizing dark mode, or applying an entire theme, sounds and all.

If you value function over aesthetics, jailbreaking can cater to you too. Functionality tweaks, which bring subtle improvements to the way the device operates, are also popular. Swiping across the keyboard to move the text cursor rather than fiddling with the magnifying glass, setting your phone to perform complex events in response to certain button combinations, turning off read receipts in third-party messengers, installing apps from unknown sources, connecting wirelessly to other devices via SSH, displaying Wi-Fi channel and strength information, the list goes on and on. If you've ever been bothered by a small aesthetic or functional hindrance in Apple's OS, chances are there's a package out there to help you get it just the way you want it.

For more on the benefits of jailbreaking, be sure to read our dedicated spiel listing 10+ reasons to jailbreak your iPhone or iPad in 2020.

Is jailbreaking legal?

First, let's clear up a common misconception: jailbreaking is completely legal. There was a time, prior to 2010, when jailbreaking was implied to be illegal by the US government, due to its relevance in breach of copyright litigation. However, for many years now the government has periodically upheld the status of jailbreaking as explicitly legal, and exempted it from broader issues of copyright law.

The status in other countries varies, but generally falls into "neither legal nor illegal provided it is not used for copyright infringement, and never going to a court of law anyway." In summary, there is really nothing to worry about. Even if you don't live in the US, there's almost no chance that Apple would come after you for jailbreaking your device. It hasn't happened a single time, in any country, despite a flourishing community jailbreaking since 2007.

Please note this important distinction: the act of jailbreaking is not illegal.

However, any crimes you commit on the device remain illegal. If you use your jailbreak to illegally torrent movies, download paid apps for free, or commit other cyber and copyright crimes (otherwise known as piracy), then you're still breaking the law. Stick to using your jailbreak to set up your device the way you want it, not to steal.

Does jailbreaking void my warranty?

Yes and no. Yes, because if you go to the Apple store with a jailbroken device in order to receive support, repair or service, you will be refused (provided they notice). Whilst Apple acknowledges the US government's DMCA exemption ruling that makes jailbreaking legal, that doesn't mean that they have to allow it in their warranty agreement. Basically, it's illegal for them to stop you from doing what you want with your device, but it's legal for them to refuse to provide any support for it if you have done anything they don't like.

From Apple's support article on jailbreaking:

Apple strongly cautions against installing any software that hacks the iOS. It is also important to note that unauthorized modification of the iOS is a violation of the iPhone end-user license agreement and because of this, Apple may deny service for an iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch that has installed any unauthorized software.

However, there's a simple workaround to the warranty question too. If you have to take your device to an Apple store, just restore it to its factory settings beforehand. This completely removes all traces of having jailbroken, and the stock device will then be accepted by Apple under warranty. There will be no way of knowing you jailbroke it.

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