Pangu jailbreak for iOS 8 – iOS 8.1 released, then pulled out!

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The Pangu team has released a jailbreak for iOS 8 – iOS 8.1 devices today, just about 35 days after the launch of Apple’s latest mobile operating system. The download link for Pangu for iOS 8 was briefly available on the official Pangu website before being pulled a few minutes later.

Although this is great news for jailbreakers, it does come with a few strings attached that make this initial iOS 8 jailbreak release somewhat useless for the time being.

Pangu iOS 8 – iOS 8.1 does not install Cydia yet

The first thing to note is that this jailbreak will not install Cydia at this time. Only providing basic SSH access, it appears that this initial release of Pangu is mostly geared towards developers so they can update their tweak for iOS 8. Of course, it is also necessary that Saurik updates Cydia for iOS 8 in order to make it compatible with the newly updated operating system, which explains why Cydia is not bundled into Pangu for iOS 8 right off the bat.

In short, although you could technically jailbreak your device, it wouldn’t do any good to the majority of users as Cydia wouldn’t be packaged with the jailbreak.

The good news is that Saurik is currently working on updating Cydia for the iOS 8 – 8.1 Pangu jailbreak, as announced on reddit recently, although he didn’t provide any ETA. Saurik explains:

So, windknown has contacted me, about a half hour ago, via e-mail. He has told me one of the issues that is keeping Substrate from working on the device, which will probably require me to build a little binary patch for dyld as part of the Substrate installation sequence. This was the worst possible day for me, as I’m traveling back to Santa Barbara today (I’m currently in Texas, having come here to give a talk at The Big Android BBQ), which means this will take me a little longer than I’d like, but clearly getting Cydia and Substrate working on iOS 8 is my highest priority. I thankfully think that I actually can start working a little on one of the Substrate issues using an iOS 7 “model” based on the information provided by windknown, which means I’ll lose less time to not having all of my devices with me. (I currently have no clue why Cydia itself is not functioning, but will find out later today when I can see it myself.)

A broken Windows only version (so far)

This release of Pangu iOS 8 – iOS 8.1 is for Windows only, but it appears that the Pangu team removed the download link, likely to fix issues linked to this initial release. The website still provides information about the jailbreak process, which might be useful to anyone looking to jailbreak their device once a stable version is available.

At this time, we were not able to successfully jailbreak any iOS device with this first release of Pangu. We actually have yet to see reports of a successful jailbreak instal. We will of course provide updates as a new version is released.

It is fair to assume that a Mac version will also be available at a later time.

Device compatibility

According to Pangu’s website, Pangu for iOS 8 – iOS 8.1 is compatible with the following devices:

iPod touch 5G
iPhone 4s, iPhone 5, iPhone 5s, iPhone 5c, iPhone 6, iPhone 6 Plus
iPad mini, iPad mini 2, iPad mini 3, iPad, iPad Air, iPad Air 2 (we’re not entirely sure about the iPad compatibility here)
Preparing for the iOS 8 – iOS 8.1 jailbreak

Maybe the first thing anyone should do before playing around with this version of Pangu is to backup their device.

As noted on the official Pangu website, it is recommended to update to iOS 8.1 or restore to iOS 8.1 via iTunes before proceeding with the jailbreak process. Over The Air updates can apparently cause problems during the process, and restoring/updating to iOS 8.1 via iTunes seems to be the best option at this time.

The Pangu Team also suggests turning off Lock screen passcode and Find My iPhone via Settings > iCloud before proceeding. Finally, the team notes that similarly to the official iOS 8 update, users are required to have some storage space left on their device in order for Pangu to run.

These are basic rules shared by the Pangu Team that are unlikely to change, even when a more stable version packaged with Cydia is available a little later.

Jailbreak instructions

We are currently looking at Pangu for iOS 8 – iOS 8.1 and will provide a set of instructions in a separate post when done. But again, note that these instructions will be limited by the current nature of this jailbreak. As we always do, we’ll provide updated instructions as Pangu is updated.

As we noted above, we’re currently unable to get Pangu to work with any iOS 8 device we tested. Like most people, we’re getting a Touch ID error.

ECB’s recommendation

At this time, we highly suggest you stay away from this jailbreak until further notice. As noted above, this release is mostly for developers and for Saurik himself to update Cydia for iOS 8. Even if you were able to jailbreak now, you wouldn’t be able to do much with your device at this time, unless you’re a developer.

Although the only download link for Pangu that was available has been pulled, there are still a few mirrors floating around the web. We don’t believe it’s a good idea for most users to use one of these links at the time, for all the reasons mentioned above. If you do, please proceed at your own risks.

What you can do now is get ready for an upcoming version of Pangu by updating or restoring to iOS 8.1 using iTunes (not OTA). This will ensure that you’re fully ready when a stable version of Pangu is released.

Apple releases iOS 8.1 with Apple Pay, iCloud Photo Library, SMS Relay & Instant Hotspot, bug fixes and improvements.

iOS-8-logo-mockup-001

As promised, Apple on Monday released iOS 8.1 for public consumption. Users who have an older version installed on their iPhone, iPod touch or iPad can now update to the latest software over-the-air, by choosing Software Update under Settings > General.

iOS 8.1 flips the switch on Apple Pay in the United States on the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus, as well as the newly released iPad Air 2and iPad mini 3.

It also re-enables the missing Camera Roll album in Photos and beta iCloud Photo Library (in beta) while bringing additional Continuity features like Text Message Forwarding between iOS 8 devices and Yosemite Macs and more.

Apple Pay, a headline new feature in iOS 8.1 supports mobile payments in apps, on websites and at select brick-and-mortar locations. On devices that don’t have NFC, like the iPhone 5s, iPad Air 2 and iPad mini 3, Apple Pay only works when you buy stuff online and through apps.

To recap, here are the supported devices for Apple Pay:

  • iPhone 6 (in-app, online and in-store purchases)
  • iPhone 6 Plus (in-app, online and in-store purchases)
  • iPad Air 2 (in-app and online purchases only)
  • iPad mini 3 (in-app and online purchases only)

Although Apple’s marketing materials don’t make the distinction between in-app and online purchases, Safari is technically and app. Moreover, company executives did say during the WWDC keynote that Apple Pay will be supported by participating online stores through a browser.

Apple Pay is also coming to Apple Watch early next year, extending Apple Pay to over 200 million owners of iPhone 5, iPhone 5c and iPhone 5s worldwide, Apple said in a media release.

Apple-Pay-device-requirements-001

Another cool new feature: Text Message Forwarding.

It lets you receive text messages in the Messages app alongside iMessages on Macs running Yosemite and iPads and iPod touches running iOS 8.1. Text messages are actually routed through a user’s iPhone, allowing you to both send and receive SMS directly from a Mac or iPad.

Text Message Forwarding requires that both your Mac and iOS device be on the same Wi-Fi network and have Bluetooth turned on for proximity.

iOS-8-SMS-Relay-iPhone-and-iPad-001

iCloud Photo Library, a built-in service that puts your entire photo library in the cloud, is now available as a beta to everyone in iOS 8.1. Once enabled in Settings > iCloud > Photos, your device will automatically upload and store your photos and videos in iCloud and sync any changes between devices.

iOS-8-Beta-2-iCloud-Photos-welcome-page

You can elect to “Optimize Storage” to keep device-optimized versions of photos on an iOS device or “Download and Keep Originals”, which stores full-resolution photos and videos on your device. Just to clear up any confusion, iCloud always keeps your snaps and videos in their original resolution.

Your iCloud Photo Library is also available via a brand new Photos app in iCloud’s web interface, depicted above, using any Mac or Windows PC running the latest version of Safari, Chrome or Firefox. And in early-2015, a Mac edition of iOS’s stock Photos app will launch allowing for the complete end-to-end photo-syncing solution between desktop, mobile and the web.

iCloud Photo Library is great, but you’ll quickly run out of space as every iCloud account includes a meager five gigabytes of free storage. Apple’s iCloud storage upgrade pricingisn’t the most competitive: the firm is offering 20 gigabytes for 99 cents per month, 200 gigabytes in exchange for five bucks per month, 500GB for $9.99 per month and 1TB for $19.99 per month.

icloud-drive-price

Compare this to the $9.99 1TB Dropbox Pro plan (same as Google).

Microsoft is offering 1TB OneDrive bucket for seven bucks per month and they’re also throwing in Office 365 for that price. By the way, if you’re serious about iPhone photography you should consider Yahoo’s Flickr service, which includes one terabyte of free storage for your photos.

As mentioned before, iOS 8.1 also brings back the Camera Roll album which went missing in iOS 8. The Camera Roll album collates only the photos you’ve taken directly on the device or saved from Mail and other apps. The Camera Roll comeback makes the operating system compatible with applications that required it, such as WhatsApp.

iOS-8-Photos-search

The problem stems, as many have complained, from the fact that iOS 8.0 has removed the system-wide Camera Roll album for no apparent reason. In addition to these features, iOS 8.1 contains bug fixes, performance enhancements and several improvements listed below.

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iOS 8.1 includes other nice-to-haves

A new Enable Dictation toggle in Settings > General > Keyboards (seen above) is now available. Moreover, you’ll notice slightly larger app icons when managing your widgets in the Notification Center. The iBooks icon has been slightly redesigned and there’s now an alternative way to access privacy settings on a per-app basis, through their respective pane in the Settings app, as pictured below.

use-cellular-data

Note that certain iOS 8 features are only available in select markets.

The operating system is compatible with:

  • iPhone 4s
  • iPhone 5/5c
  • iPhone 5s
  • iPhone 6/Plus
  • iPad 2, 3 and 4
  • iPad Air and iPad Air 2
  • iPad mini and iPad mini 2
  • iPod touch (fifth-generation)

Tip: Don’t put iOS 8 on your iPhone 4S!

Apple has made it so that that iOS 8, which goes out to the public today, will work on iPhones reaching all the way back to the venerable 4S. Which is good! But as Ars Technica found out the hard way, subjecting your elderly iPhone to new software may not be worth it. At least not yet.

The 4S, which first hit the streets nearly three years ago, does its damnedest to keep up with the software designed for its bigger (and even biggerer) younger siblings. But it just plain doesn’t have the hardware to support some of iOS 8’s biggest features, like Touch ID, AirDrop, and the Metal graphics API.

And even with the stuff it can handle, the poor 4S gets winded pretty quickly. Ars points out that the phone’s guts offer about a quarter of the performance of the iPhone 5S, and an even smaller fraction compared to the newest iPhone 6. Apps launch more slowly—sometimes taking 50 percent longer to load—with herky-jerky transitions that hang and hesitate.

 

All of which is kind of secondary to the main problem: The 4S was the last of Apple’s phones with a 3.5-inch screen. That size was once considered the golden rectangle of smartphones. But everything is bigger in the future, including iPhones, and the added rows of buttons and bars that appear in many iOS 8 apps eat up valuable screen real estate on the great-granddaddy iPhone.

So yes, it’s entirely possible for you to download the brand new iOS on your brand-old iPhone. And by doing so you’ll get a lot of goodies like more keyboard options (finally) and fun widgets.Ars ultimately concludes that it’s a trade-off you should go ahead and make.

But to us, cramming that shiny new software into the 4S’s cozy yet slightly musty house is a tight fit that will leave phone and user alike groaning. New features like widgets and alternate keyboards are nice, but not at the cost of so much screen space and speed.

Have some pity on the old warhorse, and let it stay pleasantly outdated, for its sanity and your own. Or at the very least, just wait it out a while; there’s a good chance iOS 8.1 will do more to bring older devices along for the ride. [