Why I jailbroke my iPhone

By: Marawan Alwaraki, October 23, 2015
About a week ago, a jailbreak was publicly released for iOS 9 devices. I'm a big fan of jailbroken iPhones so I was quick to try it out on my phone. However, over the past couple of years fewer and fewer people are finding the need to jailbreak their iPhones as iOS got better.

I'm not here to say that everyone should jailbreak their phones, but below are some improvements I've made to my iPhone - thanks to the jailbreak - that may catch your interest.

3D Touch & Live Photos


Apple introduced a new feature in the iPhone 6S called 3D Touch. The idea is if you push down on an app icon forcefully you get shortcuts to the app right from the homescreen. Also, 3D Touch can be used within apps to peek and pop content.

Thanks to some developers in the jailbreak community, all iPhone users running iOS 9 can now enjoy 3D Touch like features. RevealMenu and Forcy are two free tweaks that add homescreen shortcuts similar to the iPhone 6S. Instead of force pressing the screen you just hold down on the icon.

App shortcuts using RevealMenu

Peek and Pop are a lot harder to replicate. I've tried a tweak which adds it to older iPhones but it doesn't work well at all.

Also new with the iPhone 6S is a new feature called Live Photos. A free tweak on Cydia called Live Photos Enabler brings the feature to all iPhones. However, if you have an iPhone older than the 5S then you're better off without it as it messes up the whole Camera app.

Night Mode


Before going to bed I always spend some time using my phone. The bright white backgrounds still manage to shine bright despite minimal brightness making it a pain to use my phone with the lights off. Thankfully this isn't a problem anymore.

A paid tweak called Eclipse 2 turns bright white backgrounds into dark black ones making it easier on the eye. F.lux is a free tweak that warms up your iPhone screen at night which is also pretty useful. Combine the two together for an optimum experience.

The effect of f.lux doesn't show up in screenshots so I can't really demonstrate it, but below is what Eclipse does to your iPhone when enabled.



Mobile Data Toggle In Control Center


Perhaps one of my biggest annoyances with iOS is the lack of a mobile data toggle in the control center. Once again, the jailbreak heroes are here to rescue. Two free tweaks called FlipControlCenter and CCToggles allow users to customize their control center toggles. You can even change the app shortcuts at the bottom of the control center.


Spoken Notifications


Whenever a new notification came through while I was listening to a song or podcast using my earphones I had three options:
  • Ignore it
  • Take my phone out (gets boring if done several times during the same walk)
  • Use Siri to listen to notifications every few minutes
While it's not a big deal to take my phone out for every notification it just isn't as convenient as a tweak called Speak Notification. It's a paid tweak that reads out incoming messages, calls and other notifications. It's also highly customizable, so you can choose which notifications to allow as well as specific conditions for when a notification should be read aloud.

When I first downloaded Speak Notification I didn't configure it to only speak notifications when I'm wearing earphones. The consequence of that was that my phone read out a notification at full volume during a university lecture. So be careful!

Extras


  • YouTube ++ allows you to download videos, block ads, and play songs in the background
  • MEFacetimeiOS8 enables Facetime on unsupported devices
  • MapsOpener changes your default maps app from Apple Maps to Google Maps
  • Anemone lets you apply themes to your phone

That's pretty much it for now. It's pretty easy to jailbreak you just download an app on your computer, connect your phone, and follow some instructions. Check out this site for how to jailbreak.

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