iOS 6 jailbreak is here, but not for iPhone 5 or iPad

Got an iPhone 4 or 3GS, or a fourth-generation iPod Touch? If you do, and you upgraded to iOS 6, you can now jailbreak it.

This latest jailbreak comes courtesy of the iPhone Dev-Team. the Dev-Team hacked away at developer versions of iOS 6 to develop a jailbreak method, with mixed results. The newest release of the Redsn0w jailbreak tool gets the job done, though, but with a couple of catches.

First, the jailbreak is currently a tethered one, so you'll have to plug your iPhone into a computer and run Redsn0w whenever you restart it. If you don't, you'll lose the jailbreak, so this hack isn't exactly ideal. Also, if you have an iPhone 4S, a shiny new iPhone 5, a second- or third-generation iPad, or a fifth-generation iPod touch, you'll have to wait a bit longer, because this jailbreak only works with iPhone and iPod touch models built around the A4 chip.

[Update: Well, that was quick. Developer Grant Paul (aka chpwntweeted a screenshot of a jailbroken iPhone 5. The phone's homescreen displays the icon for Cydia, the app repository for jailbroken iPhones. Don't get your hopes just just yet, though; Grant hasn't confirmed if the jailbreak used Redsn0w, and we can't yet see how well Cydia actually works once you open the app. It will be interesting to find out soon how this was achieved, and when a publically availble version will follow.]

Jailbreaking can let you get at all sorts of additional apps and add-ons for your iPhone, but it isn't without its risks. Apple doesn't condone jailbreaking, and doing so could potentially void your warranty, so if something goes wrong, you may be on your own. And remember that a future update could undo your jailbreak, so it is by no means permanent. See our primer on jailbreaking for more.

If you have an older iPhone and want to give extra freedom a chance, once you back up your phone, head over to Redmond Pie for a a step-by-step guide on how to use Redsn0w.

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