Jailbreaking an iOS device has a long history and a place in the hearts of many long-time iPhone and iPod Touch users. For a long time it was the only way to install third-party apps before the App Store was added to iOS, and for many, it remains an essential part of the iOS experience. For others, it’s unknown, dangerous, and perhaps a little intimidating. Thankfully, for those new to jailbreaking, there is a multitude of ways to do it. With tools such as Yalu102 and zJailbreak, jailbreaking is not only faster than ever but also easier. Whether you’re a hardened veteran of jailbreaking, or this is your first time trying it, this guide will help you jailbreak your iPhone or iPod Touch.
Please note: As the iPad has moved away from iOS with iPadOS, the following techniques for iOS 13 are unlikely to work on an iPad running iPadOS. If you have an older iPad though, then you’ll still be able to jailbreak older versions of iOS on the iPad — just not any iPad running iPadOS.
What is jailbreaking?
First and foremost, let’s take a moment to remember this guide is not a guarantee that you will successfully jailbreak your iPhone or iPod. When dealing with something like a jailbreak, there is always a small chance something could go wrong with your phone, and we cannot be responsible for this. But, jailbreaking, especially with Pangu, is extremely easy and you should be perfectly fine.
To jailbreak your iPhone means you are freeing it from the limitations imposed by Apple. Freeing a device means that it can install applications from outside Apple’s iTunes App Store and you can fiddle with previously restricted aspects of an iOS device. Jailbreaking can also help you unlock your iPhone to make it available on other carriers. However, it’s also worth noting that Apple warns against jailbreaking your iPhone or any other iOS device.
Once you finish jailbreaking your iPhone, you can check out our picks for the best iPhone apps and games.
Backing up your precious data
When it comes to jailbreaking a device, it’s always best to back it up first. You can back up your iPhone wirelessly with iCloud, and iTunes should automatically back up your device every time you plug it in. If you’re running Mac OS Catalina or newer, you can back up your iPhone directly to your Mac via Finder. Be sure to run a backup of your device before beginning the jailbreak process so that all your music, apps, movies, and everything in between are successfully stored on your computer or in the cloud. That way, once you complete the jailbreak process, you can run a restore and get everything back. Just make sure you’ve synced your device recently. Running a sync in iTunes will back up your device by default.
Starting the jailbreak process
In order to start the jailbreak process, you need to first update your device to the latest version of iOS. In this case, it’ll be iOS 13. You can use iTunes to manage your update, or use the more convenient over-the-air (OTA) update your device offers you (Settings > General > Software Update).
Once you plug in your device to your iTunes, it will prompt you to download and run the iOS update for your device. If you haven’t already updated to the latest version of iTunes, then you should do that as well. If you are on a newer Mac and no longer have iTunes, you can update your iPhone through Finder. If your device is not jailbroken, then you will update to iOS 13 without any problems. If your device is jailbroken, iOS will fail to complete the update and go into recovery mode. Don’t panic! Simply let iTunes or Finder run a recovery with the latest version of iOS. Once completed, the device will have been reset to factory settings.
In either case, do not sync your device just yet. Instead, quickly set up your device with Wi-Fi, your Apple ID, and everything else it prompts. You can also skip these for now and get back to them later. Make sure you get to the home screen before continuing.
For iOS 13 and newer
For this next step, you don’t need a computer at all — just the iOS device you want jailbroken. Just to be safe, reboot your device.
Hexxa Plus is the first company to release a jailbreaking solution for iOS 13, so it’s fitting that it’s the method Pangu recommends. As such, we’ll quickly walk you through installing it.
- Download Hexxa Plus on your device. Make sure to access that link from your iOS device, as it won’t work on a PC or MacBook.
- Tap Allow > Download to download it to your iOS 13 device profile. Then head to Settings > Profile Downloaded and tap the downloaded link. You may need to confirm your device’s passcode before continuing.
- Once the Hexxa Plus app is installed, you’re free to install a repo too. Pangu recommends Cydia, and to download it, open your Hexxa Plus app and tap Get Repos.
- Scroll to the App Managers Repo List and tap it, then copy the “http://ios.cyrepo.tk/” address.
- Re-open your Hexxa Plus app and tap Extract Repo. Then paste the copied address and tap Ok to extract the Cydia repo.
- Tap the Download button, then hit Allow > Go to settings > Profile Downloaded > Install. Once you’ve entered your passcode to authorize it, you’ll just need to tap Install > Done.
Now that’s installed you can use it to download other jailbreak apps or install another marketplace.
Restoring your device from iTunes or Finder
Once you’ve completed the actual jailbreak process, it’s important you take the time to restore all your precious data back onto your iOS device. If you haven’t jailbroken your device before, you may not need to do this as your device will have carried over all your data in the jailbreak process. If you have jailbroken your device before, then this will be necessary as you’ll have to do a recovery to get your device to update.
Simply plug your iPhone, iPad, or iPod Touch back into your computer, and iTunes or Finder will do the rest. By the time your restore is finished, your apps, music, photos, and precious data should all be back where they belong.
Do a victory dance!
Congratulations! You’ve done it. You have successfully completed the jailbreak and restore process for your iOS device. Be sure to run Cydia and check out all the amazing new apps and tools you can use.
Jailbreaking your iOS device is easier than ever, and if you’re an advanced user, it can be a lot of fun to unleash the true potential of your iPhone or iPad. Despite what Apple claims about the risks of jailbreaking, it’s an option you should consider to get the most out of your iOS device.