Hackers have released software designed to break Apple's stranglehold on apps for its iPhone.
The so-called "jailbreak" software for the iPad and newer versions of the iPhone, allows users to install applications that have not been authorised by device maker.
According to reports, the software, called Spirit, was released over the weekend and is available for iPhone OS firmware 3.1.2, 3.1.3, and 3.2.
It is not known whether it will be compatible with the forthcoming version OS 4.0 which will come within the next two months.
Spirit allows iPad and iPhone users to install unapproved third-party applications, change their phone wallpaper and to use their iPad to as a modem for their computer.
However, according to a tech expert, the Spirit software only works on iPhones and iPads that have been activated and run an unmodified version of the firmware.
The developers of the jailbreaking solution say on their website that "Some packages in Cydia, not designed for iPad, might screw up your system and require you to restore" and advise to use Windows 95 compatibility mode when encountering one common error.
The Windows or MacOSX version can be downloaded from here.