Apple's brand new iOS5 jailbroken already

iPhone Dev Team stalwart MuscleNerd reckons he has jailbroken Apple's soon-to-be-released mobile operating system just hours after its announcement but, don't get too excited just yet, as there are some caveats.

Firstly, the hack is a tethered jailbreak, which means the device must be hooked up to a host PC or Mac every time you power cycle it. Secondly, the hacker is almost certainly working on a pre-release developer beta of the software meaning Apple could include additional security measures, or block already-known vulnerabilities, in the final public release.

There's also no indication of if or when a public release will happen, and when it does it will probably struggle with carrier unlocks as most recent jailbreaks have.

Even if you do mange to get the iDevice in question up and running, we're willing to bet that Apple will find some way of keeping jailbroken devices out of its new iCloud service which, despite some negative rumblings from certain corners of the Internet, looks set to become yet another game-changing development from Steve Jobs and his little helpers.

To be honest, we get the distinct feeling that, since US courts ruled that jailbreaking was legal, Apple is pretty much nonplussed about code-wranglers footling about in their own iPhone's innards, as long as it doesn't take cash out of Apple's coffers.

And as most of the apps available through the likes of Cydia do little more than add interface elements and unlock restrictions imposed by Apple on the GUI, there's little point spending lots of time, effort and money trying to make the hackers go away.

Apple might lose a few bucks every time someone unlocks a carrier or bootlegs an app, but all of that pales into insignificance compared with the bucketloads of cash the Cupertino company trousers from its virtual monopoly of the legal download market for both software and media.