Siri, Apple's much sought-after personal assistant, can be accessed by jailbroken iPhones using a hacking application called Spire, according to iOS 5 cracker Chpwn.
Before users begin downloading, however, they should know that getting the hack itself is just the beginning. There are many more steps beyond getting Spire in order to actually use Siri on an older iOS 5 device, and even then users put themselves at risk for getting hacked by others.
The Spire hack, posted on Cydia, allows users to download Siri from Apple's server onto older versions of the iPhone, eliminating one of the main differences between the iPhone 4 and the iPhone 4S.
[Spire is] a new tool for installing Siri on previously unsupported, but jailbroken, devices, said Chpwn (real name Grant Paul), who with Ryan Petrich and Steven Troughton-Smith unveiled Spire earlier this week.
The 100MB download (Chpwn recommends using Wi-Fi to help it along) will add Siri to any device running iOS 5. That means any jailbreak iPhone 4, iPhone 3GS, third and fourth generation iPod touch and first generation iPad will qualify for a free download of the popular app.
The Siri hack is even legal, according to Chpwn, bypassing copyright issues with Apple that have stopped other cracks in the past. Spire uses a new method to obtain the files necessary for Siri, so it doesn't have the copyright issues encountered by previous attempts, Chpwn said.
Issues with Spire's Siri Hack
Before users head to Cydia, however, they would do well to read this first.
Even if you download Spire and use it to crack Siri, your jailbroken iPhone, iPod or iPad will still need authentication to use Siri's servers. That means Siri won't even be activated unless you can use a proxy servers with iPhone 4S credentials, the same problem other Siri cracks trying to avoid Apple's legal team have run into.
In a blog post, Chpwn offers several suggestions for how to bypass this problem. One, hardly a problem saver, is to buy an iPhone 4S and use the authentication via proxy.
A cheaper route would be to ask some (very understanding) friends to let them borrow their iPhone 4S and use it as a proxy, instead. The software might also work if Apple offers a pay-as-you-go service on the product in question.
Still, all this sounds pretty complicated (and requires more than some Apple users' standard technical know-how) to achieve quick and easy results.
And another risk factor, one users are already posting about, is that all the data stored on your iPhone, iPod or iPad would run through Siri servers that, being hacked, aren't protected the way they would be on an iPhone 4S.
Remember kids, Troughton-Smith tweeted, keep safe- all your contacts/mail/SMS/GPS go through it.
'You'll be able to figure something out.'
“Spire is far from perfect, but at least at this point in time, it’s the best that I can do,” Chpwn said of the proxy issue. “Maybe in the future someone will find a way to evade the authorization requirement, but from my position here that’s unlikely.
Hopefully, however, you’ll be able to figure something out.”
If you're an Apple fan who's not as tech-savvy, it's probably best to save up for an iPhone 4S or simply wait for it to arrive for earlier, cheaper models. If you want to take a chance, however, and wade through the issues of authorization by proxy, Spire is the closest to a true Siri hack you've got, and is definitely one of the legal ones.
Must Read: Spire Ports Siri to Jailbroken iOS Devices