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Jun 4, 2014

Samsung Galaxy S5 Google Play Edition Allegedly Leaks Online

Galaxy S5, Samsung’s newest flagship Android smartphone, has been on the market for about two months now, and it seems that a new version of the phone will be released very soon.

According to the latest reports on the matter, Samsung is preparing the launch of a Google Play Edition of the device, and what appears to be a leaked image with the phone has emerged online today, via evleaks.at. The image shows the phone booting up, but it does not unveil too many details on the UI and software features packed inside it. The photo is not of best quality, but we can make an idea of what it will look like from the front. Of course, there’s no official confirmation available on the device, and it remains to be seen whether the actual Galaxy S5 Google Play Edition will turn out to be this way in the end.

One thing that appears to be almost certain, however, is the fact that Samsung will indeed launch this new flavor of the smartphone. It has already released such phone variants before, and other mobile phone makers out there made similar moves, some even with this year’s flagships, so we believe that it won’t miss this opportunity with Galaxy S5 either.

Samsung Galaxy S5 Google Play Edition
Image credits to evleaks.at

iPhone 4 Will Not Get iOS 8

iPhone 4 has had a tumultuous existence. In its prototype stage, it was forgotten on a stool and leaked to tech sites, to Steve Jobs’ dismay. Then it incurred the dreadful Antennagate fiasco. Then Apple pulled it out of production only to reinstate the iPhone 4 production lines for “emerging markets.” Then it got pulled again.

The final blow has yet to come, though. In fall, when everyone will be sitting on the edge of their seat waiting for iOS 8 to arrive in their OTA software updaters, iPhone 4 users will be left out in the cold. Apple confirmed its extinction in a brief compatibility chart on Monday. That’s quite a series of blows for what was once the world’s most coveted smartphone. But it’s also reality. It’s a lot like Darwin’s evolution of the species, where nature selectively favors the apt to carry on their genes, while pushing the weak to the bottom of the food chain. The phone lacks strength to run the software, so it’s deprived of it. Simple as that.

So what’s the iPhone 4 user to do in a situation like this? Well, Apple is still willing to give users credits for trading in these handsets, so the best option for them would be to consider upgrading to a newer model. Not necessarily iPhone 6 or anything too fancy, but at least a 4S. That’s the minimum requirement for iOS 8.

iPhone 4
Image credits to iFixit

How to Downgrade iOS 8 Back to iOS 7.1.1

So, you heard Apple started rolling out the iOS 8 beta and you decided to install it on your non-developer device. Chances are you’re not having the time of your life right now. Even if you do manage to get it up and running, there’s still the matter involving crashing apps and unreliable services.

Luckily for you, some of us make it our job to tell you how to fix your situation. Grab your iPhone’s USB cable and proceed with these simple steps to restore your iDevice to its previous state (assuming that state was iOS 7).

Step 1
Download the appropriate iOS 7 / 7.1 / 7.1.1 IPSW for your iDevice using the good ol' Interwebs. Surely you don’t expect us to fetch the links for you. Just use your Google skills. You’ll get there eventually. Oh alright, here's your firmware on end of post.

Step 2
With the iOS 7 IPSW downloaded to your desktop, connect your iDevice to the Mac / PC and let it show up in the iTunes bar. Right click your device and back it up. However, do note that if you want to revert to a state you’ve previously backed up, then you can just follow Step 3.

Step 3
Disconnect your iDevice from the computer and put it into DFU mode like this:
  1. Power off the device 
  2. Start holding Power button for 3 seconds
  3. Hold Home button but don't let go of the Power button for 10 seconds
  4. Keep holding Home and let go of Power, and stay like that for 15 seconds just to be sure you got it right

You should now be in DFU. Please note that it’s easy to mess up entering DFU, so if things don’t go as described in the following steps, it probably means you’ll need to retry.

Step 4
Connect your device to the computer again. This time the system should alert you that you have a device waiting in DFU mode. Choose the option to Restore iPhone with the ALT key held down (on Windows it’s the Shift key that does the trick here). This is to be able to selectively install any IPSW you have sitting on your hard drive. Which takes us to step 5.

Step 5
When prompted, select the iOS 7 IPSW that should be sitting on your desktop and hit Open. Click Restore when prompted and let the gadgets work their magic. In a few minutes you should be back in iOS 7 land. You’re welcome!

Here are firmware download link (Apple Servers):

iPhone in DFU mode alert
Image credits to Apple

iOS 8 Jailbreak Good to Go, Patches Need Minor Adjustments

Well-known hacker Stefan Esser has announced plans to jailbreak Apple’s iOS 8 using existing exploits that he developed on iOS 7.1.1. Not wanting to burn the vulnerabilities, the security expert will likely refrain from releasing the jailbreak until iOS 8 Final debuts this fall.

A series of tweets from the renowned security expert indicate that the iOS 8 jailbreak is pretty much a go. Esser says all he needs is to spend a few hours with the beta and find some relocated code to apply existing vulnerabilities. “Download finished. Initial tests show that iOS 8 beta does not fix anything. Dumped kernel fine, but code changed and patches are not found. [...] I guess tomorrow I need a few hours in the office to fix the code and then the JB should be iOS 8 beta compatible. [...] Only question is if Cydia runs at all in iOS 8,” he said. Esser recently discovered new holes in Apple’s mobile software allowing him to compromise the latest firmware, iOS 7.1.1. He showed off the feat on YouTube but refrained from releasing the actual jailbreak to the public. As avid jailbreakers will remember, Apple patched existing exploits with the release of iOS 7.1, making the newly-discovered bugs very precious indeed.

The good news is that these newly-found vulnerabilities also seem applicable to iOS 8, meaning Esser and his hacking buds know about them while Apple doesn’t. When iOS 8 is released this fall, it will basically be vulnerable-on-arrival (VOA). We’re coining the term right here, right now. Jokes aside, iOS 8 seems poised to receive its much deserved jailbreak, as the firmware versions before it. The popularity of these hacks has diminished substantially in recent times, but the hackers are still at it and many people out there still use jailbreaking as a way to download unapproved software, such as icon sets and themes. With iOS 8 slated to launch this fall, it could well be at least three to four months before jailbreak fans can get their hands on Esser’s work.

In the meantime, everyone who is a developer and has a paid subscription to the iOS Developer Program can download iOS 8 beta 1 and play around with the software at will. A beta of OS X 10.10 Yosemite is also available in the form of a Developer Preview. More information on these two topics can be found in the related links below.

Stefan Esser tweet
Image credits to Stefan Esser's Twitter feed (@i0n1c)

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