Three months after iOS 7 was made available to the public alongside Apple’s new iPhones, hacking group Evasi0n finally released an untethered jailbreak for iOS 7 yesterday, but soon found itself in hot soup.
In the course of developing the iOS 7 jailbreak, Evasi0n was approached by Chinese app store TaiG to offer it bundled with the jailbreak in China. The group took it up — but TaiG turned out to be a piracy app market.
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UPDATE: One of the creators behind the iOS 7 jailbreak, pod2g, says that TaiG will no longer be installed by default for those who download the jailbreak in China.
We have decided to remotely disable the default installation of TaiG in China for further investigations on the piracy issue.
— pod2g (@pod2g) December 23, 2013
In an attempt to clarify matters, Evasi0n has published a letter to the jailbreaking community saying it is “deeply sorry and embarrassed about the piracy that was seen today.”
Evasi0n explained that it originally believed TaiG was “well suited to meet the needs of users for the Chinese market” and that TaiG was simply meant as a bundled third-party app store in China, similar to the way Evasi0n has bundled and distributed Cydia around the world as an additional app store.
Evasi0n also says it contractually bound TaiG to not have piracy in their store when signing an agreement.
In entering the agreement with them, we had hoped and continue to hope that our cooperation with Taig will improve the piracy situation in China. Many App Stores within China, including those run by large corporations, have many issues with pirated software. Promoting an app store that is required not to have piracy with our jailbreak, we believe, will help developers.
This belief, even if it started out with good intentions, has turned out to be an embarrassing snafu — after all China isn’t an easy place to conduct business in, and the Evasi0n team may have taken on more than it could chew.
Cydia creator Jay Freeman (better known as Saurik) also jumped into the fray, saying he already warned the Evasi0n team about TaiG.
BTW, I knew about TaiG 2 months ago: I warned evad3rs it was sketchy, told them there would be piracy, and tried to find them a better deal.
— Jay Freeman (saurik) (@saurik) December 22, 2013
Many have accused Evasi0n of linking up with TaiG because the app store paid good money. The team acknowledges that it has benefited financially from its work, but insists that the “interests of the community will always be the most important thing” to them and says it is “deeply upset” by how the community has been distressed this time round.
The Evasi0n team says that TaiG has been working to resolve the piracy problem and is removing all examples of it found in their app store. If the piracy cannot be weeded out, TaiG will be pulled from the jailbreak, Evasi0n says.
Headline image via Lintao Zhang/Getty Images