Over the years I have ‘jailbroken’ my iPhone 2G, 3G, and 3GS. Additionally, I have installed a variety of leaked BlackBerry OS’s on my Storm 9530, and a LOT of those leaked ROMs were run through Shrink-a-OS to remove stuff I don’t need or use. On top of that I have rooted my Motorola Droid and HTC Incredible and installed custom ROMs and updated firmware. I have always had a concern in the back of my mind about potential security issues with the non-approved Operating Systems. I have been going back and forth between installing and not installing these builds despite the security risk. This is an area OS vendors need to work quickly to address. I hope that they do, and I fear that they might. Yes, I understand the apparent contradiction here.
It is not far fetched for a malicious person to put something bad into any of these Operating Systems that you rush to install, and despite that, there still is a draw. For me it has always been about missing functionality or hope for better performance. With the iPhone, I wanted the ability to use a non- AT&T SIM when I traveled outside of the US. For Android, it was about Wi-Fi tethering and screenshots. On BlackBerry, it was about the poor performance of the initial builds for the Storm.
However, it is the very nature of how carriers and OS manufactures work that creates this leaked/jailbreak/root community. I have not seen a case of any of these communities doing something malicious, but that does not mean it will not happen. Nor does it mean that it will, either.
As much as I like the Bold 9650, I would like to have BlackBerry 6. I honestly believe before the month of August is over BBLeaks will post a leaked version of BlackBerry 6 for the Bold 9650 and my technical animal instincts will kick in. I have the exact same feeling about any Android phone. I can pay the carrier (Verizon) $20 per month for tethering or I can just root my phone and have a free Wi-Fi tethering app. We all know BlackBerry 6 is supposed to have Mobile Hotspot and that feature is calling me too.
Maybe I am hopeless and will always install custom OS’s because I just want the latest and greatest. Hopefully companies can become faster with updates. The BlackBerry does not have a jailbreak/root community today, but are leaked OS’s as much of a risk, especially since app modules can be switched in and out?
I am torn between these two extremes: just leaving it alone and waiting upon the mercies of these slow, staid, hulking corporate behemoths who will get around to it eventually (maybe?), or the other extreme of throwing caution to the wind and taking my destiny into my own hands and trying to manage the risk. You know that old adage that says “A man who sells his freedom for security in the end gets neither” (Benjamin Franklin) it is not just about politics. The one thing that I do not want to happen is to have the choice removed altogether. I would rather decide for myself which path to take and have that possibility of choice. How do you feel about this?