Introducing the iDB app for iPhone

By , Mar 14, 2016

iDB app in App Store

It took us several years to get here, but today we’re pleased to announce that we have released an iDB app for iPhone, available now in the App Store. Before I go into the details behind the app’s development, head over to the App Store to download it for free right now.

For the past several years, I’ve put off developing an app because, quite frankly, I didn’t feel there was a real need for one. Sure, a few loyal readers were asking for an iDB app, but in my mind, there was nothing substantial an App Store app could offer over the web-based version of the website that you can just visit in Safari.

Late last year, I began thinking about an app that would take a different approach from what every other blog has launched on the App Store. The core idea was that I definitely wanted to stay away from the vertically scrollable format used by most news apps or web apps. I also wanted a format that would give all content inside the app a chance to be seen, instead of accidentally skipped by a quick swipe up gesture. As a result, you’ll see the iDB app offers a different experience.

A different experience

Many other apps before this one used that simple card-based design concept, such as Paper by Facebook, and Tinder, and all these apps have something in common: they make for a completely different interaction with the device, which is something I really wanted the iDB app to offer.

Scrolling up and down can be a somewhat passive gesture, and it can cause you to accidentally miss an interesting article while scrolling. Scrolling up and down is also the de facto gesture used by most news apps, and like I touched on earlier, I wanted something different from the run-of-the-mill app format; something original, and, dare I say, fun to use!

iDB app cards

The biggest benefits of using cards to provide content in our app is how it gives all content a chance to be seen. Unless you’re just swiping without looking at your screen, there is just no way you will miss a post on iDB.

How does it work?

I don’t think anyone will need a tutorial to use the app, but nonetheless, here is a quick run down on how you can use it.

Upon launching it, you will be presented with a card showing the latest article published on iDB. From there, you can swipe left or right or tap on the left and right arrow buttons to navigate through other posted content on iDB.

See something you like? Just tap on it to read the full article; you’ll be presented with the article content in full rich formatting with pictures, and videos. You will also be able to tap the Comment button at the bottom to leave a comment. We have implemented Disqus support and we’ve even implemented 1password support so you can login quickly and easily.

iDB app commenting

If an article contains an embedded video or a podcast, you can view the video directly from the app and listen to the podcast from it as well. Even better, the app will let you background the podcast so you can listen to it even if you close the app and lock your iPhone, or open another app.

Once you’re done reading the article, you’ll be able to share it using the stock iOS share sheet, then swipe to close the Article view and go back to Card view.

If you want to check for new articles, you just tap the Refresh button, which will reload the app and take you to the very latest article card. Simple enough!

From the app’s settings, you can adjust the font style and size. I particularly like using the Helvetica Neue font. I think it makes for a very modern look.

About ads

Believe it or not, we all need to make money, which is why we have added ads to the app. You will only see an ad every so often in Card view. There are also two ads in Article view.

Obviously, we wish money wasn’t an issue and we’d have loved to release an app without any ad whatsoever, but the reality is that these ads help pay the people who write for iDB, including Anthony, Christian, Cody, Timothy, Jim, and myself. This is what keeps the good content coming!

For those that totally hate ads and feel this will be a deal-breaker, the good news is an upcoming update will include an in-app subscription purchase that will allow you to remove these ads (and more). Stay tuned for this update.

We had to suck it up

Releasing an app in the App Store means abiding to Apple’s rules, even those that are unwritten, such as displaying jailbreak-related content inside the app itself.

Because we’ve spent significant time and resources to make this app, we definitely don’t want to take the risk of having it removed from the App Store just because it contains content related to jailbreaking. We know, it sucks, but that’s the way it has to be to host our app in the App Store.

Apple has already removed our Let’s Talk Jailbreak podcast from iTunes (without giving us any clear explanation, mind you), and has also taken down apps from sites focusing on jailbreaking, so we know for a fact it’s something they won’t let us fly with in the App Store.

We’re probably even more bummed out about it than you are, because we love covering jailbreak content and we love to bring this content to you, but at the end of the day, there is nothing we can do about this.

But fear not, we will of course still be covering jailbreak news and tweaks on iDB. That content will be available on the site, but it won’t be available in the app for the reasons I mentioned above.

There is more to come

This is just the beginning for the iDB app, and we do have more features coming in the next few weeks, including the ability to remove ads, receive push notifications, bookmark your favorite articles, and mark articles for offline reading. Heck, we’ll even have a basic Apple Watch app to use on your wrist!

In the meantime, please give the app a try and see for yourself. Personally, the iDB app has quickly become my favorite way to browse the site, as well as read and reply to comments. There is something almost addictive about it.

If you have any question or comment, don’t hesitate to send them to

If you haven’t already done so, go download the iDB app for iPhone in the App Store now.

  • Share:
  • Follow:
  • Stephaughn Alston

    Interesting that you guys don’t have an option for the San Francisco font in the settings. Coming in a future update?

    • Likely not

      • Steve Harvey

        Why? I really want it!

  • iphone72

    I will continue using the web-based version. I like reading about the jailbreak news…so no reason for me to download the app, but congrats anyway!

    • Anonymous

      I felt the same way.

  • James G

    Awesome! Looking forward to that in-app purchase to remove ads.

    • James G

      Make sure you price it well, I want you getting the better end of the deal. Ads are annoying in apps.

  • Kenneth Delgado

    Loving this app, but needs some work.

  • The Fluffy Alpaca

    This is definitely getting a place on the first homescreen.

  • andreags4

    The first impression is “wow this is very cool”, but when you see ads popping out randomly, you’ll get to uninstall it.

  • You must have misunderstood what was said in this post. There will always be jailbreak content on the website. However, jailbreak content will not make its way into the app, because Apple would most definitely pull it out of the App Store for that reason.

  • Rob_Huska

    I totally understand the ads, but is there anyway to limit the style of ads? It seems that everyone closes in differs ways. Just something to make a necessary item be a little more convenient for users.

    • There are links to ALL jailbreak related articles both on the desktop and mobile versions of the site.

      • Rob_Huska

        Unless I missed something, I know there is one for each Jailbreak News, Jailbreak Tweaks, and Cydia. I was referring to one that brought in all three of those at once. I know it’s kind of petty and if it’s not implemented I will just get used to using those 3 separate filters. It was just a suggestion.

      • There is a link on both the mobile and desktop version of the site to all jailbreak-related content. It’s not hidden either. I think it’s the first or second link in the menu of the mobile site. It’s the second link under the “jailbreak” menu of the desktop site. Link is

      • Rob_Huska

        I see, so it is the Jailbreak News link will give all content, including tweaks and news! perfect. That is how I will navigate the site! Thanks.

        Really nice work on the app by the way. I hope my comments didn’t take away from my that.

  • azriyassin

    great…. downloaded now

  • Rakesh Jain

    Installed already yesterday. Nice app. Earlier I used flipboard just for iDB updates. Can enable push notifications by any chance (or I’m missing something?)..

    • Push notifications will come in a future update

  • spartan locke

    For the app u guy should add what time u posted the news that would be helpful and make ur app very good thanks

  • port87

    u want jailbreak news? theres an app for that.

  • Pablo

    Hey Sebastien great work! I love the new way to scroll through news. If I may, I’d suggest to add a way to search through the news (e.g. to search wallpapers of the week news, etc), add Apple Watch support and if you aren’t showing jb news here, you could put sonething in the app to let the reader know there is content not showing here (using the space the news would have use). iPad app would also be great, specially because it is so much easy to log in to Disqus from the app. Again, great work, I’ve been waiting for this app so long!

  • faisal

    downloaded this and used it and liked it… and i thought i wouldnt comment here telling everyone here that i had downloaded and used the app… but since i see how beautiful the app is… just had to .. great going guys… keep up the good work.

  • OWashe


  • Fawaz

    woow finally i downloaded the app
    its really awesome…
    i was waiting for this only

  • Alex

    Is the launch of the app why the webpage only shows a blank white page since a few days ago??

    • Nothing has changed on the site so the problem comes from your ad blocker, not from here

  • Finnly

  • Troy

    Good job Sebastian. I don’t mind the ads on the app. I always use adblockers but I don’t find the ads on the app intrusive. I can’t say much for the mobile version or desktop version.

    Kudos. You’ll be earning my views. I’ll even click on a few ads to support you guys. I see that you guys use Admob. good luck

    Edit: sorry, looks like I spoke too soon. Was swiping between articles while listening to a podcast (ironically your most recent one about this app) and a pop up with audio popped up (interrupted my podcast). So sorry. Looks like I’ll be sticking to mobile version 🙁

  • Frank Lobitz


  • leart

    i was hopping for a iOS 7 support but noooo, iOS 8 and latter

  • GeekCornerUK

    Fantastic app really like the style

  • Andres

    I think it’s funny how the iDB app icon looks just like the Remote app and Safari app

    • Cristian B

      lol yep

  • zoLa siWisa

    App is flawless, I only have trouble to connect with Google+ with a 2 verification option on a iPhone 6s Plus… Oh the other coolthing is when I was updating Social Squre… Their team gave a cool shout out

  • Sandeep Roy

    Oh Yes ! Congrats to the team !

  • John Tremendol

    Really Happy for the iDB app! Also half of the traffic on your website is caused by me because i only have 1 bookmark on my phone & whenever i feel like my internet isn’t working (which i feel alot) i open your website to check since it opens instantly. 😀

  • Matt

    Great job with the app @seb481:disqus! I really like the design! Two things I noticed:
    1. The app stops playing any background audio when you launch it. If this is intentional, then that’s fine.
    2. The app has used 11% of my battery in the last 24 hours. This is a fairly significant amount for my app usage.

    • Hi thanks for the feedback.

      1. This is not really intentional and we’re looking into it.

      2. I am not sure what to tell you about your battery usage. Despite spending considerable amounts of time inside the app, mine only shows at 5% for both the past 24 hours and the past 7 days. I don’t want to say there is no issue here, however, I would suggest checking back in a day or two and making sure this is indeed an issue that should be addressed rather than a one-off behavior. If you’re still experiencing issues after a few days, please send feedback via the Settings panel inside the app. Thanks

  • neoamaru

    fiuh, way overdue, but better late & excellent than never!
    Great job Sebastien!!

  • lookHOWMADheis

    i wish i could have helped out with the development of this

  • The app keeps crashing; i don’t have jailbreak, i’m on iOS 9.2, I reinstall twice, and also make hard reboot, but the app won’t open

  • as a UI/UX designer I really don’t like the design of the app, the back and forward buttons are really big, and creates a really waste of space. The shadow is really heavy, the tinder effect, probably great, but takes a lot of time go forward or backward, the settings button is useless since the same “settings” are present inside every post.

    It’s great the fact that you have an iPhone app, I personally have a lot of time waiting for something like that, but not always a “clean” design is a great design.

  • Julian

    I can’t seem to get the comments to load up in the app. They work fine in Safari. Am I missing something?

    • Try deleting the app and installing again.

      • Julian

        I did this and it didn’t work. Maybe it’s just my iPhone, I’ll try on iPad.

  • Espekayen

    Very nice app. Looking forward to paying the subscription so I can lose the ads. Keep up the great work.