Why Do People Think Jailbreaking Can Brick Your iPhone? [Rant]

This week has gone by faster than usual. Perhaps the Apple event made the days come and go quicker but nevertheless it’s Friday. This is the day I’ve been known to spout off about a topic that I feel needs further attention. This week I go after those who feel the need to warn people that jailbreaking your iPhone can “brick” it.

I recently posted an article announcing the recent jailbreak of my iPhone 4. Having been away from the dark side since my iPhone 3G, I wasn’t sure what to expect from the process.

Imagine my surprise when I looked for information about the risks and came across a legitimately regarded site that tells me I could brick my device if I jailbreak it. Bricking means the device is beyond repair and will never be able to function at any level again. Ignoring the hype I went to JailbreakMe and performed the hack in minutes without issue.

I don’t know one person who has legitimately bricked their iPhone or any other iDevice for that matter. Not one. Surely if a simple jailbreak was capable of doing this I would have heard of at least one example of it happening. This leads me to question whether or not these tech sites actually know of anyone who has either. So why give the disclaimer on nearly every article that relates to jailbreaking?

I admittedly know very little about programming but I imagine if you go into an app that accesses the root you could mess up your device real bad. I do know that doing this would have to be nearly intentional since you would have to download the app and knowingly go beyond your knowledge. At that point you deserve whatever pile you step in.

Perhaps these bigger sites that invariably warn their readers about bricking their devices are protecting themselves not only from user complaints, but protecting their relationship with Apple. By stating an unrealistic warning they are sort of shielding themselves from Apple discontinuing future invitations. A wild idea perhaps but you never know. Getting your pass pulled from Apple would be quite the consequence.

What do you think? Do you get annoyed when you read that jailbreaking can brick your device like I do or am I just being a brick head? I wonder if any of our readers know anyone who has bricked their iPhone by the definition I gave, which is the actual meaning. Let us know in our freedom of speech center known as the comment box.