Possible tvOS 10.1.1 jailbreak may be coming after all

As you may recall, software internals consultant Jonathan Levin recently released LiberTV, a jailbreak tool for tvOS 9.1-10.1.

Based on Luca Todesco and Marco Grassi’s work which brought us the Yalu jailbreaks for iOS 10.0-10.2, Levin’s original work covered the equivalent tvOS firmwares, up to a maximum of tvOS 10.1. However, Levin may be able to go one better, based on a tweet posted today.

The tvOS 10.1.1 firmware is somewhat equivalent to iOS 10.2.1, in which the Yalu exploits were patched. It’s unclear therefore what has prompted Levin’s statement that his tool’s coverage could be increased. Perhaps he has found further exploits in his own work, or perhaps tvOS did not receive the proper treatment in terms of patches for the Yalu bugs. Another possible source of confidence is the release of iOS 10.3, which comes along with a list of bugs it patches. These bugs are by definition unpatched in iOS 10.2.1 (tvOS 10.1.1), so perhaps further fodder for a jailbreak has been identified there.

Details do not go much further than that at present, and Levin makes no definite promises for the future, so take this optimistically, but with a grain of salt. As his tweet clearly states, a jailbreak for tvOS 10.1.1 is a maybe only. Furthermore, it is not for tvOS 10.2 (the most recent version, released yesterday), nor is there any release date.

We always advise readers to remain on the lowest possible firmware if they wish to jailbreak, and the same holds true for tvOS. If you are on tvOS 10.2 currently, downgrade immediately to tvOS 10.1.1 whilst it is still signed. This will only be possible for the next few days. You can follow our guide to restore your Apple TV to a firmware of your choice, in this case tvOS 10.1.1. After downgrading, disable automatic updates in your Apple TV settings straight away.

If you are already on tvOS 10.1.1, disable automatic updates in your Apple TV settings straight away, and wait it out. If you’re on tvOS 10.1 or below, stay where you are. LiberTV already supports those firmwares, and more importantly, already exists. Stick with that.

There have been reports of Apple TVs not respecting auto-update settings of late and updating past tvOS 10.1 without prompting. I’ve not seen this happen myself, but be on the watch for it. If you’re already on tvOS 10.1 or lower, jailbreak with LiberTV now, which will disable these auto-updates for good. If you’re on tvOS 10.1.1, there’s nothing you can do except watch out for this and hope, or leave your Apple TV unplugged/disconnected from the internet.

With luck, an updated release of nitoTV will come out soon and breathe some new life and utility into our Apple TV 4 jailbreaks. Until then, the advice for all Apple TV 4 users is this: downgrade immediately from tvOS 10.2 to tvOS 10.1.1 if you’re on the former. If you’re on tvOS 10.1 or lower, stay where you are and do not update.

We’ll have to see what becomes of this hint in the days to come, but for now take the necessary precautions. All Apple TV 4 owners can currently downgrade to tvOS 10.1.1, and wait it out for a possible jailbreak, if they’re quick.

Are you interested in an Apple TV jailbreak? Did you miss out on tvOS 10.1? Be ready for a possible tvOS 10.1.1!