iOS 18 Borrwed 18 Features from Jailbreaking 1

18 features iOS 18 ‘borrowed’ from the jailbreak community

18 features iOS 18 ‘borrowed’ from the jailbreak community

Apple unveiled iOS & iPadOS 18, the upcoming firmware updates for the iPhone and iPad platforms, at its annual WWDC 2024 event. But one disturbing trend we noticed when the Cupertino-based company began showing off new features is just how… familiar… many of them seemed.

18 features that iOS 18 borrowed from the jailbreak community.

Indeed, we have been able to identify at least 18 features that the jailbreak community had as jailbreak tweaks before Apple built them into the stock operating system. Apple does this every year, as jailbreak tweak developers generally devise great ideas. But now, even non-jailbreakers can take advantage of many of these features.

18 features iOS & iPadOS 18 get that jailbreakers had first

1. Dark Mode-friendly app icons

iOS 18 Dark Mode-friendly icons.

iOS & iPadOS 18 finally add a feature to the Home Screen that dynamically colorizes the app icons based on your dark mode or light mode setting.

This is a big deal because it used to be that even after setting dark mode on your device, your app icons could be hyper bright and sear your eyeballs as if you were looking at the Sun without eye protection. Exaggerated? Maybe. But I still feel that way.

It’s worth noting that jailbreakers have been able to do this forever. iOS developer Surenix came out with a theme called Vantaye back in 2020 that could make your Home Screen’s app icons darker to suit dark mode. Another more recent theme called Darker Plus would go on to do the same thing.

So did Apple come up with this idea? Nah. But they certainly took the idea, ran with it, and implemented it in iOS & iPadOS 18 without even the slightest attempt to credit to either of these theme makers.

2. More Control Center toggles

iOS 18 Control Center toggles.iOS 18 Control Center toggles.

iOS & iPadOS 18 also offer significant upgrades to Control Center, including a new API for developers to create and offer their own toggles.

While we’ve been able to add and remove toggles from Control Center forever, the list of items has been limited to what Apple wanted to provide. This is the first time that third-party developers will get to make toggles for Control Center, and it’s exciting to think about what they may do with this capability.

But again, this is something jailbreakers have been able to do forever. An add-on called CCSupport allowed jailbreak tweak developers to literally make whatever Control Center toggle they wanted and offer it for jailbreakers to download and use.

This is honestly an expected evolution for Control Center, but it’s worth noting that the jailbreak community had it first.

3. Lock individual apps

Lock apps with Face ID in iOS 18.Lock apps with Face ID in iOS 18.

iOS & iPadOS 18 will reduce your anxiety when handing your unlocked iPhone or iPad to somebody else by allowing you to lock apps behind biometric authentication.

While some third-party apps have offered this as an optional feature for quite some time, this software update makes it a native feature that applies even to native apps, and it prevents someone from opening your sensitive apps when you hand their your iPhone or iPad, such as to view photographs or watch a video.

But we don’t think Apple came up with this idea either, because a jailbreak tweak called BioProtext XS, along with many jailbreak tweaks just like it, have been doing this for as long as we can remember.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m happy to see this feature on stock devices for once, but Apple should have given some attribution to the idea to those who came up with it before the tech company did.

4. Reassign Lock Screen Quick Action buttons

Change the Lock Screen's Quick Action buttons in iOS 18.Change the Lock Screen's Quick Action buttons in iOS 18.

iOS & iPadOS 18 will, for the first time, allow users to reassign those handy Quick Action buttons on the Lock Screen that you most likely recognize as the Flashlight and Camera toggle buttons.

While having fast access to the Flashlight and the Camera are undoubtedly helpful, it’s also worth noting that the Action Button on the iPhone 15 Pro & Pro Max allow for greater flexibility in terms of shortcuts, and so having the ability to customize the Lock Screen’s Quick Action buttons to do something else can be infinitely useful.

This means that you can change those buttons to do something other than starting up your device’s Flashlight or launching the Camera interface, and I’m salivating just thinking of the different ways I’m going to use this.

But of course, Apple isn’t the first entity to come up with such an idea… this is something that I’ve witness literally countless jailbreak tweaks do over the years, such as QuickActions.

5. Schedule text messages

Schedule text messages in iOS 18.Schedule text messages in iOS 18.

iOS & iPadOS 18 are making it easier than ever before to send timed messages to people so that you never have to be accused or forgetting someone’s Birthday or a wishing them a happy holiday.

Indeed, you can literally wake up on the first of the year and schedule out all your Happy Birthday messages before they come, and your iPhone or iPad will automatically send those messages on the time and date you designate.

I’ve been waiting for this feature to come in a stock iOS & iPadOS update for a very long time, but despite that, I’ve been doing this all along thanks to a jailbreak tweak that already existed called Nova.

Seems to me like just another awesome feature that jailbreakers had first and Apple thought would be a great addition to their operating system if they would just shamelessly steal it.

6. Game mode

Game Mode in iOS 18.Game Mode in iOS 18.

iOS & iPadOS 18 can also force your iPhone or iPad into a higher performance mode while playing certain games via what’s being called Game Mode.

I want to make it perfectly clear that while I can appreciate enjoying every last drop of performance possible out of Apple’s powerful mobile chips while gaming, I think the jailbreak community has already been one step ahead on this issue all along.

Let me explain… while jailbreak tweaks have never unlocked a full-blown ‘Game Mode’ on iPhones and iPads per-se, they have allowed us to force much higher display refresh rates on displays that support it – a feature of Game Mode. This meant that we could squeeze better performance out of games long before iOS & iPadOS 18 ever announced this feature.

Several jailbreak tweaks, including the likes of Always120 and Dynamic120hz have helped pioneer such enhancements in gaming performance.

7. Calculator on iPadOS

Calculator app in iPadOS 18.Calculator app in iPadOS 18.

iPadOS 18 finally brings a native Calculator to the iPad – almost 15 years later. Can you even believe it?

The Calculator app is more than just a numeric input device. Users can also use the Apple Pencil to write out equations, functions, and simple math problems to see the answers appear in real-time after writing the ‘equals sign.’

But let’s be real… no one ever needed to wait until iPadOS 18 to get a Calculator app on the device. There were always Calculator apps in the App Store, and there were even some amazing jailbreak tweaks that brought the feature to iPads as well. One such jailbreak tweak that comes to mind is Cardculator, a tweak that invokes a Calculator interface on the iPad (and the iPhone) with a swipe up from the corner of your display.

I mean, I’m ecstatic that the iPad is finally getting a Calculator app, and even more-so that it isn’t just an iPhone Calculator app expanded to use the larger canvas. But… jailbreak tweaks beat Apple to the punch.

8. ChatGPT integration with Siri

ChatGPT AI integrated into Siri in macOS Sequoia.ChatGPT AI integrated into Siri in macOS Sequoia.

iOS & iPadOS 18 make big changes to Siri so that the virtual assistant can actually assist you instead of just searching the web for answers and asking you if you want to search the web when she can’t find answers.

Much of these changes involve integration with artificial intelligence models, such as ChatGPT, and in the future, this could extend to other AI models such as GeminAI or perhaps Grok (well, maybe not the latter, considering owner Elon Musk’s opinion of iPhones since Apple announced partnering with ChatGPT).

As a result of this integration, Siri will be smarter when attempting to answer your questions. If Siri can’t answer a question, you will be asked if you want to share the query with ChatGPT, which will then give you an AI-based answer instead of a generic, “would you like me search the web for…” type of answer.

Yes, this is particularly wonderful for everyone who wanted a smarter Siri, but… jailbreakers had it first. SiriPlus was a jailbreak tweak released only just this year that replaced Siri with ChatGPT or Gemini. Seems we knew Siri needed a brain boost all along.

9. Custom Home Screen app layouts

Custom Home Screen Layout in iOS 18.Custom Home Screen Layout in iOS 18.

iOS & iPadOS 18 finaly give users the ability to customize their app layouts in more flexible ways by doing away with the typical snap-grid based system that always auto-fits app icons into the next available space.

Now, users will be able to put spaces in between app icons, leave gaping holes in the middle of the Home Screen, or create intuitive layouts that work for them. It’s almost like actually being able to make your Home Screen all about you.

But don’t give Apple too much credit here… this is a feature that we’ve had in the jailbreak community since I first started jailbreaking almost a decade and a half ago. Just look at jailbreak tweaks like Boxy 3 and Genous.

10. T9 dial pad

T9 Dial Pad in iOS 18.T9 Dial Pad in iOS 18.

iOS 18 finally adds an optional T9 dialer experience to the Phone app, offering a similar experience to that of a flip phone from ye olde days.

What this means is that the dial pad can display letters on them just like they would on a traditional 3×4 physical dial pad, which can assist some users with dialing certain things depending on what they’re more accustomed to using.

But T9 dialers are nothing new in the jailbreak community, as jailbreak tweaks like EasyDialer14 have been around for years.

11. Hide Home Screen app icon labels

iOS 18 remove icon labels from Home Screen.iOS 18 remove icon labels from Home Screen.

iOS & iPadOS 18 finally allow users to hide the Home Screen’s app icon labels from view for the first time ever on a stock device.

Doing this is somewhat of an acquired taste, but it’s something that jailbreakers have been doing for what seems like forever. In fact, it was only last year that we showed you a jailbreak tweak called nolabel that did exactly this.

We’re not sure what percentage of people are actually going to take advantage of this feature yet since it seems to appeal only to minimalists or those who don’t like the white text over their wallpaper, but it’s still another feature that jailbreakers have had access to forever before Apple put it into the operating system by default.

12. Floating tab bar

iPadOS 18 floating tab bar.iPadOS 18 floating tab bar.

iPadOS 18 introduces a new floating tab bar experience to various apps on the platform in order to provide a modernized user interface experience.

I’m a big fan of this design change, especially as iPad users have a much larger screen real estate that doesn’t need to behave like the smaller iPhone user interface as it has all these years.

But before we get ahead of ourselves, I want to give credit where credit is due, because a jailbreak tweak called FloatyTab that we showed you back in 2020 already brought a floating tab bar experience to Apple devices, offering a similar user experience to that which we see in iPadOS 18.

I wonder how long until Apple brings this feature to iPhones…?

13. Hide apps from Home Screen

You can hide apps from the Home Screen in iOS 18.You can hide apps from the Home Screen in iOS 18.

iOS & iPadOS 18 give users the ability to hide apps from their Home Screen for the first time on a stock device.

While previous versions of iOS & iPadOS have allowed apps to be placed inside of Folders or in the App Library, those apps weren’t truly hidden from someone who could exercise dominion and control over your device. In other words, they would know the app was there.

Thanks to the new feature in iOS & iPadOS 18, you can hide apps from the Home Screen and they won’t appear inside of Folders or in the App Library.

This is a feature that will undoubtedly keep significant others from knowing you still have the Tinder app installed on your device… er… perhaps there are more valuable uses for it. But we should note that jailbreak tweaks like HideYourApps have made this possible on jailbroken handsets for ages.

14. Remote control iPhone from computer

Remote control your iPhone from your Mac using macOS Sequoia.Remote control your iPhone from your Mac using macOS Sequoia.

macOS Sequoia is introducing expanded continuity features that also allow you to remotely control your iPhone running iOS 18 from your desktop.

This concept works a lot like Virtual Network Connection (VNC) software, and it’s worth noting that while you could always download apps to control your computer from your iPhone or iPad, doing exactly the opposite has been particularly locked down by Apple for years.

While this appears to be changing for the iPhone starting with iOS 18, we should note that Jay Freeman’s (yes, the Cydia creator) Veency jailbreak tweak has made this possible since even the early days of jailbreaking by turning your iPhone into a VNC server. It’s worth noting that Veency hasn’t been updated for newer versions of iOS since Freeman stepped away from Cydia and jailbreaking.

Yes, I love this feature of macOS Sequoia and iOS 18, and I’m sure I’ll use it a lot, but jailbreakers had it first.

15. Format text in Messages app

Messages app in iOS 18 enables text formatting.Messages app in iOS 18 enables text formatting.

iOS  & iPadOS 18 allow users to format text they type in the messaging field of the native Messages app for the first time.

This means that when you’re sending iMessages, you can bold, italicize, strike, or underline text that you send to other people, and this helps you get your point across more easily.

That aside, the new Messages app text formatting feature works a lot like the jailbreak tweak Textyle 3 that launched back in 2023, so we’re going to give this to the jailbreak scene.

What is it with Apple and copying ideas from 2020 this year…?

16. Resize Control Center modules

Re-sizing Control Center modules in iOS 18.Re-sizing Control Center modules in iOS 18.

iOS & iPadOS 18 are making some big changes to the way we use Control Center, and this includes being able to not only rearrange our Control Center modules to the positions we prefer with less effort, but also re-sizing them to be as large or as small as we’d like.

It seems comical that it took Apple this long to bring more of these customization aspects to Control Center, an interface that most iPhone and iPad users take advantage of on the daily, but… jailbreakers have been doing this for much longer.

Take, for example, a jailbreak tweak called BetterCC, which allowed users to rearrange their Control Center modules and even re-size them to be as big or as small as they wanted.

I applaud Apple for finally making this a stock feature, but we shouldn’t have had to hack our devices to be able to do this for as long as we’ve had to…

17. Search recent calls list

You can search the Phone app’s call history in iOS 18.You can search the Phone app’s call history in iOS 18.

iOS 18 is adding the ability to search your Recents list in the Phone app on your iPhone.

Long overdue, this feature will let you find a recent phone call you’ve placed or received from the Phone app so that you aren’t forced to scroll through a lengthy call history list to find what you’re looking for.

The fact that this was never a native feature in previous versions of iOS eludes me. But the jailbreak community made it possible by way of jailbreak tweaks like Contacts Extended.

At least now I can find someone’s phone number even if they aren’t on my contacts list and I’ve phoned them before.

18. More AirPods Pro gestures

Apple AirPods Pro 2nd generation.Apple AirPods Pro 2nd generation.

iOS & iPadOS 18 are making your AirPods Pro 2 even smarter by integrating new gesture systems that can control various actions, such as nodding to answer a phone call, or shaking your head to decline a phone call.

These gestures are going to be powerful and unassuming in circumstances where you may not want to draw attention to yourself, such as when you’re in class, or when you’re in a crowded elevator.

It’s worth noting, however, that jailbreakers have been adding more and more gestures to their AirPods and AirPods Pro for years, and we have jailbreak tweaks like Siliqua 2 and Siliqua Pro to thank for those ideas.

It’s still great to see Apple expanding the possibilities of its products, but just remember who took matters into their own hands first…

Conclusion

It’s easy to sit back and say that Apple ‘stole’ all these features from the jailbreak community, but I think it’s important to realize that it was only a matter of time before many of these features made it to mainstream iPhones. Generally, jailbreak tweaks make features available on the platform before Apple ever gets a chance to implement them, and this is normal.

Also see: 17 things iOS & iPadOS 17 ‘borrowed’ from the jailbreak community

On the other hand, it’s still fun to poke fun at the fact that teenagers and college-age tweak developers have managed to improve a multi-billion-dollar company’s mobile operating system well before the company could, and that’s one of the things that I think makes jailbreaking an attractive option (when available).

Can you think of any other features in iOS & iPadOS 18 that are evidently derived from ideas that were first implemented in the jailbreak community? Be sure to let us know in the comments section down below.

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