Making your iPhone perfect - A La Jailbreak. iOS7 edition.
I was gonna post this in the Apple Core section, but I kept getting 404 errors, so I gave up and somehow, the mobile section is working. So let's begin huh?
Like many of you, I'm sure you really love your iPhone, but are saddened by many of it's shortcomings. Yes, there is Android, and thumbs to you for your choice, but some of us just like Apple. Can we move on now?
To fix this, some budding folks out there have done the amazing task of providing a lot of alternatives to help make this experience that much better! Those alternatives are achieved with the amazingly simply Jailbreak.
I first Jailbroke my iPhone when the 3G was released. Back then, it was nowhere near as simple as it is now.
The first step to perfection. The Jailbreak.
Basically, there are only a few simple steps in ensuring a smooth Jailbreak.
Note: Again, this jailbreak is only compatible with compatible with iPhone, iPod touch, iPad and iPad mini models running iOS 7.0 through 7.0.4. That means it won't work on the Apple TV or any devices running iOS 6.x. Also, you'll want to make sure that you backup your device using iCloud or iTunes. And for those of you who have updated via OTA, you'll want to back it up in iTunes and do a full restore before applying evasi0n7
1) Backup your iPhone. Just in case. It's very rare, and has never happened to me, but sometimes it screws up.
2) Ensure anything iTunes related is CLOSED on your computer. That includes iTunes. If you have a Windows machine, it might be good to go in the task manager and switch off the iTunes helper task as well.
3) Download the latest Jailbreak software. LINK
4) Optional: If you have already jailbroken previously, and have updated and are about to re-jailbreak, a word of advice. Unless you did a full restore, re-jailbreaking can clutter up the root directories on your iPhone. Simple things like the stash/theme folder will be duplicated because they are not removed during the update, and jailbreaking again, will simply cause new files to be created, giving you double ups of everything. My advice is to do a full factory restore - install iOS and then jailbreak again. The double ups in files generally don't effect you, but they can become annoying when you want to modify something later on and can't work out which directory or folder is actually being used.
5) Install the Jailbreak software. In the case of the Mac version, it should simply be a bootable file in a .DMG file. Simply drag and drop. The same can be said of the Windows version, which is usually an .EXE within a .ZIP or something. Drag and drop as well. Another windows note, you'll need to "run as administrator" as well.Step 5: You should see a message on the tool that it has detected your device, and the Jailbreak button should become clickable.
6) To begin the jailbreak process, click that button and sit back and let the app do its thing.
7) Eventually, you'll be asked to tap the evasi0n7 icon on your device's Home screen, which will complete the process.
8) Once the jailbreak process has completed, you'll be taken to your Lock screen. From there, you can Slide to unlock your device and where you'll find the Cydia icon on your Home screen's second page.
... And that's all there is to it. The entire process takes around 5 minutes, and your device will reboot a few times. If the process gets stuck at any point, it's safe to restart the program, reboot the device (if necessary by holding down Power and Home), and rerun the process.
That's the easy part. Now for the fun part. Tweakalacious fun.
Now, the jailbreak released caught Saurik by surprise, and Cydia was ill prepared initially. But, thankfully, things have been updated and Cydia has even been given a new lick of paint to match iOS7.
There isn't a huge list of available Jailbreak tweaks, and I'll try and add more in the future. But for now, these are the small things I've added to make life a little more bearable on the iPhone.
First things first. Winterboard.
Seasoned jailbreaks will all collectively sigh with happiness. Especially when the iOS7's icons are pure fugly. So, let's install it now. Sadly, there isn't a huge collection of themes available yet. But there is enough to make anyone happy. Concurrently, I have installed the theme Zanilla. It follows Apple's pursuit of the clean flat look, but still makes it somewhat playful and nice enough that it matches everything else quite nicely.
There are some other great themes like that are also available and are beautiful substitutes.
The next on the list for me was iFile.
I like to tweak things and get deep into the root directory, sometimes (and dangerously) altering .plist folders for my own enjoyment. iFile let's you get right into the guts of your phone, extract ZIP files and even wirelessly let you access the file system through your web browser. It's a powerful program and well worth the purchase.
This clever tweak let's you modify your actions and customise your own actions to any number of gestures you wish. Great for fixing a broken home button sometimes or linking your volume to a swipe or app to a three finger touch.
This little tweak extends the controls available in the control center and adds even more to it! It'll let you add location, LTE, respring, vibrate etc... Everything if you want. And it all looks integrated and part of the OS.
I used this because there are some terribly made mobile ads that appear on a website and are near impossible to remove/hide/close sometimes. I know it works for Safari, but it will work on some other apps as well. My biggest was Safari, so that completes the list for me. It's nice to browse without having to wade through adverts all over your page, and saves on your mobile data too. No need to load that gigantic image on the sidebars anymore! Well worth the purchase!
A smart app that helps when your phone battery begins to get a little low. When most people get a low battery, they manually switch things off, maybe dim their screens or turn off Wifi. This little tweak does all of that automatically when your battery get's too low. There's not much in customisation yet, still, it's a nice feature to have to get that extra life from your batteries.
Trust me when I say this. It makes editing text SO MUCH EASIER. Sick of poking around on your screen trying to select the right bit of your word, you can slide about with ease and go from there.
More of an aesthetic thing than anything else, but this handy little guy changes the colours of the music players UI according to the most prominant colour's on your album art. No more boring white! Of course, this purely comes down to your own tastes. I just liked the idea more than anything else.
As the name suggests, NoSlowAnimations seriously speeds up animations in iOS 7. I found this tweak to be a tad jarring. You may or may not like this one.
Live Weather Icon.
It's a live weather icon. What more can I say? It works really well too. We have a live calendar and clock icon, why not a weather one too? Works pretty well, I downloaded it when it was at 0.2. It's since come to 0.4 and has slowly improved over time. The placement of text is a little terrible though, and the animations being pulled out of the app into the icon sometimes look a little weird. But, for better or worse, it works well at what it does.
Controllers for All
Words can't explain how awesome this tweak is. Now I can place my iPad on the coffee table, whip out my PS3 controller and play some fun games. This great tweak enables you to connect any kind of controller to your iOS device. Not really suitable for iPhone imo, but perfect for an iPad.
These are all the tweaks I currently use at the moment. There are a lot more I'd like to add, but have yet to be updated by the respecting developers. Below is a collection of other tweaks I've been made aware from various other blogs and websites.
BiteSMS: The iOS 7 version of BiteSMS is still in beta, but it's working well enough for you to use every day. BiteSMS supercharges your messaging, allowing you to easily reply to incoming texts from anywhere in iOS, mark messages to read later and plenty more. It's super powerful and has enough features that many people jailbreak just to use it.
BioLockdown: I don't have the 5S. But if you have one, this extends the bio scanner in the 5S and lets you lock apps with it. It includes some other options, its a nice addition to have if you went to keep things even more secure. Say... Your messages app guys?
TetherMe: Does your carrier charge you to tether? Using this tweak enables you to tether WITHOUT paying extra for it. It uses bluetooth as well as USB and hotspotting.
CCHide: A simple way to remove certain things you don't want to use in your controls drawer. Just cleans it up a little. For example, if you don't use the music player controls, simply remove them.
Assistant Unrestrictor: Every once in a while, Siri's servers go down and when that happens, the assistant stops working. Assistant Unrestrictor routes Siri over to Voice Control when it's unavailable, so you can at least do a few minor things like change the music track, play albums, or make a phone call.
Bloard: Prefer the sleek dark keyboard in iOS 7 over the white one? Bloard enables it all the time.
CyDelete7: CyDelete makes it so you can delete Cydia apps just like you delete App Store apps. Just tap and hold on an app, wait for it to jiggle, and delete away.
Fav: Fav lets you pick one application that can be immediately accessible from the home screen with a right swipe (where Spotlight used to be).
F.lux: F.lux automatically changes your screen brightness and temperature to make it easier to read and to helps reduce eyestrain.
MapsAllCountries: MapsAllCounties enables turn-by-turn directions in the Maps app in countries where it's not officially supported.
Messages Customiser: Don't like the boring blue (or green) colours in the Messages app? Messages Customiser allows you to change the colours to just about whatever you want.
NoNewMark: NoNewMark gets rid of the blue dot that appears on updated and new apps.
NoSlowAnimations: As the name suggests, NoSlowAnimations seriously speeds up animations in iOS 7.
Open In App for Photos: Open In App for Photos gives you the option to immediately share photos from the Photos app to any app that supports image import (such as Dropbox, QuickOffice and Skitch).
SwipeSelection: SwipeSelection makes editing text on the iPad and iPhone way better. Instead of forcing you to hunt and peck to find a line of text, SwipeSelection allows you to use gestures to get around and it's a lot easier to use.
Swipey: Swipey is an app launcher that works from your lock screen. All you need to do is swipe left and your favourite apps appear for launching.
TapTodaysCalendar: Ever tried to tap the date in Notification Center thinking that it'd take you to the calendar app? For some bizarre reason, it doesn't work, but TapTodaysCalendar makes it so it does.
iCleaner Pro: iCleaner is a simple way to scan your iOS device for unnecessary files and clear up storage space on your iOS device. You can quickly delete all kinds of things that waste space, such as message attachments, Safari cache and application cache. It's not officially available for iOS 7 yet, but you can check out the beta right now. Since it is in beta, you'll use it at your own risk, so be careful what you do with it and don't delete anything you need.
Slide for Usage: racking your general app usage is a handy way to see exactly what apps are sucking up your time. SlideForUsage (free) adds usage details to your app switcher. Just open up your app switcher and swipe down on the screenshot to reveal the last time you opened the app, how long you used it for, and the total amount of time you've used it since you downloaded it.
Pluck 2: Gives you access to your music app from Control Center. It adds a small icon to Control Center, and you can instantly pick songs and change the music. It's incredibly simple but super helpful if you don't want to unlock your device just to change a song.
Favourite Contacts 7: If you want quick access to your most-used contacts, Favorite Contacts ($1.99) puts them right in your Notification Center. The tweak uses your favourites from your phone app and puts them in your Notification Center so you can easily call, email or message them without messing around in menus.
Apptray: Adds a fourth tab to your Notification Center where you can easily launch apps. Just pick the apps you want, and they will appear there. It's something like a second-tier app launcher that nice to keep for apps you don't want to bury all the way in a folder but also don't want on your home screen.
iTouchSecure: Does one thing: it matches your passwords to your fingerprints and autofills your passwords for you. So, if you want to log in to a site in Safari, you touch your finger to the TouchID sensor, and it will autofill the password. It's an easy way to ensure nobody logs in to sites when you're not around. If I had a 5S, I'd definitely grab this one. Super handy to have and makes life a lot easier on the go.
Notecreator: Allows you to write notes from anywhere without opening up a whole new app. You do this by assigning NoteCreator an Activator action (like hitting the home button three times). Do the action, and NoteCreator pops up a small notification where you can quickly type a note that's saved into Notes. It's simple, but if you like taking notes and hate the fact you have to switch to another app to do so, NoteCreator solves that annoyance.
Apologies to all, I know I haven't added the repo's for a lot of the tweaks here, I'll try and locate them and add them alter on. Otherwise, putting it quickly into google or the Cydia search bar will get you the download locale pretty quickly.
For those who have Jailbreaked in the past, this is the compatibility list you can check out for past Jailbreak tweaks and their compatibility status. It's constantly updated, so I'll just link to it instead:
I hope this post somewhat helps you all, I'll try and add more depending on how I go and how much free time I glean out from my workload. My iPhone setup is based solely on my own needs. I'm not a hardcore business man, most of what I do revolves around my email and messaging, then camera use and editing. Obviously, tailor the tweaks and mods to your needs and I'm sure you yourself can setup a great user experience for yourself.