We know Apple previously tested Siri on iPhone 4 and older devices but hasn’t enabled the voice recognition software to work on customers’ iOS devices released before the iPhone 4S. Meanwhile however, the hacking community cracked Apple’s digital secretary to work on jailbroken devices and ported the dictation feature to iPhone 4. And now, it looks like a Chinese hacker group called CD-Team was able to create the first fully-featured Siri port. Called H1Siri, it’s already available on Cydia, a third-party store carrying unsanctioned software for jailbroken devices. The hack lets you use the full range of Siri features on both jailbroken fourth-generation iPod touch and GSM/CDMA iPhone 4 running either iOS 5.0 or the latest 5.0.1 version.
According to iClarified, the 100MB download is available via both Cydia.be and iphone3gsystem.fr/cydia repositories (select Manage > Sources > Edit in Cydia, add the sources and do a search for H1Siri). Be advised that H1Siri comes from a relatively unknown party and contains cracks so it’s likely illegal. Some people have speculated that the hack takes advantage of SiriProxy, a proxy server that fools Siri into believing it is talking to Apple’s servers. Taking this into account and knowing the hack passes your personal information to a shady third-party server, you should be aware of potentially serious privacy implications stemming from using this hack. If you’re still interested, a how-to guide is available here.
Please note that we couldn’t determine at press time the magic behind this tweak and some users reported intermittent connectivity issues, another indication of H1Siri talking to a third-party proxy server rather than communicate with the Apple cloud directly. The Siri Proxy project has been used to enable interesting uses, from managing a radio-controlled thermostat to controlling your Plex media center to starting your car.
As for jailbreaking, those waiting for an untethered iOS 5 jailbreak will be happy to know that a new tool is now available for easy downgrading to iOS 5.0…
Called iFaith, a Windows application, it lets you circumvent Apple’s restricted downgrade system which prevents people from downgrading their devices to an older iOS 5.x firmware. The new version, iFaith 1.4, works around that Apple-imposed limitation by permitting unsigned restores based on dumped iOS 5 signature hash blobs. This is important because, as noted by MuscleNerd, an upcoming untethered iOS 5 jailbreak might require iFait for user restores. According to the iFaith developer, iH8sn0w, it is possible to restore to iOS 5.0.1 and preserve iPhone 4 baseband by dumping the blobs with iFaith first. The tool does not support A5 devices yet. Because the sn0wbreeze tool (another iH8sn0w’s creation) isn’t capable of iFaith blobs yet, users are advised to use the redsn0w app. More information in iH8sn0w’s video tour included below. As for Siri, an iPhone 4S exclusive that currently understands and can speak English, French and German, Apple says “in 2012, Siri will support additional languages, including Japanese, Chinese, Korean, Italian, and Spanish”. Apple’s language technologies engineers are already hard at work developing Siri for the Chinese market.