Applying Jailbreak to the latest version of Apple's mobile operating system has revealed radio buttons that suggest there may be some truth to the ongoing reports that Apple is about to launch a radio streaming service.
Graphical buttons denoting a radio tower that enable a user to "buy" when pressed have been discovered hidden in iOS 6.1, the latest version of the software installed on Apple iPads, iPhone and iPod Touch devices. The discovery was made following the use of the recent ‘evasi0n Jailbreak' on the latest operating system.
iOS Jailbreaking is the process of unlocking the software-based limitations Apple installs on its operating systems so that a device can run third-party apps, work on a number of networks, or so that it can be customized in terms of appearance. Once an iPhone or iPad has been given the Jailbreak treatment, a user can change the icons, color palette or other settings that are usually off limits. The practice is at best frowned upon and is at worst illegal and not something that Apple in any way condones. Hackers regularly see how quickly they can crack the latest version of the OS following its release. The latest edition of iOS was released on January 28 and by February 4 the first jailbreak had already been published online. A similar practice, however, is often encouraged on Android devices where it is called ‘rooting'. For example, when Motorola announced that it would no longer support operating system upgrades for a number of its smartphones, Google, Motorola's parent company, offered to publish the root code so that hardcore Android fans could improve the operating systems on these phones that would otherwise be left behind.
Rumors of Apple's move into the internet radio market have been circulating for nearly a year. When Bloomberg published a report in November that the service -- most likely to be called iRadio -- was set for launch in 2013, Pandora, currently the most popular internet radio service in the US, saw its share price tumble as investors panicked.
Most sources who claim to have an inside track on the veracity of the reports say that Apple is still negotiating licensing deals with the major record labels.