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iPhone Hacker Cracks PlayStation3

Gordon Kelly


Original iPhone Hacker Cracks PlayStation3

Three years is one heck of a long time to remain unhacked in the technology world, but it was inevitable the PlayStation 3 would fall eventually ...

Taking this notable scalp is US hacker George Hotz and, if his name sounds familiar, he was the then-teenager who famously first hacked the iPhone (generation one). How long had he been working on the PS3 hack? Five weeks. "It's supposed to be unhackable - but nothing is unhackable," Hotz explained to BBC News. "I can now do whatever I want with the system. It's like I've got an awesome new power - I'm just not sure how to wield it."

Describing the hack Hotz said it is "5% hardware and 95% software" and would allow pirated games to be played. "You can use hardware to inject an insecurity and then you can build on that," he said, admitting "To tell you the truth, I've never really played a PS3. I have one game, but I've never really played it." Instead Hotz said his main motivations were "curiosity" and "opening up the platform" and it could have positive benefits too since he claimed it will enable users of newer versions like the PS3 Slim to once again play older PlayStation 2 titles.

To prove his feat Hotz has promised to publish details of the console's root key, which should make it easier for other hackers to crack. It is the same tactic he performed with the iPhone. Sony has quickly responded to Hotz comments saying it is "investigating the report and will clarify the situation once we have more information."

I imagine it isn't too thrilled...


via BBC News


January 26, 2010, 3:02 pm

Whilst certainly impressive this will very unlikely cause any piracy issues for Sony, the simple reason being blu-ray. With the cost of blanks far exceeding the average cost of a game rental, not to mention the initial outlay to purchase a blu-ray burner, i serious doubt anyone would bother.


January 26, 2010, 3:14 pm

Whilst I'm more than happy to pay for PS3 games (I just wait for the price to drop!), if this means that the PS3's pathetic media capabilities can be stretched to XBMC, then I say 'w00t!'. Or something. I hate having to use PS3 Media Server on the PC whilst the PS3 has a 500Gb hd sitting there waiting. I like to use subtitles and the PS3 is very hit and miss with them, never mind avis that stop halfway through. I don't want to reencode anything, and XBMC means I never have to.

Ala Miah

January 26, 2010, 3:25 pm


Thought this was never going to be hacked.

But sony can relax a little, Blu ray games are 30-40GB in size, 2mb broadband anyone? Blu ray Discs are still expensive, blu ray writers even more. So while ps3 can be hacked, not many people are going to be able to profit from it so easily.


January 26, 2010, 3:36 pm

Well when you claim that your system in unhackable you are really just asking for it. But I'm all for allowing people to play old PS2 games on the newer system. Especially when they took away that feature purely because they wanted to stop people playing/ buying old PS2 games instead of PS3 games.


January 26, 2010, 4:07 pm

he looks like an overworked kid from a 3rd country..

Bring it on Geortz! If it can be softhacked, I will serously consider buying a PS3 slim...


January 26, 2010, 4:20 pm

If I can make a Slim play PS2 titles I might consider it. Maybe I'll buy a couple of games as well Sony! It takes a 3rd party to save Sony from it's own stupidity.


January 26, 2010, 4:35 pm

If his actions pressure Sony to add functionality to the PS3 like PS2bc, then I'm all for that, it would be great. Thats if the PS3 can emulate PS2 games...

But if this nerd just wants to pave the way for piracy he needs ejecting into space


January 26, 2010, 4:48 pm

Surely a hacked XBox360 is better value for money?

Lee Moorhouse

January 26, 2010, 5:17 pm

I hope Sony can fix this, I would hate for some nerd (I mean, look at him) to ruin such a fantastic machine. Either that or put him on staff. To quote many films 'Everyone has a price'.

trained KILLA

January 26, 2010, 5:20 pm



January 26, 2010, 5:38 pm

@Ali Miah

30-40GB PS3 games LOL.


January 26, 2010, 6:00 pm

I wonder (from a point of ignorance) if the fact that he's hacked it could lead to a USB DVD drive being added if so then a) PS2 games I presume could play with a software patch and b) it would open the way for PS3 titles being ripped to DVD and played via it.

Just a thought.


January 26, 2010, 6:10 pm

I don't think that it will be possible to play PS2 games on the PS3 Slim since it doesn't have the PS2's GS graphics chip installed. The PS3's RSX graphics chip can't emulate that rather peculiar piece of hardware.


January 26, 2010, 6:17 pm

@Adsski and @Ala Miah: discs? Surely if someone can hack it, someone else can write something so that ISOs are read off the hard drive.

As for the PS3 emulating PS2 games, it was doing so through software emulation a couple of years ago, and it was their plan to release PS2 software over PSN. Although they're only just starting to talk about it now for some reason...

@BobaFett: LOL. Indeed ;).


January 26, 2010, 6:44 pm

@J4cK1505: But if this nerd just wants to pave the way for piracy he needs ejecting into space

You know I've always believed the best defence against piracy is fair price. Currently the pricing structure of some of these games is like having the licence to print money. RRP's like £50 is just ridiculous.

Peter 20

January 26, 2010, 7:10 pm

This kid really has some bright future ahead of him.. or He'll end up behind bars if he plays his cards wrong.


January 26, 2010, 7:25 pm

I haven't paid anything near RRP for a PS3 game for years, possibly ever. Even the two recent games that I bought on released day (FIFA 10 and MW2) were only £25/£26 each. PS3 media streaming is superb, no need to use something like PS3 Media Server - IF you are streaming in a format the PS3 can read natively. I just stream directly from my Buffalo Linkstation NAS. Flawless.

If Sony could provide AAA games for download at the same price as retail discs (ie: the aformentioned £26 for MW2) I'd happily download games to my upgraded 500GB PS3 drive, much more convenient. A legal ISO loader, in fact. My 50mb broadband means this wouldn't be an issue. Having said that, the ridiculous prices on the PSN movie store leads me to believe that a AAA game title would also carry a ridiculous price.

As for additional features, all I want to see is support for more movie formats (MKV etc), support for NTFS (or some other format that allows for files > 4GB) external drives, and a MUCH better way of organising MP3/audio files on the PS3 itself, in proper folders rather than one long list. There's absolutely no reason why Sony couldn't provide these features themselves.


January 26, 2010, 7:28 pm

@ Keith

In my opinion price has little to do with piracy. The majority of DVD movies are under a tenner to buy, yet still get mass pirated. As for games, if a £50 game was £15 on launch it would still be pirated. Some people don't want to pay for anything, regardless of price.

Modern Warfare 2 on 360 was overpriced at launch (I still bought it anyway). I then sold it for £35 over a month later on ebay. Awesome value for money!


January 26, 2010, 8:04 pm

Here, that's not yer man Frodo Baggins, is it? Is that the one device to bind them all he's carrying?


January 26, 2010, 8:15 pm

how did trained_KILLA's comment get approved, trustedreviews?


January 26, 2010, 8:40 pm

Anything that forces companies to make their produces do things people want them to do is a god thing. Anything that makes piracy easier is a bad thing :/


January 26, 2010, 9:47 pm

surprised TR doesnt filter 'wanker'

Guess the all team agreed it poses no harm

technical, very :---)


January 26, 2010, 10:14 pm

@xbrumster - slip of the wrist, so to speak.

We can approve or deny, but not edit and we cannot delete comments once live. Apologies.


January 26, 2010, 10:45 pm

How do these hackers survive? If they're spending weeks or months cracking hardware and software, I presume they don't have normal jobs. Fair play to their technical expertise although it's very noble of them to just give all their hard work away for free by publishing it on the Internet.


January 26, 2010, 11:22 pm

@Gordon, Lets have more slips of the wrist, as colourful as the Apple invitation :)

@Orinj, Geortz received a couple of iphones and a car for being the first to unlock the original iphone... nice honey pot for a teenager

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