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Jailbreakers Hack iOS 5 Notification Center, Adds Working Custom Widgets

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Just shortly after developers have tackled Apple’s new Android-styled Notification Center to create a proof-of-concept widget that merely displays ‘Hello World,’ hackers now have attacked Notification Center to bring fully-functional widgets to iOS 5 via jailbreaking.

In addition to the standard Apple pre-loaded weather and stock ticker widgets, developers have now added a third row of widgets to Notification Center that brings quick access to toggle settings like airplane mode, WiFi, screen brightness, and more. The toggle controls are reminiscent of Samsung’s widgets on its proprietary TouchWiz UI that’s bundled on Android smartphones. For example, on the Droid Charge for Verizon Wireless, when a user pulls down the notification drawer, they will have access to toggle buttons for WiFi, Bluetooth, GPS, mobile data, and auto rotation toggles; notifications are shown just below this row of toggle controls on TouchWiz.

Though Apple had announced the new Notification Center and widget support for iOS 5, which is currently in developer beta, the company had not announced support nor an SDK allowing third-party developers a way to create their own widgets for iOS 5.

Still yet, developers have also been able to create more unofficial functionality for widgets on Notification Center, including creating quick-launch shortcuts, allowing users to quickly open Mobile Safari or Twitter, for example.

In addition to being able to unofficially launch widgets on iOS 5, developers have also found a way to adjust the background and opacity of the Notification Center pull-down. Instead of the slate grey linen-styled background, developers can now change the color and make the pull-down translucent.

It’s unclear if Apple will enable more functionality out of widgets or customizations of Notification Center, but for now, there has been strong interest from developers and users on creating a more personalized iOS 5 experience. This strong push for custom widgets ahead of official iOS 5 support, if and when that happens, perhaps indicate that the jailbreaking community is here to stay for a while.

Via 9to5 Mac

Tech enthusiast in Silicon Valley enjoying the possibilities of ubiquitous connectivity, information sharing, and collaboration enabled by mobile broadband. You can contact Chuong on Twitter @chuongvision or search +chuongvision on Google+.

12 Comments

  1. JP

    06/14/2011 at 3:27 pm

    The more iOS starts to look like Android, the more I might consider actually using an iDevice.  The lack of PC-free syncing has been what always pushed me away from Apple in the past.  If you change devices (or ROMs) frequently, the ability to resync all media and apps just by logging in is key! 

  2. Anthony

    06/14/2011 at 4:07 pm

    First and foremost, these rumors of iOS copying android need to stop. Notification center was born from Apple hiring Jailbreak-Developers, one of them famous for creating MobileNotifier. The camera, adopting the volume buttons to take photos, notification center all in one spot, the banner-styled notifications, the added camera features (built in crop, and editing), iMessage, Wifi-sync, Using the device while it syncs, ful screen safari, private browsing in safari, and many other features were all adopted from the Cydia store. Not Android.

    • Justin Richards

      06/15/2011 at 3:55 am

      Here’s the thing though, most of the stuff in the Cydia store was made due to the demand of features that were popular in other devices. WiFi Sync was just down right stolen from a jailbreak dev who had actually submitted his app to Apple for approval in the App Store, but was turned down.

      The new Notification Center doesn’t resemble MobileNotifier at all, and more closely resembles Notified Pro, which was inspired by Android. MobileNotifier never had a pull down drawer, it was launched from the multitasking dock.

    • CrispyP

      10/10/2011 at 10:08 am

      I think you need to get your timelines straight. Android had notifications even before Cydia went mainstream in Feb 2008. Thats the time they launched BossPrefs, the iOS2 jailbreak app which a semblance of notifications. Wifi Sync, using devices while it syncs, full screen browsers and tabbed browsing, incognito tabs, all Android or Android apps. 

  3. person287

    06/14/2011 at 9:11 pm

    That looks pretty good! Hope it becomes an official thing allowed in the app store but this is by far the best integration into iOS I’ve seen so far, even if it is partly helped by apple :)

  4. Alex Chung

    06/17/2011 at 2:30 am

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    p.p2 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; font: 17.0px ‘Marker Felt’; min-height: 19.0px}

    I’m a developer through apple. If you’re interested in trying iOS 5 Beta, please check out my page: http://getiosbeta.org/news

    All proceeds go to help the poor Mexico. 

  5. Marc Johnson

    07/20/2011 at 3:32 am

    If Apple doesn’t open the notification center widgets to the app store, their going to lose a lot of non-jb user potential..

  6. Marc Johnson

    07/20/2011 at 3:32 am

    If Apple doesn’t open the notification center widgets to the app store, their going to lose a lot of non-jb user potential..

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