Does latest firmware unbrick dead iPhones?

The iPhone's firmware is completely wiped and completely overwritten by 1.1.3 it seems

After all the kafuffle about iPhones getting bricked by previous firmware updates, it appears the latest update may be somewhat different. Apple's 1.1.3 firmware would appear to be a hugely expansive rewrite of some of the fundamental elements of the firmware. So if you bricked your iPhone by installing dodgy code, it'll be completely overwritten by 1.1.3.

The folks at Gizmodo have posted a video of their bricked phone before and after the update. The change was not without issue though, and seems to have involved some trial and error. Initially the phone still didn't show any signal as it said the phone did not contain the authorised SIM.

After a restart though, they got the phone working, as this video shows.

In September we reported on the danger posed to unlocked iPhones by firmware update 1.1.1, which added access to the Wi-Fi iTunes Music Store and several other features.

Danger of 'unauthorised modification'

The firmware appeared to restore the unlocked iPhone back to its pre-activation state

"If you have modified your iPhone's software, applying this software update may result in your iPhone becoming permanently inoperable," Apple re-warned customers in the release notes accompanying the software download. "Making unauthorised modifications to the software on your iPhone violates the iPhone software license agreement, and the inability to use your iPhone due to unauthorised software modifications is not covered under your iPhone's warranty."


Dan (Twitter, Google+) is TechRadar's Former Deputy Editor and is now in charge at our sister site Covering all things computing, internet and mobile he's a seasoned regular at major tech shows such as CES, IFA and Mobile World Congress. Dan has also been a tech expert for many outlets including BBC Radio 4, 5Live and the World Service, The Sun and ITV News.