2023, July 19
·
Security
·
6 min read
·
Matt S.

How to Jailbreak a Firestick? Is It Legal & Safe?

Jailbreaking Firestick is the process of modifying the device's operating system to gain unrestricted access to a wide range of apps and streaming services.

According to Amazon, more than 50 million people actively use the Amazon Firestick each month. This compact and capable streaming device plugs into your TV and acts as a media streaming center, allowing you to easily stream video, music, install apps and do all sorts of other cool stuff. And the fact that this capable device costs only 39.99 USD on Amazon makes it a great investment for a lot of people. It turns any television set, even an old one, into a SMART TV with a lot of features. Sometimes it can offer an even better user experience than what you get with the official SMART TV OS.
With that being said, we're not here to talk about the benefits of a regular firestick. We're here to discuss Firestick jailbreak. What's that, you're wondering? Stick around and find out!

What exactly is jailbreaking?

In general, most developers and manufacturers create certain limitations and restrictions for their devices. This can be done to protect the device's hardware and operating system from being exploited or harmed by unauthorized software. That is mostly a good thing, but a lot of the time, developers take it too far to have more control over profits and their user base.
This is where jailbreaking comes into play.
Firestrick jailbreaking means the process of modifying the device's operating system to gain unrestricted access to a wide range of third-party apps, streaming services, and content that are not available through the official Amazon Appstore.
Since the Firestick offers the functionality of a SMART TV but comes at a fraction of the price, you might think, "Can Amazon make money off of it?". And you'd be on to a point. See, the Firestick is cheap, but you do have to pay a subscription and/or one-time purchase fee for your content. And that can total 500 or 1,000 USD annually for a single household.
This Business Insider chart shows just how much of a hole streaming services can burn in your pocket. Let's say you have Prime Video, Hulu, and Netflix. That is close to 40 USD per month or ~480 USD per year just for streaming alone. You can get a new, greatly rated, 55" - 65" UHD SMART TV for that price.
So, naturally, the demand for a jailbroken Firestick is very real. Users of jailbroken Firesticks say that they benefit from more content being available to them and saving hundreds of dollars.

Jailbreaking a Firestick

Full Disclaimer – this is just a guide for educational and explanatory purposes. Jailbreak at your own risk!

Process of Jailbreaking

We'll talk about how to jailbreak a Firestick in steps. Your experience can slightly change according to the Fire TV OS you're using,
Step 1: Find "Downloader". Use the find function and look for Downloader.
NOTE: Before you use Downloader, you want to go to Settings to enable the install apps from unverified sources.
  • Navigate to My Fire TV or Device (depending on your Firestick version).
  • Select Developer Options.
  • Enable Apps from Unknown Sources & ADB Debugging. Click on the ADB debugging once you've downloaded Downloader and turn it on.
  • Open Privacy settings and turn Collect app usage data OFF.
  • Open Data usage monitoring and also set it to OFF.
You need to enable ADB connections/sideloading to make sure everything works. That's pretty much it.
Step 2: Find the Downloader app in your FIRE TV interface.
Step 3: Open the Downloader app (allow all permissions) and use it to download jailbreaking app. One popular option is Kodi, an open-source media player. Here's how to install Kodi:
  • In the Downloader app, enter the URL for the Kodi APK file (e.g., https://kodi.tv/download).
  • Follow the on-screen prompts to install Kodi on your Firestick.
Step 4: Launch and configure Kodi. After installing Kodi, you can launch it from the Firestick's app menu. Take some time to explore Kodi's features and customize them according to your preferences.
Drumroll, please – jailbreaking was successful, and you should now have a jailbroken Firestick.

What can I do with a jailbroken Firestick?

There are some differences and what users call advantages that unlock after you jailbreak a Firestick.
On one side, it opens up a world of possibilities and benefits. Here are a few key advantages:
  • Access to a lot of third-party apps. Jailbreaking allows users to install apps that are not available through the official Amazon Appstore, expanding their entertainment options. The jailbreak also allows sideloading apps from external sources, opening up a world of possibilities beyond the limitations of the official app ecosystem.
  • Free streaming. With a jailbroken Firestick, you can access free streaming services, allowing you to enjoy movies, TV shows, and live sports without a costly subscription. Not usually legal, though.
  • Customization. Jailbreaking gives you the freedom to personalize your Firestick's interface, install custom themes, and enhance the overall user experience. Regular Amazon services don't allow that much freedom.

Is this legal?

Just the process of jailbreaking and educating yourself isn't illegal. However, finding copyrighted content and accessing it by infringing copyrights is.
At the same time, the answer is not as straightforward as a simple "yes" or "no." While the process of jailbreaking itself is legal (probably only voids warranty), certain activities or the content accessed through jailbroken Firesticks may infringe upon copyright laws.
It's important to note that streaming copyrighted content without proper licensing or authorization is generally considered illegal in many jurisdictions. However, the laws and accountability may greatly vary depending on your location.
The consequences? These can range from receiving cease-and-desist letters to facing hefty fines or even criminal charges, depending on how much you pirate and where you're located.
To ensure you stay on the right side of the law, it is crucial to use your jailbroken Firestick responsibly, respect copyright laws, and only stream content from legal sources.

Summary

So, we've explained the process of jailbreaking a Firestick, the pros of it, and what is the legal status of such a process. We hope this was informative. Read our other blogs to find the latest and greatest insights into the world of cybersecurity, tech tips, and private communications online.
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