A new PlayStation 4 jailbreak looks increasingly unlikely

A new PS4 jailbreak looks unlikely. (Source: Digital Trends)
A new PS4 jailbreak looks unlikely. (Source: Digital Trends)
The hopeful PlayStation 4 homebrew scene has waited a long while for a new kernel exploit, after the release of the firmware 5.05 jailbreak back in 2018. That wait is unlikely to end anytime soon, in light of recent developments.
Ricci Rox, 🇪🇸
Views, thoughts, and opinions expressed in the text belong solely to the author.

Over the past few months, there's been hope in the PlayStation 4 homebrew scene that a kernel exploit would soon be released, with a jailbreak to follow. Things have taken a bleak turn of recent, though, and it now looks exceedingly unlikely that Sony's current-gen console will see a new jailbreak release anytime soon.

Back in March, well-known developer @theflow0 announced that he had discovered a vulnerability that could potentially open up the path for a kernel exploit. After two months of silence, that looks to be dead in the water. @theflow0's last statement on the matter seemed to lean towards such an exploit being unusable at best.

Sony's public opening of its Bug Bounty Program with a payout of up to US$50,000 is unlikely to have made things better either. Devs who would otherwise work in tandem with the PS4 homebrew scene have less motivation to do so, considering the potential of a massive payout from Sony. In fact, the Bug Bounty Program is currently listed as having paid out US$10,000 to a developer with the handle @theflow0. It could be someone else, or it could be the same developer who was hopeful for a kernel exploit just a few months ago. 

Conjecture is useless here but the fact remains that devs now have little to no motivation to work towards a PlayStation 4 exploit. Reporting a vulnerability to Sony all but ensures a tangible payday; and there's a feeling among the masses that, just like rooting is now becoming unnecessary in the Android space, homebrew for the PlayStation 4 is an irrelevant cause with little to no actual utilitarian value. The hopeful homebrew community also tends to get a tad...abrasive to developers, further compounding the issue.

I'd love to see a new jailbreak for the PlayStation 4. The current one is based on firmware 5.05 and is long in the tooth at this point. It's a matter of principle; users should have the freedom to do what they want with the hardware they paid for—within the confines of the law. That freedom doesn't seem to be forthcoming, however, and hope is all that's left. 


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Ricci Rox, 2020-07- 3 (Update: 2020-07- 3)
Opinion by Ricci Rox
Views, thoughts, and opinions expressed in the text belong solely to the author.
Ricci Rox
Ricci Rox - News Editor - @riccirox - 1829 articles published on Notebookcheck since 2017
I'm a freelance copywriter who lives and dies for tech. Android, ​especially. The smartphone market is one going through an impressive growth spurt, so I crawl the Internet with keen interest in a technological ecosystem that doesn't seem to be slowing down anytime soon.
contact me via: @riccirox, LinkedIn