Kindle: Jailbreak Your Kindle

So, you’re happy with your Kindle Paperwhite?

Maybe you’d like a bit more functionality, though? 

Perhaps you’re bored of the standard screensaver or you’d like some additional fonts? 

It could be there’s a PDF viewer that you prefer to the default viewer? 

Unfortunately, you’re stuck with the proprietary settings provided when you buy a Kindle. If you jailbreak your Kindle, though, you can bypass these defaults if they’re not to your liking.

What Is Jailbreaking?

Jailbreaking is gaining the ability to install third-party apps that don’t typically come with a device. 

While jailbreaking is perfectly legal, retailers don’t want you to use apps from other manufacturers because they see this, understandably, as losing business.

If you own a Kindle but want the functions and features that you get with an expensive Kindle Oasis, jailbreaking can enable this without costing you a red cent more.

Why Jailbreak Your Kindle?

Kindle owners who jailbreak their Kindle often do so in order to use own custom screensavers. 

Also, many people also want to read their e-book collections from Calibre (an opensource e-reader) on their Kindle.

Many find organizing their collections Kindle is cumbersome where Calibre is much more user-friendly. Jailbreaking a Kindle allows you to organize your files on your Kindle using Calibre.


Pros and Cons of Jailbreaking a Kindle

Unfortunately, if you don’t know what you are doing you run the risk of bricking your device. This could signal permanent failure of your Kindle.

Also, many who try to jailbreak their Kindle find that some software can’t be bypassed and it requires taking the device apart. For most, this seems like too much of a risk.

If you can jailbreak your Kindle successfully, though, you can enjoy a wider range of reading apps, install third party software, and display your own screensavers. 

Only you know whether you consider this a worthwhile risk or a waste of time.

How can you go about jailbreaking, then?

Jailbreaking Your Kindle

How you jailbreak or whether you can jailbreak your Kindle will depend on which version you have. 

Jailbreaking involves taking your Kindle device back  to factory settings and then installing a jailbreak file.

When the jailbreak installation is complete, you can then install the latest firmware and the jailbreak settings will be maintained.

Kindle jailbreak forums all point to the best resource for the latest jailbreak information as Wiki Mobileread

Every version of Kindle has a slightly different jailbreak process, but the installation follows these steps:

  1. Find the nickname of your device from your serial number
  2. Next, prepare your device for jailbreak by wiping the storage areas (but backup everything first!)
  3. Download the firmware image relevant to your Kindle onto your computer
  4. Validate this file then transfer onto your Kindle
  5. The jailbreak should install

Please note, this is a simplistic explanation of the process. Different versions of Kindles have complicated variations when it comes to installing the jailbreak.

Always check at Wiki Mobileread as they have the most up to date resources on jailbreaking a Kindle.

Some Final Thoughts

Not sure if you should jailbreak your Kindle? Is it really worth it? Many people find it certainly helps to organize their library and who wants to see the same screensaver every day?

Of course, there’s always the risk of bricking your device, so take care and make sure you thoroughly research what you’re doing using the most up-to-date forums for your version. Be careful as the version of firmware you are running could brick your Kindle.

You can always drop us a line with a specific enquiry about jailbreaking your Kindle if you can’t find the answer to any more questions on our site.

Stay current on more Kindle hacks and get the most from your device by bookmarking Pick My Reader and we’ll see you soon!

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