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PwnageTool jailbreaks 4.1 devices, Apple TV 2

New jailbreak combines multiple exploits to allow loading of custom firmware packages onto any iDevice running iOS 4.1, makes apps for Apple TV 2 possible.

All your iDevices are belong to us. Screenshot by Matt Hickey/CNET

Here's some Apple news that has nothing to do with today's Back to Mac announcements: The Dev Team today released PwnageTool 4.1, a jailbreaking app for OS X that allows users of iDevices--iPod Touches, iPads, iPhones--to load custom firmware on their gadgets.

The tool uses a variety of exploits to maintain carrier unlocks on unlocked devices, and works on any device that can run iOS 4.1 (3.2.2 for iPad users). The only devices it doesn't work on are the original iPhone and the first two generations of the iPod Touch, the Dev Team said on its blog.

But the big news is that this userland jailbreak works on the Apple TV 2. Though the ability to jailbreak the Apple TV has been around for a while, we believe this is the first tool to have that ability specifically supported. Right now there are no apps for it, but in time developers should have that fixed. In fact, there's the possibility of porting current iDevice apps to your TV. Imagine being able to play Angry Birds on your big screen.

That said, today Apple announced that OS X Lion would have an app store, leaving the Apple TV as the only current device running iOS not to have one. That leaves open the possibility that Apple is planning one for the ATV2, which makes sense. But even if it doesn't, your Apple TV just got more useful.