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Sony halts sales of PS3 jailbreak

Australian court orders resellers there to temporarily halt presales of PS Jailbreak, a USB dongle that would allow PlayStation 3 owners to dump borrowed games onto the system's hard drive.

Not so fast PS3 jailbreakers. Sony has succeeded, at least Down Under, in temporarily halting presales of a USB dongle that would allow PlayStation 3 owners to dump borrowed games onto the system's hard drive.


A federal court in Australia on Thursday ordered electronics retailers in the country to stop sales and distribution of the dongle called PS Jailbreak, which we told you about last week. Court documents indicate the injunction will remain in place until a hearing scheduled for Tuesday that could determine the permanent fate of the modchip in Australia, and have consequences for the device in other countries, as well.

Australian retailer Quantronics, one of three respondents named in court documents filed by Sony Computer Entertainment Europe and Sony Computer Entertainment Australia, currently lists the $170 product as "no stock," but details on the PS3 modchip remain on the site.

Earlier, reports the site PS3News, Quantronics posted a notice stating it would not:

• Import the PS Jailbreak
• Distribute the PS Jailbreak
• Offer the dongle for sale to the public
• Provide it to another person
• Otherwise deal with the product

"Unless a continuation of orders or permanent injunction is granted to Sony Computer Entertainment, this product page will be returned and sales will resume on the 31st August 2010," the site said.

That notice no longer appeared on the site at the time of this writing.

The site PSJailbreak.com, meanwhile, did not mention the Australian court order on Friday. It lists distributors around the world, including the three Australian outfits named in the court documents. In addition to Quantronics, they are OzModChips.com and ModSupplier.com.

Thursday's court order also gives Sony permission to collect and test all dongles in the firms' possession.

The PS3 runs the software on the PS Jailbreak when the dongle is inserted into the console's USB port and booted. Besides the ability to copy and play games from the hard drive, the jailbreak is said to allow non-Sony-approved software, including homebrew apps, to run. Even online gaming is supported, and early reports stated that games running from the hard drive run faster than the same games from the optical disc drive. The hack was scheduled to ship Friday, August 27.

"We will not be providing further commentary with regards to this case," Sony Computer Entertainment said in a statement Monday. "However, as we always have, we will continue to take necessary actions from both hardware and software to protect the intellectual property of the content offered on the PS3 system."

Update, Monday at 11:20 a.m. PDT: A comment from Sony has been added to the story.