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Windows Phone 7 unlocked with reversible ChevronWP7 tool

Windows Phone 7 looks like it's getting ready for a full jailbreak, opening the way for warranty-scoffing users to add unapproved apps that don't need any Microsoft permission.

A tool has been published that unlocks Windows Phone 7, potentially allowing unapproved apps and firmware for those who are willing to void their warranty.

ChevronWP7 allows you to unlock any Windows Phone 7 device on the market, its creators promise. It certainly looks simpler than the techniques used to jailbreak the iPhone. Targeted at homebrew developers, it allows you to load your own apps on to the phone without having to go through Microsoft's Marketplace, and lets you return your phone safely to its locked state.

This isn't a full jailbreak, as the creators of the tool have simply unlocked a feature open to all Windows Phone 7 developers. The developers are at pains to state this isn't about creating pirated Windows Phone 7 applications, but instead about developing apps that otherwise wouldn't make it through the Marketplace's restrictions.

This is in spite of the rapidly growing number of apps -- there are roughly nearly 3,000 apps and games on the platform, with more than 15,000 developers working on more.

Those of you who've jailbroken your iPhone will know all about the benefits -- it lets you download apps not available in the App Store. Frowned upon by Apple but not illegal, it voids your warranty.

The iOS jailbreak was partly a response to Apple's close control of what goes in and out of the App Store. Windows Phone 7 is still at a very early stage, so it's not yet clear whether users will want to download unapproved apps, or developers have the motivation to create them. But knowing the hacking community, they'll have a jailbreaking tool out ready within days anyway.

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