The iPhone Dictionary
If you’ve just picked up an iPhone (something many people are doing with the release of the iPhone 4), you’ll probably first notice that there are lots of terms and phrases that might seem somewhat like a foreign language. And, especially if you’ve never or rarely used a cell phone before (something a little less common these days), these words might be a bit confusing. Here are some of the most common words, and their meanings, in the iPhone dictionary.
Baseband – The Baseband is what controls the phone part of the iPhone. It’s the Baseband that verifies the SIM card and that will search for the signal for the cell phone tower.
Bootloader – The bootloader starts up when the phone starts booting up and ensures that upon boot, everything works accordingly and as it should.
DFU Mode – Putting your iPhone into DFU mode can be compared to putting your PC into safe mode. This is done when a normal restore doesn’t work and should only be used as a last resort. Changing your iPhone to work in DFU mode is a bit tricky, as it involves getting timing absolutely perfect, but it can be done and should only take a few tries. To do it, hold down the Sleep/Wake button and the Home button just as you would in a normal restore. But just before the Apple logo pops up, let go of the Sleep/Wake button and continue holding the Home button until your iPhone recognizes that the phone is in DFU mode.
Firmware – This is essentially the operating system of your phone.
Installer.app – This is what your phone will use to download most of the iPhone applications. This element of the phone has the ability to download things to the phone over Wi-Fi.
Jailbreak – This is done when you access the phone’s root file system. Most users do this so that they can download third-party applications to their phone, or turn their iPod Touch into an iPhone.
Recovery Mode – This is the process of essentially resetting your iPhone. Most users do this when something goes wrong with their phone, but it doesn’t require major repair work.
Unlock – Unlocking your iPhone will allow you to use any carrier of your choice, rather than the handful of approved carriers that Apple will give you.