Hack Enables 3D Maps on iPhone 4, Proves(?) It’s Not Too Old for the Future

As is standard fare for a new iOS release, Apple has omitted select features from the iPhone 4 version due to its seemingly more debilitated age, including a stand-out of iOS 6: 3D maps. Of course, that does not stop the hacking community from stepping in to save the day by bringing the future of mapping to the 4S’s beloved ancestor in form of a hack that gets the feature working in much of its glory on an iPhone 4.

Russian hacker Anton Tiktov (under the handle iTony) has brought 3D mapping to the excluded device just days after the iOS 6 beta was circulated to the development community. His key to the lock that places limitation on the iPhone 4′s mapping capabilities comes in the form of Tiktov’s ’3DEnabler’ app. With Cyda limitations on jailbroken devices running the beta, Tiktov managed to modify the firmware of his iPhone 4 in order to install 3DEnabler.

Although it is not available in Cydia just yet, there is a guide that will allow the most persistent users to install 3DEnabler through Tiktov’s methods.

While iPhone 4 does get indeed receive Apple’s new map application in iOS 6, the company has decided not to enable fly-by 3D maps on the two-year old device, limiting it to the inveterate standard, satellite, and hybrid views. This is not the only limitation presented to iPhone 4 users running iOS 6, as it is also excluded from the turn-by-turn navigation features in iOS 6.

Developed in partnership with C3 Technologies, Apple’s advanced photo-realistic 3D solution is exclusively reserved for iPhone 4S, iPad 2, as well as the third-generation iPad. The reasoning is more than likely a combination of both costly mapping deals as well as the significant performance increase that was brought by the upgraded hardware.

With the iPhone 4S citing up to seven times better graphics performance, it is no wonder that Apple would leave the graphic-intensive intricacies of its 3D mapping technology off of its predecessor.

Would you want to see 3D maps on the aging iPhone 4 even though it appears to run at a low, clunky frame-rate in comparison to newer devices? Check out videos of the tweak working its magic and decide for yourself whether Apple is making the right move by only enabling the feature on devices that can optimally run it:

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[via SlashGear]