Back in January we reported that ChevronWP7 Labs, the officially-sanctioned "jailbreak" service for Windows Phone "homebrew", was coming to a halt. At the time, the reasons cited mostly revolved around the difficulties some users experienced in installing it and the following tech-support needed to help them out. The project was put on indefinite hiatus with more tokens possibly being bought in the future.
However, today it's official: the experiment is over.
Within 120 days, those who unlocked their phones via the ChevronWP7 Labs service will have their phones re-locked. The good news is all users who bought a token are eligible for a one-year Microsoft App Hub membership, a $99 value and allowing them to stay unlocked for 12 more months.
The jailbreak service is being permanently shut down for a few reasons, including those cited above but also because many of those who did unlock their phones so that they could "sideload" apps for experimentation, never moved on to actually publishing any apps to the Windows Phone Marketplace. That was one of the goals of the project -- to reduce the $99 barrier for devs who might not be able to afford the App Hub membership.
While ChevronWP7 Labs is gone, the ChevronWP7 team made up of Rafael Rivera, Long Zheng and Chris Walsh will continue tinkering around:
"Fear not, we will continue to explore other ideas with Microsoft. All sides are still very interested in the hobbyist and homebrew developer communities."
For more information on the closure of the service and for those looking to upgrade to that App Hub membership, head to the ChevronWP7 Labs site here.