Well that didn’t take long. Yesterday, we told you about an Android vulnerability found in ClientLogin that could have serious security ramifications. Using a dummy open access-point, a nefarious third party could passively — via Wi-Fi — collect authentication tokens to password protected services such as Facebook, Twitter, and Google Calendar stored on affected Android devices. Speaking with Mobilized’s Ina Fried, the Android-maker has stated that it is taking action, and fast. “Today we’re starting to roll out a fix which addresses a potential security flaw that could, under certain circumstances, allow a third party access to data available in calendar and contacts,” Google told the publication. “This fix requires no action from users and will roll out globally over the next few days.” The vulnerability will still be present in the company’s Picasa online photo offering, but Google stated that it is working to patch that service as well.
Looking to scoop up one of Apple’s ultra-light notebook offerings? You may want to hold on to your wallet for a few more weeks. According to the latest report, Apple is preparing to update the notebook line in the not-too-distant future. “The Taiwan-based supply chain for Apple products will begin shipments of new 11.6-inch and 13.3-inch MacBook Air models featuring Sandy Bridge platform and Thunderbolt interface in late May for launch in June or July,” reads a report filed by DigiTimes. The article goes on to note that the updated Air will be assembled by Quanta Computer, with Catcher Technology, Auras Technology, Shin Zu Shing, Simplo Technology, and Dynapack all supplying components. The report echos earlier prognostications made by Concord Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo. The current iterations of the MacBook Air were first revealed in October of 2010, just 7-months ago. More →
Oh, you haven’t heard? Having a display with 326 pixels per inch (ppi) was so last year. In 2011, 367ppi reigns supreme. At this week’s SID 2011 conference, Japanese company Toshiba showcased a 4-inch LCD display with a 720 x 1280 pixel resolution and an impressive pixel density of 367ppi. The screen, which will come to market sometime this year, has a contrast ratio of 1000:1 and is capable of displaying video in native 720p. Much has been made of screen pixel-density, thanks in part to Apple coining the term “Retina display” with its launch of the iPhone 4. Apple’s latest smartphone features 326 pixels per inch, making the new Toshiba offering — with 41 extra pixels for every inch — better (or at least denser). What handset will be knighted with the new, ultra-crisp screen? We’re not sure, but we can’t wait to find out. More →
Nokia’s N9 handset has made a brief cameo via a one-minute, official-looking video clip. What do we learn from said video? Not a heck of a lot. What we do see is a 12-megapixel camera complete with Carl Zeiss optics flash before our eyes, and the iconography seen suggests that the device will be a Symbian offering complete with the Anna software update. The rumor mill states the N9 will be a pentaband GSM handset that could make an appearance stateside, although… since Nokia is going all-in with Windows Phone, we’re not sure what the fate of this handset is. The video is after the break. Have a look for yourself.
The Motorola DROID X2 is definitely taking a page from the DROID Incredible 2′s playbook. That is: we know almost everything about this phone although Verizon Wireless has yet to officially announce it. Bearing that in mind, it should come as no surprise that the DROID X2′s user guide has hit Motorola’s official website. The guide confirms that the X2 will be a dual-core, 1GHz device with a 4.3-inch display and qHD resolution. It also confirms that the handset’s form will be nearly identical to that of the original DROID X; released just one year ago. The DROID X2 has a rumored go-live date of May 26th, although the guide does little to confirm that. Hit the jump to check out the PDF. More →
One of the major benefits of owning an Android handset is the ability to install applications from non-Market sources — without the necessity of a dev-team intervention. AT&T customers have not, however, been privy to this particular feature… that is until now. In a letter to developers, the carrier has confirmed that it will, from this point forward, allow users to install Android apps from third-party sources such as the Amazon App Store. The act of installing applications through unofficial channels — oft referred to as side-loading — has been disabled by AT&T since the introduction of its first Android handset. The carrier’s newest Android offering, the Samsung Infuse 4G, was the first device to ship with the side-loading handcuffs removed and, thankfully, it looks like it won’t be the last. More →
In a Congressional appearance last week, Sprint CEO Dan Hesse explained just why his company objects to the proposed $39 billion AT&T and T-Mobile merger. Aside from his previously expressed grievances — that the merger would create a wireless duopoly and stifle competition — Hesse also noted another possible paradigm: the deal could lead to Sprint being bought or acquired as well. “The most likely buyer is CenturyLink, the biggest company in telecommunications without a wireless unit,” writes Bloomberg, quoting industry analysts. Other potential Sprint buyers on the publication’s post-merger hit-list include Comcast Communications — a company that might be interested in bundling home internet, phone and cable services with wireless offerings. Most analysts agree that a Sprint purchase would come at least two full-quarters after the AT&T and T-Mobile deal has been finalized, although the idea of the Now Network being procured is still very speculative. Representatives from Sprint, CenturyLink, and Comcast all declined to comment on the report. More →
A report filed by UK publication The Register details a scary weakness in most Android handsets currently being sold. The aforementioned vulnerability would allow attackers to collect and use digital tokens stored on a handset after a user authenticates to a password protected service. “The weakness stems from the improper implementation of an authentication protocol known as ClientLogin in Android versions 2.3.3 and earlier,” reads the report, quoting research from the University of Ulm. “After a user submits valid credentials for Google Calendar, Twitter, Facebook, or several other accounts, the programming interface retrieves an authentication token that is sent in cleartext. Because the authToken can be used for up to 14 days in any subsequent requests on the service, attackers can exploit them to gain unauthorized access to accounts.” Google has issued a patch for the ClientLogin protocol with Android 2.3.4 and Android 3.0, but, as The Register points out, only 1% of Android devices are currently running the updated code. More →
Chinese blog 911Sniper has uncovered evidence of a new, HTC tablet with a 10-inch form factor. Being called the HTC Puccini, the Android 3.0.1 slate boasts a 1.5GHz Qualcomm MSM8660 processor, 1280 x 800 pixel WXGA resolution, HTC’s Sense experience, and an AT&T compatible LTE radio. The Puccini, should it come to market, would be a larger version of the company’s Flyer offering — complete with Scribe pen support. HTCSniper has a good track record when it comes to unearthing HTC hardware through ROM leaks, so we wouldn’t be too surprised to see this one get official in the near future. More →
According to a report by CVG, Android Market downloads of games specifically designed to run on Sony Ericsson’s Xperia PLAY handset have been extremely low. As evidence in its case, the report hones in on five Play titles that all have under 1,000 total Market downloads: Cool Boarders 2, 100–500; Destruction Derby, 500–1,000; Jumping Flash, 50–100; MediEvil, 100–500; and Syphon Filter, 100–500. Despite this, the handset’s creator is undeterred. “There’s no concerns, it’s a revolutionary device, it’s shaking up the market, we’re very pleased with it,” said Dominic Heil-Dwyer, head of market development at Sony Ericsson. “In terms of getting the PlayStation Certified program out, generally, we’re very happy. I think we’ll make a full assessment of if it has achieved our expectations fully, further down the line, so we’re very happy.” Launched in early April, the device pairs classic gaming controls with the now familiar large-touchscreen smartphone form factor. The Xperia PLAY is scheduled to make its Stateside debut on Verizon Wireless in the coming months. More →
A Verizon Wireless spokesperson has shed some light on the fate of the HTC Merge — an Android 2.2 handset first discovered last September. The device, which was officially announced by HTC in February, has fallen in and out of obscurity for months. Now, according to the latest report, users may finally get a chance to purchase the handset. Speaking with blog Phone Scoop, a Verizon representative explained, “The HTC Merge was approved for use on the Verizon Wireless network and is being sold by third party distributors, but not in Verizon Wireless stores.” The full-QWERTY smartphone also contains a SIM card slot — for use overseas — making it one of Verizon’s “world phones.” The company did not indicate if the handset would eventually make its way to Verizon’s retail outlets. More →
An International Trade Commission (ITC) judge has ruled that Kodak did not infringe upon camera patents held by Apple. Reuters is reporting that an administrative law judge rejected the Cupertino-company’s claims, with a final decision by the ITC due on September 19th. Kodak, although not as prominent as it once was when film reigned supreme, still holds a treasure-trove of patents. “Many investors see Kodak’s value in its lucrative portfolio of intellectual property,” reads the report. “It has more than 1,000 patents and it made an estimated $630 million in 2010 from its licenses. But analysts have said this revenue from licenses is unpredictable and the portfolio might eventually dwindle.” Kodak has a pending suit filed against both Apple and Research In Motion, again surrounding smartphone camera technology, that is set to be decided upon on May 23rd. More →
It’s more like a pre-prenuptial agreement, but you get the idea. T-Mobile’s parent company, Deutsche Telecom, has confirmed that it stands to receive a $6 billion settlement from AT&T should the companies’ proposed merger fall through. According to DT, a $3 billion cash payment would be made along with additional spectrum and a national roaming agreement. While the exact valuation of the spectrum and roaming agreement was not disclosed, Reuters appraises the two intangibles at close to $3 billion. Congress, the Federal Communications Commission and Department of Justice are all scrutinizing the proposed deal, which would make AT&T the largest wireless provider in the United States. There are sure to be plenty of twists and turns along the way, but once thing is certain: a large sum of money is going to be debited from AT&T’s coffers no matter the regulatory outcome. More →