BlackBerry Ryan Seacrest Lawsuit

BlackBerry scores big early win against arch nemesis Ryan Seacrest

By on March 24, 2014 at 9:20 AM.

BlackBerry scores big early win against arch nemesis Ryan Seacrest

Every protagonist needs an arch enemy: Sherlock Holmes has Moriarty, Batman has the Joker and BlackBerry has Ryan Seacrest, the American Idol host and onetime BlackBerry user who allegedly stabbed the company in the back by ripping off its keyboard design for his Typo iPhone keyboard attachment. BerryReview points out that BlackBerry is now one step closer to exacting revenge on its hated enemy because a judge late last week validated two of the three patents that the company is asserting against Seacrest. BlackBerry still has to prove that Seacrest and Typo infringed upon these patents, of course, but just from looking at the design of the Typo attachment it looks like BlackBerry will have a strong case to make. BGR reviewed the Typo earlier this year and found that “it’s a well thought out, well designed, well made product by two people who can’t live without their physical keyboard.”

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Microsoft Hotmail and Outlook Privacy

Apparently, Microsoft can ‘scroogle’ your privacy whenever it wants

By on March 21, 2014 at 8:55 AM.

Apparently, Microsoft can ‘scroogle’ your privacy whenever it wants

Even though it bashed Google a number of times in ads for the way the Search giant is monetizing its services by accessing personal information from users to deliver better targeted ads, it turns out that Microsoft can equally “scroogle” one’s privacy if it wants to. Or at least it was able to do so in the past, as the company is now planning certain changes to further guard the privacy of users. More →

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Eric Schmidt CEO Of America

WTF of the week: Occupy Wall St. cofounder wants Eric Schmidt named ‘CEO of America’

By on March 20, 2014 at 12:05 PM.

WTF of the week: Occupy Wall St. cofounder wants Eric Schmidt named ‘CEO of America’

The Occupy Wall Street protest movement as a whole never seemed to have any concrete goals other than to play drum circles in public parks and now we can see why: One of its founders seems just as ideologically confused as the movement she helped create. The Guardian reports that Justine Tunney, who created the OccupyWallSt.org website and who now works as a software engineer at Google, has just launched a White House petition demanding that Barack Obama step down as president and then have Google chairman Eric Schmidt appointed to take his place as “CEO of America.” More →

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Netflix For Pirates Is Back

Popcorn Time, the ‘Netflix for pirates,’ is already back from the dead

By on March 17, 2014 at 12:01 PM.

Popcorn Time, the ‘Netflix for pirates,’ is already back from the dead

The sleekest, most intuitive platform for pirated movie streaming we’ve ever seen was shut down by its creators at the end of last week, but one torrent site has taken on the task of resurrecting the defunct Popcorn Time. According to TorrentFreak, the team at torrent site YTS “will now be picking up the Popcorn Time project and continuing on like previously.” YTS believes it is in a better position regarding copyrights than the original designers were, meaning the app should stay online for the foreseeable future. More →

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Netflix For Pirates Is Dead

‘Netflix for pirates’ is already dead

By on March 14, 2014 at 5:05 PM.

‘Netflix for pirates’ is already dead

The pirate’s answer to Netflix is now offline. Popcorn Time streamed dozens of free movies straight from their torrent files to computers all around the world, and the creators never stopped claiming that it was all completely legal. They even checked four times! But despite the massive response, much of which the creators say was positive, the app has been permanently disconnected. According to the message that now dominates the front page of the app’s website, the creators no longer want to be a part of “endless debates about piracy and copyright, legal threats and the shady machinery that makes us feel in danger for doing what we love.” We’ll be keeping an eye out to see if the team has anything else in store for the future.

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Comcast Time Warner Cable Political Donations

Why our politicians won’t lift a finger to stop the Comcast-TWC merger

By on March 11, 2014 at 11:15 PM.

Why our politicians won’t lift a finger to stop the Comcast-TWC merger

Lots of people hate the idea of letting Comcast and Time Warner Cable merge but don’t expect our esteemed elected officials to care. Politico documents how Comcast really does have all its bases covered in the Capitol when it comes to making campaign contributions to influential members of Congress. In fact, Politico’s examination of public records reveals that Comcast has donated money to “almost every member of Congress who has a hand in regulating it,” including “all but three members of the Senate Judiciary Committee” and “32 of the 39 members of the House Judiciary Committee.” In all, Politico says Comcast has already spent $2 million for this year’s campaign cycle after spending roughly $3.5 million in 2011 and 2012.

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Apple Vs. Samsung Patent Lawsuit

Apple’s end goal: Cripple Samsung’s ability to profit from smartphones

By on March 11, 2014 at 3:30 PM.

Apple’s end goal: Cripple Samsung’s ability to profit from smartphones

Florian Mueller, the leading phone patent maven, writes about a fascinating new twist in the handset industry patent wars. Mueller has in the past been harshly critical of Samsung’s own royalty demands but now he finds himself aghast that Apple is demanding a staggering $40 fee for smartphones and tablets using a suite of five Apple software patents. More →

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Android In-App Purchases Lawsuit

Woman sues Google after her kid blows $66 on in-app purchases

By on March 11, 2014 at 2:30 PM.

Woman sues Google after her kid blows $66 on in-app purchases

In-app purchases are apparently becoming big problems for parents who let their children play free mobile games on their tablets. GigaOM brings us word that a woman in New York has filed a lawsuit against Google after her son spent $65.95 on digital crystals that he used to help him play the Marvel Run Jump Smash! game. Essentially the mother wants to see Google make it so that you need to enter your password for every in-game purchase so that children won’t be able to rack up huge bills just by clicking “yes” when asked if they really want to buy virtual goods. Right now you can make an in-app purchase through Google Play without entering your password as long as you do it within 30 minutes from when you last entered your password. A press release outlining the lawsuit against Google over in-app purchases follows below. More →

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Apple vs Samsung Second Trial Damages

Apple wants to milk some serious cash from Samsung in new patent suit

By on March 11, 2014 at 2:14 PM.

Apple wants to milk some serious cash from Samsung in new patent suit

New documents uncovered by FOSS Patents reveals that Apple may be asking for as much as $40 per Samsung device found to be infringing on Apple’s patents that are in play in the second U.S. lawsuit between the two companies that’s set to start later this month. That works out to an average of $8 for each of the five Apple patens that are used against Samsung in this trial, “which relate to (but don’t even fully monopolize) the phone number tapping feature, unified search, data synchronization, slide-to-unlock, and autocomplete.” On the other hand, both parties had to cut the number of patent claims for the upcoming trial, with each side selecting its strongest ones for the trial.
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Nokia Patent Troll

Is Nokia about to become a giant unstoppable patent troll?

By on March 11, 2014 at 1:00 PM.

Is Nokia about to become a giant unstoppable patent troll?

The Korea Electronics Association has submitted a petition to Fair Trade Commission opposing Microsoft’s acquisition of Nokia’s phone unit. Koreans are restating the theory that many industry observers have been speculating about in recent months: the loss of its handset operations may unleash Nokia as a sort of megatroll with the power to cripple the profitability of most Asian phone vendors. More →

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Netflix For Pirates Streaming Torrents

‘Netflix for pirates’ brings streaming video to BitTorrent users

By on March 10, 2014 at 12:15 PM.

‘Netflix for pirates’ brings streaming video to BitTorrent users

If Netflix, Amazon Prime and Hulu Plus are any indication, torrenting isn’t quite the destructive force many groups have made it out to be. Torrenting is a popular alternative to legal streaming, buying and renting, but the abundance of poor quality torrents coupled with the unfriendly method of acquiring movies and TV shows through torrenting has kept a majority of viewers glued to their TVs, browsers and tablets. If watching a ripped movie was as easy as logging into Netflix, would the tides turn in the favor of torrents? The creators of Popcorn Time want to find out. More →

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Mt. Gox Fraud

Hackers call Mt. Gox CEO a liar, say he still controls ‘stolen’ bitcoin

By on March 10, 2014 at 8:45 AM.

Hackers call Mt. Gox CEO a liar, say he still controls ‘stolen’ bitcoin

Anonymous hackers on Sunday claimed to have published evidence that Mt. Gox CEO Mark Karpeles lied about the theft of more than $500 million worth of bitcoin. According to the hackers, Karpeles still controls all of the cryptocurrency he says was stolen recently in the biggest heist of bitcoin’s brief history. Mt. Gox was the world’s largest bitcoin exchange until about 850,000 bitcoin were allegedly stolen during a breach, forcing the exchange to shut down and file for bankruptcy protection. According to new claims from anonymous hackers, however, the heist never occurred and Karpeles still controls nearly 1 million bitcoin worth approximately $596 million at Monday’s exchange rate. More →

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