The security of the Android mobile platform has always been a topic of debate. Due to Google’s open ecosystem and less invasive app policing policies, researchers argue that the Google Play marketplace is home to numerous malicious apps. Reports have surfaced over the past few years that claimed even applications from legitimate companies — such as Facebook, Skype and Path — were exploiting Android permissions and secretly accessing data. Paul Brodeur of Leviathan Security had a simple question: what data can an app access when it has no permissions? What he found may be shocking. More →
The United States Patent and Trademark Office published a patent application from Apple on Thursday that reveals potential next-generation battery designs. As the mobile industry turns toward thinner devices, Apple is looking to redesign batteries to enable these thin designs. According to PatentlyApple, the Cupertino-based company’s invention relates to a battery cell, which includes a set of electrode sheets of different dimensions that can be arranged in a variety of designs. The configuration can be based on a non-rectangular battery design such as an L-shaped, a triangular or a pyramidal design. Existing battery packs typically contain rectangular cells, and by utilizing cells with alternative shapes, Apple will seemingly be able to pack more cells into a smaller battery pack. More →
Microsoft recently unveiled an official Xbox LIVE application for iOS devices, including the iPhone, iPad and iPod touch. The application allows users to view and change Xbox avatars, send Xbox LIVE friends messages or compare achievements, learn about new games and more. Prior to Wednesday, Microsoft had only offered an official Xbox LIVE application to its Windows Phone users, so we’re a bit surprised (and pleased) to see the company spread the love to iOS. There’s no word if an Android application is in the works. Xbox LIVE for iPhone is available now in the iTunes App Store for free. More →
Flipboard, the popular magazine-style news application originally made available for the iPad is now available for iPhone as well. Flipboard allows users to flip through a single feed of articles and photos that have been shared across various social networks. It can also display stories from a variety of news categories including technology, design, “Flipboard picks,” photography, business, sports, style, travel, food and more. The user interface is among the best we’ve ever seen on a casual news application. Android and Windows Phone users may want to check out Pulse for a similar experience, though Pulse isn’t quite as impressive and novel as Flipboard. Flipboard for iPhone is free and is available in the App Store now. More →
The Federal Communications Commission on Tuesday granted AT&T permission to withdraw its application to purchase T-Mobile USA for $39 billion. Two public policy groups, Public Knowledge and Media Access Project asked the FCC to publish its documents relating to the deal and to prevent AT&T from rescinding its application, although it appears it’s too late for that to happen. AT&T announced its intention to withdraw its application to purchase T-Mobile USA on November 24th when it explained that it was going to instead focus on a lawsuit brought against it by the Department of Justice. That case is expected to kick off in February. Should AT&T win, it is likely the wireless carrier will re-file its application with the FCC and begin its acquisition process all over again. Public Knowledge and Media Access Project have argued that AT&T will have unfairly exhausted the resources of its competitors by the time it re-files for the merger.
Desktop apps that are designed to run on Windows 8 computers with x86/x64 processors will also be capable of running on ARM processors, ZDNet reported on Tuesday. Developers will need to recompile applications so that they run properly and Microsoft is hoping that a majority of developers create both desktop and ARM versions of their applications. In addition, ZDNet’s Mary Jo Foley said the standard Windows 8 desktop Metro style user interface will look the exact same on both types of processors. Microsoft has not yet said whether or not its Windows 8 application store will be populated with both Metro style applications and desktop apps. More →
Flipboard, the company behind the popular like-named social magazine application for the iPad, plans to add TV shows, books and movie content, Reuters reported on Thursday. The company’s app has been downloaded more than 3 million times, and it offers articles from several popular magazines including Rolling Stone and National Geographic. Users can view articles alongside customized news and social network feeds, too. Flipboard CEO Mike McCue told Reuters that he hopes to add TV shows and movies by the end of the year but has not discussed who his company is teaming up with to deliver the content just yet. It is also still unclear when McCue will add books to the app. A version of the software for the iPhone and iPod touch will be launching in the coming weeks and we’re excited to see how it performs on the iPhone’s smaller screen. More →
Swype released the latest version of its popular software keyboard exclusively for Sprint Nexus S 4G users on Tuesday. Swype now supports new app gesture features, shortcuts, dictionary management, automatic noun capitalization and more. Users, for example, can now move from the Swype Key to “t” and then “w” to automatically launch Twitter. The shortcuts feature allows you to select all by moving from the Swype Key to “a,” and cut, copy or paste using similar gestures. We tested all the new additions on a demo Nexus S 4G with the Swype preloaded, and we liked the new features but we still can’t get the hang of typing quickly with it just yet. It’s unclear when the latest Swype iteration will be available for other Android handsets, but Nexus S 4G owners can update immediately. Hit the jump for a quick video of the new features in action. More →
Have a Windows Phone? Want in on the Google+ fun? Your wait may soon be over. In a post published on July 14th, Google listed fifteen changes that it said “may” be implemented this week. Number six on the list is “Google+ App for Windows Phone 7.” Google officially announced the Google+ social network on June 28th and, while it already has more than 10 million users, third party user stats have suggested 87% of the current profiles belong to men. More →
T-Mobile introduced a new Android application on Wednesday called “More for Me.” The app offers T-Mobile customers with phones running Android 1.6 or later, daily deals based upon their preferences, location, and interests. Discounts are provided by sites such as LivingSocial, which is available in more than 260 markets, but there are also exclusive discounts from T-Mobile or its partners. T-Mobile customers simply need to install the T-Mobile More for Me app from the Android Market to get started. Read on for the full press release. More →
Facebook is set to launch its own iPhone photo-sharing service that will compete with the likes of Instagram and Path. Tech Crunch has obtained 50MB worth of data about Facebook’s project, including documents and actual images of the work in progress. The service is being called “WithPeople” or “Hovertown” internally, and it’s possible that it will be launched as a built-in feature to Facebook’s existing iPhone app or as a separate application entirely. Judging from the leaked image, we definitely see a resemblance to Path, particularly with the layout of the image previews. It certainly looks like a faster and more interactive way to view your friend’s Facebook photos though, so we’re excited to hear more about this project. More →
A few weeks back, a patent-holding company called Lodsys began contacting developers and asking them to cough up money for using their in-app purchasing technology without a license. Apple intervened briefly and said that its developers are covered under its own license, but now the company has taken the matter to court with an official movement to intervene. The motion officially states:
Apple Inc. hereby respectfully moves to intervene as a defendant and counterclaim plaintiff in the above-captioned action brought by plaintiff Lodsys, LLC against seven software application developers for allegedly infringing U.S. Patent Nos. 7,222,078 and 7,620,565. Apple seeks to intervene because it is expressly licensed to provide to the Developers products and services that embody the patents in suit, free from claims of infringement of those patents.
Hit the jump for more of the back story. More →
Apple on Tuesday officially announced that its iWork productivity applications, including Keynote, Pages, and Numbers, are now available for the iPhone and iPod touch. Apple has completely redesigned the applications to take advantage of iOS’s multitouch features. “Now you can use Keynote, Pages, and Numbers on iPhone and iPod touch to create amazing presentations, documents, and spreadsheets right in the palm of your hand,” Philip Shiller, Apple’s senior vice president of worldwide product marketing, said. “The incredible Retina display, revolutionary multi-touch interface and our powerful software make it easy to create, edit, organize, and share all of your documents from the iPhone 4 or iPod touch.” The applications offer improved document management and a tools button in the toolbar for quickly sharing documents without closing the application. Keynote, Pages, and Numbers are available in the iTunes App Store now for $9.99 each. Existing iWork for iPad users can upgrade for free, and the Keynote Remote is available for $0.99. Hit the jump for the full press release. More →