Google celebrates 3 million business on Apps, adds features

September 20th at 5:56 PM

Google celebrates 3 million business on Apps, adds features

Today, Google announced that over 3 million businesses have met their messaging and collaboration needs by switching to Google Apps. To celebrate the occasion, Google announced two new features it is adding to its cloud-powered services: two-step verification and mobile editing for Google Docs. First, two-step authentication. As Google explains:

Google Apps Premier, Education and Government Edition administrators can now have users sign in with the combination of their password (something they know) and a one-time verification code provided by a mobile phone (something they have). Users can continue to access Google Apps from Internet-connected devices, but with stronger protections to help fend off risks like phishing scams and password reuse. For the first time, we’re making this technology accessible to organizations large and small without the costs and complexities that have historically limited two-step verification to large enterprises with deep pockets. Furthermore, in the coming months, Standard Edition and hundreds of millions of individual Google users will be able to enjoy this feature as well.

The second feature, mobile editing of Google Docs, is exactly what it sounds like. Google has demonstrated the ability to edit documents on the Android OS as well as the iPad. “In the next few weeks, co-workers around the world will soon be able to co-edit files simultaneously from an even wider array of devices,” writes Google.

There you have it. Two-step authentication for extra security and the ability to collaborate and edit Google Docs on select mobile devices. We’re curious, any individual users going to take advantage of the two-step authentication process when it is rolled out to all Gmail/Google users? More →


Apple patent application includes mock-up of a jailbroken iPhone

March 28th at 12:49 PM

Apple patent application includes mock-up of a jailbroken iPhone

Apple’s recent patent application covering biometric and other embedded authentication systems has caused quite a stir as one of the included images is a mock-up of a jailbroken phone. Considering that Apple is trying to use copyright infringement and the DMCA to hinder jailbreaking, it is unusual to see such an image in an official Apple document.  The image of the jailbroken iPhone appears in a section of the patent that describes how authentication can be used to display different options and applications to different users:

[0048]Once the user has been properly authenticated, the electronic device may display options associated with the authenticated user (e.g., options for applications purchased by particular users). In some embodiments, the electronic device may provide access to resources or content that was previously not available (e.g., contact lists or previous messages in a telephone or mail application). FIGS. 5A-C are schematic views of illustrative display screens associated with different users provided in response to authenticating the user in accordance with one embodiment of the invention.

United States Patent Application: 0090083850 PRE { font-family: “Times New Roman”; font-size: 12pt; } [0050]Display screen 500C may include options 510C for resources or applications available to the users. In some embodiments, options 510C for the same resources as other display screens may have different appearances (e.g., different icons). For example, in FIG. 5C, the options displayed for the Mail, Clock, Photos, YouTube, and Calculator applications may be different than those displayed in display screen 500A of FIG. 5A. Display screen 500C may in addition include a custom or personal background 512C (e.g., different background image). In some embodiments, display screen 500C may not include a dock or other feature for maintaining some options 510C in a fixed position (e.g., unlike options 510B located in dock 512B).

Presumably under this authentication scheme, some users will be allowed access to the jailbroken screen while other users will be blocked and shown another screen. Was the selection of a jailbroken screen to represent a modified home screen a major faux pas or was its inclusion deliberate? Either way, Installer is sooooo 2008. It’s all about Cydia now, Apple — get with the program.

[Via Engadget]