Weekend Reading: Orangen’t you glad I didn’t say banana—I mean Apple?
There have been some pretty hot news in the world of mobile this week. Instead of showcasing some of the companies that are #winning, this weekend spend some time reading about #fail… Intrigued yet? If you don’t like stalkers you should be.
Apple tracks you on your iPhone
I am assuming all of you have read about iPhone’s track users’ whereabouts and storing location information with the iOS 4 software update, issued in June 2010 (If you haven’t hear about this, I suggest you don’t admit it, nod and smile, and read this article). Pete Warden and Alasdair Allan are the data researchers you can thank for bringing this information to the public’s attention. The researchers claim that with a simple program anyone in possession of an updated apple phone or computer can access details concerning the device owner’s whereabouts, but do not allude to the program in question.
Outraged and think users’ rights have been violated? You’re not alone, Sen. Al Franken, Democratic Senator of Minnesota, has written a letter to Apple requesting the technology giant to explain how and why this happened. Rep. Ed Markey, Democrat of Massachusetts, has also joined in on the fun, sending Apple his own questioning letter. Rep. Markey asks if the device is call an “iPhone” or “iTrack.” Both men’s concerns stem back to a lack of encryption on the data. Keep your eyes peeled while the public anxiously awaits a response from Apple.
Google tracks you on your Android
Laughing at Apple users and thinking you are safe on your Android? Think again. Google’s Android Smartphones are also reportedly transmitting user locations back to Google. Apple and Google are now racing to see who can build a database faster to be able to pinpoint people via their Smartphones. This article claims that the companies are trying to gain the most location-based information as possible to gain a competitive edge in the LBS market, which is anticipated to grow $5.4 billion to $8.3 billion by 2014 according to Gartner research firm. This race to the top does not explain the lack of security measures on the data being stored.
Stop the madness, or just the stalking
Still freaked out by all of this tracking? It’s not so bad, you could always turn your phone off wherever you go… or you can follow some other tips to avoid mobile trackers. On Androids users have the option of unselecting a location services box, and if you missed it at start up you can go through your menu, settings and into your location and location setting. Apple users can also visit their settings to either block certain applications or turn off location-based services on their devices.
Green Apple #fail for Earth Day
With respect to Apple’s failures this week, and in honor of Earth Day, we bring Apple’s latest fail: Apple was named least green company. Greenpeace, an environmentally focused nonprofit, ousted Apple after the corporation’s latest investment in a new facility will triple Apple’s electricity consumption. Combined, Apple’s data centers are score the highest coal dependence, scoring a 54.5 percent but closely followed by Facebook, IBM, HPR and Twitter. Bad Apple, we only have one earth and we thought you- a company that’s known for being progressive and innovative – might be more into it. Overall this was a rough week for Apple.
Don’t get us wrong; despite some of its worms, we love Apple. Most of us here at MoPR sport iPhones, and I myself got the iPad 2 on the first day it was available. I’m just being more careful with their location services!