Tech News Today 297

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Tech News Today
Episode 297

Tech News Today 297: Rip Your Heart Out, UK!

US ISPs lie much less than they did in 2009, Android has an eavesdropping trojan, Amazon's app store is rotten, and more.

Submit and vote on story coverage at technewstoday.reddit.com


Hosts

Top Stories

  • Facebook Acquires Push Pop Press
  • Facebook buys digital bookmaker Push Pop Press
    • Push Pop Press makes books for iOS. -- won an Apple Design Award for their appification of Al Gore's "Our Choice" book.
    • Push Pop says Facebook is acquiring it "for its technology"
    • "Although Facebook isn't planning to start publishing digital books, the ideas and technology behind Push Pop Press will be integrated with Facebook, giving people even richer ways to share their stories,"
    • Push Pop will donate future profits from the Gore book to The Climate Reality Project.
  • FiOS dominates as FCC measures actual Internet speeds
  • FCC Broadband Study Shows Which Companies Actually Come Close To Meeting Advertised Download Speeds
    • Measuring Broadband America Study announced by FCC Chairman Julius Genakowski -- Comcast, Cox, and Verizon FiOS largely perform well, but other companies like Cablevision, AT&T, MediaCom, and Frontier all fail to deliver their customers the quality of service promised.
    • Big improvement over a similar study in 2009 (when consumers were getting 50%)
    • SamKnows recruited 78,000 Internet users from across the US, then selected 9000 of them to receive a specially configured router. That router took a series of measurements during March 2011 that tested broadband speed from a user's home to a remote server across the Internet. Results were checked against ISP-installed reference points to ensure accuracy.
    • Cablevision fails spectacularly in peak hours but points to their high customer satisfaction rankings as a defense.
    • On average, during peak periods DSL-based services delivered download speeds that were 82 percent of advertised speeds, cable-based services delivered 93 percent of advertised speeds, and fiber-to-the-home services delivered 114 percent of advertised speeds.
    • Half of consumers don't even know what speeds they're supposed to get.

Discussion Stories

  • New Android trojan records phone calls, shares with remote server
  • A Trojan spying on your conversations
    • Dinesh Venkatesan from HCL technologies found a trojan for Android on a malware collection channel (not in wild)
    • presents itself as an "Android System Message" that requires users to press an "Install" button for it to insert itself in the phone.
    • Phone calls are recorded and saved to an AMR file onto the handset’s SD memory card,
    • Trojan effectively describes in bullet points all the nefarious things it's about to do, including "record audio" and "read phone state and identity."
  • EA's $25 "Season Ticket" offers prerelease games, cheaper DLC
    • "Season Ticket" from EA costs $25 a year
    • Early Full-Game Digital Access gives you access to games three days before sale. Must be purchased to continue playing.
    • 20-percent discount on DLC
    • Free Premium Web Content
    • Membership badge
    • GameStop is the program's official retail partner.
  • Sprint to sell 4G services to wholesale customers
    • Sprint Nextel said today that it will begin offering 4G services on a wholesale basis
    • The new arrangement is made possible by an agreement with ClearWire over wholesale pricing in April.
    • Could this save Sprint, provide more competition?

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"Well, today's story prompted me to check my page for ATT upgrades and I noticed something unusual. First, let me say that the account is a shared family plan with 4 iPhones and corporate discount, which means the bill is mildly scary! (And that affects upgrade time.) However, when I just checked ALL four of the lines state that they are eligible for upgrades, but most are no where near 2 years old. (A couple are getting close to a year and a half, and my line has an iPhone 4). ATT generally lets you shuffle upgrade times between lines so it's difficult to tell exactly what the most recent date would otherwise be, but having 4 upgrades at once is NOT normal, but quite nice, since my whole family is ready to upgrade their iPhones.

Thanks!

Michael Ball"


"Hey TNT crew,

I was just watching episode 294 regarding the android figures (phones vs tablets) and wanted to give my two cents:

The reason why the numbers for smart phones are much higher for phones over tablets is due to the fact that the tablet is a luxury product while a phone is what people need. When you go and get a mobile phone many people will get the cheapest phone that can do basic things. We are now at the stage where these cheap phones are smart phones. In the tablet space, people generally only get tablets as a luxury device and usually can afford $500 with no problem, they therefore want the best device. Therefore they will choose the best tablet.I would be interested to know the android numbers for the high end android phones under the various carriers. I suspect that the majority of the android phones are the lower end versions from HTC, Samsung, Motorola etc.

Would be good to know your views.

Sanjay from Singapore"

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Production Information

  • Edited by: Jeff
  • Notes:
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