Tech News Today 489

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Tech News Today
Episode 489

Tech News Today 489: The Galaxy Strikes Back

How CISPA would affect you, Google doesn't have the most popular Android, Nokia falls from grace, and more.

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  • This overrides all other privacy laws. So can share information on customers with government as long as it pertains to a cyber threat. Amendment by Rep. Ben Quayle limits to only the following purposes (rather than any lawful purpose) but expands beyond cyber threats to cybersecurity, cyber crime, protecting people from harm (death bodily injury), protecting children from exploitation, and national security
  • under existing federal law, any person or company who helps someone "intercept any wire, oral, or electronic communication"--unless specifically authorized by law--could face criminal charges. CISPA would trump all other laws.


    • "Efforts to harm public and private systems and networks"
    • "theft or wrongful possession of public or private data, intellectual property, or personally identifiable information"


    • Government cannot demand more information that a self-protected company authorizes
    • Companies cannot use information shared to gain a marketplace advantage
    • Private companies are indemnified against liability for mistakes made when sharing the information


  • CTIA, the US Chamber of Commerce, the Internet Security Alliance, and the National Cable and Telecommunications Association, and large companies like AT&T, Verizon, Facebook, Intel, Oracle, and Microsoft.
    • Rep. Mike Rogers, Michigan "Without our ideas, without our innovation that countries like China are stealing every single day; we will cease to be a great nation."


  • EFF, ACLU, Center for Democracy and Technology, American Library Association, TechFreedom
    • Rep. Jared Polis, Colorado: CISPA would "waive every single privacy law ever enacted in the name of cybersecurity. Allowing the military and NSA to spy on Americans on American soil goes against every principle this country was founded on."


  • Democrats largely oppose it and control the Senate and White House. Senate Majority leader Harry Reid would like to move forward on the bill in May


  • Forbes: Cyberthreat information can be given to a non-profit, called the National Cyber Forensics and Training Alliance (NCFTA), which has a legal agreement with the government that allows it to then hand over info to the FBI.

  • Amazon Kindle Fire is top Android tablet
  • More Tablets Run Amazon’s Version of Android Than Google’s
  • Comscore release
    • February Comscore study that estimated Android tablet market share by tracking device traffic online.
    • 54% of all Android tablets are Kindle Fires. 2nd most popular tablet, Samsung's Galaxy Tab, has 15.4% of the market. Motorola Xoom with 7% share, the Asus Transformer, with 6.3%, and the Toshiba AT100, with 5.7%.
    • Fire practically doubled its share of market in the past two month, from 29.4% share in Dec 2011 to 54.4% February 2012.
    • Amazon runs custom(forked) version of Android, cheapest offering of all the tablets. Kindle launched in November 2011 for $199. Launched earlier this month in Europe. They don't release Kindle sales figures, but they do say it's their best selling, most gifted, and most wished for product
    • Larger screen tablets result in higher levels of content consumption. Comscore found that 10-inch tablets have a 39% higher consumption rate than 7-inch tablets.
    • Amazon announced revenues were up 34% in Q1.

    • IHS iSuppli - Apple (35 -33 million over Samsung) Strategy Analytics - Samsung (44.5 to 35.1 million)
    • Samsung earnings - revenue up 98% year over year, record $4.46 billion profit for Q1
    • Senior VP Robert Yi at end of earnings call

Discussion Stories

  • U.S. Escalates Google Case by Hiring Noted Outside Lawyer
  • FTC hires ex-DOJ prosecutor for Google antitrust probe
  • Google Street View Investigation by U.S. Declared Closed
  • Google Says It’s Being Investigated in Argentina, Korea
    • The Federal Trade Commission, which is examining Google's search technology, on Thursday hired Beth Wilkinson, a former Justice Department prosecutor
    • Wilkinson was key in the conviction of Oklahoma City bomber Timothy McVeigh
    • As former TFC official David Wales points out "this shows Google that if it doesn’t give you the remedy you want, you’re going to litigate."
    • Experts are comparing the hiring of Wilkinson to the hiring of David Boies who represented the DOJ in the United Staves v. Microsoft case of 1998.
    • While difficult to prove abuse of a monopoly in an antitrust case Douglas Broder, author of several antitrust law textbooks, said "It can be done."
    • The general issue of the investigation is whether Google abuses its Internet search power.
    • Google controls ~66% of the US search market, according to comScore
    • Bing = 15%, Yahoo = 14%
    • Critics argue that Google is manipulating results to hide competitors while Google asserts that "competition is a click away"
    • The US isn't the only ones investigating Google. Last year both South Korea and Argentina began investigations into whether Google accepts payments in return for search result placement.
  • Nintendo's gunning for retailers, expanding eShop offerings for Wii U, 3DS
  • Nintendo plays catch-up, will offer downloadable versions of 3DS, Wii U retail games
    • Nintendo President Satoru Iwata said in the company's investor briefing that Nintendo will sell its Wii U and 3DS games through its eShop.
    • The first 2 games available via download will be Onitore Brain Training and some little game called "New Super Mario Bros. 2" NSMB will hit in August
    • Unclear whether third-party games will be downloadable.
    • Games will still be available via traditional brick and mortar stores. You'll be able to purchase "activation codes" for digital downloads. Downloads and in-store games will be available on the same day.
    • downloaded titles will be tied to the specific 3DS system they're first downloaded to.
    • If you're worried about space, don't forget that Nintendo uses standard SD cards in the Wii and the 3DS (no proprietary memory lock in)
  • Yahoo accuses Facebook of dealing with dirty patent trolls
  • Yahoo Slams Facebook for ‘Retaliation’ in Patent Lawsuit
  • Byte Me: Yahoo Files More Patent Claims Against Facebook
    • 1. Yahoo sued Facebook for allegedly infringing 10 patents (3 from acq. of Overture services, rest filed in-house)
    • 2. Facebook accused Yahoo of infringing 10 patents (3 from NYU researchers 5 from other companies, all purchase within last 5 months) ***"Facebook purchased eight patents from non-practicing entities," Yahoo said in response to Facebook's counterclaim filed today in the US District Court in San Francisco.
      • Accuses Facebook of not acting in good faith, called the patent acquisitions retaliation, asked court to declare counterclaims invalid: Yahoo notes that "two patents were purchased [by Facebook] from 'IPG Electronics 503 Limited,' a San Diego-based patent aggregator; two patents were purchased from 'Cheah Intellectual Property Licensing,' a California-based patent holding company; one patent was purchased from 'Right Point LLC,' a Texas-based patent aggregator; and three patents were purchased from New York University's intellectual property licensing department."
    • 3. Yahoo now accusing Facebook of violating 2 more patents U.S. District Court in San Jose: #7,933,903, covering a "system and method to determine the validity of and interaction on a network," and #7,698,315, covering a "System and method allowing advertisers to manage search listings in a pay for placement search system using grouping."
    • Facebook: "We remain perplexed by Yahoo's erratic actions. We disagree with these latest claims and we will continue to defend ourselves vigorously."

News Fuse






"Howdy Tech News Today,

yesterday Tom mentioned that he has never seen a 3D phone in the wild. Lies! At this past years Blizzcon I (finally) met Tom in real life and took a photo with him. A 3D photo, on my 3D phone (the Evo 3D). See attached (we even did the point-hands-at-screen thing to show off the 3D). Now, I'll be frank: I don't use the 3D unless I want to show someone the 3D. So, I don't disagree with him about the usefulness of mobile 3D.

Love the show, Ted the Engineer"



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Production Information

  • Edited by: Chad
  • Notes:
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