"Hello, I'm a Mac, and I don't get viruses." We've all heard that phrase before, right? Some of the crazier people even believed that. Well, for a long time here at the show, we've talked about the hows and whys of that statement. Whether it be a low popularity, lack of interest or all-around uncaring nature, hackers never seemed to want to bother creating viruses and malware on Apple devices. It surely wasn't because their operating system was indestructible or that their nonexistent virus protection was unbeatable. It simply was because, that with 90% of all computers having Windows on it, it seemed like a waste of time to build a separate malicious program for Mac.
With the recent increase in popularity of all things shiny in the Apple world, hackers, now more than ever, have taken interest in the Mac OS. I mean, when you have so many mindless sheep who flock to a product because one latte-sipping schmuck at Starbucks says it's the best, why wouldn't you want to suck the confidence right from that "I wear clothes that make me look homeless but call it retro" individual, along with their money?
So, that's exactly what is happening now. How are they doing it? We'll tell you after the break.
Ever since CES 2011, we have been excited about the release of BlackBerry's Playbook, which should have won Best of CES, but we won't go there. We have speculated since the announcement that between the HP TouchPad and the PlayBook, the tablet market would be finally changed and made better with the addition of these smarter, better and actually useful devices.
Unfortunately, the release of the PlayBook has not come with just happy thoughts and good wishes. After a failed attempt at an employment site, another small tragedy struck RIM this week, as over 1,000 of the new tablets have been recalled by BlackBerry manufacturer Research in Motion.
For more on the story and some good news about it, click the break.
In the past, we have discussed Android's overall security problems and Marketplace vulnerabilities, but this week we have encountered a new set of problems, thanks to the researchers at Ulm University.
Here is the problem: many Google apps, such as Calendar and Contacts, sync with the Google servers regularly when they have access to the Internet. They use an authentication service known as ClientLogin, which creates an authentication token on the device which is good for up to 14 days. This allows the device to sync data within that time period without having to reauthenticate. This is a fairly common practice, similar to checking "Remember me" on services like Facebook. The problem here is that the token is transmitted in clear text (no encryption) to Google's servers.
How does this affect devices? Hit the break to find out.
In possibly the strangest news to come out of the recent big network upfronts is the return of The Flintstones. The oddity here is not that one of the most recognized series of all time will be returning to the airwaves, but more that it is being headed by Family Guy creator Seth MacFarlane. The deal has MacFarlane teaming up with FOX (of course) and Warner Bros Television, who owns the rights to the franchise.
MacFarlane said that the first character he ever drew was Fred Flintstone and added,
So it's appropriate that events have come full circle, allowing me to produce the newest incarnation of this great franchise. Plus, I think America is finally ready for an animated sitcom about a fat stupid guy with a wife who's too good for him.
To find out more about the new series, hit the break.
According to a Sandvine report, it turns out that Netflix has become the largest consumer of Internet bandwidth. Formerly the position was held by BitTorrent and the fact that this trend has ended indicates that legal, paid content is becoming the norm instead. How much bandwidth is used by Netflix?
On average, a Netflix user will use 40GB of bandwidth each month watching videos on their computers and televisions. If you separate the Xbox 360 users, they consume about 80GB each month just for Netflix. This does not include all of the other data usage for the console, including Hulu Plus, game and demo downloads, the Zune Marketplace, etc.
How does all of this affect AT&T users? Hit the break to find out.
It turns out that at least one member of the United States Secret Service is human, despite the evidence from their official Twitter account. After only 9 days in existence, the account had its first major PR blunder - a message was posted by an employee saying,
Had to monitor Fox for a story. Can't. Deal. With. The. Blathering.
This was meant to be posted to the user's personal account, of course, but was not. The secret service, after saying an internal follow-up was in progress, released this statement:
An employee with access to the Secret Service's Twitter account, who mistakenly believed they were on their personal account, posted an unapproved and inappropriate tweet. We apologize for this mistake, and the user no longer has access to our official account. Policies and practices which would have prevented this were not followed and will be reinforced for all account users.
Honestly, this was the first tweet from the organization that didn't feel like it was written by a robot. I'm disappointed that it was deleted so swiftly. Maybe people would have decided the organization was interesting, but we wouldn't want that.