Apple has recently been cleaning up the App Store but this time their goals are a bit more Puritanical. In the past they have gone through and gotten rid of apps considered to be rip-offs all in the best interests of the customer. Now they have decided to take things a step further in the purification process by purging any "overtly sexual content" from the App Store. What does a company who advertises itself as cool and hip determine as overtly sexual content? An Apple representative recently disclosed its judgments to the developer of Wobbie who is among those developers with apps expelled by Apple. According to him this is what they said,
In 2007 a Nevada resident, Charles Borowy, was convicted of possessing child pornography as determined by the FBI. The FBI agent used software that verified hash marks of files and identified known images of child pornography then used the "browse host" feature in Limewire to download all the offenders hosted files, 4 of which turned out to be illegal. In the end Borowy pleaded guilty and was sentenced to 45 months in prison. The guilty plea did allow him to appeal on the basis that the search and seizure required authorization as per the Fourth Amendment because he thought he turned off the share feature. The San Francisco appeals court just recently ruled that the searches and seizures only require warrants if it "violates a reasonable expectation of privacy." Files shared on a very public P2P network fall outside the reasonable privacy category.
Microsoft announced the next version of its mobile operating system in Barcelona this week, named Windows Phone 7 Series. Although not the most pleasant sounding name, it is definitely the most pleasant looking Windows Mobile ever.
When Microsoft stopped calling it Windows Mobile and started calling it Windows Phone when 6.5 hit, we knew what was in store - a complete overhaul of the operating system - and that is exactly what we got. It's a smartphone, a Zune and an Xbox Portable (our name) all in one device.
The first thing to note is that the familiar Windows feel is gone, replaced instead with a more ZuneHD feel; multiple tiles on the Start screen, which are completely customizable. Similar to an Android home screen, but with a more widget feel. You can have Facebook status updates, Xbox Live, Internet Explorer, Zune, Pictures, etc.
While EPIX already has control over your television and computer, Adobe's Open Screen Project has opened a door for their Big On Any Screen philosophy to make its way to mobile devices as well.
The Open Screen Project is based around Flash Player 10.1 for mobile, which some devices currently support. If the mobile version can keep up with the capabilities of its desktop cousin, there is a lot of possibility here. They will be working on a feature where you can start a movie on your TV or computer and finish it on your mobile, but there was very little information available on that.
We also have no release date, carrier partners or info on whether you will need to have your wireless and cable linked to use the continue feature, but if so I can certainly see a partnership with Verizon VCast or AT&T Uverse, though Sprint's media offerings and capabilities tend to overshadow the others.
Intel and Nokia have each been working on new Linux-based mobile operating systems. Neither is really finished and neither is really hugely innovative, but what they do have in common is that they no longer exist.
At Nokia's media presentation at the Mobile World Congress on Monday, Nokia and Intel announced that Intel's Maemo and Nokia's Moblin would be ditched and their joint Linux knowledge and development would be combined into a single product, named MeeGo. While their individual products were designed to be semi-device specific, the combined MeeGo is a "software platform that will support multiple hardware architectures across the broadest range of device segments, including pocketable mobile computers, netbooks, tablets, mediaphones, connected TVs and in-vehicle infotainment systems."
We expect to see the first MeeGo devices sometime this year, but we don't know exactly what types of devices they will turn out to be.
To start out the Mobile World Congress right, 24 of the largest mobile operators in the world, representing a total of 3 billion customers, have come together to create an open industry platform for app developers through the Wholesale Applications Community.
The companies include China Mobile and Vodafone, the world's largest operators (almost 1 billion subscribers just to themselves), Deutsche Telekom (which operates T-Mobile USA), Verizon Wireless (partially owned by Vodafone and now owns Alltel) and Sprint Nextel, covering all of the important US carriers.
In addition to the largest players in the carrier world, the group also has the support of 3 of the important handset manufacturers: Sony Ericsson, Samsung and LG. The WAC hopes to have a standard for working cross-platform within the next year.