Monday, 3 December 2012

WhatsApp to be bought by Facebook?

WhatsApp apparently has millions of users worldwide, who have sent over one billion messages in a day
BANGALORE, INDIA: The highly popular free messaging and file sharing application WhatsApp may be bought by social networking site Facebook, according to a report on TechCrunh. ''Whatsapp, the multiplatform mobile messaging app that has been one of the runaway success stories for ad-free, paid services, has been in talks to be acquired by Facebook, according to sources close to the matter. We're still digging around on potential price and other details about how advanced the deal is,'' says the report.
WhatsApp, an application available for Android, BlackBerry OS, iOS, Series 40, Symbian, and Windows Phone, was developed in 2009 and became one of the most downloaded apps in a short span of time. Last year, WhatsApp users apparently sent over a billion messages a day. ''Just how much is 1 billion messages? That is 41,666,667 messages an hour, 694,444 messages a minute, and 11,574 messages a second,'' says a blog post on WhatApp website.

The app is currently the number 2 paid app in Apple's App Store. On Google Play , it is free for the first year, and then $0.99 per year thereafter. It's also currently the most popular free app on Google Play. According to Google, the app has had between 100 million and 500 million installs so far.

However, the app has had its share of problems. In May 2011, there was a security hole reported in WhatsApp, which left user accounts open for hijacking. Also, On January 6, 2012, an unknown hacker published a website ( which made it possible to change the status of an arbitrary WhatsApp user, as long as the phone number was known. To let it work, it only required a restart of the app. According to the hacker, it is only one of the many security issues in WhatsApp. And, last week there was a status error problem with WhatsApp, which lead to a lot of panic with hoax messages on the same being circulated. It took over 12 hours for the problem to get fixed.

That said, how do you feel about Facebook buying WhatsApp? Despite the problems mentioned above, is WhatsApp still your favorite app under the free messaging applications category? Do let us know.

Source :

Europe Joins Free Internet Chorus

Europe Joins Free Internet Chorus

Europe Joins Free Internet Chorus
There may be a lot of fulminating at next week's UN conference on Internet regulation, but it's not likely to have a major impact. "I expect very little of substance to change," said law professor Derek Bambauer. "This is partly because of the nature of this type of international conference, and partly because there is no consensus on change, and partly because the U.S. still has a practical veto."

There may be a lot of fulminating at next week's UN conference on Internet regulation, but it's not likely to have a major impact. "I expect very little of substance to change," said law professor Derek Bambauer. "This is partly because of the nature of this type of international conference, and partly because there is no consensus on change, and partly because the U.S. still has a practical veto."

The European Union announced on Friday that it would oppose attempts to increase regulation of the Internet at a United Nations conference that will take place next week in Dubai. This move comes as some countries have called for tighter rules on Web service providers and phone operators.

The International Telecommunications Union, an agency within the United Nations, is hosting the World Conference on International Telecommunications (WCIT) beginning Monday. The goal of the event is to update the International Telecommunications Regulations, a decades-old treaty. Representatives from 190 governments will meet in Dubai to hash out their differences, with some expected to push for tighter control of the Web.

"The WCIT-12 conference is going to be fascinating," said Derek E. Bambauer, associate professor of law at the University of Arizona's James E. Rogers College of Law. "It is in many ways going to refight the battles of the World Summit on the Information Society meetings."

The European Commission did not respond to our request for further details.

Can the Web Be Reined In?

The first notable consideration is whether it is even possible to more tightly regulate the Web, even if a treaty were to call for it.

"You can legislate but not control it," said Billy Pidgeon, senior analyst for Inside Network. "If someone breaks the law, you can take them to court, but you can't really control the Internet."

However, that may not stop some nations from trying.

"There is the control such as what Syria has done, where you shut it down -- but it isn't something that is a major cause for worry," Pidgeon told TechNewsWorld.

"But there is no reason to do it," he added. "There are probably industry groups and countries that will want to increase regulations, but it isn't something anyone should want. As long as there are organizations that oversee the Internet that remain independent -- and they should remain so -- any sort of legislation is going to be ineffective anyway."

Some nations may see it another way, though -- such as "China, Russia, and other countries that are concerned about the impact of free speech on their governments," said Josh Crandall, principal analyst at Netpop Research.

More Than Flame Wars

When individuals get into disputes online -- whether in a forum, chat room or other discussion-type setting -- things can get heated, resulting in so-called flame wars. Could a similar war of words erupt at the WCIT-12?
"There are a number of issues that could heat up," said Bambauer. "I think there are likely to be three that will flare."

The first could involve tariffs and fees for Internet connectivity, as a number of entities -- such as ISPs and even some governments -- could likely look to change the cost structure for connections, Bambauer told TechNewsWorld.

"Right now, both sides of the connection pay for bandwidth," he noted. "Google pays for its connectivity -- I pay for mine. But Google does not pay directly to access me or any other user. Telecommunications companies would like to charge more to companies whose content comprises a larger share of their traffic."
This isn't just an international political issue, Bambauer stressed, as implementing it could likely lead to significant shifts in costs and would require some architectural changes to put metering in place.

Governance Issues

The second issue that could come out of the conference is governance, which is likely to remain a perennial hot-button issue.

"Right now, governance is highly distributed, but the flashpoint around IP addresses and domain names is ICANN," said Bambauer.

"ICANN emerged out of the initial fights over Internet governance in the 1990s and has had a complicated relationship with the U.S. government," he explained. "It is perceived by many other countries as being too tied to the U.S. -- effectively giving the U.S. a veto over governance decisions."

At present, the leading contender to take over some or all of ICANN's functions is the ITU, which Bambauer noted may want in on the Internet since its current role -- coordinating the international telephone system -- is becoming increasingly irrelevant.

"The ITU is seen by the U.S. and civil society groups, though, as too closely tied to governments and insufficiently concerned with other stakeholders," explained Bambauer. "ICANN tries hard to paint itself as a multi-stakeholder institution, [while] the ITU is trying hard at the moment to downplay questions of Internet governance, which is a sure sign that it's a live issue at WCIT."

Censorship Controversy

The last issue is censorship, said Bambauer, with countries such as Russia recently having moved to tighten controls over free expression online.

"In many ways, this is also tied to governance, since censoring countries want deference to national governments over online controls, and also want to be able to frame questions of censorship as part of national security or information security initiatives," he stressed.

Given the design of the Internet, this prompts the original question: whether any amount of regulation can actually resolve anything.

"From its birth, the Internet was designed to be a multi-nodal, resilient system, capable of withstanding nuclear war," Crandall told TechNewsWorld.

"Data traveling through the Internet wants to be free, and many products have been developed to ensure the security of messages flowing through it," he said.

"If a government thinks it's necessary to restrict transmissions, it can set up roadblocks, as China has done with its Internet Great Wall," Crandall emphasized. "But those systems tend to be the result of internal domestic policies rather than international agreements."

So, will anything actually get accomplished, even as the EU has stated it opposition to regulation?
"In terms of the range of outcomes, I think it is ironically quite narrow," said Bambauer. "I expect very little of substance to change. This is partly because of the nature of this type of international conference, and partly because there is no consensus on change -- and partly because the U.S. still has a practical veto over many of these decisions, given its relationship with ICANN." 

Source :

Sunday, 2 December 2012

Most Indian travellers comment about their interests online: Study

Most Indian travellers comment about their interests online: Study
A whopping 98 per cent of Indian travellers comment about their interests online and Asia- Pacific travellers want more social media and cannot go on holiday without their smartphones and laptops, says a study.
NEW DELHI: A whopping 98 per cent of Indian travellers comment about their interests online and Asia- Pacific travellers want more social media and cannot go on holiday without their smartphones and laptops, says a study.

Travellers from Asia-Pacific countries are both most enthusiastic about social media and most attached to their mobile devices in the world, according to Text100's Digital Index: Travel and Tourism study.

The study, which covered on 4,600 respondents in 13 countries, suggests that Asia-Pacific consumers lead the way in using social media to inspire, purchase and share their travel experiences.

"Widespread Asia-Pacific enthusiasm for social media is definitely not a signal for the travel industry to invest solely in digital," said Anne Costello, Text100's Regional Director, APAC.

"Travel and tourism operators need to integrate their traditional and new communications channels, but more importantly they need to focus on delivering content which their customers actually want to receive," Costello added.

The study also found that 89 per cent of Asia-Pacific travellers use travel apps on their smartphones or tablets while on holiday, primarily for information about local attractions and finding their way around.

This 'always-on' tendency, however, means that Asia- Pacific travellers find it harder to switch-off on holiday than any others, 34 per cent use their mobile devices to do work while on holiday, compared to a global average of 22 per cent, the study said.

"As the fastest adopters of digital technology when it comes to travel, Asia-Pacific consumers are experiencing more benefits and challenges alike than the rest of the world.

"As a result, these tech-savvy travellers feel the travel industry needs to do more to keep up with their fast-growing reliance on mobile device and social media as part of the overall travel experience," it said.

Seventy-two per cent of travellers from Asia-Pacific countries have used social media to inspire at least one element of their recent holidays, compared to only 51 per cent of travellers globally, it said.

Despite this appetite for digital communication, many Asia-Pacific consumers still base travel decisions on more traditional sources of influence. 48 per cent say traditional travel agents still help in planning their holidays, while 57 per cent are influenced by travel TV programmes.

Asia-Pacific countries include India, China, Malaysia, Singapore among others. 

Friday, 30 November 2012

9 Most Expected Apple Products Of 2013

Bangalore: Apple’s 2012 schedule has been incredibly busy; the iOS6, iPhone 5, iPad mini, new iPods, and updated Macs with specialties like retina displays and bigger sizes. And then a question arises, what’s the Apple line ups for 2013? The company had already given hints about some interesting devices, including a low cost iPhone cooking inside the Cupertino giant’s executive kitchen. Here are the speculated Apple devices which will see the light of the day in next year as compiled by Business Insider.    

#9 Spring: Apple television?

Apple came up with the updates of just about everything at the end of 2012. This gave birth to the speculation that Apple either planned nothing for the spring or on the contrary it’s got something big to unveil.

So the next possible big release from Apple’s bag of products for the spring could be its “television”. Rumors of an Apple television have been rampant for years. So the year 2013 can be the best period to wave a green flag for the Apple TV or which may be called ‘iTV’ as Apple’s nomenclature follows. 

#8 Spring: iPad Mini with Retina display

 Apple’s iPad mini made waves in the media prior to its release and was also hit the market with the blast. But all the fanfare was fizzled and as the Apple bloggers place it “iPad mini is the real iPad, there’s only one problem which took the sheen out of device and it’s the screen”. So Apple, to rectify this problem may come up with a smarter display, the new Apple innovation “retina display”. This spring we can hope for a iPad mini which along with other things can come up with retina display.

#7 Spring: iRadio

Apple has intensified talks with music labels to unveil its own advertising supported streaming radio service and it will be the competitor to Pandora Media Inc. The iRadio is supposed to start early next year, according to people with knowledge of the negotiations who want to stay anonymous. 

 “Radio is a natural step for Apple,” Rich Greenfield, an analyst with BTIG LLC in New York, said in an interview, reports Bloomberg. “This helps Apple dominate in cars, where people listen to an average of two hours of radio a day.”

#6 Spring: Apple TV app store

So once the Apple TV gets big launch the next best possible offering from the Apple could be an App Store exclusive for its TV. And the company may also open up its gates for the developers to contribute the apps for its new device, in turn creating a whole new experience with the TV.

#5 Summer: OSX 10.9

Apple has reported to be actively testing its new version of Mac OS, called as OS X 10.9. And there were rumors that the Apple Mountain cat is about to take a big leap and include the key features from the popular iOS mobile platform. OS X 10.9 is supposed to include the Apple Maps along with Siri, the company's virtual personal assistant that was first introduced on the iPhone 4S in late 2011.

Apple says it's going to start updating its desktop software more frequently. Now that the person in charge of iOS is in charge of OSX, we expect the release schedules to be linked. And we expect more cross over between the two operating systems in terms of features. This new release is rumored to have Siri and Apple Maps.

#4 Summer: iOS 7

Apple, in each new version of iOS attempts to deliver an upgrade to add new user experiences. The iOS 6 is a good OS but for its Apple Maps and some Notification Center issues. So the next update is expected to deliver on these two discontents along with offering other new features. If one follows the pattern of Apple’s software releases , we may expect to see the iOS 6.1 this spring and later iOS 7 at

With each new version of iOS, Apple delivers an upgrade to parts of the user experience and this Notification Center mock-up shows one of the features we hope Apple includes in iOS 7.

If Apple follows their pattern for software releases, we can expect to see iOS 6.1 this Spring and the announcement of iOS 7 at The Apple Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) 2013, with the possibility of an iOS 7 release date tied to the iPhone 5S release, or whatever Apple calls the next iPhone.

#3 Summer: iPhone 5S

The rumors of the iPhone 5S were sparked amazingly just weeks after iPhone 5 release. A report from the Chinese Commercial Times added fuel to the rumors stating that Apple would be manufacturing 50,000 to 100,000 test units of the “iPhone5S” in December this year. 

As for the rumor goes the iPhone 5S will possibly be unveiled in the middle of 2013 as opposed to the end of next year. Apple has launched iPhone 4S in October last year and the iPhone 5 in September this year, so there was a gap of nearly a year for the launch of new iteration. But this time, as the rumor goes, Apple fans will be in for a surprise as the Cupertino giant will put in orders for the iPhone 5S starting in March or April of next year, way earlier than many assumed.

The Apple may choose the summer launch next year to boost the sales of its device in holiday season and also to take on with its rival Samsung.

#2 Fall: The iPad 5

Apple shocked technophiles and industry experts around the world with its unexpected unveiling of the iPad 4, alongside the iPad Mini, at an event in California last month.

The company’s near 12 month cycle for the new iteration’s launches, which use to be under wraps, has become predictable. But the launch of iPad 4 was so covert that the rumor mill was completely unaware of its existence until it launched.  

Nevertheless this new strategy from Apple is not stopping the rumor mill from speculating the launch of iPad 5. The rumors are already abounding about that the new sleeker, lighter and loaded iPad 5 will hit the shelves early next year. 

#1 WILD CARD: A cheap, totally different iPhone

Apple iPhones were considered to be costlier with respect to its rival android devices. So Apple may come up with the iPhone which would be cheaper and totally different from the existing iPhones to gain market especially in the developing countries like India and China. May be it will be a reality in next year.  

source :

Wednesday, 28 November 2012

Gmail, meet Google Drive - and behold 10GB file transfers

Users can now send files from Google Drive that are 400 times larger than is possible in a traditional attachment.

(Credit: Google)
Anyone who has ever had to send enormous files across the Internet has a new option. Google announced today that it has integrated Google Drive with Gmail, allowing users of both services to insert files from Drive directly into their messages.
Notably, file sizes can be up to 10GB, or 400 times larger than is allowed in a traditional attachment.
The team also built some "smart assistant" technology into the feature to make sure recipients of your shared files have the necessary permissions. Product manager Phil Sharp explains in a blog post:
Like a smart assistant, Gmail will also double-check that your recipients all have access to any files you're sending. This works like Gmail's forgotten attachment detector: whenever you send a file from Drive that isn't shared with everyone, you'll be prompted with the option to change the file's sharing settings without leaving your email. It'll even work with Drive links pasted directly into emails.
Source :

Tuesday, 27 November 2012

Apple hit with patent lawsuit over iPhone's use of headphones

Apple has been handed a lawsuit over its use of headphones on the iPhone.
(Credit: Josh Long/CNET) 
An apparent shell company files $3 million lawsuit over a 2008 patent covering an interface for sending and receiving audio signals from a phone.

An apparent shell company has filed a $3 million patent-infringement lawsuit against Apple for including headphones with its iPhones.

A company called Intelligent Smart Phones Concepts sued Apple last week in U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California, alleging that Apple infringed on U.S. Patent No. 7,373,182. The abstract for "Wireless Mobile Phone Including a Headset" describes an interface that allows a removable headset "to receive at least telephony audio signals from the phone, and to provide audio signals to the phone."

Art included with the patent application and subsequent lawsuit demonstrates how the interface works:

The "Wireless Mobile Phone Including a Headset."

(Credit: USPTO) 
ISPC is seeking $3 million in lost revenue and royalties, as well as an injunction preventing Apple from further infringement of the patent. CNET has contacted Sepehr Daghighian, described in court documents as ISPC's attorney, for more information about the company and will update this report when we learn more. The only information available via Internet searches was related to its lawsuit against Apple, suggesting the company is a nonpracticing entity created to extract licensing fees from other companies rather than making products based on the patents.

CNET has also contacted Apple for comment on the lawsuit and will update this report when we learn more.
The patent was granted in 2008 and assigned to Varia Mobil, a Seattle-based company connected to Varia Holdings, which earlier this year sued Samsung and Research In Motion for installing emoticon shortcut menus on their mobile phones.

The lawsuit against Apple was filed the same day that David Kappos, the outgoing head of the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, told critics of the patent system to "give it a rest already."

A study released earlier this year found that patent infringement lawsuits are on the rise, costing U.S. companies $29 billion in 2011. The explosion in patent lawsuits, especially in the software and pharmaceutical industries, led one judge presiding over high-profile cases to declare that "patent protection is on the whole excessive and that major reforms are necessary."

Source :-

Tuesday, 20 November 2012

Bug affects some Windows Phones

Some new Windows Phone 8 users are reporting a power bug has hit two companies’ flagship phones for the system — the Nokia Lumia 920 and the 8X by HTC.

According to service forum reports on Windows Phone Central, some users’ phones have been turning off at random and are showing poor battery life. Some Nokia Lumia 920 users are also reporting their screens have been freezing.

Those experiencing problems have seen the reboots range from multiple times per day to one every few days. The phones aren’t warm, which indicates they aren’t overheating, and people have had some success uninstalling some of the apps that come with the phones. Others have decided to wait for updates.

Not all users are experiencing problems. I, personally haven’t experienced the bugs with tests of the Nokia 920 or the 8X. Both phones have operated normally and have had enough battery to get through a normal day’s use.
Microsoft launched its first line of new Windows Phones on Nov. 9 and more models — the Nokia Lumia 822, 820, and 810 Samsung ATIV S and HTC 8S — are on their way. The new operating system is an important one for Microsoft, which is trying to compete with Apple and Google in the smartphone software market.
The company has had trouble gaining a significant chunk of the market with its previous smartphone system, Windows Phone 7, but is making a big advertising push to get users to catch on to its newest offering. 

Related stories:

Thursday, 8 November 2012

Evernote 5.0 released for iPhone and iPad, Brings New User Interface

Evernote version 5.0 was just released for iOS today, bringing a completely new user interface to the popular note taking app.
The old UI was a bit crowded with all it’s buttons, and the usual black iOS bar, but it’s now replaced with a unique evernote design, where the Evernote main menu now has five tabs for All Notes, Notebooks, Tags, Places, or Premium Features. Clicking on tab takes you to a fullscreen app, and you can drag down the tab header to return back to the main menu.

Apparently Evernote was trying to make sure that “everything needs to be one or two taps away,” and it appears they managed to pull it off in the design. Apart from that, there’s new controls, an improved page camera, unified shared notebook list, and more:
What’s New in Version 5.0
New in version 5
• New home screen features quick access to notes, notebooks, tags, places, and Premium features
• Create new notes with fewer taps using home screen quick note buttons
• Note list redesigned with new card style to showcase note content
• Added ability to quickly create new notebooks from the Notebooks list
• Places displays notes on a zoomable map
• Evernote Premium view lets you access Premium features and account status
• New unified shared notebook list shows your notebooks and ones shared with you
New iPad features:
• Added notebook stack support in Notebooks view
• List of recently viewed, edited and created notes appear on the home screen for easy multi-tasking
Numerous bug fixes and stability improvements
Available now for iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad, right over at the App Store.