Mobile Carrier to Shut Off Ads

It’s an interesting experiment that is bound to be popular with users, but not with advertisers. In mid-June, for 24 hours, UK wireless carrier Three will shut off ads at the network level. This won’t impact all subscribers – only those who have signed up to be part of the trial will go ad-free. Three has identified three main reasons why the mobile experience should be free of advertising: data usage, security and relevance. “Something needs to change and we believe that by working with the advertising industry, brands and publishers, that we can create more relevant, less intrusive adverts

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Do Smartphones Need a Consumer Warning?

Our smartphones are on us constantly; we hardly every have them off our person. The age-old argument over whether or not these devices are safe continues, with some calling for proper consumer warning labels outlining the potential danger. The link between radio-frequency waves and illnesses like cancer is still entirely ambiguous, which leads to varying levels of suspicion where mobile phones are concerned. Advocates who believe there are health risks say that, like any other potentially harmful product, our smartphones should have a clearly visible label on the back of the device. People on the other side of this debate

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Did Microsoft Just Give Up on Smartphones?

Microsoft announced this week it intends to sell its entire feature phone business FIH Mobile – the Foxconn subsidiary – as well as Finnish company HMD Global Oy for only $350 million. Microsoft has a rocky history with the mobile phone industry. In 2013, retiring CEO Steve Ballmer purchased Nokia’s weak mobile phone business, mostly because Nokia is one of the only brands that used the Windows 10 Mobile OS. And while Nokia is great at pumping out inexpensive handsets worldwide, its products didn’t fit into Microsoft’s software-based business model. This was evident when current CEO Satya Nadella laid off

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AT&T Roaming Better Than Canadian Plans

If you cross the U.S.-Canada border often for work, family, or whatever the reason, having a second phone to save on roaming fees may not be your best option. AT&T is now offering free roaming in Canada and Mexico to subscribers on a share plan of 15GB or higher. Considering how expensive roaming can get, this is a big deal for frequent travelers. To break it down, it would be $100 a month for the 15GB plan plus $15 for the phone line, adding up to $115 a month, or $150 CAD. This is less expensive than any of Canada’s

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FCC, FTC to Investigate Mobile Security Updates

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) and Federal Trade Commission (FTC) are launching parallel probes into the mobile industry’s security update practices. The agencies want to determine how manufacturers issue security updates for mobile devices, and how carriers review and release the patches. “As consumers and businesses turn to mobile broadband to conduct ever more of their daily activities, the safety of their communications and other personal information is directly related to the security of the devices they use,” stated an FCC press release. “There have recently been a growing number of vulnerabilities associated with mobile operating systems that threaten the

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MIT Chronos Secures Wi-Fi With No Password

Sick of telling people your cumbersome, 20-digit Wi-Fi password? Well you should be, because it turns out they don’t even do a good job of protecting your network against unwanted users. MIT’s Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory has found a way to make networks more secure while eliminating the need for passwords. MIT Professor Dina Katabi has been leading a project called Chronos; a system that enables Wi-Fi to precisely pinpoint all the adapters connected to it. That means it can choose to grant access to a Wi-Fi router based on the user’s location and prevent intruders from remotely

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Is Li-Fi the Future of Wireless Internet?

Yesterday we told you how Christmas lights could interfere with your Wi-Fi connection. Today, we’ll tell you about how a light bulb could be your Wi-Fi connection. Isn’t technology grand? Li-Fi, a new Internet technology based on light has been in the works for a few years, but has now reached a new pinnacle in its development. A New Delhi start-up called Velmenni has recently used a Li-Fi enabled light bulb to transmit data at 1 GB per second, which is 100 times faster than speeds enabled by current Wi-Fi. Velmenni used Jugnu smart LED bulbs to conduct its test,

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Christmas Lights Could Interfere With Wi-Fi

You’re in the middle of decking the halls when you hop onto Pinterest for a last-minute tree-trimming idea. Except the mission is anything but quick: you stare at your screen impatiently while waiting for it to load, wondering if you’re running off your dial-up connection from 1996. Before you call your ISP to ream them out, take a look around your house. According to communications regulator Ofcom, your Christmas lights could be to blame. Overall, it estimates over 5 million homes in the UK could improve their Wi-Fi speed by simply rearranging their electronics equipment. “It could be down to

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Is Verizon Data This Season’s Hot Gift?

If you’re looking for something unique to put under the tree this year, Verizon data may be what you need. The United States’ largest carrier has just announced its subscribers can send 1 GB of data as a gift this holiday season. It’s like giving your friend or family member 3,000 web pages, 13,000 emails or three hours of content streaming for just $10. Verizon is updating its Messages app for Android to include a way to send data to your contacts. If you’re not a user of Verizon Messages, you can also purchase the data through the carrier’s website.

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BYOD on the Decline?

For the last few years people have been pumping up Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) programs as the best solution for employees and businesses alike. However, those same people weren’t always quick to acknowledge the well-documented issues often surrounding it. It appears the tide may be turning. The results of a 2015 CompTIA Information Technology Association survey of American IT professionals show over half work at companies that have banned BYOD. In total, 53 percent of the 375 respondents said their company does not allow the use of personal devices in the workplace, a significant increase from 34 percent just

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