Two days ago security firm, Zvelo, discovered and reported to Google that the security PIN system that Google Wallet users have to enter to verify transactions, could be compromised. The wallet application saves your PIN in an encrypted file on the phone itself, and not the secured NFC chip, so if your phone falls into the wrong hands, that person could lift your PIN file from the phone and simply crack it using a bruteforce attack. If successful this person would then have full access to your Wallet account.
Because of the Wallet’s security architecture, the change will require a fundamental rejiggering of the security protocols, according to Zvelo. Google responded and said that “The zvelo study was conducted on their own phone on which they disabled the security mechanisms that protect Google Wallet by rooting the device”.
So if you haven’t rooted your phone you should be fine, right? Turns out this is not so, because now a new method shown at thesmartphonechamp.com. Because of a security vulnerability in Google Wallet that effects all users, regardless of if they are rooted or not, someone can get access to your Google Wallet without even the need for bruteforcing.
There’s a new tablet coming soon called “Spark”. Announced at the end of January this new device uses an open Linux stack on unlocked hardware and comes with an open content and services market, and uses KDE Plasma Active UI.
The tablet will be available for pre-order starting next week, and will start shipping worldwide in May. Approximate price will be about $265 USD.
The hardware is based on the Zenithink C71, using a 7-inch (800×480) multi-touch screen, a 1GHz AMLogic ARM processor and Mali-400 GPU. It will have 512MB of RAM, 4GB of internal storage (with a microSD slot for expandability), 802/11b/g WiFi, USB ports, a front-facing 1.3MP webcam, and an audio jack. There are plans to add GPS and 3G functionality in future versions, but for now you will have to manage without.
What may be the largest ever malware campaign against Android users have been uncovered. The malware discovered was packaged in 13 different apps from three different publishers, and found in Android Market. Dubbed “Android.Counterclank” by Symantec, the attack seems to take a different tactic compared to the more common “repackaging method”. This practice involves repackaging a legitimate app with attack code, then re-release it to the marketplace in the hope that users will confuse the infected version with the real deal. “These aren’t rebundled apps, as we’ve seen so many times before” said Kevin Haley, a director with Symantec‘s security response team.
The 13 different applications have titles ranging from “Sexy Girls Puzzle” to “Counter Strike Ground Force”, and many of the infected apps were still available on the Android Market as of 3 p.m. ET Friday. Symantec estimated the impact by combining the download totals of the 13 apps, arriving at a figure between 1 million on the low end and 5 million on the high. “Yes, this is the largest malware outbreak on the Android Market” said Haley.
In recent weeks Samsung confirmed that Galaxy S II would receive an upgrade to Android 4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich), but could at that time not confirm a release date. The joy of these news was unfortunately then dampened among some of the Galaxy fans when an update list concerning ICS and the Galaxy line was presented last week, giving indications that Galaxy S and P1000 Galaxy Tab 7.0 would not receive the ICS update at all. A lot of users was understandably infuriated and contacted Samsung to show their displeasure and disappointment. Many of them naturally also tried find out the reason for this decision.
Turns out Samsung actually seem to be listening, and have now promised to look into the matter, and reevaluate if there is a possibility for both Galaxy S and P1000 Galaxy Tab to get the Android 4.0, Ice Cream Sandwich update. They are of course not making any promises that the devices in the end will get the update, but it is nice to know that Samsung is paying attention and is open to feedback from their customers.
Yesterday Microsoft announced on their Inside Windows Live blog, that they have opened up public access to its Messenger IM network via the Extensible Messaging and Presence Protocol (XMPP). More than 300 million people actively use Live Messenger every month according to Microsoft, and the vast majority of them also actively use other services like Facebook, Yahoo and Twitter. As users contact lists and collection of chat clients and services start to grow, it becomes increasingly difficult to manage.
Microsoft have in Windows Phone 7 shown their recent ambition to collect all different people you know under one place. This approach lets you collect social media, phone contacts and also chat services under one place for easy access. The Messaging service itself has also been expanded to let you connect via a Windows PC, Windows Phone, and Hotmail trying to make it easier for the user to sign in to existing services, and chat with who they want, without having to re-spam all their friends and force them to join yet another network, or download yet another chat client.
A question that a lot of Nokia users owning a Symbian^3 devices have been asking for a while now is: “when will Symbian Belle be released for my phone?”. There have been several indications that the update is soon to be released, among otherthings recently leaked version of Symbian Belle have shown up not only for the Nokia N8 like in the past, but now also for C7 and E6. Nokia have also recently released devices with Symbian Belle pre-installed, as an example the Nokia 700.
Now Nokia Store also gives a pretty strong sign that the wait might soon be over. If you visit the Nokia Store and on the top of the page select Set device, and choose Nokia N8 as your phone, you now get a second option asking if you are using Symbian Anna or earlier, or Symbian Belle. This addition is fairly new, and where probably added when the Nokia Store was updated recently.
This week had an amazing start for the residents of London, courtesy of Nokia and Deadmau5. Seems Nokia and Microsoft is pulling out all the stops to make Windows Phone and the Lumia phones a success. It really shows that they both mean business and Nokia is ready to take back their crown as the number one smartphone manufacturer, a title they lost in the beginning of this year.
Adobe have for more then a decade developed Flash, and with it enabling richer content to be created and deployed all over the web. Adobe Flash allowed designers and creators to develop more advanced content, reaching well beyond what browsers could do, and what HTML in the past was capable of. HTML has however evolved throughout the years, and long talked about HTML5 has finally started to be implemented all over the web. Adobe seems to realize that the journey for Flash, at least for mobile devices, has run its course and its time to embrace change, or disparate into the shadows of the Internets past.
Today HTML5 is universally supported on major mobile devices, in some cases exclusively, and this forces Adobe to think about their strategy for the future. HTML5 is currently the best solution for creating and deploying content in a browser across mobile platforms. Since it’s already becoming a standard, Adobe has chosen to end further development of the Flash Player run in the mobile devices browser. They will however continue to provide solutions for known security issues and do minor bug fixes for existing Flash players. Future work with Flash on mobile plattforms will be focused on enabling Flash developers to package native apps with Adobe AIR for all the major app stores. The development will end following the upcoming release of Flash Player 11.1 for Android and BlackBerry PlayBook.
The application is looking very smooth, and like Windows Phone Mango in general, very snappy to use. It is also well integrated into the Metro UI making it look like a native application that just naturally belongs. The Spotify team has been working on this release since at least April, but after seeing the finished work it seems it was well worth the wait. In the application you can navigate by swiping back and forth in typical Windows Phone fashion between new releases, playlists, friend feeds, and more.
At Nokia World in London today Nokia revealed not only one, but two brand new Windows Phone devices. The stunningly beautiful Nokia Lumia 800, that brings content to life in a fun and easy way, and also the affordable Nokia Lumia 710 that brings the Lumia experience to more people around the world, with the same easy and fluent software functionality as her bigger sister.
Nokia Lumia 800 shares the main design features of the gorgeous Nokia N9, but with some changes and additions. The bottom part of the 3.9″ screen is dedicated to the three standard buttons that is a familial feature of the Windows Phone operating system. This leaves a 3,7″ part of the screen left to be used by rest of the UI. On the right side of the phone there’s also an added hardware button, dedicated for the on-board 8 Megapixel camera. Unlike other devices running Windows Phone, on a Nokia phone you will of course get something extra. Among things, you get free Offline navigation, and also access to the brand new Nokia Music service.