Cell phone carriers reject kill switch for stolen smartphones

Carriers don’t want anti-theft software for fear it would eat into the profits.

Lawmakers in San Francisco and New York have been pushing hardware makers like Samsung to provide anti-theft software for cell phones that would allow owners to remotely deactivate a phone should it get stolen, rendering it useless. But according to the San Francisco district attorney, George Gascón, carriers like Verizon, AT&T, and Sprint aren’t crazy about the idea of implementing such a “kill switch.” Why? Because they’d lose money.



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83% of American adults own cell phones

people on cell phones

A third of American adults own smartphones.

83% of American adults own some kind of cell phone.  Cell phones have become a near-ubiquitous tool for information seeking and communicating and these devices have an impact on many aspects of their owners’ daily lives. In a nationally representative telephone survey, the Pew Research Center’s Internet & American Life Project found that, during the 30 days preceding the interview:


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The Connected States of America

When you think of a map of the US, you probably break it down by state or quadrants or party affiliation. But MIT, IBM and AT&T’s research teams decided to look at who was talking to whom, and the resulting map is pretty captivating.

The researchers organized anonymous data from AT&T mobile phones into interactive maps illustrating which areas place the most calls and texts, and who they’re communicating with. The colors represent areas that areas that communicate heavily locally, while the lines are for areas of the country that are in heavy contact remotely, like San Francisco and New York…

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Nokia says ‘No’ to Google Android

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The Nokia Morph is a concept phone with
shape-changing capabilities

Nokia is committed to get back the No.1 position in smartphones and plans to use no other software than Symbian and Linux MeeGo, head of its mobile solutions unit said.
“It’s my aim to ensure Nokia stays as the market and intellectual leader in creating the digital world,” Anssi Vanjoki wrote in a blog on Nokia’s website.
“Symbian and MeeGo are the best software for our smartest devices. As such, we have no plans to use any other software,” he said, adding “there are no plans to introduce an Android device from Nokia”.
He added, “There is no denying, that as a challenger now, we have a fight on our hands. The first battle is to bring you products and services you will want to own and use.”
The world’s top cellphone maker warned in mid-June second-quarter sales and profits at its key phones unit would be weaker than expected as it struggles to compete against Apple’s iPhone. Nokia also said 2010 profit margin at the phone business would be weaker.
Vanjoki noted it would be a tough task to make Nokia the leader in smartphones again, but added the company has all the assets “to produce killer smartphones and market-changing mobile computers”.
“Symbian and MeeGo are the best software for our smartest devices. As such, we have no plans to use any other software,” he said, adding “there are no plans to introduce an Android device from Nokia.”

Nokia is committed to get back the No.1 position in smartphones and is nervous about getting too cozy with Google. Instead, it plans to use the robust software platform of Symbian and Linux MeeGo, head of its mobile solutions unit said. (Video on the Morph)

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Artificial Life Created in a Laboratory for the First Time

Dr Craig Venter, a multi-millionaire pioneer in genetics, and his team have managed to make a completely new “synthetic” life form from a mix of chemicals.  They manufactured a new chromosome from artificial DNA in a test tube, then transferred it into an empty cell and watched it multiply – the very definition of being alive.


How to Make Your Personal QR Code

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Ever since I installed a barcode-scanning app on my phone, I see QR codes everywhere—so naturally I wanted one of my own. If you’re a barcode-scanning fool, the QR code to the left links to my personal web site. Fun!

A QR (“quick response”) code is a square barcode that makes getting URLs, location coordinates, any text or contact information onto a phone fast. With a barcode scanner app installed, you just point your phone’s camera at the code to read its contents. Here’s what reading this QR code looks like on my Android phone, using an app simply called “Barcode Scanner.”

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Behold! The Cell Phone With The Built In Cigarette Lighter.

Machismo cig lightre phone

Straight out of China comes “The Machismo!” – billed as “the world’s hottest cigarette lighter mobile phone.” Does that mean there’s more than one? Like, are there other, lesser, not-as-hot cell phones with built-in cigarette lighters? Nothing would surprise me after seeing this.

According to the product description on Chinavasion.com…

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Mobile Phone Radiation Found To Stunt Crops In India

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Convenience vs Heath
Mobile phones may have become ubiquitous in rural areas of India and popular among farmers. But electromagnetic radiation emanating from them may be stunting the growth of agricultural crops and plants, preliminary research has revealed.

Studies carried out at Panjab University, Chandigarh, suggest that electromagnetic field (EMF) radiation from cell phones could choke seeds, affect germination and early growth. This is said to be the first such study on the impact of EMF radiation on seeds.

The researchers germinated moong dal (Phaseolus aureus) seeds in a closed chamber in which two cell phones were kept on talk mode.


World’s Largest Photovoltaic Power Plant in China

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The 2,000-megawatt complex similar to this will be built
in Ordos City, Inner Mongolia, China by 2019

First Solar, a leading maker of solar panels, based in Tempe, AZ, has announcedthat it will build an enormous, 2,000 megawatt solar power plant in China, starting next year. Bloomberg reports that it will be the largest solar power plant in the world.

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Reclaim – A Cellphone Made From Corn

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Sprint and Samsung are ready to demonstrate their great love for the Earth. The two companies have just introduced the Reclaim, a super-eco cellphone made from 80 percent recycled materials. The device — a stout, sliding, QWERTY message-friendly model — is constructed from “bio-plastic” materials made from corn, is free of PVC, and mostly free of BFR (brominated flame retardants)… which are apparently pretty bad. The phone also has a 2 megapixel camera, stereo Bluetooth, can accept microSD cards (we assume) up to 32GB, and has Sprint Navigation onboard.

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