Find out the week’s top mobile stories from around the world.
This week.. India bans TikTok, WeChat and dozens more Chinese apps, vulnerability in some bitcoin wallets leads to double spend attacks, Zimbabwe moves to suspend mobile payments and much more.
India’s government has banned TikTok and dozens more Chinese-made apps it says are a danger to the country.
In a statement, it said the apps were “prejudicial to sovereignty and integrity of India, defence of India, security of state and public order”. In total, 59 apps were banned – among them popular messaging app WeChat. It follows escalating tensions along the disputed border between the two powers.
Apple halted updates for thousands of mobile games on its App Store in China to comply with local licensing laws, Financial Times (FT) reported.
The newspaper stated Apple informed developers in February it would begin to impose long-standing rules on 30 June. The clampdown covers free games featuring in-app purchases along with paid-for services.
ZenGo, a startup that is building a mobile cryptocurrency wallet, has discovered a vulnerability in some of the most popular cryptocurrency wallets, such as hardware wallet Ledger, BRD and Edge.
Named BigSpender, the vulnerability might lead to an incorrect balance on your wallet as unconfirmed transactions are taken into account in your total balance. The attacker could revoke the transaction before it is confirmed, which could lead to some confusion.
Zimbabwe has ordered mobile payments firms to suspend transactions, accusing them of conspiring to sabotage the economy.
In a statement on Friday, the country’s secretary for information, publicity and broadcasting services Nick Mangwana said the government is suspending “all monetary transactions on phone-based mobile money platforms”. The stock exchange has also been closed.
As public carriers extend their new infrastructure into more areas, the drumbeat for a 5G wireless world has grown louder. But public carrier 5G shouldn’t eclipse the multitude of network connectivity options that businesses can use to bring Internet of Things (IoT) and network edge operations into harmony.
Google has sought to remedy long-running concerns over mobile user privacy, with latest initiatives rolling out automatic data deletions, easier incognito mode access and more.
Accessing incognito mode on all Google products will soon become faster and easier, accessible by simply long-pressing a user’s profile photo in apps such as Maps, Search and YouTube.
Mobile advertising is among the most theoretically successful forms of advertising ever. Think about it: A device you carry almost everywhere with you can serve you appropriate ads anytime—when you’re at a store or when you’re trying to figure out what to watch tonight.
But even though companies spend more on mobile advertising than TV and all traditional media combined, I can’t recall a single mobile ad that prompted me to buy something. I could just be obtuse, but for me, mobile ads are merely an annoyance. I have seen none that are so well-targeted that they change my mindset and get me in the position to buy something.
Prior to Covid-19, retailers were already moving towards mobile-first shopping, with phones being used to link the in-store and digital experience. The pandemic has pressed fast forward on this transformation, opening up both challenges and opportunities for retailers.
Foremost, mobile can be a tool that brings the convenience of online shopping to the in-store experience. After all, the easier the brand makes the shopping experience the more likely the customer is to return.
In the spring, as the virus swept across the world and billions of people were compelled to stay at home, the popularity of one social media app rose more sharply than any other. By late March, usage of WhatsApp around the world had grown by 40%. In Spain, where the lockdown was particularly strict, it rose by 76%. In those early months, WhatsApp – which hovers neatly between the space of email, Facebook and SMS, allowing text messages, links and photos to be shared between groups – was a prime conduit through which waves of news, memes and mass anxiety travelled.