Find out the week’s top mobile stories from around the world.
This week.. Apple could ban mobile apps that don’t block ad tracking, China pushes to tighten app data privacy Developing Telecoms, Facebook’s rebranded cryptocurrency Diem is a ‘wolf in sheep’s clothing,’ Germany’s finance minister says… and much more.
Apple has said that some mobile apps may be banned from the App Store if they do not comply with upcoming privacy standards. The launch of Apple’s new App Tracking Transparency protocols have already been delayed to give developers more time to address potential privacy issues, but it seems likely that this will not be enough to ensure that all applications are compliant.
According to Reuters, Craig Federighi, Apple’s senior vice president of software engineering, told the European Data Protection and Privacy Conference that users will soon be able to choose whether they allow advertisers to track them across different websites and apps.
The Cyberspace Administration of China (CAC) published a draft of rules designed to limit mobile app developers from collecting user data, an attempt to regulate the growing technology sector.
Reuters reported, 38 categories of apps were covered such as online shopping, ride-hailing, instant messengers and bike-sharing.
The security watchdog said it was concerned about data protection and consumer rights, and noted it suspended apps deemed to have mishandled user data.
Facebook’s rebranded cryptocurrency Diem is a ‘wolf in sheep’s clothing,’ Germany’s finance minister says
Facebook’s Diem, formerly known as Libra, is a “wolf in sheep’s clothing” because a new name does nothing to change associated regulatory risks, Germany’s finance minister said on Monday.
“A wolf in sheep’s clothing is still a wolf,” Reuters reported Germany’s Olaf Scholz as saying. “It is clear to me that Germany and Europe cannot and will not accept its entry into the market while the regulatory risks are not adequately addressed.”
“We must do everything possible to make sure the currency monopoly remains in the hands of states,” he said.
Digital identity is an important set of technologies that could be money-spinners for enterprises and operators. It is also a highly contentious subject. A new report from Juniper Research finds that the revenue earning potential of digital ID services for mobile operators and DSPs could well be US$8.1 billion by 2015, massively up from the $1.3 billion likely to be achieved over the course of 2020. Juniper says that as the identity sector evolves, mobile operators could play an expanded and increasingly important role in providing verification of digital identity and universal login based on subscriber identity.
Microsoft is bringing Xbox Cloud Gaming to iOS and Windows PCs next year. In a blog post Wednesday, Microsoft said its cloud-gaming platform will be available in spring 2021 as part of Xbox Game Pass Ultimate for Windows PCs through the Xbox app and web browsers and for Apple’s iOS through mobile web browsers.
“Whatever screen you choose, we want to make it easy to continue your game and connect with your friends,” Microsoft said.
Google has been fined a total of €100m by the French data privacy watchdog, CNIL, for breaching Article 82 of the French Data Protection Act. The fine – made up of a €60m fine for Google LLC and a €40m fine for Google Ireland – has been levied because CNIL found that when a user visited the google.fr website, cookies, including advertising tracking cookies, were dropped on the user’s PC, without any action on their part and without the user giving their consent. Amazon has also been fined €35m by CNIL for the same offence.
In making the fines public, CNIL acknowledged that Google has now stopped automatically dropping ad cookies when a user arrives at google.fr, since an update that occurred in September 2020.
ABI Research says operators need to act now to address connectivity for a diverse range of devices with different needs, at scale and globally. At the end of 2020, there will be 6.6 billion connected IoT devices and active worldwide; 840 million of them will use cellular networks – just under 8% of the total.
At the end of 2014, there were 180 million cellular IoT devices active worldwide, and that number increased by over 4.5 times in the six intervening years.
Fraud detection specialist Ravelin’s new survey has found that mobile payment platforms are creating a higher incidence of ‘friendly fraud’. Defined as an instance where the customer makes a purchase using a credit card and then petitions their bank for a chargeback instead of a merchant-issued refund. In these situations, merchants are held accountable despite any measures taken to verify the transaction.
With regular credit cards, Ravelin states that merchants generally challenge 37% of chargebacks and achieve a successful outcome 56% of the time. However, the rise of digital wallets like Google Pay and Apple Pay has significantly muddied the waters.
‘Success of Mobile Gaming in Nigeria Depends on the Business Model Employed’ – SolveEducation CEO Oladimeji Ojo
With over 200 million mobile subscriptions and more than 91.5 million active mobile app users, Nigeria is finely poised as a hotbed for mobile gaming.
SolveEducation, through its Dawn of Civilisation (DoC) gaming app, is working to boost learning among young people in Nigeria and Africa at large through games.
Founded by Oladimeji Ojo in 2019, the Ibadan-based startup has adopted the unconventional but result-oriented method of leveraging games to educate students.