Find out the week’s top mobile stories from around the world. Headlines this week include… Apple and Android phones hacked by Italian spyware, says Google, How to strike the right balance between UX and data privacy, Twitter partners with Shopify to bring merchants’ products to Twitter Shopping and much more…
An Italian company’s hacking tools were used to spy on Apple and Android smartphones in Italy and Kazakhstan, Alphabet Inc’s Google said in a new report.
Milan-based RCS Lab, whose website claims European law enforcement agencies as clients, developed tools to spy on private messages and contacts of the targeted devices, the report said.
The mobile industry is at a turning point as OS and app developers struggle to find the perfect balance between UX and data privacy. Recently, public awareness has been zealous in airing the darker side of the “information age.” For instance, The Social Dilemma was the second most-watched documentary film on Netflix, with 38 million viewers by the end of the first month it was on the streaming platform. With increased public awareness and focus on the darker side, it becomes easy to lose sight of the benefits of processing user data.
As part of its ongoing efforts to expand into e-commerce, Twitter today announced a new partnership with Shopify. The deal will see Twitter launching a sales channel app that will be made available to all of Shopify’s U.S. merchants through its app store. The app allows merchants to onboard themselves to Twitter’s Shopping Manager, the dashboard offered by the social media company where sellers can access product catalog tools and enable other shopping features for their profiles.
Technology and telecoms giants including Meta Platforms, Huawei and Qualcomm jointly launched the Metaverse Standards Forum to develop industry guidelines ensuring immersive VR worlds are compatible.
The group will explore how the coordination and implementation of interoperability standards could deliver an open and inclusive metaverse.
American Airlines has launched a new partnership with the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) to test mobile identification. Customers with TSA PreCheck can now go through the airport with just their phone and their face.
Launched at Dallas Fort Worth International Airport (DFW), American Airlines AAdvantage members who are enrolled in TSA PreCheck may choose to use their American Airlines Mobile ID at select TSA PreCheck checkpoints to have their identity verified.
The phone previously known as the Osom OV1, built by a team consisting of former engineers and designers from Essential, is being renamed and repurposed today, and it’s all in the name of crypto. This afternoon in New York City, blockchain company Solana announced its own mobile phone, called the Saga, made in collaboration with Osom. It’s priced at $1,000, and preorders open today. A $100 deposit is required, and Solana says the Saga will ship in the first quarter of 2023.
Tanzania has reduced a controversial levy on mobile money transactions introduced a year ago by 43%, bringing relief to users who were shouldering a heavy burden when sending or receiving money using mobile phones.
Tanzania is among many African nations that have imposed a tax on mobile phone-based transactions, which local analysts say has hurt millions of small businesses and reversed impressive gains in economic inclusion.
An Imperial student startup has developed affordable and integrated technology for fish farmers to monitor and troubleshoot water quality issues.
Banoo, co-founded by Selly Shafira, a student on the MSc Innovation, Entrepreneurship & Management at Imperial College Business School, won the £15,000 top prize in the WE Innovate Final on 22 June for their technology to support fish farmers in Indonesia to be more productive. WE Innovate is a women’s entrepreneurship programme run by Imperial Enterprise Lab designed to inspire and accelerate the progress of women entrepreneurs. At the in-person final, five finalists went head-to-head in the hope of winning a share of a £30,000 prize pot, sponsored by bp.
Chinese internet giant ByteDance’s nascent foray into gaming is showing signs of promise with spending across its mobile titles growing over the past year as it looks to challenge rivals Tencent and NetEase.
The TikTok owner generated $1 billion of player spending across its mobile games between June 21, 2021 and June 20, 2022, a 16% increase from the same period last year, according to data analytics company Sensor Tower. This figure includes data from Apple’s App Store and Google Play, but not third-party Android stores in China.