TIME Google

10 Google Glass Notions That Aren’t True (According to Google)


Google takes aim at controversies surrounding its head-mounted computer.

In a post on Google+, Google’s decided to debunk some of the taller tales floating around about its Google Glass headgear. You’ve probably heard at least one of these in the past year or so, whether you saw the story about the driver ticketed for wearing a pair while driving in California, or the stories about apps that let you snap pictures of people, unsuspecting, by winking.

If one theme carries through the company’s lengthy 10-item post, it’s privacy: Google wants us to view Glass as just another rung on a ladder we’ve been climbing for a very long time: cameras, cellphones, YouTube and now Glass simply expand our social dialogue, goes this line of thinking.

I get it, but that somewhat blithe approach sidesteps important questions about the nature of “progress” and the whole history of positivist assumptions that whatever happens, happens for the best. I don’t disagree with most of Google’s points here, but looking past the ones that rebut feature-related matters of fact, the company too quickly glides past more abstract issues. Is it really enough to wave off privacy concerns by looking backwards? Is the widespread adoption of something validation enough? Plenty would disagree. You could argue (and in fact many have), for instance, that pervasive camera networks like Britain’s unprecedented CCTV system are Orwell’s future dystopia by any other name.

How we use technology and not the technology itself determines its cultural value, of course, but whether we’re capable of using all forms of technology wisely is another matter. It’s at the crux of the gun control argument, and you can follow it all the way up the line to technology like nukes. Hysteria’s one side of the coin, but carelessness is the other.

Google Glass might not be “the ultimate distraction,” but just like cellphones, it could be if used improperly, and who’s going to enforce its proper use? It might not be on and recording all the time today, but what about more powerful future versions down the road? It doesn’t do facial recognition at Google’s behest, but what about tomorrow? And for all Google’s assurances about curating its application store to control what people can do, what happens when people start jailbreaking these things?

In other words: how do you give people the personal freedom they need to feel liberated without endangering others? And how do you regulate something to prevent harm without harming personal freedom? If you can answer that, you’ve squared the oldest circle in the book.

The Top 10 Google Glass Myths [Google+]


An Illustrated History of Twitter in Two Minutes

In honor of the site's eighth birthday


Just in time for Twitter’s eighth birthday this week, tech website Mashable animated the popular social media service’s exponential growth and global integration over the years — from founding, to now — with a sketch illustration video that features infographics and TwitPics of history. The illustrator, Bob Al-Greene, draws faster than I tweet — and that’s saying something.

TIME Smartphones

Samsung Galaxy S5 Pre-Orders Begin

The Samsung Galaxy S5
The Samsung Galaxy S5 Samsung

If you want to be among the first to get a new Samsung Galaxy S5, the time to act is now. AT&T announced that pre-orders for the flagship Android smartphone will begin in-store and online starting Friday, March 21.

Unveiled just last month, the new 5.1” Galaxy S5 boasts 2560 x 1440 resolution, a fingerprint scanner, IP67 water resistance, a black-and-white ultralow power saving mode and improved camera features. The smartphone is available in four colors: white, black, blue and gold.

Like the competing Apple iPhone 5S, the Samsung Galaxy S5 will retail for $200 on-contract; full retail is $649.99. AT&T Next customers can get the device for $25 per month for 18 months, or for $32.50 per month for 12 months.

AT&T is offering a bonus $50 discount if you buy a new Galaxy Gear 2 ($299) or Gear 2 Neo ($199) smartwatch at the same time you pick up a Galaxy 5. That said, I’m far more excited about Android Wear, Google’s new Android-based smartwatch operating system, and the coming Moto 360 smartwatch that runs it.

A release date for the Samsung Galaxy S5 has yet to be announced, though AT&T says the phone will begin shipping in “early April.” Sprint, T-Mobile and Verizon will carry the phone as well.

This article was written by Fox Van Allen and originally appeared on Techlicious.

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TIME video

Android Wear: Here’s What Google’s Smartwatch Interface Looks Like


Over on YouTube, Dom Esposito burns through a roughly six-minute overview of the developer version of Android Wear, the software that’ll power Android-based smartwatches set to hit the market this year (see my colleague Jared Newman’s excellent Android Wear write-ups here and here).

In the above video, Esposito shows off the developer version of Android Wear, which he loaded onto his HTC One smartphone. Though the functionality shown in the video is a far cry from what we’ll see in finished products, the tour should give you a good idea of how text messages, tweets, email and calls will be handled.

Of all the smartwatch offerings on the market right now, I’ll admit that the Moto 360 watch shown in the video is the only one to have caught my interest to the point that I’m actually considering buying one. Two things will make or break the purchase for me, however: price and battery life.

For me, anything north of $150 probably won’t cut it. As for battery life, I don’t expect to get more than a few days out of each charge, but I certainly don’t want to have to charge it every night. Ideally, the screen would stay off to conserve battery life unless a call, text message or email comes through. In other words, I wouldn’t use this thing to tell time.

Google Android Wear: Full Overview And Demo (Beta) [YouTube via Tim Stevens]


Gmail Ramps Up Encryption to Thwart the NSA, but It’s Still Not a Silver Bullet

Getty Images

Google announced that its Gmail service will use secure, encrypted connections in an effort to thwart NSA snooping. The measure is a step in the right direction, but users can still do more to protect their own privacy

Yesterday, Google announced that its Gmail service will use a secure, encrypted connection. Gmail has supported encryption since its early days, and the option was turned on by default in 2010 — but with this latest announcement, there’s no way to turn it off.

The official company line is as follows:

Today’s change means that no one can listen in on your messages as they go back and forth between you and Gmail’s servers—no matter if you’re using public WiFi or logging in from your computer, phone or tablet.

In addition, every single email message you send or receive—100% of them—is encrypted while moving internally. This ensures that your messages are safe not only when they move between you and Gmail’s servers, but also as they move between Google’s data centers—something we made a top priority after last summer’s revelations.

The quip about “last summer’s revelations” doesn’t name any names, but we’re talking about Edward Snowden and the NSA, of course.

Encrypting your Gmail messages from the web interface to Google’s servers – and as they bounce around between Google’s servers before being shuttled to your recipient’s Gmail interface – is a step in the right direction, but it’s still not a cure-all as far as general Internet security is concerned.

Here are a few of the pieces that are still missing.

This is a Gmail-user-to-Gmail-user solution. Everything Google is saying pertains to how Gmail messages move around Google’s network between Gmail users. Once you start exchanging email with non-Gmail users, the system can potentially break down. Not that other services aren’t encrypted, mind you, but Google’s not promising to protect your communications with someone who’s not a Gmail user.

We’ll (probably) never know the extent of Google’s relationship with the NSA. Google might not even know the extent of its relationship with the NSA, for that matter. This encryption setup takes steps to make it difficult or impossible for the NSA to snoop on Gmail messages in the traditional snooping sense, but who knows if the NSA doesn’t have a more direct line into Gmail.

The burden of true security is up to each user, and it’s too cumbersome for most people. As Snowden pointed out in his recent SXSW interview, end-to-end encryption from one user to another is currently one of the best ways to prevent others from snooping on you. The problem is that end-to-end encryption relies on both parties using encryption tools and services for sending messages back and forth. Your average Internet user doesn’t have the time or patience to deal with stuff like that, or they don’t care enough to make sure nobody can intercept the recipes, chain emails and soccer schedules they’re sending around.

These quibbles aside, this is still a nice addition to Gmail’s feature-set. And the greater the number of web companies that roll out widespread encryption like this, the better. Just don’t start emailing your social security number around – that’s all. It’s always best to use the Internet with a tiny ember of paranoia gently burning in the back of your mind.

Staying at the forefront of email security and reliability: HTTPS-only and 99.978% availability [Google]

TIME Television

Sony and Microsoft Are in New Kind of Break-Neck Race

Customers buy Sony Computer Entertainment Inc.'s PlayStation 4 video game console box during the launch event in Seoul, South Korea, Dec. 17, 2013.
SeongJoon Cho—Bloomberg/Getty Images

It’s been a while since video game consoles were just about video games. Sony’s PlayStation 2 was initially a hot seller partially because it came equipped with a DVD player in the early days of that technology. Microsoft’s Xbox 360 and the PlayStation 3 offered a wide range of distractions besides games thanks to digital stores for movies and native apps for services such as Netflix and HBO Go. The next step in the transformation of the game console into an entertainment center? Original TV shows made exclusively for your Xbox or PlayStation.

Both Sony and Microsoft are prepping original programming for their newly launched PlayStation 4 and Xbox One consoles. On Wednesday Sony revealed that it is developing an hour-long supernatural drama series called “Powers” that will air on the PlayStation Network, the service that PS3 and PS4 owners use to play games online and stream video content. That’s in addition to the Internet-based TV service Sony has planned that will feature live programming from cable networks. The company didn’t disclose whether the new show would be bundled with the pay-TV service but cast them as independent initiatives.

Sony is actually playing catch-up to Microsoft, though. The software giant launched Xbox Entertainment Studios in 2012, a production outfit helmed by former CBS executive Nancy Tellem that will make television-like programming for the console. The marquee project is a live-action series based on the popular Halo video game franchise that will be produced by Steven Spielberg. Other shows in the works include a documentary about the video game industry crash of 1983, a reality series about urban soccer leagues and a show based on the life of rapper Nas, according to Deadline.

For these tech giants, expanding consoles’ functionality beyond video games is a necessity in a world of multi-purpose devices. Gadgets that serve a single purpose (like Nintendo’s poorly performing Wii U console, for instance) no longer appeal as much to consumers, says Brian Blau, research director in consumer technologies at Gartner. “They have to show value in many different arenas,” he says.

Even without original shows, consoles have already proven formidable entertainment hubs. Microsoft revealed years ago that gamers spend more time streaming video content like Netflix and ESPN than playing Xbox games online. Ten percent of all digital movie rentals and purchases were made through Xbox consoles in 2013, according to research firm IHS Screen Digest. The PS3 has also been successful beyond gaming, with its users spending 17 million hours per week using entertainment apps on the console. It’s the most popular device for streaming Netflix to the TV, at times even eclipsing Netflix usage on the PC. “The game consoles have both been significant players in the rise of [Internet-based] video consumption,” says Dan Cryan, the research director for digital media at IHS Screen Digest.

Strong original content will only heighten the appeal of the consoles to casual gamers seeking a versatile entertainment device. Though the shows announced so far skew heavily toward the young male demographic typically associated with PlayStation and Xbox, Blau predicts the companies will craft content with a wider appeal as their consoles hit cheaper price points. “They really want to bring in a wider portion of the family in front of the television and even get some of the non-gamers in the family to pick up the controller,” he says.

Still, it’s not clear whether Microsoft and Sony will be able to craft shows that can compete with the glut of online video content coming from the likes of Netflix, Hulu, Amazon and Google. Sony already has huge production studios that have made hit TV shows like Breaking Bad. But analysts say the company has had trouble creating synergy between its Hollywood studios and its consumer electronics divisions in the past. Microsoft has little background in television, but neither did Netflix before it spent hundreds of millions of dollars to commission critical hits like House of Cards and Orange Is the New Black. Microsoft strong-armed its way into the gaming industry by buying up talent and racking up huge monetary losses—it could do the same to establish itself as a player in television content.

Even as the giants of gaming are expanding to video, though, other tech companies are eyeing their video game turf. Amazon acquired the game developer Double Helix in February, perhaps to provide content for the company’s upcoming set-top box. Rumors persist that Apple is prepping a new Apple TV device that will include an app store for video games, and last year the Wall Street Journal reported that Google was developing a video game console running on its Android operating system.

The basic functionality of living room gadgets from all tech companies is likely to look increasingly similar in the coming years. That will heighten the importance of exclusive content—be it a hit video game or a popular television show—to stand out from the crowd. “These devices are now acting as effectively entry points for a smorgasbord of entertainment,” Cryan says. “The more value you add to that, the more people will use them and the more appealing they become.”

MORE: The History of Video Game Consoles – Full


Rakuten CEO Promises to Bring E-Books to Viber

Think Amazon meets Viber meets WhatsApp


Hiroshi Mikitani, chief executive officer and founder of the Japanese e-commerce giant Rakuten, said he plans to turn Viber into an e-commerce platform. “We are going to sell everything [on Viber]: we’re going to sell e-books, we’re going to sell content, games,” Mikitan told CNN. Rakuten, the owner of Kobo e-readers and online retailer Play.com, recently paid an eye-popping $900 million dollars to purchase Viber, a popular messaging platform.

There is big money to be made on these messaging platforms. WhatsApp says it has more than 400 million monthly users. Skype reports close to 300 million users worldwide. In an interview with Bloomberg, Mikitani said he wants to see its user base grow to a whopping two billion. And now, Rakuten is looking for other streams of revenue. “E-commerce is entering into what I call the ‘humanization stage.’” said Mikitani. “We’re not trying to become a huge vending machine, we’re trying to replicate face to face human transaction using the information technology.”

TIME Apple

iOS 7.1 Hacked on Untethered iPhone 4 by Future Apple Employee

Hacker says he'll be working for Apple in a few months.

If the video below is accurate, iOS 7.1 has joined the ranks of jailbroken mobile OS’s not two weeks after it’s release on March 10.

The jailbreak pertains to the iPhone 4 — that’s the device shown in the video below. If the hack is legitimate, it follows close behind the first iOS 7 jailbreak, released a few days before Christmas last year by hacker group Evasi0n (that’s Evasi0n with a zero, not an “o”).

Here’s the video:

According to a commenter on the video, the hack only works on devices that employ Apple’s A4 chip, thus it would apply to the iPhone 4, the original iPad and the fourth-generation iPod Touch.

Now here’s where this gets a little strange: the fellow behind this apparent iOS 7.1-slash-iPhone 4 jailbreak goes by the Twitter handle @winocm (and the YouTube account rmsiphone). He made a name jailbreaking different versions of iOS 6 last year. The twist: late last month, he revealed on Twitter that he’d be joining Apple as an employee in 2014.

So if I’m parsing all of this correctly, a professed future Apple employee just jailbroke the latest iteration of Apple’s flagship operating system, then made a public video of it. Not the sort of thing you’d expect, or Apple CEO Tim Cook to hand out attaboys for. And I’m not the only one wondering how the laws of space-time work in @winocm’s universe: here’s someone else asking the hacker about it on Twitter last night:


Here’s What’s Draining Your iPhone Battery (and What You Can Do About It)

If you own an iPhone, there’s a good chance you run into battery problems now and again — times you wish you had the battery life to take one more photo, look up the location of a restaurant or make a quick phone call. But the more we use and rely on our smartphones, the more likely they are to run out of juice when we need them most.

With a bit of awareness about how you use your iPhone and what apps you’re using on it, you can curb your iPhone’s battery-draining tendencies. We’ll take a look at what types of apps commonly drain battery power and look into ways to keep your iPhone juiced up.

What’s always running?


The biggest battery drain by far are the apps you’re always using. Do you keep Facebook open on your iPhone and check it regularly? Do you have AOL Instant Messenger (AIM) open on your phone to talk to friends on the go, or Pandora streaming music in the background? Some of these apps keep running in the background, burning battery life even when you aren’t paying any attention to them.

Looking at our examples, Facebook actively notifies you of new updates or messages, AIM constantly checks to see if your friends are on or offline, and streaming apps like Netflix, Hulu, Pandora and Spotify keep streaming until you tell them to stop. As long as these apps are active and doing things, they’re burning through your battery life.

You also need to be wary of apps that keep your screen active (because although you might not think about it, it takes a lot of energy to keep your phone’s screen lit up) or put a strain on your smartphone’s internal processor. Beyond the video streaming apps we’ve already mentioned, be on the watch for games; they might be fun, but they’ll cut sharply into your battery life. Video and photo editing apps like iMovie and iPhoto also take a lot of power to run, so keep them closed unless you need them. And using your phone as a flashlight is useful, but keeping the screen or camera flash active can definitely ruin your battery expectations.

Shutting down the battery drainers

If you’re concerned about your iPhone’s battery life (or you’re going over your phone’s data plan limits), it’s worth spending a few minutes to think about what you really need your phone to be doing. If there’s anything you keep running but don’t actually need, the best bet is to close it. Log out of AIM, skip checking Facebook and close Pandora when you’re done listening.

Closing apps isn’t as straightforward as you’d think. Just pressing your iPhone’s home button to go back to the main screen may seem to close an app, but it will still be running in the background. To completely close an app when you’re done using it, follow these simple steps:

  • Tap your home button twice to pull up a list of running apps. On iOS 7, this is a list you swipe through, while on earlier versions it’s a set of icons at the bottom of the screen.
  • To close an app in iOS 7, swipe it up and off the screen. In earlier versions, press and hold the app until it starts jiggling, then tap the red minus symbol in the upper left corner.
  • When you’re done, tap the app you want to return to, or tap the home button twice to go back to your home screen.
  • Your less-burdened battery will thank you!

Keep location services on lockdown


Location services can be terribly convenient, letting apps know where you are and providing useful, location-specific information. However, keeping your iPhone’s GPS running can go through your remaining battery power very quickly.

You can tell when something on your phone is using location services by the arrow icon that appears in your menu bar at the top of the screen. If you’d like to save battery life, you have several options where location services are concerned.

Close apps that use location services when you don’t need them. Common culprits are map and navigation apps and services that provide you with location-based information, like Yelp and Foursquare.

If you don’t think an app needs access to location services, it’s easy to disable it on an app-by-app basis. Just open Settings > Privacy > Location Services, and find the apps you don’t want to access location data. Move the slider next to them to the off position. That application won’t be able to fire up your phone’s GPS until you change that setting.

You can also disable location services entirely if you aren’t using them. Go to Settings > Privacy > Location Services, and move the slider by Location Services to the off position.

Watch what you download

Downloading lots of data doesn’t just burn through your monthly data plan; it also burns through your battery life as your phone works to pull that data down from cellular or Wi-Fi networks. So if you’re particularly concerned about battery life, you probably want to avoid apps that will be a major data drain.

The most common culprits are anything that streams video or music: Netflix, Hulu, HBO Go, YouTube, Pandora, Spotify, Google+ Hangouts, Skype and FaceTime. You might not think of your email, which pushes new messages to your phone, or your favorite social networks, where you’re viewing friends’ photos, videos and status updates (and probably uploading your own!). Though text-based updates are small, photos and videos are larger files (especially as the iPhone’s camera improves), and viewing lots of them will leave you with less battery life.

So when you’re on a battery budget, set your phone to fetch your email at an interval instead of having it constantly pushed to your phone. For your social networks, skip uploading photos and videos or viewing those of your friends. You’re best off avoiding apps like Facebook, Instagram, Flickr, 500px, Tumblr and Pinterest and even browsing image-intensive websites. (If you’re wondering why Twitter didn’t make the list, it’s because Twitter only loads text and a small preview photo unless you click to open it.)

Be careful of free apps

Though free apps may seem tempting, these ad-supported apps burn at least a little extra battery power to download and display advertisements. In our own experience, apps downloading advertisements was the fourth highest data use on our iPhone — and as we mentioned above, when you’re downloading data, you’re also burning down your battery.

If you like an app enough to use it all the time, why not go ahead and pay a dollar or two to buy it instead of making your phone download advertisements every time you open it?

Our best battery tips


There are lots of things your phone can do that will cause your battery to drain faster — and you might not even use some of them. Here are some common battery culprits and how to disable them if and when you don’t need them.

Disable Bluetooth

If you don’t use any Bluetooth accessories, turn Bluetooth off under Settings > Bluetooth. In iOS 7, there’s a shortcut: Swipe up from your home screen to bring up a mini settings menu, and click the Bluetooth icon to shut off Bluetooth.

Reduce screen brightness

Keeping your screen brightly lit at all times can be a massive battery drain. Go to Settings > Wallpapers & Brightness (or Brightness & Wallpaper on older versions of iOS), and set the brightness slider to the lowest level you’re comfortable with. Then enable Auto-Brightness, which automatically makes the screen darker or lighter in response to current lighting conditions. You can and should also reduce screen drain by setting your phone’s screen lock to kick on as quickly as possible, reducing the amount of time the screen is needlessly lit. Go to Settings > General > Auto-Lock, and set it to 1 minute.

Turn off notifications

It’s handy to get notifications when an app wants to tell you something, but it also means that your iPhone is always keeping track of what the app is up to, which burns battery power. Even worse, a lock screen notification that pops up lights up your screen for a minute to show it to you — and as we noted above, keeping the screen lit can be a significant battery drain.

Turn off notifications for individual apps under Settings > Notification Center (or Notifications for older versions of iOS). Most apps seem happy to notify you about any and everything, so we suggest disabling most of these notifications. Scroll down to the list of apps, and click each app to see what kind of notifications it does. If you don’t want any, select None and turn off Badge App Icon, Alert Sound, Show in Notification Center and Show on Lock Screen (or View in Lock Screen on older versions of iOS).

Disable Wi-Fi

If you aren’t using Wi-Fi, turn it off; otherwise, your phone will constantly check for available Wi-Fi networks, draining your battery in the process. You can disable Wi-Fi under Settings > Wi-Fi, but don’t forget to turn it back on again when you need it or you’ll regret all that data use when you see your next wireless bill!

If you don’t need any kind of data service (or if you’re in an area where you aren’t getting a good signal), you can save a lot of battery life by turning on Airplane Mode under Settings. This disables Bluetooth, Wi-Fi and cellular service, cutting off all of the worst battery drainers. Again, iOS 7 has a shortcut: Swipe up from your home screen and click the Wi-Fi icon to disable Wi-Fi or the Airplane Mode icon to enable Airplane Mode.

Check your email less frequently

Many of us use our phones to keep tabs on our email accounts, but how often you check your email can take a major toll on your battery life. The iPhone lets you set up new mail to be automatically pushed to your phone (although not all email services support this) or fetched from the mail server at certain intervals.

Because push mail means a constant connection, you’ll get better battery life by fetching mail at intervals — and the less frequent the interval, the better your battery life. To change how often your phone checks your email, go to Settings > Mail, Contacts, Calendars > Fetch New Data. For best battery life, turn Push off and reduce your Fetch interval or set it to Manual. If you really need mail from a specific account fast, you can also enable Push-only on the accounts you choose from this menu.

Keep charged!

Instead of waiting for your battery to run dry, plug it in when you’re at your desk at work or in the car. Even a few minutes worth of charging could make the difference.

There’s an app for that!

Battery Saver

Many apps claim to help improve your battery life. While none of them work miracles, they can all help you make the most of your battery and stay aware of how much battery life you have left. Here are our favorites.

Battery Saver

This free app isn’t very intuitively organized and has some oddball extras (like the ability to check the weather and set alarms, ostensibly for charging your phone), but since it offers more battery information than the competition, we’re willing to overlook these oddities.

The app tells you how much battery life you have remaining in time, listing how long your battery will last on various tasks (click Remaining), which is very useful for determining what your 50% battery life will get you. Its most useful feature is the ability to tell you how much power different apps are draining (click App Being Used), so you know which apps you should shut down. Click Optimize to find out how much extra battery life you can get by changing certain system settings.

Price: Free on iTunes

Onavo Count

This one is the only iPhone app that tells you how much data each of your apps is using. Before you click to download it, be aware what it doesn’t do: Onava Count is poor at measuring whether you’re about to go over your cellular plan’s data cap. In our experience, the app doesn’t differentiate between cellular and Wi-Fi data. But Onavo does do a great job of telling you which apps are spending a lot of time downloading — and those are the apps you might want to see about shutting down when you need to save battery life.

Price: Free on iTunes

DataMan Next

If you’re looking for an app to help you stay inside your data limits, we like the easy-to-use DataMan Next. However, you may also find the iPhone’s built-in monitoring works just as well for you; you can find it under Settings > General > Usage > Cellular Usage, though you’ll have to remember to reset it manually every month.

Price: $1.99 on iTunes

Am I overdoing it on data?

As we’ve said, downloading data can kill your battery life — and even worse, if you go over your cell phone plan’s data caps, you can get slapped with extra fees. Fortunately, each carrier offers easy options to check how much data you’ve used. If you don’t want to hit the web to look up your account information, you can check the details from your phone.

  • AT&T: AT&T should text you data usage alerts when you reach 65% and 90% of your data plan. If you want more details, the myAT&T app lets you see all of your AT&T account information in one place. Dial *3282# to receive a text message indicating your current data usage.
  • Verizon: Verizon sends you an alert when you reach 50%, 75%, 90% and 100% of your data allowance. If you want more details, download the My Verizon Mobile app to view all your Verizon account information. Dial #3282 to receive a text from Verizon listing your current data usage.
  • Sprint: Sprint sends you an email or text alert when you reach 75%, 90% and 100% of your data allowance. As with the other carriers, there’s an app that lets you get detailed account information: Download Sprint Zone for easy access to all your details. If you aren’t keen on an app, text “usage” to 1311 to receive a text message listing your voice, text and data usage.
  • T-Mobile: T-Mobile sends usage alerts that can be configured under its web page. (Once you’ve logged on, just go to Go to Manage, Your Profile page, then the Account Usage Alerts.) Download the T-Mobile My Account app to check your account info from your phone, or dial #932# to get a text message with usage information.

Now that you’re armed with information, we wish you good luck and long life with your iPhone battery!

This article was written by Elizabeth Harper and originally appeared on Techlicious.

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TIME Companies

Microsoft Admits to Searching Blogger’s Emails

The tech giant admits it searched a blogger's emails during an internal investigation into a former employee who was accused of leaking company secrets, saying in this case it “took extraordinary actions"

Microsoft admitted Thursday that it searched a blogger’s emails during an internal investigation into who leaked company secrets.

John Frank, the company’s deputy general counsel said in a statement that Microsoft “took extraordinary actions in this case,” the Associated Press reports. In September 2012, Microsoft searched the Hotmail account and instant messages of a blogger who was communicating with a former software architect for the company, Alex Kibkalo.

Kibkalo was named in an FBI complaint filed on Monday, but the blogger was not identified, the AP reports. Kibkalo allegedly shared tweaks to the Windows 8 RT operating system and software tools that could have aided hackers in navigating and activating Microsoft programs. Kibkalo’s cloud account, which he allegedly used to share files with the blogger, was also searched. Kibkalo has since located to Russia, according to authorities.

Microsoft said its legal office approved the search but that in the future it would consult an outside attorney before resorting to such measures. But Frank said a court order wasn’t needed in this case. “Courts do not issue orders authorizing someone to search themselves,” he said. “Even when we have probable cause, it’s not feasible to ask a court to order us to search ourselves.”


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