Early adopters playing with iOS 6 fear users will have to beg AT&T to let them make FaceTime video calls over the cellular network.
An alert box, shown over at MacRumours, pops up and urges fanbois to have a word with the telco if they attempt to make a FaceTime call and Wi-Fi isn't available.
The discovery sparked rumours that AT&T plans to charge for Apple's video-calling service. The network operator hasn't responded helpfully and Apple is as taciturn as ever, so punters will just have to wait until the official launch of iOS 6, the iPad and iPhone operating system.
AT&T already demands a fee for tethering (sharing a phone's mobile internet connection with other devices over Wi-Fi) so the concept of flat-rate data charing is already broken. However, US blogopundits have spilled their cinnamon dolce lattes in shock at the idea that AT&T may bill customers for the privilege of making video calls.
They could use Skype, of course, which happily supports video calling over mobile networks, but Skype is owned by Microsoft and that will be enough to prevent most Apple users from considering it. Read more...
The developers of the popular XBMC open source entertainment hub have released a preliminary version for Android, which means the software could soon be running on a wide range of smartphones and tablets – even Google's Nexus Q media device.
Though originally designed for home theater PCs, XBMC now runs on a wide range of devices, including the Apple TV. Its main advantage is that it can play virtually any media format you throw at it, either from the network or local storage.
The Android version was mostly developed in secret, helped along by funding from digital set-top box maker Pivos, and was formally unveiled over the weekend.
The software is still in a raw state. It runs, but unless you own a Pivos XIOS set-top box, it currently only supports software decoding of audio and video, which means playback can be pretty choppy. Hardware acceleration for more devices should arrive eventually, but it's too early to say when. Read more...
The New York metropolitan area has the highest demand for H-1B workers in the United States, according to a new study that examines regional use of the work visa.
That's followed by Los Angeles, San Francisco, San Jose and Washington metropolitan areas, according to a Brookings Institution study that maps H-1B visa usage around the country.
The study's broader mission is to explain how H-1B workers are used, where they are used, and what companies use them in 106 metropolitan areas.
Take the Columbus, Ind., metro area, for instance. That area had 629 H-1B visa requests in 2010 and 2011. The top visa employer in Columbus is Cummins Inc., an engine manufacturing company.
As part of the study, Neil Ruiz, a senior policy analyst at Brookings and co-author of the report, interviewed officials at Cummings who told him that they need skilled workers to help develop clean technologies for engines. "They are really struggling to fill a lot of their positions," said Ruiz. Read more...
Microsoft yesterday clarified that Mac users will not be able to download and install a copy of Office for Mac 2011 as one of the five licenses allowed by the new Office 365 subscription plans.
The news may make the subscription deals, including Office 365 Home Premium, less attractive to consumers and businesses that have both Macs and Windows PCs.
While Office for Mac 2011 will integrate with Office 365 plans to some extent, users will not be given licenses to the OS X software.
"To clarify, those that have Office for Mac 2011 licenses and install the update, once it's available, will be able to use their Office for Mac 2011 license as one of the 5 devices in the Office Home Premium subscription," a Microsoft spokesperson said in an email reply to questions Tuesday.
Computerworld had posed two possible interpretations of earlier comments by Microsoft about how Mac users fit into the plans for the Office 365 subscription deals, which will give consumers five licenses to the new Office 2013 on Windows. Read more...
Facebook saw its U.S. user base drop by 0.7% over the past three months and 1.7% over the last six months, according to a report from Rory Maher, a senior Internet analyst at Capstone Investments.
The report was based on research that used proprietary software to analyze Facebook user growth in more than 200 countries. The report also noted that Hong Kong had a 1.7% drop in users and Singapore had a 1.1% drop.
In all three areas -- the U.S., Hong Kong and Singapore -- Facebook has more than 50% market penetration. Read more...
Just days after a former employee blasted Mozilla for its frequent updates, the company on Tuesday shipped Firefox 14, patching 18 vulnerabilities and adding automatic encryption of searches passed to Google's search engine.
The upgrade also lets users set an option that loads plug-ins -- such as Adobe's Flash Player or Oracle's Java -- only after approval, an additional security measure that may prevent stop some attacks.
Half of the 18 bugs quashed in Firefox 14 were rated "critical" by Mozilla, while four were labeled as "high" threats in the company's four-step scoring system. The remaining five were pegged as "moderate" vulnerabilities.
A hacker today claimed to have broken into ITWallStreet.com, a website for IT professionals seeking jobs or working with Wall Street firms, and exposed highly detailed data belonging to tens of thousands of job applicants.
As many as 12 data files containing detailed information on job applicants were publicly posted today after apparently being accessed from an ITWallStreet database by a hacker belonging to a group called TeamGhostShell.
A Computerworld inspection of the published data showed the first and last names, mailing addresses, email addresses, usernames, hashed passwords and phone numbers of what appear to be thousands of people who have applied for IT jobs with Wall Street firms. Many of the thousands of hashed passwords appear to have already been decrypted into their clear text form. Read more...
HTC has filed a counterclaim before a court in Florida stating that Apple has infringed on two of its patents, originally assigned to Hewlett-Packard and Electronic Data Systems, a company that HP acquired in 2008.
The Taiwanese phone maker is being sued for patent infringement by Apple in the court along with Motorola Mobility.
HTC claimed in a filing on Tuesday to the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida it has been assigned all rights, title and interest of U.S. Patent No. 7,571,221 (the '221 patent) entitled "Installation of network services in an embedded network server," which was assigned to HP. Read more...
To generate interest from developers, Boston-based Akiban Technologies has released as open source its flagship database software, called Akiban Server. The company also released a connector for replicating a MySQL database within Akiban, and it has forged a partnership with platform hosting provider Engine Yard.
"The data that we capture grows more and more complicated. We designed a database that can handle increasing levels of depth and complexity," said Ori Herrnstadt, who is a cofounder and Chief Technology Officer for Akiban.
The company announced the release at OSCON (O'Reilly Open Source Conference), being held this week in Portland, Oregon.
Through a novel way of grouping data, the Akiban database can complete operations 10 or more times faster than MySQL, the company has claimed. It also provides developers multiple ways for their applications to work with the database. Read more...
An industry consortium dedicated to assuring the security of software has issued guidelines to lower the risk that vulnerabilities that could be exploited by attackers will wind up in finished code.
In particular, SAFECode (Software Assurance Forum for Excellence in Code) is addressing how to prevent vulnerabilities that may worm their way in during the Agile software development process.
Agile is a framework for incremental software development by teams that work together in stages called sprints to develop the first iteration of code then revisit it regularly to refine the product based on new requirements and input from users.
SAFECode's new paper (PDF), "Practical Security Stories and Security Tasks for Agile Development Environments," presents Agile teams with a list of specific goals they may be trying to achieve at the outset and tasks necessary to achieve each one. Read more...