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October 17, 2012

Technology News Briefs — Oct. 17, 2012

Samsung Retains Top Spot

Samsung is still No. 1 in the mobile market, new data has revealed.

During the three-month average period ending in August, Samsung had 27.5 percent of the mobile subscriber market, according to comScore data released this month. LG placed second with 18.2 percent closely followed by Apple at 17.1 percent.

Apple’s share of the mobile market increased 2.1 percent while LG’s share dropped 0.9 percent. Samsung’s percentage remained steady.

In the bottom half were Motorola with 11.2 percent of the market, a drop of 0.8 percent and HTC with 6.1 percent, an increase of 0.2 percent.

Texting continues to be the most popular activity: 75.6 percent of mobile phone owners do so, followed by downloading apps at 53.4 percent and browsing at 52 percent.

Passbook Can Soon Be Used at Apple Stores

Apple customers will soon be able to use Passbook at the company’s stores.

Citing an “unnamed Apple source,” the unofficial Apple blog site TUAW said the company will launch an update to its EasyPay point-of-sale software later this month to allow store employees to scan Passbook-based Apple Store cards for payments.

The company has completed its replacement of the cases for EasyPay-enabled iPod touches to allow use of the rear-facing camera. Previously, the EasyPay add-on obstructed the lens so it was impossible to scan items.

“The feature looks to be limited to prepaid gift cards, at least for the time being, so those hoping to load and reload their own virtual Apple Store card still have some waiting to do,” the blog said. “The company likely already has a solution in mind, so don’t be surprised to see the ability to add funds appear in the near future.”

‘No Limits DVR’ to Launch Nov. 1

After much speculation, it has been confirmed — the Boxee DVR will launch Nov. 1 for $99.

Boxee TV is the new over-the-air DVR which uploads users’ recordings and stores and retrieves them from the cloud. There is no limit on how much can be recorded.

Boxee, which has dubbed the technology “No Limits DVR,” allows the user to access all TV recordings via Boxee TV or any device — including Smartphones and tablets — that can load its HTML5-based website. Boxee TV can record on-air TV shows using an antenna or its unencrypted basic cable via its built-in QAM tuner. It allows users to record two shows at once, or watch one show while recording another.

There is a $15 monthly subscription fee, however, which, most likely, is to cover the electronic program guide data and the unlimited cloud storage.

Apple Sued for Using ‘Eye’ in Ad Campaign

A Swiss photographer has launched a lawsuit against Apple.

Photographer Sabine Liewald alleges the company misused one of her pictures by using it to advertise its latest MacBook Pro computers.

Liewald claims Apple obtained the rights to use the image of a heavily made-up model’s eye for “layout purposes only,” not for commercial use. The complaint says Apple used the image in its advertising, including on its website. She says the photograph is covered under copyright, and “protected under the Byrne Convention as a non-United States work.”

The suit was filed in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York earlier this week. It seeks a trial by jury to establish damages and possible loss of profits.

Apple has yet to comment on the lawsuit.

 

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