Posts Tagged ‘privacy’

New arrival: BlackBerry unveils DTEK50 Android smartphone

Tuesday, July 26th, 2016

From today, DTEK50 is available for pre-order from ShopBlackBerry.com in the US, Canada, UK, France, Germany, Spain, Italy and The Netherlands for US$299. Availability of DTEK50 in additional global channels and countries will be announced in the coming weeks.

For a limited time, customers who pre-order a DTEK50 on ShopBlackBerry.com only will receive a complimentary BlackBerry Mobile Power Pack, a high-capacity portable charger worth US$59.99 ($69.99 CDN, €59.99 and £54.99) that powers all your compatible mobile devices to maximise your productivity and play time. This offer expires on August 8th at 11:59 pm PST.

For a limited time, customers who pre-order a DTEK50 on ShopBlackBerry.com only will receive a complimentary BlackBerry Mobile Power Pack, a high-capacity portable charger worth US$59.99 ($69.99 CDN, €59.99 and £54.99) that powers all your compatible mobile devices to maximise your productivity and play time. This offer expires on 8 August at 11:59 pm PST. Image credit: BlackBerry.

BlackBerry boasts that the DTEK50 is “the world’s most secure Android smartphone, delivering BlackBerry’s unmatched security, privacy and productivity to price-conscious consumers and businesses”.

“We take our customers’ privacy seriously. That’s why we’re excited with all the security and functionality that’s built in our newest Android smartphone. DTEK50 merges the unique security and connectivity features BlackBerry is known for, with the rich Android ecosystem. This device adds to BlackBerry’s lineup of secure smartphones, providing choice to our customers with different price points on both, BlackBerry 10 and Android platforms,” said Ralph Pini, Chief Operating Officer and General Manager, Devices, BlackBerry.

The DTEK50 is BlackBerry’s second smartphone powered by Android, following the PRIV.

Fully equipped with Android Marshmallow 6.0, DTEK50 combines BlackBerry’s unique security, privacy and productivity with the full Android experience in an all-touch design, at a price point that’s “accessible for consumers and ideal for enterprise fleet deployment”, according to the company’s press release..

Availability

DTEK50 will be available in a number of channels around the world, including more than 40 partners from electronics stores, carriers, VARs and distributors.

This includes Rogers, Bell, TELUS, WIND, Videotron and SaskTel among others in Canada.

In the U.S., DTEK50 will initially be available in Best Buy, B&H and Amazon.

More details from the press release below.

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Search, plus your world — by Google

Friday, January 13th, 2012

Google has extended its search results by tapping into the data, photos, information and relationships in your Google+ and Picasa account — as long as you’re logged onto your Google account.

Google launched this extension to its existing search engine earlier this week. This opt-out integration will be gradually rolled out over the coming days for users using Google Search in English.

Prior to this extension, Google returned results based on its indexing engine of the public information available on the Internet and listed them in order of relevancy based on its Page Rank algorithm.

With Search Plus Your World – if you’re logged into your Google account – henever you do a search, Google Search will add three types of information to the search process and results listings:

  1. Personal Results. Photos and posts, related to your search term, from Google+ and Picasa — both your own and those shared specifically with you, that only you will be able to see on your results page;
  2. Profiles in Search. Helps you find people within your Google+ network or circles — both in autocomplete (as you type in the search term) and results listings;
  3. People and Pages. Helps you find people’s profiles and Google+ pages related to a specific topic or area of interest — not just in your social circles, and enables you to follow them with just a few clicks. This is available even if you’re not logged into Google.

To me, this feature is an enhancement. Information is drawn from my own account, to which I have permission to access anyway. The information is not available to anyone else doing a similar search on Google as long as he is not logged into my account.

Screenshot from Google showing addition of personal results, photos and switch to turn off the feature.

Screenshot from Google showing addition of personal results, photos and switch to turn off the feature.

It makes my search more relevant and it’s easier to do a comprehensive search that includes my Google+ and Picasa accounts (and perhaps other assets in the future).

The only problem is that it is now much easier for an intruder too, should my account ever be compromised or if I forget to log out of my account.

Note to self: Log out even if you’re stepping away for a coffee. What would have taken hours to consolidate across your different accounts can now be searched in one fell swoop while you’re raiding the fridge.

I share many people’s laments that this extension of search into my own social networks is limited to my Google+ account and Google assets —  and not my Twitter and Facebook accounts.

Both Twitter and Facebook have disallowed Google from crawling their content.

Facebook is keeping mum for the moment, but Twitter is crying foul — claiming that Google is leveraging unfair advantage by using its predominant Search presence to help its nascent Google+ network against other social networks. Two thirds of search in the US goes through Google Search.

Twitter used to allow Google to tap its data until recently, when it stopped the arrangement with Google but continued the partnership with Microsoft’s Bing search engine.

Search Plus Your World can be toggled on and off but it is default on at the start of every session. You need to go to Settings to permanently turn it off.

Search Plus Your World can be toggled on and off but it is default on at the start of every session. You need to go to Settings to permanently turn it off.

It’s beyond the man in the street to know if it was Twitter deliberately keeping Google out or whether it’s Google who preferred to be kept out so it’s Search Plus Your World is now “unfortunately” constrained to only Google+.

Only an investigation by the FTC can ascertain the posturing and vested interests involved, and organisations like the Electronic Privacy Information Center are already considering filing a anti-competitive complaint to the FTC regarding this.

By the way, here’s how to turn off the Google’s Search plus Your World permanently if you wish to do so.