Could there soon be a social networking czar in Washington? That’s unlikely, but this week four Democratic senators called on Facebook to give some consideration to recent changes to the social networking site’s privacy settings. The four senators, who included Senator Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) argued that the recent changes give users less control over private information and that this was done without the users’ actual permission.
This is important to consider as well when using social networking sites for business. And as with any site be cautious of what sorts of information you provide online.
HP to Buy Palm
Palm has found its white knight this week, as Hewlett-Packard announced yesterday that it will buy Palm. The struggling smartphone maker had fallen on tough times, and it looks like HP could be looking to expand its business from computers, notebooks and printers. Earlier this year, HP had announced plans to release a tablet, which could be some competition for Apple’s popular iPad. So now HP could also be looking to take on Apple’s iPhone as well.
Where this is really interesting is in how this will impact the relationship between HP and Microsoft, with the former usually looking to the latter for the operating system. By buying Palm, HP will acquire the WebOS mobile operating system, something generally considered the strongest part of the smartphone maker.
Analysts are already predicting that HP could release Windows Phone 7 handsets along side those running WebOS. So what else does Palm offer? One thing is a number of patents – which could help in any showdown with Apple.
Rumors & Releases: BlackBerry Pearl 3G
Research in Motion doesn’t typically generate the same level of buzz when it announces a new handset, but this week that could change. Just prior to the company’s Wireless Enterprise Symposium this week the company announced two new handsets: the BlackBerry Bold 9650 and the BlackBerry Pearl 3G. The former is actually a re-branded BlackBerry Tour, which now has added Wi-Fi and an optical trackpad. It includes the same dual-mode functionality for world roaming, and support for international 3G bands. The handset also is ready for its world tour with a 3.2megapixel camera.
The Pearl 3G will feature the same sleek design as past Pearl models, and interestingly enough there will be two configurations. The first will have a 20-key Sure Type keypad while the second will have a 14-key Sure Type keypad. Neither of these truly replace a full QWERTY keypad, but for those who can make do, this is a particularly sleek phone.