Supreme Court: Cell phone searches require warrant

The U.S. Supreme Court ruled unanimously today that law enforcement officers need to get a search warrant before they can rifle through the contents of someone’s smartphone. Chief Justice John Roberts, who wrote the majority opinion, said that cell phones were vastly different from other items people might carry on them, especially in terms of… Read More

HTC unveiled a new mid-range phone at Mobile World Congress called the Desire 816.

HTC: Volunteer your phone to cure cancer while you sleep

HTC says if 1 million of its smartphones owners donated their unused processing power, it would be equal to one of the world’s top supercomputers. The HTC Power to Give initiative was announced today at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona to let smartphone owners hand over their phone’s unspent processing power to assist in fighting… Read More


‘The phone is the PC’: Ubuntu tests demand for all-in-one device with $32M campaign

The line is increasingly blurring between smartphones, tablets and desktop computers. But how much blurring are we ready for? Canonical, the company behind the Ubuntu Linux distribution, has launched a new $32 million crowdfunding campaign that will test the demand for an all-in-one device — an “Ubuntu Edge” smartphone powerful enough to serve as the… Read More


Profits sink at HTC on delay of new HTC One smartphone

HTC, the Taiwan-based smartphone maker whose North American operations are located in the Seattle area, posted weak earnings today driven in part by the delayed launch of the HTC One. The company’s net income fell to $2.8 million, the sixth straight decline and a 98 percent drop, reports Bloomberg. HTC delayed the launch of its… Read More


‘Bezos Beep’ could replace the smartphone bump for mobile content sharing

Companies including Samsung have been promoting the practice of sharing content by bumping two devices together — transmitting photos, videos and other files from phone to phone using Near Field Communications. Amazon’s Jeff Bezos has a different plan. Let’s call it the Bezos Beep. A newly published patent application, listing the Amazon CEO as sole… Read More


Driver distractions: Study shows how smartphones keep our eyes off the road

While smartphones are helping us stay connected like we’ve never been before, it’s quickly becoming a big problem for driving distracted. In an interesting study done by the auto industry’s top lobbying group, the Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers, 5,000 car owners were polled about their driving habits and the numbers reiterate the fact that our increasing… Read More


The people’s champ: Verizon is most favorable carrier

Remember those “Can you hear me now?” Verizon commercials? Turns out there’s actually some truth to those messages. The people have spoken and Verizon is the most favorable cell phone carrier in the nation based on an annual Consumer Reports survey of 63,253 subscribers around the country. Out of the four big carriers, Verizon led the way… Read More


Romotive unveils new $150 smartphone-controlled robot, lands $5M from Sequoia, others

Romotive today is unveiling its next-generation smartphone-controlled robot, a $150 device that the company says is faster and “more sleekly designed” than earlier versions. It’s also announcing $5 million in funding from Sequoia Capital, Crunchfund, Ron Conway’s SV Angel and others. Incubated at TechStars Seattle, Romotive moved to Las Vegas shortly after the program concluded as… Read More


Startup’s iPhone-powered landmine detector could help save lives, limbs and land

Entrepreneurs are always trying to avoid landmines. But here’s a startup that’s actively seeking them out — literally. Red Lotus Technologies, a Seattle and San Francisco upstart led by operations manager Robin Hibbs Rosenberg and engineer Lahiru Jayatilaka, has developed a new system to better pinpoint landmines in former war-torn nations like Cambodia and Angola. The landmine… Read More

iPhone vs. Android

Chart: China overtakes U.S. for smartphone crown

Smartphones are nearly everywhere in the U.S., but the number one market for smartphone shipments is now China, according to a report out today by IDC. China will account for 26.5 percent of all smartphone shipments this year, compared to 17.8 percent for the United States. “Looking ahead, the PRC smartphone market will continue to… Read More


How Kinect, smartphones and programming are reshaping high school

Tech-minded teachers from across the country are on the Microsoft campus in Redmond this week, sharing some of the new ways they’re incorporating technology into their classrooms. The event is the company’s Partners in Learning U.S. Forum. See the video above for highlights from my tour of the event earlier today — including teachers incorporating… Read More


Chart: Samsung tops Apple in smartphone shipments

Apple’s iPhone may be synonymous with the smartphone revolution. But Samsung still holds the lead in terms of worldwide shipments, showing a 32.6 percent market share as it shipped 50.2 million units during the second quarter. That compared to Apple’s 16.9 percent market share and 16.9 million units shipped, according to a report from IDC. Together,… Read More

tablet 200

Tablets surpass smartphones in e-commerce traffic

It was bound to happen. With larger, easier-to-view screens and their sheer portability, tablets have now overtaken smartphones as devices for shopping, according to Monetate, a provider of cloud-based technology for online marketers. As reported by Gigaom, tablets drove more traffic to retail sites than smartphones during the first quarter of 2012, 6.52 percent vs. smartphones 5.35… Read More


Will your next smartphone have a backside display?

A newly surfaced patent filing from Microsoft provides a glimpse of where our smartphones might be headed — even if it’s not the most original idea in the world. The concept, as detailed by, is a smartphone with a low-powered backside display, possibly wrapping around the corners of the device, that could show content… Read More

Thorsten Heins

RIM’s new CEO states the obvious in YouTube video: ‘We have to get better at execution’

RIM, which has struggled to keep its BlackBerry line of smartphones relevant amid increasing competition from the iPhone and Android, today replaced co-CEOs Jim Balsillie and Mike Lazaridis with a little-known executive by the name of Thorsten Heins. (Full release here). Who is Thorsten Heins? Well, as part of the introductory process, the company posted… Read More


Ask Andru: Apple iMessage Follow-Up

The first ever Ask Andru column featured a question about Apple’s iMessage, a proprietary method the company uses to allow owners of iOS devices to send text messages, pictures, and videos to each other through Apple’s servers, bypassing the traditional wireless carrier. This allows users to send as many messages as they want without having… Read More