This week: the Apple/FBI showdown heats up the encryption war, a prime swath of the wireless spectrum goes up for grabs, and Snapchat’s “Chat 2.0” takes one step closer to being the “most human way to chat.”
- Goodbye Apple vs. FBI, hello crypto wars
Although the battle between Apple and the FBI over the San Bernardino shooter’s iPhone ended, the very existence of the case has caused the war over encryption to heat up even more. The implications are many; as Apple continues to tighten phone security, the fragile trust between the government and the tech industry has sustained damage. After the Apple/FBI incident and the certainty of more battles, Congress will be under pressure to pass encryption legislation—and that will bring on its own set of battles.Read more about the battles around encryption at Wired.
- The fight for more of the wireless spectrum: bad news for TV, good news for wireless users
On April 5th the Federal Communications Commission’s “Incentive Auction” will be poised to take spectrum that has belonged to TV broadcasters and auction it off to wireless service providers. Shifting this very valuable “real estate” on the spectrum could means major changes to the wires industry, opening the opportunity for smaller carriers to deliver strong, nationwide coverage. That puts them in competition with the big boys like Verizon Wireless and AT&T.Read this FAQ from c|net to learn more about the wireless spectrum, the auction, and how it could affect wireless users.
- Snapchat CEO: “Chat 2.0” will have it all – video, audio, GIFs, and stickers
This week, Snapchat launched Chat 2.0, which boasts a laundry list of new features that it says are “seamlessly combined” within the popular social media app. Among other things, this latest version allows private conversations to “morph” between mediums, depending on what the user wants. Other features include video and audio notes as well as the ability to initiate a call even if you’re not chatting, which basically turns Snapchat into a phone.Read more about “Chat 2.0” at TechCrunch.
- Fed survey: Mobile banking is getting more popular with adults
According to a survey by the Federal Reserve, mobile banking grew in popularity with adults last year. 43% (a 4% increase over last year) of adults with mobile phones are using their mobile phones for financial activities, reportedly because of features like the ability to check balances and make payments. This shift is also having a negative impact on traditional banking channels; although ATMs are holding on as the “most important way” consumers do their banking, mobile came in at third place—above branch tellers—on a list of banking interactions ranked by importance.See what else was revealed in the survey at MarketWatch.
- Analyst predicts the next release of iPhone will be the most “radically different” redesign yet
According to a KGI Securities analyst, Apple will release an iPhone with a “radically different” design. This release, likely the iPhone 7S, will include features such as curved glass, wireless charging capabilities, and more sophisticated biometric security, including face recognition.To read more iPhone predictions, visit CNN Money.