links for 2010-05-08

  • Verizon Wireless will start to sell Microsoft Corp’s (MSFT.O) Kin phones on Thursday as both companies look to do battle with Apple Inc (AAPL.O) by catering to savvy young phone users who are obsessed with following what their friends are doing online.
    The biggest U.S. wireless operator will start online sales on Thursday for the two phones, the companies said today, which were announced on April 13, and it plans to start selling them in stores one week later.
  • The security flaw, discovered by TechCrunch, relates to a feature on Facebook that allows users to preview their own privacy settings. Describing the problem, TechCrunch’s Steve O’Hear wrote: “There is a major security flaw in the social networking site that, with just a few mouse clicks, enables any user to view the live chats of their ‘friends’. Using what sounds like a simple trick, a user can also access their friends’ latest pending friend-requests and which friends they share in common. That’s a lot of potentially sensitive information.”
    He said that TechCrunch had informed Facebook of the problem. Facebook now displays a message that says “chat is down for maintenance at this time”.

  • Internet calling service Skype plans a public “beta” test of a group video chat function that lets up to five people participate in a video call simultaneously.
    When the feature launches next week it will be free, but Skype Ltd. plans to start charging for it along with some other upcoming features in three or four months, said Neil Stevens, general manager of Skype’s consumer business segment.
    Skype’s software already offers a range of free services, including the ability to make voice or video calls and send instant messages to other Skype users. Users pay for services such as making calls from a PC to a landline or cell phone.
    (tags: skype)

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