Weekly News Round-up: What You May Have Missed in the World of Android

Google’s Mobile Application Development Agreements created grounds for a federal antitrust lawsuit in California’s Northern District Court (case number 14-cv-02007). The lawsuit alleges that Google maintains a monopoly because of its suite of Android apps and the “restrictive contracts” to install the apps. The lawsuit (or at least the press release) goes on to say that device prices are artificially high because of the MADA.

Honestly, this is the dumbest lawsuit ever! Google creates great applications, but you’re not required to use them. Further, as we already learned, the licensing fee is only $0.99 per device; hardly an impediment to the sale of Android devices. Additionally, there are other, unrestricted applications if you don’t want to use Google’s services. Amazon’s proof that you don’t need Google to survive.

Here’s a hint: build a better device, one that doesn’t suck. Oh, and don’t even get me started on this quote: “According to the complaint, in both situations, the owners’ phones should have cost less and had better search capabilities as the result of competition that would have ensued, had Google’s MADA restraints not existed.”

Google gets it right in their response:

Anyone can use Android without Google and anyone can use Google without Android . . . Since Android’s introduction, greater competition in smartphones has given consumers more choices at lower prices.

Now the rest of the news:

  • Just to prove how awesome its apps are, Google released separate apps for Docs and Sheets.
  • Oh, and don’t forget how cool Google’s Search app is with parking ability.
  • We got a look at how Google’s self-driving car functions:

  • Internet Explorer is having issues (there’s a fix), but that’s okay because most of the readers of this blog use Chrome.
  • Nexus devices might be dead (then again, so is Google+) and become rebranded as “Silver”.
  • Redbox Instant subscribers now have Chromecast support.
  • There’s a new virus coming as a text message from Russia. Look for “Is this your photo?” and don’t look at the picture.
  • Here are 5 apps that might be worth taking a look at.
  • A new Nexus 6 with a fingerprint scanner? Possibly.
  • Snoopers beware, perhaps you’ll plug-in to a new VPN:


Or just be careful of what you click and scan.

  • And if you haven’t watched this video, it’s worth 7 minutes of your time:

  • And finally, because I’d rather be doing this, this week:

 

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Jeff Taylor

I’m just an ordinary guy living an extraordinary life. I’m also an attorney and I blog about Android for lawyers. You can follow me on Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube, or Google+.