This Week in Mobile: August 6th – 13th

This Week in Mobile August 6th – 13th – Our weekly post on mobile news. You can expect a new post every Monday morning giving a brief summary of what happened the previous week in the mobile space along with links for more information. If you think we missed anything important, leave a comment or send us a tweet @willowtreeapps. Here is what happened this week…


Starbucks has signed a deal with Square to use its mobile payment system in 7,000 Starbucks locations.

Screenshot of aggressive in-app purchases from The Verge

– EA released “Pitfall!”, a new iOS game very similar to the wildly successful Temple Run. The game has been well received, but some reviewers are complaining about the over aggressive use of in-app purchases. Are consumers getting tired of paying for additional content, especially in games that aren’t free?

– Kaspersky Labs is reporting 5 cases of Trojan apps in the wild for Android and BlackBerry. Researchers found 4 apps for BlackBerry and 1 for Android which infected users’ devices with the same viruses. More viruses are targeting mobile devices, and app stores without a review process  are struggling to remove malicious apps.


– Motorola announced plans to cut 20% of its employees and close a third of its offices. According to Mark Randall, head of Motorola’s supply chain, the company plans to buy less components and use fewer suppliers, which could mean the company is going to focus on fewer phones.

– Google Now, the new voice based search from Google, will be available on iOS soon. Google details their plans in a Blog post, and uploaded a video of the service running on an iPhone.


– The Samsung Apple trial is providing too much interesting news to cover here alone. For now I would look at The Verge’s coverage or check out its top ranking iPhone app.

– The YouTube app, loaded by default on iOS devices since 2007, will not be in the new iOS 6. Users of the 6.0 Beta reported that the app had been removed, and Apple responded saying the licensing deal with Google had ended. YouTube gave the following quote to Engadget: “We are working with Apple to ensure we have the best possible YouTube experience for iOS users.”


– Microsoft has released the new Windows Phone 8 development center. The website also mentions that new in-app purchases will only be available for Windows Phone 8; current Windows Phone users will be left out.


– The ruling for RIM vs Mformation, which ruled in favor of Mformation, was overturned this week. RIM no longer has to pay Mformation 147.5 million in the patent suit.

– Bloomberg is reporting a rumor that IBM could be looking to buy the enterprise-services unit from RIM. Most analysts agree this is one of the most valuable assets RIM owns, so they might not be willing to sell.

New and Notable Apps: 

Obama’s Plan for more government transparency


– The US Census Bureau released its first app this week, tracking the US economy. This could be the first wave of apps released from the White House’s directive that all agencies create more government transparency through open mobile data.

– The Google Translate app got an update this week to translate text from images.

Burner, a new app out for iOS, lets you pay $2 for temporary new phone number, letting you privately make and receive phone calls.

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