Sprint Uses Carrier IQ to Monitor Network Performance
In a statement provided to The Verge, Sprint today admitted that it uses information harvested by Carrier IQ to help manage the performance of its network. "Carrier IQ provides information that allows Sprint, and other carriers that use it, to analyze our network performance and identify where we should be improving service," said Sprint. "We also use the data to understand device performance so we can figure out when issues are occurring. We collect enough information to understand the customer experience with devices on our network and how to address any connection problems, but we do not and cannot look at the contents of messages, photos, videos, etc., using this tool. The information collected is not sold and we don't provide a direct feed of this data to anyone outside of Sprint." Carrier IQ has come under fire for collecting user data on Android and other smartphones. Nokia and RIM, have said that Carrier IQ is not installed by them on their devices. Verizon Wireless has also said that it does not use Carrier IQ. AT&T has also admitted to using Carrier IQ, as have HTC and Samsung. Senator Al Franken has requested that Carrier IQ provide the U.S. government with a detailed list of what information it does and does not collect, how that data is stored, and what's done with the data. Carrier IQ has until December 14 to respond.
More Carriers and Phone Makers Agree to Adopt Google's RCS-Based 'Android Messages' Service
Google today said more wireless network operators and handset manufacturers will use Android Messages, its RCS-based messaging service, as the default SMS/MMS tool on their phones. (Android Messages was previously known as Google Messenger.) Some of the features of RCS, which is a global standard, include group chat, high-resolution photo sharing, advanced calling features, and read receipts.
Galaxy S8 to Cost $750, S8+ to Cost $850: Carriers Share Launch Details
Samsung's new Galaxy S8 and S8+ smartphones will cost $750 and $850, respectively. The phones share almost all features other than size and both ship with 64 GB of internal storage.
AT&T Stepping Up Three-Channel Carrier Aggregation
AT&T today confirmed to Fierce Wireless that, like its competitors, it is deploying three-channel carrier aggregation on its LTE 4G network. "We're currently in the process of deploying three-way carrier aggregation on our network," said AT&T spokesman Steven Schwadron in a statement given to Fierce.
Microsoft Adds Carrier Billing to Windows Store
Microsoft has expanded an existing agreement with Boku to bring carrier billing to the Windows Store. Sprint is the first carrier too support the service, which means Sprint customers will be able to charge Microsoft Store purchases to their monthly bill.