The biggest announcement from the Blackberry Live conference this week was arguably the news that its popular messaging application BBM will be heading to both Android and iOS this summer. "We will make BBM available as the premiere multiplatform messaging solution all around the globe, and even better, it's free," BlackBerry CEO Thorsten Heins said at the conference held in Orlando, Florida. "This is such a great experience, it's just too good to keep it only to ourselves." Is this the first step of BlackBerry reinventing itself around software and services instead of handsets and tablets? Check out our feature article to see if such a move could resurrect the fortunes of the Canadian manufacturer.
Google is back at the centre of a tax avoidance storm, with fresh evidence from whistleblowers appearing to reveal that the search giant's UK employees are closing sales - a practice that means the firm is liable to be taxed in full by HM Revenue & Customs. Recalling Google MD for the UK and Ireland Matt Brittin for further questioning, chair of the public accounts committee Margaret Hodge said that the Internet superpower is behaving in a "devious, calculated and, in my view, unethical way" as it continues to avoid paying tax in Britain. Follow the link for the full story.
Who'd have thought that the web would begin turning away prostitutes? That's exactly what professional business network LinkedIn has done with a recent update to its user agreement terms. The site welcomes users from a variety of professions, just not the oldest one, it seems. This week, LinkedIn added a clause to its user terms that bans prostitutes. "Even if it is legal where you are located, [users cannot] create profiles or provide content that promotes escort services or prostitution," say the terms. LinkedIn did not immediately respond to our request for comment, but a spokesman said that the site "has always prohibited these kinds of profiles." It just didn't make that clear enough; the old agreement simply included anything "unlawful." But since prostitution is in fact legal in some areas where LinkedIn operates, the social network had to be a little more explicit.
Google has sent Microsoft a blunt cease-and-desist letter, ordering the firm to remove its YouTube app from Windows Phone by 22 May. Francisco Varela, director of global platform partnerships at YouTube, penned a letter to Todd Brix, general manager for Windows Phone, arguing that the Windows Phone version of YouTube violates Google's terms by allowing video downloads, not displaying ads, and allowing access to videos that its partners have restricted. "These features directly harm our content creators and clearly violate our terms of service," Varela wrote in the letter. "We request that you immediately withdraw this application from the Windows Phone Store and disable existing downloads of the application by Wednesday, May 22, 2013." Follow the link for more on the app spat.