Are you afraid of data theft? Lately, the online community has put the clamps on shady business practices in the tech industry. For example, Facebook was recently put under the microscope for selling its users’ data to willing buyers. However, for every documented case, dozens of undocumented others are lying in wait for unsuspecting victims.
Now, Finland is mounting a similar case against HMD Global, the current owners of the Nokia brand. Last month, the Norwegian Broadcasting Corporation (NRK) received a tip from Henrik Austad, a local Nokia 7 user. While monitoring his handset’s outgoing traffic, Austad noticed a glaring anomaly: it was sending data packets to a Chinese server called “vnet.cn.”
For every instance that the screen turns on, the Nokia 7 sent the phone’s geographical data, SIM card number, and serial number to the Chinese server. Theoretically, the server’s owners (and anyone who can access the traffic) can know the whereabouts of specific users.
Investigating the tip, NRK discovered the server’s owners: China Telecom. Unfortunately, further investigations have warranted nothing. The media company speculates that the surveillance mechanism was intended for Chinese users but ended up with international markets.
HMD Global has since admitted to the fault. Apparently, the company has already detected the error before Austad’s tip. As a result, they released a Nokia 7 security patch a few weeks ago.
Unfortunately, HMD Global’s confession isn’t enough for its home country, Finland. In an email, Reijo Aarnio, Finnish Ombudsman for Data Protection, was surprised at the leaked information. As a result, Finland authorities will investigate the matter even further.
In their defense, HMD Global claims that “the data was never processed, and no personal information was shared with third parties or authorities.” Of note, the Nokia 7 is a China-exclusive phone. Later on, HMD Global released the international variants, Nokia 7.1 and Nokia 7 Plus.
OnePlus founder Carl Pei to launch his new company very soon
Something to do with the audio industry
Last year, OnePlus, despite a renewed push for an expansive product lineup, shifted a massive portion of its head honchos around. Late last year, for one, OnePlus co-founder Carl Pei left the company for a then-unknown business venture. Now, we have an idea of what it is. Posted directly from the source, Pei is announcing his new business very, very soon.
On Twitter, Pei posted the official announcement: “Our new brand will be announced tomorrow at 11am London time.” That was almost 12 hours ago at the time of this writing, meaning the official announcement is coming practically 12 hours from now.
Our new brand will be announced tomorrow at 11am London time ⏱
— Carl Pei (@getpeid) January 26, 2021
According to previous posts from the OnePlus founder, the new business venture will play around in the audio industry including music devices and accessories. Pei is already a known player in the industry, having spearheaded OnePlus’ forays into the audio business. Before he left, he presented the company’s take on wireless earbuds, the OnePlus Buds.
By creating a new company, Pei can focus on audio full-time. However, at this point, no one knows what the company will specifically make or even what it is called. All we know is that some investors seeded the venture with US$ 7 million.
Besides Pei, fellow co-founder Pete Lau also “exited” the company, albeit still working with other BKK companies in a joint venture to sync all of them together.
Huawei praises American technology, reevaluates own lineup
In rare public letter
For a while now, Huawei has stayed silent following the recent slew of American bans. However, amid the silence, the Chinese company has suffered endless misery in the hands of the Trump administration. Now, under a new president, Huawei might finally get a well-deserved reprieve. In a rare public address, Huawei founder Ren Zhengfei praises American technology and is reevaluating his own product lineup.
In the public letter, written sometime in June last year and reported by Reuters, Ren called out the Trump administration’s actions for creating “a great mismatch between [Huawei’s] strategy and [their] abilities.” The heavily restrictive policies have, in turn, forced Huawei to reevaluate their lineup, including cutting some products and some staff.
Since the letter was penned last year, Huawei’s cost-cutting might have already come to pass after selling Honor away. The company hasn’t eradicated much of its product lineup, though. Huawei is still planning to launch its tentpole series soon.
Despite criticizing Trump’s actions, Ren also praised the caliber of American technology as a “beacon of technology” and something to be emulated. The public praise makes the timing a bit conspicuous. There is a possibility that Huawei is trying to court the Biden administration into laxer policies going forward. Before the Trump administration ended, the ex-president landed a farewell blow, reportedly revoking some already accepted applications for operating licenses. With a new administration, Huawei is enjoying some renewed hope.
SEE ALSO: Huawei buys 90 patents from BlackBerry
OnePlus and OPPO are merging research departments
A new era for R&D
Everyone knows about the relationship between OPPO and OnePlus. Last year, renowned OnePlus CEO Pete Lau controversially switched sides over to OPPO, despite retaining some form of responsibility with his former company. Both companies have evolved side-by-side for a while. Today, they are taking a step further. Now confirmed by both companies, both companies have merged research departments.
Some rumors about the merge have emerged late last year. However, at the time, the rumors were just that — rumors. Now, it’s 100 percent confirmed.
In a statement sent to Android Authority, a OnePlus spokesperson has confirmed that both companies are integrating their research efforts into OPLUS, an overseeing holding company now led by Lau. Now, both companies are in a joint research partnership with one another.
However, the OnePlus statement also assures users that all involved parties will continue to operate independently despite the partnership. However, given that they are now working together, all companies under the BKK flag can now share new innovations and features with one another.
At the very least, the partnership cements a fact that was formerly known anyway: that OPPO and OnePlus share a strong relationship between themselves. At the moment, no one knows what the partnership will create, but it’s a good sight, at least.
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