Apple, Pandora Named In New Privacy Suit
Apple, Pandora, The Weather Channel, and five other major iPhone application makers are the defendants in a Federal lawsuit filed earlier this week in Northern California. Apple is named because it maintains final approval over all apps available in the store. The app makers, however, are accused of accessing iPhone users’ UDID and allowing advertisers to access the personal information of their users, without asking permission.
UDID is not an infection, it is the Unique Device Identifier “akin to a social security number for a phone,” writes Ryan Singel at Wired.
The lawsuit seeks monetary damages and the cessation of UDID usage in Apple applications. A similar case ended in settlement, but if this one results in a decision against Pandora, digital music could lose a shot at building simple streaming radio charts, much like those of terrestrial radio which provide artists, managers and labels with spin counts and zip codes.
RootMusic Sprouts Giving Tree
Shortly after becoming the number one most utilized music application on Facebook with over twelve million active users, SF based RootMusic is starting to put their non-profit initiative into motion.
The Root SF will serve as a local information incubator and resource hub for bands in the bay area and bands coming through the bay area. RootMusic Founder J Sider says “its very much about focusing on the music community and figuring out what we can help and support and guide.”
SoundHound Free For All
Music and music melody search company SoundHound, (who you may have known previously as midomi) made a major move last week by removing limitations on the number of searches in its free app. SoundHound competes with well known Shazam in music identification and melody search, but the paid version of SoundHound’s app released just last April included more search functionality including lyrics and videos.
Previous to last week, the free version of SoundHound limited users to just five searches per month. But now anyone with a smartphone can identify an unlimited number of songs. I asked WaldenVC’s Larry Marcus (an investor in SoundHound) if the removal of search limitations was the result of other revenue streams gaining momentum, or if perhaps increasing usage is more beneficial than paid accounts. SoundHound is confident that giving users what they want (and possibly need) is the path to success.
“They are so happy not to constrain users,” says Marcus about SoundHound, “People who want the premium ad free experience or to show their support will buy the paid version.” Check out the SoundHound app for iPhone & Android.