The Washington Post

The Circuit: FCC bill notifications, Kids apps, Hulu

LEADING THE DAY: The Federal Communications Commission and industry leaders will announce a self-regulatory program to warn customers when they near their monthly limits on voice, data and texting services as well as when they incur international roaming fees, The Washington Post reported.

The standards are expected to be enforced by April 17, 2013. The FCC declined to comment on whether the announcement will lead FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski to drop his own regulatory proposals to avoid “bill shock.”

Kids app regulations: Content that would be flagged as inappropriate for children on other media has been finding its way into kids’ hands through smartphone apps, The Washington Post reported. Sometimes games that appear safe for children have content in later levels that feature sex and violence, while others are served ads for apps that are not age-level appropriate.

Hulu: Hulu’s owners announced last week that they would stop attempts to sell the video streaming service, but now face the challenge of guiding the business to its next level. That may include adding another major investor such as Time Warner, the Wall Street Journal reported. Citing “people familiar with the matter,” the report said that Hulu’s owners — News Corp., Walt Disney Corp., and Providence Equity Partners LLC — must streamline the way Hulu’s business is run to stay competitive.

Samsung, Apple: Samsung has asked Japanese and Australian courts to block sales of Apple’s latest iPhone, the 4S, which went on sale worldwide last Friday, the Associated Press reported. In Japan, the company is also asking the court to stop sales of the iPhone 4 and the iPad 2.

Last week, Samsung was ordered to stop selling its Galaxy tablet computer in Australia after Apple accused the Korean company of infringing on its patents for the iPhone and the iPad.

RIM offers free apps, support: Research in Motion is offering free smartphone apps and technical support to all those affected by its worldwide outages. In a statement, Monday, the company announced that it will offer a “selection of premium apps” worth more than $100 to BlackBerry users through the company’s app store starting from Oct. 19 until Dec. 31.

The company is also offering users one month of free technical support to enterprise users.

Hayley Tsukayama covers consumer technology for The Washington Post.



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