The Washington Post

The Circuit: Sprint and LightSquared; Google privacy; Verizon hearing scheduled

Sprint, LightSquared: Sprint and LightSquared announced Friday that they were ending their spectrum hosting agreement.

In a statement, Sprint said that while it “continues to be supportive” of LightSquared’s business, it has chosen to terminate its agreement due to “unresolved issues.” In its own statement, LightSquared said that it believes the contract termination is “in the best business interests of both companies” and that it expected the termination given “the regulatory delays that have impacted LightSquared.”

Google privacy probes: Google is reportedly facing new investigations in the United States and Europe over its admission that it was using code to bypass privacy settings on Apple’s Safari browser.

The Wall Street Journal reported Thursday that the Federal Trade Commission is looking into whether Google’s Safari actions violated its settlement with the government, which included a promise not to “misrepresent” its approach to privacy. The French data protection authority CNIL, which is investigating Google for possible anticompetitive actions, is also said to be addressing the Safari issue in its probe.

The FTC declined to comment on the report.

Verizon hearing: The Senate subcommittee on antitrust has scheduled a hearing to look into the deals between Verizon and cable companies for spectrum and cross-marketing. Witnesses include Verizon Executive Vice President and general counsel Randal Milch, Comcast Executive Vice President David L. Cohen and Rural Cellular Association President and Chief Executive Steve Berry.

Apple patent suit: A German court in Mannheim has delayed a trial over an Apple-Samsung patent dispute, Reuters reported Friday. Apple alleged that Samsung copied its “slide-to-unlock” technology on the iPhone and iPad.

According to the report, the suit has been delayed pending the outcome of a separate suit on the same issue in Munich. Apple is currently involved in several patent suits with Samsung, HTC and Motorola over intellectual property used in mobile devices.

iPad sales: The release of the new iPad sent Apple fan to stores worldwide, but didn’t have the expected impact on Apple’s stock, which was trading down slightly Friday afternoon. The company’s stock had hit $600 briefly Thursday, with some analysts expecting the stock to hit $700 as sales of the iPad ramped up.

Excitement around the iPad far exceeded critical voices from protesters who wanted to express their concern over reports of conditions in Apple’s supply chain factories.

On Friday, American Public Media retracted one of the reports that spawned the protest movements, a “This American Life” report based on the monologue of Mike Daisey, saying that Daisey’s account of factory conditions in China “contained significant fabrications.”

Hayley Tsukayama covers consumer technology for The Washington Post.



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