U.S. carriers are no longer sharing customer location data

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Significant Locations
Your location data is no longer up for grabs.
Photo: Cult of Mac

U.S. carriers have (mostly) put an end to the practice of selling customer location data to third-parties, a new report reveals.

This dodgy practice was previously carried out by giants including T-Mobile, AT&T, Sprint, and Verizon. They passed on this data to middlemen, which then sold the information to other companies without getting the necessary permission from users.

Disney takes over Hulu as Apple TV+ competition builds

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Hulu
Live sports could be Hulu’s biggest selling point.
Photo: Hulu

The Walt Disney Company now owns not one, but two TV streaming services.

After partnering with various media companies on Hulu for years, Disney has slowly been buying up its partners’ stake in the streaming service. Its recent acquisition of 21st Century Fox gave it 60% ownership, but Disney just revealed that it struck a deal with Comcast that will give it complete ownership of Hulu.

FCC tries to confirm carriers stopped selling phone location data

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Apple Maps reservation OpenTable
You can’t escape your phone company tracking you, but the FCC can make them stop selling the information.
Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

The CEOs of the big four US wireless carriers were asked by an FCC commissioner whether they’ve stopped selling their customers’ real-time location data, as they had promised to do.

Published reports in recent months indicated that the locations of Americans were being sold without their permission of even knowledge.

AT&T’s ‘5G E’ speeds are slower than LTE on other networks

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No matter what your AT&T iPhone says, everyone else says “5G E” is 4G.
No matter what your AT&T iPhone says, everyone else says “5G E” is 4G.
Photo: Cult of Mac/@Siddavarapu

Customers on AT&T’s ‘5G E’ networks aren’t getting the huge speed gains promised by one of the nation’s largest carriers.

In an attempt to get a headstart on the 5G wave, AT&T has renamed a large portion of its 4G network to ‘5G E.’ The carrier calls it 5G Evolution and says its the first step towards the 20Gbps speeds promised by 5G, but a recent study found that AT&T’s 5G E network is actually slower than LTE Advanced speeds on other carriers.

Look at how mediocre AT&T’s speeds are:

Netflix confirms it won’t be part of Apple’s TV streaming service

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When it comes to streaming video, Apple is the underdog against Netflix.
When it comes to streaming video, Apple is the underdog against Netflix.
Photo: Stock Catalog/Flickr CC

Apple won’t officially unveil its streaming video service until next week but Netflix CEO Reed Hastings confirmed that his company will not be part of it.

The new video streaming service will offer subscriptions to other streaming services along with original TV shows from Apple. Everything will be combined into one “easy-to-use” app. However, Netflix doesn’t really see teaming up with Apple for subscribers as an advantage.

DirectTV Now finally integrates with Apple TV app

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DirecTV Now lets you stream TV on your iPhone.
DirecTV Now lets you stream TV on your iPhone.
Photo: DirecTV Now.

AT&T revealed that it’s finally making it easier to watch DirecTV Now on iPhone, iPad and Apple TV by integrating it into the Apple TV app.

The new update gives DirecTV Now subscribers the ability to keep track of their watching progress for TV series and movies across multiple devices will also bringing custom recommendations on new stuff to watch.

AT&T’s bogus ‘5G E’ icon pops up on iPhones

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No matter what your AT&T iPhone says, everyone else says “5G E” is 4G.
No matter what your AT&T iPhone says, everyone else says “5G E” is 4G.
Photo: Cult of Mac/@Siddavarapu

iPhone is getting caught up in AT&T’s controversial rebranding of its LTE network as “5G Evolution.” Some developers who installed today’s iOS 12.2 update noticed that their iPhone claims to be connected to a “5G E” network.

All of AT&T’s competitors say that this network is 4G, but that hasn’t stopped the carrier.

Android phones start lying about offering 5G

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AT&T’s false 5G claim on an Android phone
There are three types of lies: lies, damned lies, and marketing.
Photo: AT&T

Some Android phones already claim they’re connected to a 5G network. This is the result of some fairly shady rebranding on the part of AT&T, which is pretending that improvements to its LTE network make it no longer 4G.

This is raising protests, especially from the other Big 4 wireless carriers.

All you need to track any phone’s location is a small bribe

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Apple Maps reservation OpenTable
Your phone company constantly tracks your location, and that information is for sale.
Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

It’s not hard to get learn the location of almost any phone, according to a new report. All that’s required is some cash and the right contacts in a web of companies with access to the geolocation data collected by mobile phone companies.