Breakfast Briefing: Samsung's smart watch, porn filter stats, building cheaper smartphones

Breakfast Briefing

Today's technology stories include Samsung's plans to mirror Apple's wristwatch, how only a third of parents sign up for porn filtering and how bling makes phones more expensive

Today's tech titbits include a Samsung watch, porn blocking stats and how to make a cut-price handset. Plus, a hacker faces three-and-a-half years for data theft and Google offers mountain views.

Samsung planning smart watch

Bloomberg reports that Samsung has come up with a great new idea: a wristwatch that doubles as a smart connected device. We've obviously heard the idea before somewhere, but Samsung insists it's been working on the project for some time.

"We've been preparing the watch product for so long," a Samsung executive said. "We are working very hard to get ready for it. We are preparing products for the future, and the watch is definitely one of them." No details on features or price were forthcoming.

Porn filters switched on by one in three parents

The wrangling over an online porn filter and various measures to help parents block porn is bearing fruit, but fewer than a third of broadband subscribers choose to turn the parental controls on when offered the choice.

TalkTalk, something of a darling among anti-porn campaigners due to its network-level HomeSafe filter (despite its failings), said that 730,000 of its 4m customers have enabled the filter, including only one out of every three new customers who had children, Ars Technica reports.

Start-up to cut bling for cheaper phones

The Verge reports on Florida start-up Blu, which believes it can take on Samsung's Galaxy S4 and Apple's iPhone in the smartphone market by cutting out the wasted money that such rivals seem to think is critical. Take out the nine-figure marketing budgets, the flashy skyscrapers and massive admin departments, and you could build phones far more cheaply, especially given that they all include roughly the same component ingredients. That brand name $500 handset? Yours for $299 without the label.

iPad hacker faces years in jail

Reuters has a detailed account of a US hacker sentenced to three-and-a-half years for stealing iPad user details. Andrew Auernheimer was found guilty last year of lifting personal details of 120,000 Apple iPad users, including big-city mayors, a TV network news anchor and a Hollywood movie mogul. The harshness of the penalty suggests those big names were not amused, but the hacker's lawyer plans to contend the punishment, claiming he hadn't really hacked AT&T's servers, merely stumbled across the information.

"If this is criminal, then tens of thousands of Americans are committing computer crimes every other day," the lawyer said. "There really was no harm."

Google Street View hits new high

Google's mapping cars seem to get everywhere these days, but who knew they could climb mountains? Wired has the images that Google's collated showing the views from the tops of some of the most infamous peaks, including Aconcagua in South America, Kilimanjaro and Everest. There's not much local information on the nearest cash point or pizza chain, however.

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