T-Mobile changing the contract gameT-Mobile will announce a new way to pay for smartphones, Google Reader is a popular news tool in countries with Internet censorship, and BlackBerry creates awkward music videos.
T-Mobile is rethinking the typical contract. I'm Bridget Carey and this is your CNET Update. Next week, T-Mobile is expected to announce that it's getting rid of smartphone subsidies altogether. That means no more discounted phones when you sign a new 2-year contract. The idea is that customers would pay full price for a phone, which could be as much as $600 or $700 and then just pay a lower monthly bill, or there could also be a way to pay for your phone on a monthly installment plan. This big announcement comes on March 26th, so, we'll find out for certain then. The shutdown of Google Reader has many people fired up especially people in countries where internet access is restricted by the government. The change.org petition has racked up more than 130,000 signatures of people urging Google to keep the Reader tool alive. While some in the U.S. just might feel inconvenience about finding a new RSS aggregator, petition signers in other countries have left comments about how Google Reader is vital to stay connected with the world. Comments from users in Kazakhstan and China say Reader is the best way to access banned websites and uncensored news. About 75 percent of signatures on the petition came from outside the U.S., 12 percent came from people living in countries that have internet censorship. Google Reader is scheduled to be shutdown on July 1st. As you know, Google has several tools for communication. There's Google Talk, Hangout, voice and messenger, but they could be all rolled into one unified program called Google Babble. At least that's the rumor geek.com is hearing from sources. If that's true, we could hear more about Google Babble in May at the Google Developer's conference that's usually when Google unveils new products and software. This could be the year of the smartwatch. A Samsung executive told Bloomberg that the company is working on a smartwatch. Of course, no word on when it could be ready. Looking ahead this week, the BlackBerry Z10 smartphone will finally hit stores on Thursday but right now, only AT&T is carrying Z10. To celebrate the launch of the phone that BlackBerry took forever to release, the company executives made a music video to the song At Last but with campy lyrics and bad lip syncing and it's just all kinds of corny. -Your games and apps are in the storefront. -Listen dudes, I know you're just having a little fun and showing that you're excited for your team but when people say it's embarrassing to have a BlackBerry phone, you're not helping the cause. You're giving nerdy white people a bad name. Just keep the music videos to yourself and put more effort in getting better apps on your phone 'cause that would be great. That's your tech news update, you could find more details at cnet.com/update. From our studios in New York, I'm Bridget Carey.