Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Morning Brief: False alarm – Skype launches, then pull its iPad app; anyone for a 'Satan sandwich'?

For a few hours late last night iPad owners could download the tablet version of the Skype. Having been seen first in the New Zealand App Store, and very briefly in the U.S. store, Skype pulled its app after recoginizing some issues.
Just after midnight Eastern time last night Skype tweeted that it had removed the app from the App Store: "To ensure your best Skype experience, we've temporarily removed Skype for iPad which went live prematurely today."
Shortly thereafter they added "We know you've been eagerly awaiting Skype for iPad and apologize for the inconvenience."

With Apple's FaceTime not catching on with developers, iPad owners have been eagerly awaiting a chat and call app more universally accepted.

Update: As you can see by the screenshot, Skype for iPad is back live in the App Store. That didn't take long, did it? This whole episode seems rather strange.

The Senate today is expected to pass the debt ceiling legislation fairly universally condemned by both sides of the political spectrum.

One of the more imaginative descriptions of the package was from Rep. Emanuel Cleaver, D-Mo., Chairman of the Congressional Black Caucus, who called it "a sugar-coated Satan sandwich," according to USA Today.

But no one thinks there is any chance the Senate will not pass the bill later today.

While the world's attention was riveted to the spectacle of the Congress, the News Corp. phone hacking scandal continues to provide new revelations.

Yesterday The Guardian reported that lawyers hired by the media giant admitted that it deleted emails associated with News International on nine different occasions beginning May of last year.

The law firm involved, Stuart Benson, clearly wants to shift the blame for the deletions over to their clients. "It is entirely for News International," the firm said yesterday, "the police and your committee as to whether there was any other agenda or subtext when issues of deletion arose and that is a matter on which my client cannot comment and something you will no doubt wish to explore direct with News International."

One gets a sense that this is a more common practice in the U.K. than in the U.S., where any tampering with evidence in the midst of an investigation will, itself, be enough to bring further charges. It is pretty well standard practice to let those being investigated know that if any evidence is destroyed in the middle of an investigation separate charges will ensue.

For its part, a News International spokesman said yesterday that "NI keeps back-ups of its core systems and, in close co-operation with the Operation Weeting team, has been working to restore these back-ups."