INTEL HAS USED THE MEDIUM OF LAWYERS to expect concerns about the kickass privacy phone that John McAfee is bringing out.
McAfee and Intel are in disagreement over the name. Intel wants to get rid of it and that part of its business, but John McAfee wants his name back.
This business over the hardest phone we have ever heard of comes to us via IDG, which reports that Intel does not want McAfee to launch any products that bear the McAfee name.
McAfee now has a company called MGT Capital Management, and it is MGT that will release the phone. While the man himself introduced the phone as the John McAfee Privacy Phone, it has mostly been referred to as the Privacy Phone since then. The press release does the same, and offers tantalizing details about the hard as nails phone that we think will smash the competition like conkers.
Everything about it sounds intimidating. "Introducing the world's first smartphone featuring hard kill switches, empowering its users to take back control of their privacy," says the official press release/warning to the competition. "All phones feature a built-in privacy control center giving users full control of access and functions of their phone."
Cool stuff. McAfee and Intel have an issue because the former sold the latter his eponymous business in 2010. Intel sold off that business later, but last Autumn the firm wrote to the Chuck Norris of the technology industry and told him to stop doing something. Bad idea, but this is what the letter said.
"Any use of the McAfee name in connection with your company and its provision of anti-spy software or other security solutions would surely be likely to confuse customers as to the source of your company's products, and/or suggest some affiliation or relationship with McAfee or Intel that does not exist."
Lawyers were assembled, some cash was spent and some wrestling over the name went down. We even reported earlier this year that a settlement was close. We forgot about the nature of lawyers though, and we should have guessed that someone will have leaped onto a table and started screaming when people mentioned a John McAfee Privacy Phone and asking what they should be doing about it.
McAfee isn't shy about putting his name to the phone though, and speaking to Newsweek, he gave it its controversial full name and confirmed that a lot of time and money has gone into creating it.
"Enormous investment in hardware costs have gone into this. The smartphone contains a bank of switches on the back cover that allow the user to physically disconnect the battery, the antennas for WiFi, Bluetooth and geolocation, the camera and the microphone," he said.
"It also will not allow the phone to connect to a Stingray or any other IMSI catcher device. In addition, it contains a web search anonymizer."
It can probably kick you through a wall too, and make a mullet and double denim work as an outfit. µ
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