DT Daily: Gamer population triples, app economy booms, Droid 4 hits shelves Friday

February 8, 2012

Gaming population triples

It looks like video games have finally gone mainstream. A recent study claims that the number of people playing video games in the US has risen 241 percent since 2008. Conducted by market research and consulting company, Parks Associates, the new study asserts that 135 million people now play video games for at least one hour a month, compared to 56 million who played games just a few years ago. Casual games on Facebook and smartphones have been linked to much of the rise.

App economy contributes 500,000 jobs

The US economy has been struggling in the last five years, but at least one new category is quite healthy. A new study by TechNet, a bipartisan policy and political network of tech CEOs, claims that about 466,000, or almost half a million jobs, have been created thanks to the growing app economies surrounding the iPhone, iPad, and Android devices. Five years ago, those jobs did not exist. New York City is ranked as the biggest destination for app economy jobs, with San Francisco and San Jose also fostering a healthy app developer community.

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Path loses its way

Privacy is in the headlines again, and one app is taking heat. While attempting to port Path, a social networking app, a developer has discovered that the service uploads the entire address books of its iPhone and Android users, including contact names, phone numbers, and email addresses. Path CEO Dave Morin claims that this data is being used only to help users connect with their friends and family, but many users aren’t convinced. Path was created and marketed as the anti-Facebook, a private place for only you and up to 50 of your closest friends and family, but the app never notified its 2 million users that it was harvesting address books. There is no evidence that user data has been sold or stolen, but Morin says that a fix for users to “opt in” to uploading their entire address book is on the way.

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Motorola Droid 4 coming Friday

Finally, Verizon will release the Motorola Droid 4 on Friday. The new Android phone will be the first good option for those who want a high-speed 4G LTE connection and a full slide-out Qwerty keyboard.

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That’s it for today, thanks for watching DT Daily. Make sure to check back on Digital Trends later today for our review of Sony’s Vaio Z ultraslim laptop.

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