Instagram Handling User Backlash Better than Facebook Ever Did

In today’s mobile news roundup: Instagram updates controversial ToS; Nokia and RIM settle patent dispute; HTC to release Windows tablets 8 next year; and Apple pulls plug on Kickstarter project.

Instagram updates controversial ToS
After hearing incessant complaints from their users over their new Terms of Service regarding users photos possibly used for advertising without their consent, Instagram has once again revised their ToS to appease their users and prevent more people from leaving the service.  They clarified that they never intended to sell user photos in the first place.

“Because of the feedback we have heard from you, we are reverting this advertising section to the original version that has been in effect since we launched the service in October 2010. You can see the updated terms here,” Instagram co-founder Kevin Systrom said.

Nokia and RIM settle patent dispute

Nokia and Research in Motion recently encountered a little obstacle in their patent licensing agreement when RIM sought arbitration and argued that the agreement goes beyond cellular essentials – which meant that the Canadian company was using  Nokia patents not included in the agreement.  Nokia wasn’t happy with what RIM did, but the arbitration tribunal sided with the Finnish company stating that RIM was in breach of contract.  The tribunal stated that RIM was “not entitled to manufacture or sell products compatible with the WLAN standard” until it has agreed to pay royalties to Nokia.

So before things got out of hand, RIM and Nokia entered into a new licensing agreement that would settle all their current patent litigations.  The agreement includes a one-time payment and on-going payments, all from RIM to Nokia, but specific terms of the agreement remain confidential to the two parties.

“We are very pleased to have resolved our patent licensing issues with RIM and reached this new agreement, while maintaining Nokia’s ability to protect our unique product differentiation,” said Paul Melin, chief intellectual property officer at Nokia. “This agreement demonstrates Nokia’s industry leading patent portfolio and enables us to focus on further licensing opportunities in the mobile communications market.”

HTC to release Windows 8 tablets next year

After Microsoft snubbed HTC for the first wave of Windows 8 partners, the Taiwanese company didn’t seem to hold a grudge as they are rumored to be building two Windows 8-based tablets, which will be released next year.

HTC is working on a 12-inch and 7-inch tablet, with the latter having the feature of making calls.  The tablets will have Qualcomm chips, but unlike other Windows 8 tablets that will be coming in January, the HTC tablets are expected to arrive sometime during the third quarter of next year.

Apple pulls plug on Kickstarter project

While Nokia and RIM have made amends, Apple still holds a grudge against Android as they’ve pulled a plug on a Kickstarter project that allows iOS and Android devices to be charged together.  Edison Junior, the technology and design lab behind the POP portable power station, is returning the full $139,170 in funding it received from Kickstarter backers.  Apple didn’t want their new Lightning port to come with other ports, such as those for Android devices, or even their old 30-pin dock ports.  They want Lightning to stand on its own because they see it as something unique and shouldn’t come with any other dock.

“We are pissed,” Edison Junior CEO Jamie Siminoff told VentureBeat in an interview. “I think they are being a bunch of assholes, and I think they’re hurting their customers.

“We didn’t get a yes or a no up front.  But as we kept going back and forth it was clear that it was getting harder. Then, when we saw that they weren’t even going to allow a Lightning connector and a 30-pin connector together, we knew it was over.”