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Suggested Reading

What is Google doing to be more like Apple? What are the costs of leaving social media? Does McDonald’s hate Burger King? Plus other burning questions.

Jim Kerr is Alberta Venture's web editor. Get in touch with him at jkerr@albertaventure.com.

Feb 20, 2013

by Jim Kerr

It sounds like Google may be coming to a mall near you, and I’m not talking Street View!

Following in the footsteps of Apple, The Huffington Post reports that the search engine giant plans to open retail stores in the U.S. and Europe by late 2013. They don’t have many physical products to sell outside of a smartphone (and lots of clothing, for some reason), but perhaps this hints that there is more to come from Google. I think it’s safe to assume that the rolling out of these stores will coincide loosely with the “Google Glass” hitting the market in 2014.

My main hope for these stores is that they have the foresight to call their employees “Googlebots” to rival the Apple “Geniuses” though.

One area Google has tried to break into, with moderate success, is that of social media. For now, that realm is ruled by the likes of Twitter and Facebook. However, some people have a real love/hate relationship with social media and are constantly debating whether or not they should get rid of their accounts. If that sounds like you, The Atlantic breaks down the costs of leaving social media.

Meanwhile, one of the potential costs of being on social media is that you might get hacked (or you might say something you regret and be forced to claim you were hacked). The scary part is, it can happen to anyone – just ask Burger King.

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The company’s official Twitter account was apparently hacked by members of Anonymous over the weekend. The hackers replaced the Twitter icon with a McDonald’s logo and changed the bio to say that the account had been sold because “the whopper flopped.”

The same thing happened to Jeep, while Apple & Facebook were also hacked recently. MTV & BET pretended to be hacked as well, but it turns out they weren’t.

Finally: if you’re in Brazil and someone offers you an iPhone, don’t expect it to be an Apple product – that country’s trademark regulator has granted consumer electronics manufacturer Gradiente Eletronica SA ownership of the name. That just shows you, even insanely big companies like Apple don’t always get their way.

Suggested Reading is a collection of interesting tech links from across the web – see something you think should be featured here? Send it to jkerr@albertaventure.com.

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