Palm Pre users, take note, your shiny new smartphone is spying on you… kinda. Palm is collecting all kinds of user behavior data from their US fleet of Palm Pre smartphones. How’s that, you ask? Well, there’s apparently a bit of code hidden within the Pre’s WebOS that instructs the handset to send Palm information on the smartphone’s location, app usage, app crashes and a list of apps installed. And, it happens on the daily! Your Palm Pre might not be spying on you outright, but sending location data back to the mothership is grounds for alarm.
While we’re not all that upset at Palm for keeping track of which WebOS apps we have installed, which apps we actually like to use or app crash-reports, having our location data tracked by Palm is a bit unnerving. Using location data for LBS (location based services) apps like Google Maps is one thing, but it seems that Palm is going one step further by keeping tabs on Palm Pre users’ location-data.
If you’re not comfortable with Palm’s tracking practices, you might want to consider disabling any and all location services on your Palm Pre. At the very least disabling GPS on your Palm Pre might be a good idea. But, that means you’ll be sacrificing location services like Google Maps.