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theEweekly Wrap: Mapping, blocking and speculating

London mapping Google has updated its Maps service for London this week to include information on the public transport network. Whether searching online or through Google Maps for mobile, users can now obtain public transport information as part of the ‘get directions’ function. The information comes from the Transport for London Datastore, and includes timetables and routemaps spanning 18,000 bus stops and 250 Tube stations as well as tram and DLR lines. If your phone has GPS, Maps can even decide on the best route based on your current location.

Google said: “Whether you use public transport every day or infrequently, as a commuter, on a business trip or as a tourist, we hope that public transport directions in London make planning your trips more convenient”. Google has also recently introduced 3D building outlines in Maps for mobile, making it easier for people on the streets of London to spot landmarks and orientate themselves.

Banned ahoy Piracy in the UK was dealt a fateful blow this week. In a landmark case, a High Court judge ruled that BT, the country’s largest Internet Service Provider (ISP), had to block access to a site that was infringing copyright. The site – Newzbin 2 – was a platform where users could share links to pirated films and TV shows. Industry body for film studios the Motion Picture Association sought an injunction last month to force BT to block their customers from the site.

As well as being the UK’s largest broadband company, BT provides CleanFeed, the technology used by a number of ISPs to block sites featuring child sex abuse. ISPs including Virgin Media and BT were in talks with the Government late last year over proposals to block adult sites to protect children, following the revelation that one in three under-10s had seen pornographic material online.

iPhone 5 rumours As is the case whenever an Apple product launch is on the horizon, rumours are flying concerning the iPhone 5. Several different case prototypes have surfaced, and it’s hard to tell which might be genuine; a computer-generated diagram leaked by MobileFun.co.uk indicate a curved back and edge-to-edge display, with some kind of touch panel where the home button usually lies. Meanwhile, Vietnamese forum Tinhte has published a photo of a thin white iPhone with casing made of plastic rather than aluminium and glass. This fits in with rumours that Apple was considering developing a more affordable version of the popular handset.

As for features on the iPhone 5, 9to5Mac reported that iOS 5 will incorporate facial recognition technology, opening up a world of possibilities including AR apps. The latest release date rumours hint at September 5th in the US, and a month later everywhere else.

Written by Rachel Hand

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