Sorry, but I still fail to understand why the app for THIS FORUM needs to have access to my Rezounds "Phone calls"? I am not picking on this app, but since it is something that many of you use it is as good a example as any.
What possible reason would a forum app need to see my number and who I have called? I have other apps that access the network that do not need to see "Phone calls", and they seem to allow calls through? This very forum loads the add for that app most times I go here on my phone, so I wanted to trust it, but now I am not so sure.
Again, I just want to use this as an example and am not pointing fingers, but I REALLY want to know.
Lets take "Angry Birds" for en example, it's popular and generally considered harmless since the developer is now fairly large and legitimate.
Here are the required permissions, I will list them in order and try to understand them.
STORAGE (I get that one, its kind of obvious with high scores and all) (But wait, it also has a network connection?)
PHONE CALLS : "Allows the application to access the phone features of the device. An Application with this permission can determine the PHONE NUMBER AND SERIAL NUMBER OF THIS PHONE,weather a call is active, the number that call is connected to and the like". (A big WTF on that one, its a free app and it should not be allowed that kind of access!)
Network Communication: Full internet access. Allows an application to create network sockets.
OK, fine, it needs to be able to connect to something on line to be able to do...wait, why in the heck does it even need to connect to any servers or open sockets? IT's THE FREE VERSION of a game on your phone? I guess if it has "In app purchases" or location based adds pushed out to you it could justify that, so we can let it slide, after all what bad can come from network access?*
Your Location, Course (Network Based)
Other apps often want GPS data, but even coarse data can be fairly close to GPS locations.
I could type the entire paragraph here that is in the description, but COME ONE PEOPLE, this is pure identity theft!
Why is it any programs right to know where I am? Especially on a device with a network connection.
This is not a map specific tool or application, its a friggin game that now knows where you are, and possibly how fast you are going while you are playing this game? You are allowing yourselves to be tracked by a private game company that aggregates data to sell to the highest bidder for all you know!
Now those network sockets are sounding a bit more diabolical?
A serious question. would you allow your home PC to have tracking software installed to find out where you are and what sites you like...oh, and how fast you are going in a school zone? I know I know "Google already knows"...but not really, if I am not logged into google on a public machine they really dont know. I guess the answer from many of you will be "I don't care", and to be honest if you are logged in to FACEBOOK on your MAC/PC then you probably really don't care.
I am not trying to present any type of paranoid attitude here, and I know I will get "That guy" that will just tell me to go back to a string and some cans, or go off topic and rant about unrelated technology that does the same thing and how it somehow justifies android doing the same thing...
But I had gotten used to being able to alter the permissions on my old Blackberry to compensate for invasive apps, if the app would crash without that given permission then it was junk spyware anyway and it was deleted. After all, a "fart app" needs no special permissions right!
I honestly feel like I my right to privacy has taken a step backwards with my move to Android, and I am here for at least two years and want to make the best of it.
Sorry for the long rant. It's snowing outside and I have more time on my hands than I should today! Thank you to all who have stuck with me so far and thank you to those sharing info that have real app building experience, I may be sending some PM's at some point to pick your brains about where to find "Android development for dummies".