Android users seem to be infatuated with this new beta of Themer
, an insanely-customizable, community-driven launcher. I was all set to download it and try it out, but the list of required permissions gave me pause.
Google, being in the business of data mining itself, only informs users of these permissions right before the app is downloaded. So I got this permissions list for Themer courtesy of AppBrain
Can access your contacts
Apps can access the list of contacts (names, phone numbers, emails)
Can access your accounts
Apps can discover your accounts and get your email address
May cost you money
Apps can use SMS services or phone calls which cost you money
Has access to your messages
Apps are capable of reading your messages (eg email, sms)
May share your location
Apps can determine your current location and send it
Most of this makes sense, I suppose. Location data is needed to display the weather, access to email and SMS is needed to display widgets... And hey, Facebook already has your address book, so what's the big deal?