The other day I noticed a new icon on the home screen of my Blackberry. It said “Poynt” and had no business being there. I did not put it there and I did not give anyone permission to do so. I said “go away” and the cocky little icon yawned before declining my request.
Poynt is an app for smart phones that supplies information about local businesses, retailers and events. I am not using it, so I have no way of judging whether it is useful or, well, pointless.
I found out quickly on the Blackberry support community forum that I was not the only victim. It is not clear, who is responsible for the mischief. The most likely culprit is Vodafone, my service provider, although I cannot see that it was done without the knowledge of Poynt Corporation. Did they pay Vodafone to put their shortcut icon on people’s phones?
The incident raises privacy and security concerns, which will need to be addressed by Vodafone and Blackberry. This is my phone. I decide what goes on it and I object to Vodafone, Blackberry, Poynt or anyone else having the power to mess with it.
Any other junk messages I can remove, destroy, throw away. But not this one. In the thread on the Blackberry forum, Poynt Support writes We were part of a service book update through your carrier recently which would explain the Apps appearance on your phone … there is no way to delete the app from your device …What a stroke of luck for Poynt.
The icon, which everybody says that I cannot remove, now resides in a junk folder on my Blackberry, where it belongs.
Will businesses ever learn that annoying potential customers or users is not the ideal strategy to attract new custom?