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Gadget Gossip: IDC Slams Windows 8, Microsoft Disses Google Play, More

As another week fades into the rear view mirror, we look back at high-tech slugfests that heated up in the past few days as tension mounted between giants like Samsung, LG, Microsoft, Google and Apple. Read on to find out who’s been clashing with who over the past few days, and which unreleased smartphones may have made their early debut on the Web.  

IDC: Windows 8 is Crashing the PC Market

After Windows Vista launched in 2007, we didn’t think Microsoft’s OS could get any worse. Then Windows 8 came out in October, and we were sadly proven wrong.

Like most people that have used a new PC  in the past six months, research firm IDC really doesn’t care for Windows 8 (what a shocker). In fact, the firm's analysts have gone so far as to say that the biggest software publisher in the world may be responsible for killing the already-slumping PC industry.

“At this point, unfortunately, it seems clear that the Windows 8 launch not only failed to provide a positive boost to the PC market, but appears to have slowed the market,” said Bob O’Connell, IDC Program Vice President,  Clients and Displays. “While some customers appreciate the new form factors and touch capabilities of Windows 8, the radical changes to the UI, removal of the familiar Start button, and the costs associated with touch have made PCs a less attractive alternative to dedicated tablets and other alternative devices.”

PC sales plummeted by 13.9 percent in the first quarter of 2013, marking the biggest decline in the past 19 years. It’s okay Microsoft, we may forgive you if you stick to what you’re good at, like launching an awesome Xbox 360 successor or tweaking your Office suite (which we hope comes to iOS soon). And who knows, maybe the long-rumored Windows Blue update will make Windows 8 more bearable (but we seriously doubt it).

Will Apple and Samsung Finally Split?

Apple and Samsung are like that couple you know that desperately needs to break up (not like Chris Brown and Rihanna bad, but you get the point). They can’t seem to agree on anything, they’re always pointing fingers back and forth, and they have a knack for dragging everyone around them into their drama. Worst of all, they’re way too dependent on each other, but that could all change very soon.  

Apple has relied on its arch rival for crucial components such as its line of A-Series chips for years, but an Asia-based report indicates Cupertino could be switching gears. In a blow to Samsung, the iPhone creator may turn to TSMC to manufacture its next set of mobile processors, presumably the A7. Of course, this has yet to be confirmed, but the newspaper cites an executive from one of Samsung’s partners as its source.

MORE: Top 10 iPhone Alternatives

Microsoft Talkin' Smack, Says Google is Stealing Your Info

Are you giving Google personal information every time you download an app from Google Play? Microsoft certainly thinks so.

The Windows creator blasted Google in yet another attack ad, accusing the search engine giant of sneakily siphoning info from its users anytime an app is downloaded. The Redmond company claims that, because Google knows your name and email address, the search giant will make assumptions about you based on your app purchases.

“We think we have a better alternative that doesn’t do these kinds of nefarious things,” Greg Sullivan, Microsoft’s senior manager for Windows Phone, said to the AP.

Microsoft, give it a rest. You’ve accused Google of reading our emails to target ads (which we already knew about) and invited the Twitter community to share their Android horror stories (which backfired MISERABLY) to no avail. We already know about Google’s platform issues, and we don’t need to hear it from you. After all, wasn’t it your privacy policy changes that were scrutinized by the EU just last year?

Is LG Leaking Its OLED Secrets to Samsung? Police Investigate.

Amanda Bynes and Lindsay Lohan aren’t the only ones getting busted by the cops. This week police investigated Samsung’s South Korean headquarters in search of potentially stolen OLED TV technology from LG, according to Bloomberg. Rumors indicate that a tipster from LG may have leaked information to its bitter rival, but both parties deny these claims.

“We have no reason to steal other companies’ technology, as we have the world's best OLED technology," a Samsung spokesperson said to Bloomberg.

LG, meanwhile, claims that it never reported Samsung to police in connection with the incident.

Is there a mole in LG’s supply chain that’s spilling secrets to Samsung? Who knows, but the situation does echo a similar scenario from last year. In July, 11 people were charged with illicitly selling Samsung’s OLED technology, six of which were LG employees.

MORE: How to Get Samsung's,LG's Best Features on Any Android Phone

Leaks of the Week

Your weekly roundup of this week's most buzzworthy smartphone leaks

An alleged iPhone 5S prototype shows off a new curvy figure. Could this be the rumored curved iPhone with a wraparound display? This looks suspiciously similar to Apple’s patent we spotted a few weeks ago... 

Image Credit: GSM Arena

Nokia Lumia 928 sporting a sleek, black style and a classic white look

Image Credit: @evleaks

HTC One outfitted in red

Image Credit: @evleaks