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Filipino phablet squawks 'I'M STOLEN'

Calling out 'Magnanakaws' before they scarper

Reducing security risks from open source software

Smartphone feature fatigue is upon us, with even the Galaxy S4's eyeball tracker and the iPhone 5S' fingerprint reader capable only of inducing yawns of grudging appreciation.

Enter Filipino smartmobe-maker my|phone, its new Iceberg model and a new feature called Tara, aka the “Theft Apprehension and Asset Recovery Application”.

TARA will be familiar to anyone familiar with the Find My iDevice features of Apple's iCloud, or Android's Device Manager as it allows remote locking and erasure of a phone's contents.

The Iceberg takes things a step further by also emitting what its manufacturer calls “a loud alarm” that repeats the word “Magnanakaw” endlessly. Magnanakaw is Tagalog for “thief” or “burglar”. Tagalog is the native language of The Philippines and is spoken by most of the nation's 98 million people, although it is the first language for only one quarter.

Beyond TARA, the Iceberg looks interesting for other reasons. The phablet boasts a 5.7” screen, Gorilla Glass 2, a a 1.2 GHz Quad-Core MediaTek's MT6589 CPU, a 12MP main camera, 16GB of storage and a gig of RAM.

All that costs just under 12,000 Philippine Pesos – just $US275 or £175.

That price doubtless plays well in the Philippines but would also make the Icerberg competitive beyond the nation's shores for those brave enough to go without support. ®

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