This week, the WHO releases a mobile health warning, Android Apps go un-downloaded, and mobile app privacy policies go unwritten.

Put Down Your Phone

This week, a new World Health Organization (WHO) report has suggested that there may possibly be a link between mobile phone usage and lethal forms of brain cancer. This is alarming news, assuming of course you use your smartphone to talk to other people. I don’t know about you, but though my iPhone can make calls, I rather prefer to use it for other things [insert AT&T connection joke here].

Yet, if you’re one of the few actually speaking into your phone, the WHO does have a few recommendations for how you can alleviate the risk.

Go Hands-free

It’s believed that keeping the phone away from your head should reduce the exposure to the potentially harmful frequencies. Invest in a Bluetooth headset or headphones with a mic so you can be hands-free.

Use FaceTime

I suspect that this WHO report is actually a marketing plot by Apple to get users to actually use FaceTime. Come to think of it, Microsoft just bought Skype, which is another type of tool that can be used to replace traditional phone use. Regardless, any VoIP service will help keep your head and phone sufficiently apart.

Text, IM or Email

Most phone calls are unnecessary and could be replaced with a text or email sent from your mobile device. Those of us who screen our calls, thank you. However, you know what’s worse than brain cancer? Dying in a car accident. So let’s be safe -- don’t text and drive.

Want a more technical analysis of the WHO report?

Apple’s App Store Dominates, Android Apps Less Popular

In other mobile news, most Android apps go un-downloaded. Say what you will about the iTunes interface, but iOS apps continue to dominate, according to Distimo research. 80% of paid Android apps have fewer than 100 downloads, while free apps are more popular, as only 25% had fewer than 100 downloads.

The report suggests that it’s more challenging for developers in the Google Android Market than in the Apple App Store to monetize using a one-off fee monetization model. As well, the Apple App store has been around longer and is promoted more frequently.

More Apps with Less Privacy

Regardless from where you download your apps, most apps don’t have suitable privacy policies. According to The Future of Privacy Forum think tank, which analyzed the top 30 paid apps last week, 22 lacked even a basic privacy policy. FPF is on a mission to have written privacy policies included in the minimum standards for app development. With a new website dedicated to this endeavor, developers can learn how to create privacy policies.

Thanks to a California law, nearly all companies that collect any consumer data online have privacy policies on their website. Yet, there’s no law clearly mandating that apps need to have published privacy policies. Though there isn’t a law (yet), it’s considered to be a good practice.