Early this afternoon, Senator Al Franken — chairman of the Senate's subcommittee on Privacy, Technology, and Law — gave Carrier IQ until December 14th to explain itself. Now, however, the senator has shifted his inquiry to those companies who admit using the controversial tracking software: Sprint, HTC, Samsung, and AT&T. The set of questions he's asking are much the same, and he's still questing to discover why the Carrier IQ software is being used and what kind of information is actually being tracked. In fact, he's giving the carriers and OEMs the same December 14th deadline for a formal explanation. Why the sudden shift in direction, then? Franken says that Carrier IQ informed his offices that the software "is subsequently modified and actually installed by other companies," namely the four above. For its part, HTC has denied using any CIQ data, but all four parties have admitted to the software being present on shipping phones.