Modi Keynote and Narendra Modi Apps, Oppo F1s Upgrade, and More Tech News This Week

Modi Keynote and Narendra Modi Apps, Oppo F1s Upgrade, and More Tech News This Week

Modi Keynote and Narendra Modi Apps, Oppo F1s Upgrade, and More Tech News This Week
HIGHLIGHTS
Prank Modi Keynote app was pulled from Google Play
The real Narendra Modi app dominated downloads
Oppo launched an upgraded variant of the Oppo F1s
This has been a strange week in technology, with Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s name attached to not one, but two apps that shot up the rankings on app stores. The Narendra Modi app quickly dominated on the App Store, after it was announced that people could use it to give their feedback on the process of demonetisation. It was later reported that 500,000 people gave their feedback in the first 24 hours, and that the responses were overwhelmingly positive. That wasn’t the only app to have “Modi” in its name though. Another app, called Modi Keynote was launched recently, and promised to authenticate the new currency notes.

The app was actually just a joke, not a real currency authentication tool, and not released by any group connected to the PM. However, a lot of people were taking it seriously, and for that reason, the creators decided to remove it from Google Play, but not before it garnered a lot of attention and downloads.

It was a slightly slow week for launches, but there was one that stood out. The Oppo F1s has a new variant with 4GB RAM and 64GB storage, which launched on Monday, following up on the original F1s launch in August. The new variant is a little more expensive, at Rs. 18,990, but that’s only a price difference of Rs. 1,000. You can get it via Amazon, or at retail outlets. Apart from the bump in RAM and storage, all the other features of the phone remain the same.
The big highlight is the 16-megapixel front-facing camera with a 1/3.1-inch sensor and f/2.0 aperture. Other selfie-focused features on the smartphone include its Beautify 4.0 app for selfie editing, the Selfie Panorama feature that stitches together three selfies, and the Screen Flash feature. The rear camera takes a back-seat on this phone, although it isn’t a slouch either, with a 13-megapixel sensor, PDAF autofocus, an f/2.2 aperture, and dual-LED flash.

The Oppo F1s of course goes up against the new Vivo V5 and the Gionee S6s in the selfie-smartphone battle in the mid-range segment.

(Also see: Vivo V5 Review)
This week was still mostly dominated by the demonetisation discussion. Emergency measures are being put in place – for exampe, the government is pushing for the activation of Rupay debit cards, while the Andhra Pradesh government is distributing free mobiles for cashless transactions, and the RBI has doubled the storage limits for mobile wallets.

On Wednesday, Paytm announced “app POS”, a system that would allow small vendors who are using Paytm to accept payments via credit or debit cards. Paytm founder Vijay Shekhar Sharma talked about how India needs a “very innovative mobile POS machine”. The very next day, Paytm pulled the plug on this feature, citing security concerns. However, towards the end of the week CEO Vijay Shekhar Sharma said at an event that the PoS service had already been resumed.

Meanwhile, old currency notes get another lease of life – the government has announced that the notes will be accepted to pay for prepaid balance top-ups, among other things. This is only for Rs. 500 notes though – if you have Rs. 1000 notes, you’re out of luck, and will have to go deposit them instead.

(Also see: BlackBerry DTEK50 Review)
There were also a couple of other launches in India, including the Panasonic Eluga Mark 2, a VoLTE capable handset priced at Rs. 10,499, that comes with 3GB of RAM and 32GB of storage, powered by a1.3GHz octa-core MediaTek MT6753 processor. This week also saw the launch of the very budget friendly Intex Aqua E4, priced at Rs. 3,333, which also supports 4G VoLTE, with 1GB RAM and 8GB storage, along with a 2-megapixel camera.
At the other end of the spectrum, the OnePlus 3T with a Snapdragon 821 SoC is now available in the US. It is an upgraded variant of its OnePlus 3 (Review) flagship. The upgraded variant gets a faster Qualcomm Snapdragon 821 SoC, a larger 128GB storage variant, a higher resolution 16-megapixel front camera, and a larger 3400mAh battery battery.

HTC also had some big launches this week. It launched the HTC Desire 650 with a 5-Inch Display, and a 13-Megapixel rear camera, along with the HTC 10 evo and the HTC Desire 10 Pro. The HTC 10 evo was unveiled in Taiwan, and will launch in India in December, the company confirmed. The HTC Desire 10 Pro launched in India for Rs. 26,490, and comes with 4GB of RAM and 64GB inbuilt storage. The dual-SIM (Nano-SIM) Desire 10 Pro sports a fingerprint sensor, and runs Android 6.0 Marshmallow with the company’s Sense UI on top.

(Also see: HTC Desire 10 Pro and evo 10 First Impressions)
Airtel also announced the launch of its payments bank – the first in India – with a pilot project starting things off in Rajasthan. The bank has a limit of Rs. 1 lakh, and it’s not offering debit or ATM cards, but it’s offering 7.5 precent interest and 10,000 Airtel stores in Rajasthan will serve as branches.

Meanwhile, if you’re looking for ways to get your hands on cash, Vodafone has also stepped up to offer some without making you take a trip to the ATM. According to the company, if you use the Vodafone m-Pesa wallet, you can withdraw money from any of its 120,000 outlets across the country. Please note that this does not mean Vodafone stores, unlike Airtel’s payments bank. This is specifically for Vodafone’s m-Pesa outlets – call 55400 from a Vodafone number, and you can get the location of nearby stores sent via SMS.
Vodafone also announced a new data plan – now, you can subscribe to 1-year’s data at Rs. 1,501 – for this, you get 15GB to start with, and then 1GB at Rs. 53, 2GB at Rs. 103, or 5GB at Rs. 256. The new data packs are currently available only for customers in the Tamil Nadu circle. Customers should note that the data offers are only valid on 3G data and Vodafone is only due to roll out 4G services in the Tamil Nadu circle by the end of this fiscal year.

Reliance Jio and Reliance Communications earlier announced a virtual merger, and this week RCom that much like Jio, it too will offer unlimited voice calling for Rs. 149, in a plan that also includes 300MB of data, which can be consumed over 2G, 3G, or 4G. Despite its similarities to the Reliance Jio plans, the new Reliance Communications unlimited voice calling plan does not require a 4G VoLTE-capable smartphone and works on any mobile phone. Though Reliance Jio is currently offering all of its services for free, the regular monthly telecom plans for the company will start from Rs. 149 as well.

(Also see: Final Fantasy XV on PS4 vs. PS4 Pro)
Tags: Demonetisation, Narendra Modi App, Phone launches, Oppo, Vivo, Panasonic, HTC launches, BlackBerry Review, Vodafone mPesa, Airtel Payments Bank, Reliance Jio

[“Source-Gadgets”]

Google to Start Adding ‘Fact Check’ Tag to Accurate News Articles in Search Results

Google to Start Adding 'Fact Check' Tag to Accurate News Articles in Search Results

HIGHLIGHTS

  • Factually correct articles will bear ‘Fact check’ tag next to them
  • Google will check if websites are conducting fact checking on their own
  • It is currently rolling out in the US and the UK

How many times have you been proven wrong among your friends because something you said was factually incorrect? You then actually doubt your knowledge and regret referring to some random article on the Internet. Well, this happens to almost everybody who easily trusts anything that is available on the Web without scrutinising it thoroughly. But now, Google is coming forward to help you save from that embarrassment. Google will now start showing you whether an article is factually correct or not by tagging it with the ‘Fact Check’ label in search results.

Readers will start seeing the tagged articles in the expanded story box on news.google.com as well as in the Google News & Weather iOS and Android apps, starting with the US and the UK, Google said in ablog post on Tuesday.

Google says organisations like International Fact-Checking Network and others are making continuous efforts to fact check articles, misinformed topics, sensationalised headlines, and other Internet hoaxes rigorously. By collaborating with them, Google aims to provide you almost accurate long news stories in the categories of health, politics etc. The websites that have correct and accurate information will be stacked in Google’s database, and will show you a visible ‘Fact Check’ label in the news section.

“In the seven years since we started labelling types of articles in Google News (e.g., In-Depth, Opinion, Wikipedia), we’ve heard that many readers enjoy having easy access to a diverse range of content types,” said Google in its blog spot enlightening the efforts the Internet giant has done to make news more relevant for the readers. Funnily enough, the latest Trump debacle has been reported to be misinforming people during the US Presidential election slated to happen in the near future – and Google is saving US citizens (and others who are interested as well) from making decisions in haste and confusion.

The Google News vertical has also explained the process the articles will now undergo to check whether it contains fact checks in part by looking for the schema.org ClaimReview markup. Meanwhile, Google will also look for the websites that follow the standard criteria for fact checking. The news websites and the publishers who enable fact-checks and are eager to see it appear with the “Fact check” tag have been advised by Google to use that markup in fact-check articles. So, if you are one of the publishers, you can head to Google’s help centre to know more on the procedure.

Tags: Google News & Weather, Google News, Apps, Android, Google, Internet
[“Source-Gadgets”]

Reliance Jio SIM Is the New iPhone, WhatsApp-Facebook Integration, and More News This Week

Reliance Jio SIM Is the New iPhone, WhatsApp-Facebook Integration, and More News This Week

HIGHLIGHTS

  • Reliance Jio SIM became the most-sought after item
  • The year-old iPhone 6s beat the Galaxy Note 7 in speed tests
  • Many Dropbox users’ passwords were leaked

Missed out on any tech news this week? You’ve come to the right place, as we’ve picked out the top stories we read over the entire week. First up – a word of warning to all Dropbox users. You might need to change your password – a leaked credential cache means that at least some users’ passwords were compromised. And if you use the same password on other sites too – which you should never, ever do – then change those as well.

The big story of the week was the mad rush for Reliance Jio SIM cards, which have probably become the most sought-after tech-related item in the country. First, there were reports that anyone with a 4G phone can now get their hands on Jio SIM, though not every Reliance store seems to be honouring the offer. Then, Reliance officially extended the offer to owners of Asus and Panasonic smartphones, followed by four more OEMs later in the week. All this just seem to heighten demand for the Reliance Jio SIM, as evident by queues in retail stores across the country, reminiscent of iPhone launches in other countries.

(Also see: Reliance JioFi Device – How to Buy, Price, Plans, and Everything You Need to Know)

x

The Reliance Jio rollout continues to bounce along merrily with no real visibility – apparently Mukesh Ambani met the telecom secretary to discuss Jio’s rollout plans, but details are unclear. Other telcos are not happy, and are alleging that the tests Reliance Jio is running are just commercial operations to scoop up useres.

Also, while Reliance started off by offering SIM cards to its employees, RIL is apparently now asking staff to stop using other telcos – Airtel is said to be the most affected by this decision.

The controversy of the week was probably the results of a test comparing the real world speed difference between the iPhone 6s and the Samsung Galaxy Note 7 – Samsung’s new phone was bestedby the year-old iPhone 6s. Interestingly, another study showed that the iPhone and iPad had higher failure rates than Android counterparts. But the coolest news of the week might be that the world’s first self driving taxis have started operations in Singapore.

Right at the start of the week, the Gionee S6s was launched. Samsung launched the Tizen-basedSamsung Z2. It is the first Tizen smartphone with 4G LTE support, and was wholly developed in Bengaluru.

 

(Also see: Gionee Says Will Set Up Manufacturing Unit in India)

Also launched this week were the Meizu U10 and Meizu U20 budget Android smartphones, which come with fingerprint scanners. There was also the Intex Cloud Tread, with 2GB of RAM and a hexa-core SoC,launched at Rs. 4,999, and the Vivo Y21L with 4G VoLTE at Rs. 7,490.

Xiaomi closed out the week in launches, with the Xiaomi Redmi Note 4 in China, which comes with a 4100mAh battery, and runs on a Helio X20 SoC.

Meanwhile, if you’re in the market for a flagship, then Samsung has an offer for you – it’s cut the prices for the Samsung Galaxy S7 and Galaxy S7 Edge. The phones are now cheaper by Rs. 5,000 each. Xiaomi also took a cue from Samsung, and has cut the price of the Xiaomi Mi 5 by Rs. 2,000, down to Rs. 22,999.

 

In case you’re using a Nexus device, good news – the Android 7.0 Nougat rollout has started for Nexus devices. Unlike Apple’s iOS, which is released to all users in a single release, Android has a much slower rollout – which is why the biggest chunk of users is still on version 4.4, KitKat, and only 15.2 percent of users are on the previous version of Android, version 6.0 or Marshmallow. Apart from the Nexus phones, the update is now also headed to some Sony phones so far.

(Also see: Android Nougat: How to Download and Install Right Now)

 

It was also revealed that Google’s new VR platform, Daydream, is going to launch soon.

While it’s been a good week for launches, other news from around the world and India had its ups and downs. At a company townhall, Flipkart’s Executive Chairman Sachin Bansal addressed employees to reassure them about layoffs – hundreds were fired in one swoop – and admitted that his removal from the CEO position was also performance related.

Speaking of CEOs, Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg started his week by giving away $95 million in Facebook shares to charity. Zuckerberg plans to donate 99 percent of his Facebook shares to the Chang Zuckerberg Initiative which will focus on charitable causes around the world, similar to the Bill and Melinda Gates foundation. At the same time, Facebook launched the Lifestage app, targeted at video loving teenagers. This iPhone app allows teens to watch clips about the life of their classmates, or make short clips themselves.

But not all is good in the house of Facebook this week. WhatsApp – which Facebook bought two years ago, updated its terms of service for the first time since 2012, to say that it’s now going to share your phone numbers with the social network, though you can opt-out of this.

 

(Also see: WhatsApp’s New User Terms Signal It’s Finally Ready to Make Some Money)

Meanwhile, in case you’re wondering how successful Edge, Microsoft’s replacement for Internet Explorer, has been… well, the company is now offering people money to use the browser. Opera was also in the news this week with the launch of Opera VPN for Android that gives free, ad-supported, unlimited VPN access to users.

One interesting piece of news from the telecom world – Trai has now permitted the validity of mobile data packs to be for one year. This is a pretty big step because earlier the longest validity you could get was 90 days, limiting a customer’s options. Airtel and Vodafone also introduced e-KYC for SIM activation with Aadhar verification, which could lead to instant verification of SIM cards. And BSNL has added an unlimited 3G plan for Rs. 1,099. You can also get a 10GB plan for Rs. 549 now.

 

Speaking of news from India, the Unified Payments Interface (UPI) rollout has now started, and bank-enabled apps are arriving in the Play Store. This could have major impact on e-commerce, and mobile wallets, as the UPI basically allows you to make a bank transfer as easily as you’d send an SMS.

(Also see: Beyond Payments – How the Unified Payments Interface Will Evolve)

There were also some leaks at Sony that tell us more about how the video games giant is moving forward. A PlayStation Europe leak revealed PlayStation Now for PC – it’s Sony’s game streaming service, and if you have a 5Mbps Internet connection, you’ll be able to play PS4 games without a PS4. The leak was confirmed later in the week.

 

There was also a leak of the PS4 Slim that shows an all-matte finish. With the Slim and the Neo, Sony will be refreshing with two consoles, an interesting move that shows how the console industry has changed with this generation.

On the other side of things, Halo 5: Forge for Windows has a release date now – the map editor for Halo 5 will arrive on Windows 10 PC on September 8, with new content from the Xbox One version.

We also heard from Titanfall’s developer – who addressed the beta test that we described as’disappointing’. The developers say it’s slower to make the game more accessible, and easier to learn as you play.

Share a screenshot and win Samsung smartphones worth Rs. 90,000 by participating in the #BrowseFaster contest.

Tags: Mobiles, Google, Apple, Smartphones, Galaxy Note 4 vs iPhone 6s, Reliance Jio, Dropbox, Sachin Bansal

 

[“Source-Gadgets”]

Opening Bell | Asian markets open higher; SBI, Jet Airways in news

A file photo of the BSE building in Mumbai. Photo: Hemant Mishra/Mint

US stocks end higher; Asia follows suit

Stocks closed higher on Thursday, with the three major indices closing at record highs, amid sharp gains in oil prices and strong quarterly results from retailers.

Asia markets advanced in early trade on Friday, following record high finishes in the US. The Japanese market returned to trade after being shut Thursday for a public holiday, and the benchmark Nikkei 225 was up 0.8%. Across the Korean Strait, the Kospi gained 0.34%.

Aditya Birla to merge Nuvo, Grasim

The Aditya Birla Group is merging two of its main companies, Aditya Birla Nuvo Ltd (Nuvo) and Grasim Industries Ltd, both of which also serve as holding companies, in an attempt to create a stronger entity, and unlock shareholder value by spinning off and listing one of Nuvo’s subsidiaries, Aditya Birla Financial Services Ltd, reports Mint .

Irdai issues draft guidelines for mandatory listing of insurance firm

The Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (Irdai) has released a discussion paper on listing of Indian insurance firms . The Irdai proposed that insurance firms having completed eight years of operations in case of general and reinsurance, and 10 years of operations in case of life insurance, can go for mandatory public listing.

MRF first-quarter profit rises

Tyre major MRF Ltd has posted a net profit of Rs.490.93 crore for the quarter ended 30 June against Rs.479.54 crore for the corresponding year-ago period. Total income on a stand-alone basis increased to Rs.3,481.97 crore fromRs.3,477.17 crore. Read more .

Bank of Baroda Q1 profit falls 59.74% to Rs.423 crore

State-owned Bank of Baroda’s net profit for the June quarter fell 59.74% from a year ago due to higher provisions and lower net interest income. Net profit for the quarter wasRs.423.62 crore, compared with Rs.1,052.15 crore a year ago.

Global gold demand up 15% in Q2 2016: World Gold Council

Global gold demand grew by 15% to 1,050 tonnes in the second quarter of 2016, mainly driven by considerable investment demand, World Gold Council (WGC) said in its latest report. Investment demand reached 448 tonnes as investors sought risk diversification and a safe store of value in the face of continued political, economic and social instability, it said. Read more .

Diesel car ban taking heavy toll on auto industry: RC Bhargava

The chairman of India’s largest car maker Maruti Suzuki India Ltd, R.C. Bhargava, has warned that the debate around the future of diesel vehicles, which have borne the brunt of a backlash against air pollution, has dented growth of the Indian auto industry and crimped its job-creation ability.

Airtel completes spectrum deal with Aircel in seven circles

Bharti Airtel said it had successfully concluded the transaction for acquiring rights to use 20 MHz 2300 Band BWA (broadband wireless access) spectrum from Aircel. The deal makes Airtel the second largest holder of 4G spectrum in 2300 MHz band after Reliance Jio Infocomm.

Indiabulls Housing Fin to issue Rs.15,000 crore worth NCDs next week

Indiabulls Housing Finance (IBHFL) will open Rs.15,000 crore non-convertible debentures (NCDs) issue next week. The issue opens on Tuesday and closes on the same day, it said. The NCDs carrying coupon rate of 8.57-8.80% per annum has a tenure of five years.

HDFC Mutual Fund raises stake in Teamlease to 9%

HDFC Mutual Fund has increased shareholding in staffingfirm Teamlease Services by 2.2% to nearly 9% by purchasing shares via the open market. The aggregate holding of HDFC Mutual Fund in Teamlease Services was at 6.79% of the paid-up equity share capital, as on 26 May.

PFC raises Rs.4,335 crore via bond issue on BSE e-book platform

State-run Power Finance Corporation (PFC) has raisedRs.4,335 crore from the issuance of debt securities on the BSE’s newly launched electronic book mechanism platform. There were 15 arrangers in the issue, which was conducted on coupon discovery basis. Read more .

Dilip Buildcon shares make strong debut; surge 15%

Shares of infrastructure firm Dilip Buildcon, which made a strong debut on the bourses on Thursday, settled with a gain of 15% over the issue price of Rs.219. After listing atRs.240, up 9.58% on the BSE, shares of the company finally ended at Rs.251.95, surging 15%. Intra-day, it jumped 16.43% to Rs.255.

Earnings Corner

Bank of India, Central Bank of India, Cipla, Deepak Fertilizers, Dena Bank, Glenmark Pharmaceuticals, Jet Airways, Oriental Bank of Commerce, PTC India and State Bank of India are among the companies that will be announcing their June quarter earnings today.

[“Source-Livemint”]

Pokemon Go, Reliance Jio, iPhone 7, and More News This Week

Pokemon Go, Reliance Jio, iPhone 7, and More News This Week

HIGHLIGHTS

  • Reliance Jio is offering three months free data to Samsung users
  • Idea is offering 45 percent more mobile data at same rate
  • Next Nasa Mars Rover discussion will be on Facebook Live

Missed out on the tech news of the week? Don’t worry, because we’ve got you covered. There was a lot of interesting news that developed over the week, and also, a tonne of Pokemon Go related stuff. Pikachu, Rattata, and Machop are entering into everyday conversations and if you were a geek growing up in the 90s, then this is really great. But if you’re sick and tired of hearing about this, we’ve got something that can help you. Check out ourguide to avoiding Game of Thrones spoilers – these tips can be tweaked to isolate yourself from Pokemon Go too. Also, if you’re sick and tired of Pokemon Go, you might want to skip the next couple of paragraphs.

Now, as usual, our Orbital Podcast talks about the biggest developments in the world of tech. This week, we talk about Pokemon Go in India. Pokemon Go might not have launched here yet but you candownload and install it pretty easily, just be careful about Pokemon malware.

(Also see: Pokemon Go Review)

Here are some basic tips and tricks to get started, and some more detailed guides as well. If you aren’t really clear about the difference between Pikachu and Pokemon, our 10 point Pokemon Go cheatsheet will help, and we’ve also got the inside story about Niantic Labs, the company that’s behind Pokemon Go.

(Also see: This Indian Augmented Reality Game Could Be the Next Pokemon Go)

Also, here’s a look at what people playing Pokemon Go from India had to say about it, and if you still want more Pokemon news, then visit our Pokemon Go page.

If you want, you can talk about your experience like playing Pokemon Go in India or share your discoveries with other Pokemon Go players in our forum by following our threads for Delhi, Mumbai,Pune, Bengaluru, Hyderabad, Chennai, Kolkata, or starting your own.

There were some interesting phone launches as well this week – here are some of the highlights from amongst those. Reliance launched two Lyf phones this week. Asus also launched two phones, the Asus ZenFone 3 Laser and the Asus ZenFone 3 Max. The phones were launched in Vietnam, and availability in other countries hasn’t been announced for now. In China, Huawei launched the Huawei Maimang 5, while the Moto E3 launch took place in the UK.

Also this week, we had the launch of the Lenovo Vibe K4 Note Wooden Edition, at Rs. 11,499, and theLG Stylus 2 Plus in India.

There’s also been a video sighting of an iPhone 7 – the release is drawing closer and the leaks are springing up as usual; expect more details in the coming weeks.

Nintendo meanwhile doubled down and after the resounding success of Pokemon Go and announced the NES Classic Edition, a revamped NES console for $59.99 (around Rs. 4,000) which will come with 30 classic games. The system won’t get any extra games, but the 30 games you will get are Nintendo’s most famous classics, so this sounds like a retro lover’s dream come true.

Aside from that, Facebook has some fun news – Nasa will hold the next Mars Rover discussion on Facebook Live. The company has been working with Nasa to promote other features, such as showing 360-degree photos from Mars so this isn’t really surprising. Also, Facebook Messenger is getting Instant Articles support this month which means articles that load instantly even while you are chatting. And speaking of social media – Maneka Gandhi met with the Twitter team to curb harassment of women online. Everyone knows about Twitter’s trolling problem, but is government intervention a solution?

Potentially huge news from the telecom world – Google’s Project Fi rolls out for its data services in 135 new countries. US-based users of Project Fi can now benefit from much faster international data speeds, and as this rollout steadily continues it’s going to disrupt existing telecom businesses.

In India, Idea Cellular has slashed its mobile data rates across all circles, offering 45 percent more data on ‘sachet’ packs, low value packs priced between Rs. 8 and Rs. 225. Still doesn’t compare to the Rs. 93 for 10GB 4G data Reliance Jio is supposed to offer, but ut’s definitely a welcome move.

Airtel was also in the news this week, though not for anything good – there’s a suspicion that Airtel is sniffing and censoring Cloudflare traffic in India. The telco has denied this entirely, and stated that blocking of any page is only done at the URL level, while CloudFlare never responded to Gadgets 360’s queries on the subject.

Samsung meanwhile has tied up with Reliance Jio, and customers with select Samsung smartphones can now get a free Reliance Jio SIM and three months of free 4G data. This is Reliance’s first tie up with a manufacturer (outside of its own brand Lyf) and reports suggest that more such announcements are in the pipeline.

Tags: Airtel, Facebook, Google, Huawei, Idea, Lenovo, Mars, Moto E3, Motorola, Nasa, Niantic, Niantic Labs, Nintendo,Pokemon, Pokemon Go, Reliance, Samsung, Twitter
[“source-ndtv”]

Freedom 251 Delivery Begins, Pokemon Go Is a Rage, Samsung Galaxy J2 (2016) Launch, and More News This Week

Freedom 251 Delivery Begins, Pokemon Go Is a Rage, Samsung Galaxy J2 (2016) Launch, and More News This Week

HIGHLIGHTS

  • The Freedom 251 smartphone is supposedly finally ‘out for delivery’
  • Pokemon Go is so successful it boosted Nintendo shares
  • Reliance offers 4G phone with 3 months unlimited service at Rs. 2,999

Another week gone by, and if you missed some of the big tech news stories, we’re here too recap the highlights of the week. These include some enormous launches, more televisions than you’ll likely see in a whole year, and some very exciting scientific developments. Let’s dive right in.

The most anticipated launch of the week was the television event by Ringing Bells where the much delayed Freedom 251 phone finally – supposedly – started deliveries. Apparently, only 5,000 units are going to be delivered, with a total of 200,000 supposed to follow. No firm dates on when the latter will happen.

(Also see: Freedom 251 First Impressions)

At the time the phone first launched, Ringing Bells had circulated an Adcom phone instead, as a “prototype” of its upcoming phone. At the event, Gadgets 360 finally tried out the real Freedom 251, and you can check out our first impressions.

Pokemon Go is predictably a big success to the point where it hugely boosted Nintendo’s shares. The game is not officially out in India yet though it is pretty easy to download, install, and play Pokemon Goif you have an Android phone. The game works just fine – here’s a guide if you want to know more about playing Pokemon Go in India. That guide will surely come in India now that the game’sinternational release has been delayed.

pokemon_go_pikachu_blastoise_charizard.jpgThe other piece of gaming news that has a lot of people excited is that No Man’s Sky is finally ready for release. The game promises to be the ultimate science fiction fantasy of just getting into your space ship and exploring the galaxy, and there is no way that it’s going to please everyone, but we are having a hard time waiting right now.

Samsung launched two new mobile devices this week – the Samsung Galaxy J Max is a VoLTE-enabled 7-inch tablet, while the Samsung Galaxy J2 (2016) is a sub-Rs. 10,000 4G phone with new Smart Glow LED notification system. Also this week, Intex launched the Aqua Power 4G with VoLTE support. There was also the launch of the Blu Energy XL with a 6-inch display. Globally, the Sharp Aquos 507SH launched this week as Japan’s first Android One Phone.

The biggest launch in India this week was probably at Samsung’s televisions related event. Samsung launched a whopping 44 different models in a single day, with prices ranging from Rs. 27,990 to Rs. 23,99,900. The company is trying to offer something for everyone across three different product lines, and says that along with Ultra HD, curved panels are going to be the next big sellers.

Some interesting developments in the telecom space include Reliance now offering a 4G phone with unlimited data for three months, at just Rs. 2,999. For now, people are reporting fast and reliable connections too. Of course, as more users get on to the network, that will most likely change. AndBSNL’s operating profit for this year is going to be over Rs. 2,000 crores – hopefully some of the money can be used to actually improve services.

For Samsung though, the week had some bad news too – a new report claims the Samsung Galaxy S7 Active is not actually waterproof. The problem is apparently limited to the US variant Galaxy S7 Active, according to well known non-profit organisation Consumer Reports. Samsung has acknowledged the problem, and said that it is investigating.

Meanwhile, if you’re one of the dozen people who owns a smartwatch – don’t go to the ATM. Your smartwatch could reveal your ATM pin warn researchers who were able to track PINs with over 80 percent accuracy. And over 13 lakh Android smartphones in India are impacted by a new kind of malware, which is an astounding figure. There are a lot of things you need to stay aware of, and one of those is the dangers of free public Wi-Fi. Follow our guide to stay safe, and also listen to our discussion on the subject in our weekly podcast.

Twitter meanwhile joins the video streaming wars – while the company owns Periscope, it also hosted a live feed of Wimbledon – the content streaming on Twitter will be a mix of video from Wimbledon, and from ESPN, which holds the rights to the content. Facebook on the other hand was the subject of a study that states it is a haven for narcissists. It might be a good time to switch to Snapchat, which just launched Memories, to save photos and videos, although it is being sued over ‘sexy Discover stories’.

Speaking of things you might want to forget, do you know how much Google knows about you? It’s probably a lot more than you think, and thanks to the My Activity tool, you can check. Google knows everything about you, but you can make it forget the worst parts, for now. Do also check out our guides on pausing location history, and getting Google to stop tracking you on the Web.

The biggest bit of science news this week was from Nasa – the Juno spacecraft entered Jupiter’s atmosphere in an event planned down almost to the second decades in advance. It’s a stunning scientific feat that could teach us much more about the history of the solar system.We could also be moving towards swarms of autonomous drones – researchers say we’re close todrones that visually coordinate on their own. This could mean fast and efficient aerial e-commerce deliveries, or it could be an essential part of Skynet’s arsenal. Hopefully the former.

Oh, and in case you were wondering – selfie elbow is real, say doctors. Turns out that holding your hand like that time and again to take selfies can cause injuries. As if we needed more proof that selfies are bad for you.

Win Star Trek merchandise and movie tickets by participating in our Star Trek Beyond contest.

Tags: BSNL, Facebook, Freedom 251, Intex, Juno, Jupiter, Nasa, No Mans Sky, Pokemon, Pokemon Go, Reliance,Ringing Bells, Samsung, Selfies, Televisions, Twitter, VoLTE
[“Source-Gadgets”]

Xiaomi Mi Max Launch, Freedom 251 Delayed, and More News This Week

Xiaomi Mi Max Launch, Freedom 251 Delayed, and More News This Week

HIGHLIGHTS

  • Freedom 251 continues to draw controversy
  • The Xiaomi Mi Max launched this week, and caused a riot
  • Android N stands for Nougat, bad luck Nutella

It’s been a big week in tech news with a lot to take in. There were some interesting launches – not all of which went well – and there were a lot of developments that got a lot of attention this week. One piece of news that you might have heard – Android N is officially Android Nougat now – a decision that is going to leave a lot of people here looking for the pronunciation guides.

Game of Thrones Season 6 is finally over, and there’s been a lot to process. We put together some of the best and worst moments of the season, and we also have a podcast about Game of Thrones Season 6 you should listen to.

This week also saw the first known death from a crash using Tesla’s Autopilot feature. Fears over the safety of autonomous vehicles might be overstated, but with the technology at such a nascent stage, incidents like this will certainly not help in the court of public perception. Earlier this week, it was announced that BMW and Intel are teaming up to make self-driving cars.

And in India, Freedom 251 maker Ringing Bells continues to raise controversy, this time over workers’ conditions. The phone, which looked dubious to start with, was first going to be delivered from June 28, then it was pushed to June 30, and now it’s going to be delivered from July 6.

In terms of actual launches, it’s been an eventful time though not as busy as some recent weeks were. The Vivo X7 and X7 Plus were launched. There’s also the confusingly named iBall Andi 5G Blink 4G launched at Rs. 6,299, and of course, there was the Xiaomi Mi Max launch. Another launch this week is the Intex Aqua 3G Pro Q entry level Android phone launched at Rs. 2,999, and at the other end of the spectrum, the ZTE Nubia Z11 with 6GB of RAM and Snapdragon 820 SoC was launched as well.

(Also see: Xiaomi Mi Max Review)

Other launches this week included the Lyf Flame 5 with VoLTE, the Lyf Earth 2, the Intex Aqua Classic, and the Micromax Unite 4 and Unite 4 Pro with Indus OS 2.0

(Also see: With Indus OS 2.0, Micromax Wants to Tap Non-English Speaking Consumers)

Apart from the usual spate of launches, there were some other interesting developments this week.

For one, is Apple following anti-competitive practices? That’s what Spotify alleged saying its app was unfairly rejected to protect Apple Music, though Apple responded saying Spotify was looking for preferential treatment. Meanwhile, Facebook is killing the Paper app on July 29, so the fantastic Paper by fiftythree is once again the only one with that name. Now, if Apple renames the Pencil, fiftythree will be really thrilled.

The Xiaomi Mi Max launch in India was a bit of a disaster, as angry ‘fans’ caused chaos at the Xiaomi event and things became calm only after police intervention. That’s not the only Xiaomi related development this week either. Xiaomi said it doesn’t need government exemptions to open retail stores in India. The company had reportedly applied to open retail stores in April seeking an exemption from local sourcing norms, but Xiaomi’s India Head Manu Jain said that the company is manufacturing devices locally and so does not need an exemption. This is contrary to the news earlier that Xiaomi had sought an extension but retracted its application.

In India, Google now officially rolled out an option to let you quickly switch between Hindi and English search results. In Bangalore, Team Indus, the only Indian entrant for Google’s X-Prize, launched a competition for space enthusiasts, giving students a chance to send a project to the surface of the moon. Another piece of news that sounds promising is that the Supreme Court dismissed a PIL seeking WhatsApp’s encryption key.

Amazon Web Services got a new region, it’s 13th globally, in Mumbai this week. AWS India head Bikram Singh Bedi told Gadgets 360 that this will help with latency and data sovereignty concerns; this could signal a new focus on public sector customers in India.

On the global stage, a lot of people have been speculating about how the British referendum on its EU status, “Brexit”, will affect businesses. There’s still not too much clarity, but Google at least seems to be staying put. Eric Schmidt says the Brexit vote is unlikely to shift investment which will leave some people sighing with relief. A man in the US claims that Apple owes him a fortune for coming up with the iPhone, and a former US secret service agent is suspected in Bitcoin thefts.

Another interesting development this week was when Nasa’s Juno mission entered Jupiter’s magnetic field. The Jupiter-bound spacecraft has entered the planet’s magnetosphere, which is the largest structure in the solar system, and the boundary into Jupiter itself. And do you remember the Philae lander? Well, the Rosetta spacecraft with reunite with the robot lab Philae on the surface of a comet on September 30, according to a statement from the European Space Agency. Meanwhile, a study says that the presence of Manganese Oxide indicates that Mars was once Earth-like.

And in headlines that we never thought we’d ever type – a man has married his smartphone – in, where else, but Las Vegas.

Win Star Trek merchandise and movie tickets by participating in our Star Trek Beyond contest.

Tags: Amazon Web Services, Apple, Brexit, Eric Schmidt, Freedom 251, Game of Thrones, Google, GoT S6, Juno, Jupiter,Mi Max, Philae, Police, Ringing Bells, Rosetta, Spotify, Tesla, Xiaomi
[“Source-Gadgets”]

Bad News for Sony Mobile Fans as Company Will Reportedly ‘Defocus’ on India

Bad News for Sony Mobile Fans as Company Will Reportedly 'Defocus' on India

HIGHLIGHTS

  • Sony Mobile expects less growth in markets such as China and India
  • Sony to focus in East Asia (including Japan), Europe and the Middle East
  • The company will focus in the high value-added segment

Sony Mobile at a recent investor meet has reportedly confirmed that it will focus less on select markets like China, India, and the US where its performance has been less than satisfactory. Sony expects its smartphone business in these countries will grow only 0.3 percent in these markets, which explains its decision to “defocus” on these regions.

Xperia Blog, which got access to presentations and other material that Sony shared at the inventory meet, adds that the company now has a regional strategy which means Sony will target only regions which are expected to have improved CAGR (compound annual growth rate) smartphone growth.

Apart from China, India, and the US, Sony is also said to shrink its smartphone business in Brazil. Thereport says that Sony Mobile will instead look to focus in East Asia (including Japan), Europe, and the Middle East.

sony_slide_xperia_blog.jpg“Sony expects to ‘preserve’ its Latin American business and other Asia Pacific regions,” points out the report.

One of the slides reads: “Sony’s priority is to focus on markets where Sony can leverage its strengths to ensure profitability improvements.” In another slide, the company notes, “Sony to maintain its core focus in the high value-added segment and develop its business through product differentiation, since players that can offer high value-added smartphones globally are limited.”

Sony’s presentation slide also hints that the company expects to face intensified competition in entry and mid-tier segments from Chinese and Indian smartphone players. Sony also points to “growth slowdown in emerging markets”.

Sony earlier this year introduced an all-new Xperia X series which replaced the earlier flagship Xperia Z series. The company in May was reported to have pulled the plug on the Xperia C and Xperia M series of smartphones. Sony’s move to kill its Xperia C-Series and Xperia M-Series smartphones seems to be in line with the slides, which suggest that Sony will focus on the high end segment of the market.

Win Star Trek merchandise and movie tickets by participating in our Star Trek Beyond contest.

Tags: Mobiles, Sony, Sony India, Sony Mobiles, Xperia, Xperia X
[“Source-Gadgets”]

Pokemon Go, Reliance Jio, iPhone 7, and More News This Week

Pokemon Go, Reliance Jio, iPhone 7, and More News This Week

HIGHLIGHTS

  • Reliance Jio is offering three months free data to Samsung users
  • Idea is offering 45 percent more mobile data at same rate
  • Next Nasa Mars Rover discussion will be on Facebook Live

Missed out on the tech news of the week? Don’t worry, because we’ve got you covered. There was a lot of interesting news that developed over the week, and also, a tonne of Pokemon Go related stuff. Pikachu, Rattata, and Machop are entering into everyday conversations and if you were a geek growing up in the 90s, then this is really great. But if you’re sick and tired of hearing about this, we’ve got something that can help you. Check out ourguide to avoiding Game of Thrones spoilers – these tips can be tweaked to isolate yourself from Pokemon Go too. Also, if you’re sick and tired of Pokemon Go, you might want to skip the next couple of paragraphs.

Now, as usual, our Orbital Podcast talks about the biggest developments in the world of tech. This week, we talk about Pokemon Go in India. Pokemon Go might not have launched here yet but you candownload and install it pretty easily, just be careful about Pokemon malware.

(Also see: Pokemon Go Review)

Here are some basic tips and tricks to get started, and some more detailed guides as well. If you aren’t really clear about the difference between Pikachu and Pokemon, our 10 point Pokemon Go cheatsheet will help, and we’ve also got the inside story about Niantic Labs, the company that’s behind Pokemon Go.

(Also see: This Indian Augmented Reality Game Could Be the Next Pokemon Go)

Also, here’s a look at what people playing Pokemon Go from India had to say about it, and if you still want more Pokemon news, then visit our Pokemon Go page.

If you want, you can talk about your experience like playing Pokemon Go in India or share your discoveries with other Pokemon Go players in our forum by following our threads for Delhi, Mumbai,Pune, Bengaluru, Hyderabad, Chennai, Kolkata, or starting your own.

There were some interesting phone launches as well this week – here are some of the highlights from amongst those. Reliance launched two Lyf phones this week. Asus also launched two phones, the Asus ZenFone 3 Laser and the Asus ZenFone 3 Max. The phones were launched in Vietnam, and availability in other countries hasn’t been announced for now. In China, Huawei launched the Huawei Maimang 5, while the Moto E3 launch took place in the UK.

Also this week, we had the launch of the Lenovo Vibe K4 Note Wooden Edition, at Rs. 11,499, and theLG Stylus 2 Plus in India.

There’s also been a video sighting of an iPhone 7 – the release is drawing closer and the leaks are springing up as usual; expect more details in the coming weeks.

Nintendo meanwhile doubled down and after the resounding success of Pokemon Go and announced the NES Classic Edition, a revamped NES console for $59.99 (around Rs. 4,000) which will come with 30 classic games. The system won’t get any extra games, but the 30 games you will get are Nintendo’s most famous classics, so this sounds like a retro lover’s dream come true.

Aside from that, Facebook has some fun news – Nasa will hold the next Mars Rover discussion on Facebook Live. The company has been working with Nasa to promote other features, such as showing 360-degree photos from Mars so this isn’t really surprising. Also, Facebook Messenger is getting Instant Articles support this month which means articles that load instantly even while you are chatting. And speaking of social media – Maneka Gandhi met with the Twitter team to curb harassment of women online. Everyone knows about Twitter’s trolling problem, but is government intervention a solution?

Potentially huge news from the telecom world – Google’s Project Fi rolls out for its data services in 135 new countries. US-based users of Project Fi can now benefit from much faster international data speeds, and as this rollout steadily continues it’s going to disrupt existing telecom businesses.

In India, Idea Cellular has slashed its mobile data rates across all circles, offering 45 percent more data on ‘sachet’ packs, low value packs priced between Rs. 8 and Rs. 225. Still doesn’t compare to the Rs. 93 for 10GB 4G data Reliance Jio is supposed to offer, but ut’s definitely a welcome move.

Airtel was also in the news this week, though not for anything good – there’s a suspicion that Airtel is sniffing and censoring Cloudflare traffic in India. The telco has denied this entirely, and stated that blocking of any page is only done at the URL level, while CloudFlare never responded to Gadgets 360’s queries on the subject.

Samsung meanwhile has tied up with Reliance Jio, and customers with select Samsung smartphones can now get a free Reliance Jio SIM and three months of free 4G data. This is Reliance’s first tie up with a manufacturer (outside of its own brand Lyf) and reports suggest that more such announcements are in the pipeline.

Download the Gadgets 360 app for Android and iOS to stay up to date with the latest tech news, product reviews, and exclusive deals on the popular mobiles.

Tags: Airtel, Facebook, Google, Huawei, Idea, Lenovo, Mars, Moto E3, Motorola, Nasa, Niantic, Niantic Labs, Nintendo,Pokemon, Pokemon Go, Reliance, Samsung, Twitter
[“source-ndtv”]

Gboard, WhatsApp for Computer, Pebble in India, and Greater News This Week

Gboard, WhatsApp for Desktop, Pebble in India, and More News This Week

HIGHLIGHTS
Google released ‘Gboard’ that can be the quality iOS keyboard yet.
WhatsApp has released a Laptop app that you could not need.
Pebble has officially launched in India – and an entire lot More.
If you‘ve neglected out at the big Information of the week, you’ve got come to the proper area, as we attempt to get you caught up on everything you need to understand in a single brief study. And there has been loads of interesting stuff happening this week. Here are some of the highlights, and also take a look at out the contemporary episode of our Orbital podcast.

For starters, we had some essential launches, which include the Lyf Flame 2, and Wind 4, Twin-SIM 4G smartphones with VoLTE, for Reliance’s upcoming Jio network. There may be additionally the Lava A67 with five-inch show, launched at Rs. four,549, and the Micromax Canvas 6 release (overview) alsooccurred this week. The Intex iRist Junior and iRist Seasoned smartwatches were also launched, with the Junior priced at simply Rs. 3,999. Centered at kids, the Junior comes with GPS connectivity so parents canmusic their youngsters, and it works with each iOS and Android devices. Talking of smartwatches, theunique smartwatch, Pebble, is eventually officially in India. Prices start at Rs. 5,999, and move up to Rs. 15,999 for the Pebble Time Steel.

Other than those launches, we additionally were given new Windows 10 laptops from iBall, and a numberLED TVs from Panasonic. We additionally noticed the release of the Samsung Galaxy Tab A ten.1 (2016), and the Meizu m3 note is also in India now. Different cellphone launches this week encompass the respect V8 launch as well as the QiKU N4 with 4GB of RAM and a deca-center SoC. Other huge launchesincluded the Xiaomi Mi Max with a 6.44-inch display and the Lenovo Zuk Z1.

Xiaomi_mi_max_front_hand.Jpg
(also see: Pinnacle five Capabilities of Xiaomi’s Largest Cellphone)

Airtel introduced self-law on call excellent, while Videocon stated efforts are on to solve the trouble, a day after the Best Court docket nixed Trai’s regulation for telcos to compensate us for name drops. It’s a little ironic that the agencies at the moment are taking sturdy stands on call drops – now that the issue ofreimbursement is off the desk.

(also see: Telcos React to call Drop Penalty Ruling, Say They WantActualProblems Constant)

Facebook had an interesting week as well. At the start of the week, it changed into alleged that theemployer has been doctoring the trending topics despite the fact that Fb refuted the claims. Now, Fb CEO Mark Zuckerberg has promised to research any bias in trending subjects, while he reiterated that noevidence of alleged manipulation were found. Fb also launched worker tips amid the accusations.

(additionally see: Why Bias Complaints Approximately Facebook‘s Trending Is a huge Deal)

One massive piece of Information If you use WhatsApp to your pc at paintings due to the fact your boss will yell at you if he sees you tapping away on your telephone all day – WhatsApp Web now helps documentsharing and not simply media sharing. WhatsApp also launched apps for Mac and Windows, althoughthese essentially work similar to WhatsApp Net, so It’s not clear why you would Want to install the app? Fellow Fb firm Instagram meanwhile overhauled its emblem and apps, though maximum of the Net turned into not thrilled. Most of the people made amusing of the new emblem, across a ramification of social networks.

Instagram_new_logo.Jpg
in the meantime, don’t forget how Microsoft introduced It is Word Flow keyboard to iOS in April? well, Google doesn’t Need to be left at the back of, and It is launched Gboard, which brings Google Search to the iPhone keyboard. This allows customers to look for emojis or gifs while typing, or to insert Seek effectsright into a textual content immediately from the keyboard. Surely no employer wants to omit out on theextraordinarily rewarding iPhone keyboard marketexpect Facebook to release one at this fee!

(additionally see: Google’s Gboard Might be the quality iPhone Keyboard but)

Truecaller also added stay caller Identity for iPhones, form of. It only works if every other Truecallerconsumer is calling you, and is at the cutting-edge version of the app, and if they’re calling you from an iPhone, then they want to vicinity the call via the Truecaller app as well. It isno longer very effective for now – it wasn’t working for plenty of customers, and did not work whilst we attempted it either.

There’s also a robust risk that Google will launch the predicted standalone Android VR headset at Google I/O subsequent week. This headset might not need to be connected to a Pc, or have a Cellphone inserted into it to work. anticipate it to fall somewhere between current mobile VR gadgets and excessivegive upComputer VR gadgets consisting of the Oculus Rift, in phrases of pricing and abilties. A standalonedevice ought to assist with adoption from lovers, which in turn will assist create an target market for earlycontent creators, however ultimately, if this era goes to look mass adoption, Cardboard remains the mostthrilling bet inside the blend.

Oculus_rift_black_inside
(also see: ‘I Sense Sick, Give Me the Bucket’: What 25 Hours in Digital Truth Appears like)

More Google NewsIn case you had been expecting Android N to convey 3-d touch, prepare to bedisenchanted as it was showed that this may not be the case at the least at launch. The company is likewise reportedly running on a product called Chirp, to take at the Amazon Echo clever-assistant/ speaker. And additionally, Google Translate now works in any app on Android, which sounds extraordinarilybeneficial, and it additionally gets an offline mode for iOS.

(also see: Android doesn’t Really want 3D touch)

Oh additionally, you may have stumble upon headlines saying that Apple has now invested in Ola. It iskind of correct, but also very incorrect. Apple invested $1 billion in Didi Chuxing (formerly Didi Kuaidi), Uber’s rival in China. Didi is in flip a strategic investor in Ola – It is invested in businesses competing with Uber around the arena.

now not a whole lot of exact News for game enthusiasts this week – Mass Efffect: Andromeda has beenbehind schedule, and Disney is shutting down the Infinity recreation unit, costing 300 human beings their jobs and putting an quit to a totally cool franchise. We do have a few cool gaming critiques you couldcheck out from this week even though – we cherished Doom, and had a lot to say Approximately the remaster of Valkyria Chronicles. another huge sport this week became Battleborn, which has a terriblecampaign but brilliant action, while Uncharted 4 was a becoming farewell to Nathan Drake.

Jeep_uc4
There has been additionally some very cool technology News this week – automaker Hyundai unveiled a wearable robotic. It’s now not a giant robotic, which could be very disappointing, however rather a powered exoskeleton that could be used in lots of areas, inclusive of the navy, and on manufacturingstrains. Yes, the armour suits from technology fiction books and films are sooner or later taking place.Similarly cool, astronomers have brought 1,284 planets to the listing of worlds past the sun device, takingthe overall list to over 3,264. Of the 1,284 new planets, apparently 550 May be rocky like Earth, with 9 in all likelihood in orbits suitable for floor water that could bolster the potentialities of supporting life.

(additionally see: stay Braille Targets to assist the Visually Challenged Pass ApproximatelyIndependently)

Incidentally, a brand new examine shows that Cellphone use can also reason interest deficiency but In case you‘re reading this on a telephone and feature made it this a long way, you then‘re possibly doingbest.

Down load the Gadgets 360 app for Android and iOS to live updated with the cutting-edge techInformation, product critiques, and distinct offers at the popular mobiles.

Tags: Apple, Battleborn, name drops, Doom, Fb, Gboard, Google, Hyundai, Instagram, iPhone Keyboards, Microsoft, Uncharted four, WhatsApp, WhatsApp Web