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Sunday, 30 July 2017

Idea raises concerns on JIO Phone over net neutrality, planning to launch its own cheap feature phone

Its over a week since the telecom giant JIO has announced its ambitious 4G feature phone the 'JIO phone'. The phone looks pretty good for the masses when looked at the bundle of offerings one gets with it. The customers get free voice calls to any network, a TV cable developed in house which will allow users to connect with normal television sets to watch the content on large screen and not to mention preloaded JIO apps to watch content, get news and do more on their affordable feature handset. And no this is not a dream shown by a con company like Ringing Bells

JIO Phone
JIO Phone
One might think what could be wrong with someone being generous to help push the Digital India dream to next set of users which are forgotten even by the government, however competitors pay close attention to your moves in a game play. Its like the government and opposition where both groups work on their own agenda while also playing the role of watchdog to bring wrong doings of each other. In similar circumstances Idea is the first one to find and raise the anomalies behind the scheme.

The issue raised by Idea is very genuine and serious. The JIO phone booking starts from 24th August and offers the customers its own apps and may be some other apps with which company might tie up, but also deprive the users to have basic apps which are prevalent in market and force their own version of apps instead. The story is very similar to that of Facebook's Facebook's mission to provide selective internet for free to users which had caused a massive outrage against the company and led TRAI to set out norms for the same.

Idea on other hand is planning on something slightly expensive offering but it will allow users the choice of operator, apps, browser etc. Its not only Idea that has raised the flag over JIO phone , Deutsche Bank and Kotak bank also expressed their concerns saying that the offering might well be breaching net neutrality principles.

Thursday, 27 July 2017

Top 10 reasons the ZenFone AR is the next big thing

The ASUS ZenFone AR is built from the ground up for augmented reality. There’s a lot to love about this cutting-edge smartphone, but let’s run down the biggest reasons why you should consider picking one up.

1. Tango Technology - Augmented Reality

Tango AR
Tango is the augmented reality system by Google which marries depth-sensing and motion-tracking camera technology. With the right apps, virtual objects can inhabit the space around you in fun, informative, and creative ways. For example, you could size up furniture for your living room, or chase monsters through your kitchen. It’s a brand new world of possibilities with augmented reality and Tango.

2. Daydream Technology - Virtual Reality

VR with Daydream view support
The ZenFone AR is the first Android phone to include both Tango and Daydream support in the same device. With the Daydream View headset, you can enjoy your own personal cinema filling your whole field of view, or dive into immersive games with the help of the included controller. The growing library of Daydream apps means you’ll always have new experiences right around the corner.

3. Next-generation camera

While the TriCam system combines every technology required for fluid virtual reality and augmented reality, the primary 23 megapixel camera can take some incredible shots. It has a large f/2.0 aperture, perfect for shooting in low-light. It can capture video in razor-sharp 4K, complete with optical and electronic image stabilization.

4.       Lightning-fast autofocus

ASUS has been carefully refining its autofocus system over the course of several generations. TriTech consists of three mechanisms working seamlessly with one another. First, there’s traditional object-tracking focus. Then, there’s laser autofocus, which can detect the distance of subjects out to 1.5 meters, even in low light. Finally, phase detection autofocus is specialized at capturing subjects in motion. All of that comes together for a lock in under 0.03 seconds.

5.       Incredible processing power

Thanks to the custom-tailored Qualcomm Snapdragon 821 processor, the ZenFone AR is able to construct vibrant 3D worlds on the fly. This requires not only an impressive amount of sheer processing power power, but energy efficiency, too. We are working with a smartphone, after all, which needs to be able to carry on with usual functions the rest of the day.

 6.       Mind-blowing sound

The finely tuned SonicMaster 3.0 engine produces premium audio in any circumstance. A new 5-magnet speaker design can churn out music louder than ever without distorting or damaging the hardware. Advanced signal processing by way of the NXP Smart AMP can handle audio at up to four times CD quality. Whether you’re in VR, or just relaxing with some tunes, the ZenFone AR will not disappoint.

7.       A beautiful display

When using the ZenFone AR with the Daydream View headset, the screen will be quite close to your eyes. ASUS has made this display exceptionally sharp to maximize immersion. At 5.7 inches, your full field of view will be taken over. The Super AMOLED 2560 x 1440 WQHD screen will produce details at the sharpest definition and with the deepest colors.

8.       Premium construction

The ZenFone AR pushes boundaries, and it feels built for the task. With a burnished leather rear and precision-milled metal frame, you’ll enjoy a true feeling of luxury every time you take the ZenFone AR out of your pocket. During day-to-day use, the Gorilla Glass 4 cover will amply protect the screen. Overall, the fine craftsmanship at play will ensure this phone ages gracefully.

9.       Biggest RAM ever in a smartphone

The ZenFone AR manages to pack in 8 GB of RAM. You can read more about how RAM works and why it’s important here, but the bottom line is that having 8 GB of it in the ZenFone AR ensures it will be able to handle intensive processing tasks of any kind, not just those that have to do with augmented reality and virtual reality.

10.   Cutting edge uses of AR technology

Last but not the least, the augmented reality or AR goes beyond VR in some key respects, enabling users to integrate real and virtual scenes — in effect, allowing you to try on products before you buy. Imagine buying furniture that you often have trouble visualizing in your home. Asian augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) startup iStaging lets you arrange furniture and appliances in your living space. By integrating the product images in your designated space, thus giving you a concrete visualization of potential purchases.
Bridging the gap between the virtual and physical worlds, augmented reality (AR) app enables students and teachers to visualize 3D models in the real environment, in real time, and at scale desired. AR Solar System, inspiring young kids to understanding the enormity and complexity of their universe. Anatomy 4D helps to discover a world of knowledge about your own amazing hardware. Zenfone AR opens up to plethora of opportunities for everyone irrespective of age.
The ZenFone AR is an absolute feat of engineering. Dig into more details on the ZenFone AR product page.

ICC Women’s World Cup Final Creates a New Record on Hotstar

India's leading video on demand platform, Hotstar today announced record viewership for the ICC Women's World Cup 2017 final match played between host England and India. For some it may be surprising to hear this news but for me it is something which was expected and I have my reasons for that. Let me take you 12 years back  to 2005 when India was in Finals, Mithali Raj led the team and lost to Australia in the pen ultimate match. Next day we woke up to the news, not covered with great depth but many of  us came to know that India is represented in Women Cricket as well and not only that we have reached till finals. May be that was the only peak point of popularity at that stage. But 2017 is different, its different in many ways, the advertisements are  at the par of the men tournaments, the internet penetration is way too high and the accessibility is again one another factor. Thanks to apps like Hotstar which have made it possible to seamlessly stream live matches on the go.

Indian Women Cricket Team posing for cameras
From the very first match when India beat England by 35 runs, it was part of the discussion even though the Indian fans were just coming out the shocker of Champions Trophy defeat in Finals. The players were now being called by name, they were no longer discussed as statistics. Smriti Mandhana became national crush and Harmanpreet Kaur's 171 run made her a household name. Mithali Raj became the highest ODI scorer in women's cricket. India defeated the defending champions Australia in Semi-Finals. All this was not going to go un-noticed. 

The match peaked in the contentious 48th over with India needing 11 runs to win off 12 balls, recording a peak concurrency of 1.9 million simultaneous viewers. This was higher than the average concurrency of many of the marquee men’s cricket tournaments on Hotstar in the last year, a feat in its own right and an inflection point in women’s sports. While Vivo IPL 2017 saw a predictable list of state-wise tune-ins, consistent with team loyalties, the Women’s World Cup saw a surprise entrant in UP, which along with Maharashtra, contributed to 25% of total viewership.

This is just the beginning, the sports has already garnered much support and recognition from local audience with this tournament we believe and wish there is more to this success story.

Thursday, 20 July 2017

Honor Band 3 Fitness Tracker with Heart Rate Sensor launched for Rs 2799, exclusively available on Amazon from today.

Huawei's digital brand Honor has announced launch of Honor Band 3 with continuous Heart Rate sensor, Water resistance of upto 50 meters, Smart Notifications, Advance Sleep tracking and a battery life claimed to be of 30 days. The band is priced very competitively at INR 2799 and will be exclusively available on Amazon India.

Honor Band 3

The minimalist design of Honor Band 3 curves to fit the wrist and follows a smooth pattern with sharp chamfered edges. The band is a first in its category to provide water resistance up to 50 meters and has customer swimming modes to track swim time, calories burned and more. Weighing just 18 grams, Honor Band 3 comes with optical heart rate monitoring technology that lets you check your statistics anytime with a twist of your wrist. For heart rate tracking, the band has five zones to help you precisely track and optimize your workouts – warm-up, fat burning, aerobic, anaerobic and extreme. The next generation heart rate algorithm coupled with M4 core technology is optimized for 10 different fitness scenarios and delivers a more accurate heart rate data.

“Focused on innovation and customer-centricity, Honor is committed to introducing meaningful products. Wearable technology is changing the world really fast as they provide us with vital information that can help us live better. The new Honor Band 3 is equipped with smart technology to help people use intelligent trackers to keep a close watch on their fitness statistics.” said Mr. P. Sanjeev, Vice President – Sales (Huawei & Honor Consumer Business).
Price and Availability
The Honor Band 3 is another Amazon excusive and will be available from July 20th in three funky colors- Dynamic Orange, Classic Navy Blue, and Carbon Black priced at INR 2,799. Honor will launch the most sort after Carbon Black color first and introduce the other two  colors in during the week of Raksha Bandhan & Independence Day celebrations.  The Band 3 will come with 12 month service warranty and backed by Honor’s best-in-class after sale facilities which no doubt will offer additional peace of mind to consumers. 

Hotstar brings premiere of 'Game of Thrones' minutes after US telecast, sets right tone for campaign "Torrent Morghulis"

Winter has finally arrived for GOT fans on Sunday night when the premiere episode of pen-ultimate season was aired originally on HBO in US. For those who have somehow missed the GOT train, GOT stands for 'Game of Thrones' a series which is arguably most watched, downloaded, admired series of all time. We just can't stop admiring G R R Martin's brilliance in spinning up a world with 7 kingdoms, a new language known as High Valyrian. When we say that the show is most viewed in the world it also means that it is also one of the most pirated series which worries its creators a lot.

Hotstar, India’s leading video-on-demand platform, and the exclusive online destination for award-winning HBO content in India, launched the highly anticipated premiere of Game of Thrones Season 7 on Monday, 17 July. The first episode of the new season was available for audiences to view within minutes of its US telecast, under the Hotstar Premium service.

In response to the burgeoning audience for international content in India, Hotstar has partnered with the world’s largest studios, like HBO, Disney and Showtime, to bring the most celebrated international movies and shows to India.

Taking a humorous lens to this, Hotstar has launched a bold marketing campaign, intended to upend the behavior of illegal downloading. Titled ‘Torrents Morghulis’, a play on ‘Valar Morghulis’, as fans of the show will instantly recognize, the theme translates to ‘All Torrents Must Die’. The campaign lightheartedly highlights the trouble people put themselves through for finding and downloading illegal content, and how redundant these pains are in the current day and age where shows are readily available, at the user’s fingertips.

Leading with the promise of ‘Minutes after America, hours before Russia’, the campaign takes Torrents head on with 4 TV commercials, an outdoor campaign in key cities, and high impact digital activation. The films features two characters, one, who still labours through the process of procuring his content illegally, and another, who’s got a Hotstar Premium subscription and is able to enjoy the Game of Thrones experience the way it is meant to be – available to watch with the world, ad-free, unbeeped and unblurred.

Based on George R.R. Martin's best-selling 'A Song of Ice and Fire' series, Game of Thrones has run for six extremely acclaimed seasons and holds the record for the highest Emmy wins for any Primetime TV show. Watch Game of ThronesSeason 7 immediately after the US telecast, Monday 17th July onwards, on Hotstar -