Monday, 11 May 2015

Samsung to delay its smartwatch launch until Apple Watch hype dies down: Report

Samsung to delay its smartwatch launch until Apple Watch hype dies down: Report
Samsung is known to be working on a new smartwatch to take on the Apple Watch. Now, a new report by SamMobile, known to provide accurate details about unannounced Samsung products, now reveals that the company plans to delay the launch of its new smartwatch until the hype around the Apple Watch dies down.
SamMobile has learnt that the launch has been pushed to the second half of the year, most likely September alongside the Galaxy Note 5, so that the company can “follow a proper time table with its product launches, and possibly to give the market time to settle down with the Apple Watch’. Needless to say, Apple Watch is the most talked-about smartwatch. Moroever, Samsung already has several failed attempts at wooing audiences with a smartwatch.
Samsung has announced a slew of other watches in the past (none have managed to make an impact), but the highlight of the upcoming wearable is its round face. This is the first Samsung smartwatch with a round face. We have previously seen the similar pattern being followed by Motorola with the Moto 360 and LG with the G Watch R smartwatches adopting circular screens.
It will reportedly also come with a ‘rotating bezel ring’. It is internally codenamed Orbis, but could be launched as ‘Gear A’.
Interestingly, we’ve been hearing about this smartwatch for quite some time now. It was earlier rumoured to be announced at MWC and hit stores on the same day as the Apple Watch.
Now, it is expected to be announced at the IFA 2015. At the IFA, the company is also expected to announce the Galaxy Note 5. We may see just one variant of the Note 5, featuring a 2K or 4K Super AMOLED display and powered by an Exynos 7422 processor. Besides, Samsung will also launch the Project Zen that is likely to replace the Galaxy Note Edge. It won’t simply be a variant of the Note 5 with a curved display, but a completely new product.
Posted by : Gizmeon

Apple in talks with Alibaba to launch Apple Pay in China: Report

Apple in talks with Alibaba to launch Apple Pay in China: Report
Apple Inc is in talks with Chinese banks and Alibaba Group Holding Ltd on launching the firm’s mobile payments system in China, Chief Executive Tim Cook told the official Xinhua news agency in an interview.
“We very much want to get Apple Pay in China,” Cook told Xinhua during a visit to the country. “I’m very bullish on Apple Pay in China.” Apple could not immediately be reached to comment on the report.
Apple Pay, which allows consumers using Apple devices to buy goods by holding the device up to readers installed by store merchants, was launched in the United States last September and quickly began to handle more transactions than all other “contact less” payment methods combined, Apple said.
Cook said he believed it could take off even faster in China.
Alibaba executive chairman Jack Ma said in October that the Chinese e-commerce giant was open to working with Apple on Apple Pay. Alibaba affiliate Alipay is China’s largest payments service. Analysts expect China to take over the Americas to become Apple’s biggest market. In the first three months of the year, for the first time, Apple sold more iPhones in China than in the United States.
The firm hopes to keep adding stores in China, where it aims to have 40 by next year, from 22 currently, Cook told Xinhua.
Cook’s China visit was to focus on Apple Pay’s entry as well as environmental initiatives to protect forests, he added.
Posted by : Gizmeon

How the Tor Project is bringing anonymity back to the web

How the Tor Project is bringing anonymity back to the web
Between government surveillance programs and websites that track users’ location and browsing habits, anonymity is hardly a given on today’s web. But there are a few solutions available for those looking to go incognito. Among the most ambitious initiatives in this vein is the Tor Project.
At the core of the Tor Project is a distributed network, in which several layers of connected routers act as separate “nodes,” transmitting information while guaranteeing users’ anonymity. In practice, this means users can connect through the network to prevent websites from pinpointing their location.
There are multiple ways to go online using the Tor network, but the most popular is the Tor Browser, a free program that allows users to surf the web through the distributed network. For total anonymity, users are advised to deactivate all of their extensions, including Flash and JavaScript, keeping in mind that this limits access to certain sites and services.
It is also possible to connect to the Tor network when using other browsers, such as Internet Explorer and Firefox, after making some fairly advanced tweaks to the network settings. Other programs that allow users to connect to the Tor network include the TorChat anonymous messaging service and a dedicated BitTorrent client.
Following Edward Snowden’s revelations on the NSA’s surveillance programs, a growing number of users worldwide have migrated to the Tor network, including everyday people concerned about online privacy. Nonetheless, the network still has a somewhat shady reputation, as it is also used by drug traffickers and arms dealers, among others seeking to avoid the law.
According to Karen Reilly, director of development at Tor, 2.5 million users access the web through the network daily.
Posted by : Gizmeon

OnePlus Power Bank with 10,000mAh battery arrives in India at Rs 1399

OnePlus Power Bank with 10,000mAh battery arrives in India at Rs 1399
Keeping up with its promise to not make users in India wait too long, OnePlus has launched its 10,000mAh Power bank in India priced at Rs 1399. It is up for grabs on and will be available in Silk white and Sandstone black.
“To compliment your existing devices and to help you stave away from the ‘charge your device’ every so often blues, we offer you the “OnePlus Power Bank” where portability, affordability and capacity will be your key features for buying this wonderful accessory,” OnePlus writes in a blogpost.
The portable power bank comes equipped with dual USB ports (5V-2A) for charging two devices at a time. It also comes with a battery indicator LED along with safety features to prevent overcharging and overheating. The battery is also backed by one year manufacturer warranty. It claims to provide three full charges for the OnePlus One.
In March, OnePlus has started shipping the 10,000mAh Power Bank in the US. The company had also promised an India launch soon and released a statement saying, “As for our fans in Europe and India, you won’t have to wait long, either. We are ironing out the logistics process for a smoother shipping experience.”
Recently, the company also announced to have resolved issues it had with Micromax through mutual consent. OnePlus One users in India will continue to get Cyanogen updates.
Posted by : Gizmeon

BlackBerry Leap smartphone with 5-inch display launched in India at Rs 21,490

BlackBerry Leap smartphone with 5-inch display launched in India at Rs 21,490
BlackBerry has launched the Leap smartphone in India at Rs 21,490. It will be available starting today via all BlackBerry exclusive stores.
The BlackBerry Leap is an affordable all-touch smartphone which sports a 5-inch edge-to-edge HD display with a 720 x 1280 pixel resolution along with a 294ppi pixel density. It is powered by a Snapdragon S4 Plus chip, which has a 1.5GHz dual-core Krait CPU. It also includes 2GB RAM.
BlackBerry Leap runs BlackBerry 10 OS (version 10.3) and supports BlackBerry Blend desktop software. In terms of memory, the device has an in-built storage of 16GB and can be further expanded up to 128GB via microSD card. On the camera front, the BlackBerry Leap has an 8MP auto-focus camera with LED flash along with a 2MP front-facing camera. The device can record 1080p videos at 30fps and also has a 5x digital zoom.
In terms of connectivity, it supports Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n, Hotspot, Bluetooth v4.0, A-GPS, 4G LTE and microUSB v2.0. The smartphone is fuelled by a non-removable Li Ion 2800mAh battery that claims to last for up to 25 hours, even after heavy use.
“The BlackBerry Leap was designed specifically for the young power professionals who see their smartphone device as a powerful and durable productivity tool that also safeguards sensitive communications, while on-the-go” said Sunil Lalvani, Managing Director, BlackBerry India. “With BlackBerry Leap complementing the latest BlackBerry portfolio, including BlackBerry Passport and BlackBerry Classic, we continue to provide products and services that meet the needs of our consumer and enterprise customers,”
Posted by : Gizmeon

Twitter to help users find a better job

Twitter to help users find a better job
Twitter can help more job-seekers than any other traditional platform if it incorporates a formal job board, say experts. The number of Twitter users has grown more rapidly than LinkedIn and Facebook in 2014, according to a study by the Pew Research Centre.
It showed that Twitter has more job openings than other social media sites and more job seekers than LinkedIn. However, only 15% of recruiters have actually found someone to hire through Twitter.
The people surveyed by Software Advice cited inconsistency of job postings and poor communication by companies with job-seekers as reasons for dissatisfaction.
Currently, the primary way for a Twitter user to find a job is by following specific companies she or he is interested in or by searching via hashtags related to jobs, companies or industries.
But a search for the hashtag #jobsearch will produce hundreds of tweets that are not related to actual jobs, such as articles on job hunting, random thoughts and junk tweets that use the hashtag for promotion.
In addition, as new tweets keep appearing every few seconds, the process of finding an appropriate job can be extremely time consuming and difficult.
What Twitter may do is to add this functionality, perhaps similar to what sites like or CareerBuilder have done. They aggregate job postings, making it easy for job seekers to view jobs by different parameters such as functional area, industry, region etc.
Posted by : Gizmeon

Apple unseats Xiaomi in Chinese market to become number one

Apple unseats Xiaomi in Chinese market to become number one
Apple has for the first time overtaken Xiaomi to become the largest vendor of smartphones in China, one of the world’s biggest markets.
Apple grabbed 14.7% of market share in the first quarter of 2015, surpassing Xiaomi, which had a 13.7% share, according to market researcher the International Data Corporation (IDC).
The two companies were followed by state-owned Huawei, Samsung and Lenovo. Top spot in China’s smartphone market, which is one of the world’s biggest but also one of its most fiercely competitive, has been occupied by four different companies in the past five quarters.
Samsung and Lenovo have also topped the list. Apple, Xiaomi, Huawei, Samsung and Lenovo took up 57.8% of the market in the January-March period. While Apple, Xiaomi and Huawei saw shipments increase during this time, Samsung and Lenovo suffered substantial declines, according to the data.
A total of 98.8 million smartphones were shipped, 4.3% fewer than in the first quarter of 2014.
This was the first such drop in over six years, suggesting the market may be reaching saturation point after several quarters of over 20% growth.
The market entered a period of adjustment in the first quarter as companies’ inventories piled up due to intense competition, Wang Jiping, director of IDC’s China branch, was quoted by news portal
Posted by : Gizmeon

Alibaba in talks to buy $1.2 billion stake in Micromax: Report

Alibaba in talks to buy $1.2 billion stake in Micromax: Report
Alibaba is in talks with India’s Micromax Informatics to buy an about 20 percent stake in the smartphone maker, helping the Chinese e-commerce giant expand in one of the world’s fastest growing markets for the devices, several people with direct knowledge of the matter said.
The deal, if completed, would see Alibaba investing as much as $1.2 billion in Micromax, the second-largest smartphone brand in India by sales, and would value the company at up to $6 billion, two of the people said. India is the world’s third largest smartphone market and was the fastest growing in the Asia Pacific region in the third quarter of last year, according to industry research firm International Data Corporation.
Micromax and Alibaba began talks on the stake sale after discussions with investors led by Japanese telecoms firm Softbank Corp stalled over differences in valuations, the sources said.
“The Softbank talks are not officially over, but it’ll be hard to get back on track,” said one of the people. Softbank is the largest shareholder in Alibaba.
All the sources involved in the process declined to be named as they were not authorised to speak to the media about ongoing talks. Micromax, SoftBank and Alibaba declined to comment. The sources said Alibaba wants to use the Micromax deal to tap into the boom in the number of internet users in India, which is also one of the world’s most rapidly growing smartphone markets.
Growth in India, and especially in mobile transactions, would help Alibaba offset stiff competition at home from domestic rivals including Inc, as well as what appears to be growing e-commerce user saturation.
Strong revenue from mobile transactions helped the company report a 45 percent increase in quarterly revenue. “The talks are centered around using Micromax devices as a platform to get into a serious business of its own in India,” said one of the sources, referring to Alibaba.
Alibaba, for example, would be able to roll out services such as Alipay, its online payment platform, on Micromax phones. Ant Financial Services Group, which owns Alipay, is China’s largest payment service provider and is controlled by Alibaba’s executive chairman and founder Jack Ma.
The stake sale is aimed at helping Micromax raise capital as it expands into new business segments including personal computing.
The company is seeking funds from private investors, or a possible stock market listing, its co-founder told Reuters.
Micromax started up in India in 2008, and its affordable, large-screen phones are now the country’s most popular after Samsung Electronics Co Ltd smartphones. Micromax counts Sequoia Capital and TA Associates among its investors.
Posted by : Gizmeon

Ericsson extends patent suits against Apple to Europe

Ericsson extends patent suits against Apple to Europe
Swedish telecom equipment maker Ericsson has filed lawsuits in Germany, Britain and the Netherlands against Apple over technology licence payments, Ericsson said on Friday, extending a U.S. battle between the firms to Europe.
Ericsson said it had offered to enter into arbitration with Apple to reach a global licensing agreement for its patents, but that offer had now expired. “Apple continues to profit from Ericsson’s technology without having a valid licence in place,” said Kasim Alfalahi, Chief Intellectual Property Officer at Ericsson.
“Our technology is used in many features and functionality of today’s communication devices. We are confident the courts in Germany, the UK and the Netherlands will be able to help us resolve this matter in a fair manner,” he added.
An Apple spokeswoman declined to comment on the legal action in the three European countries, which relates to 2G and 4G/LTE mobile communications standards and non-standardized technology, but referred to its statement in January.
“Unfortunately, we have not been able to agree with Ericsson on a fair rate for their patents so, as a last resort, we are asking the courts for help,” part of that statement said.
Ericsson had already filed a complaint in mid-January in the United States against Apple, responding to a lawsuit from the iPhone maker.
Last year, smartphone maker Samsung Electronics Co agreed to pay Ericsson $650 million along with years of royalties to end a licence dispute.
If the dispute with Apple also went Ericsson’s way, the U.S. firm would have to pay it between 2-6 billion Swedish crowns ($240-725 million) annually, analysts said, based on estimates of levels of handset sales and royalty payments per phone.
Posted by : Gizmeon

Facebook may sue lawyers over fugitive’s lawsuit: US judge

Facebook may sue lawyers over fugitive’s lawsuit: US judge
Facebook may pursue a lawsuit against law firms that represented a New York man who recently turned fugitive rather than face federal charges that he tried to defraud founder Mark Zuckerberg out of half of the company, a judge ruled.
New York Supreme Court Justice Eileen Rakower said Facebook and Zuckerberg could move forward with a lawsuit alleging law firms, including DLA Piper LLP and Milberg LLP, maliciously prosecuted claims by Paul Ceglia that were based on forged documents.
Rakower said that, accepting Facebook’s claims as true, its complaint adequately alleged the law firms “knew there was no basis – and therefore no probable cause- for Ceglia’s claims.”
Facebook in statement said it was pleaded with the ruling and would “continue to hold accountable DLA Piper and the other firms who pursued Paul Ceglia’s fraudulent claims against Facebook.”
A DLA Piper spokesman did not respond to a request for comment. Milberg’s lawyer declined comment, and a lawyer for a third firm, Lippes Mathias Wexler Friedman LLP, did not respond to a request for comment.
The ruling came a week after what would have been the May 4 start of a criminal trial in Manhattan federal court of Ceglia, a 41-year-old wood pellet salesman from Wellsville, New York.
Instead, Ceglia removed his electronic ankle bracelet in early March and disappeared, along with his wife, two children and a dog. His whereabouts remain unknown. The criminal case arose from Ceglia’s June 2010 civil lawsuit in upstate New York against Menlo Park, California-based Facebook and Zuckerberg.
Ceglia alleged that a 2003 contract with Zuckerberg, then a Harvard University freshman who had done programming work for Ceglia’s, entitled him to half of Facebook. The 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in New York last month upheld the dismissal of that lawsuit, saying “overwhelming forensic evidence” showed the contract was forged.
Over the years, the lawsuit was handled by several prominent law firms, including DLA Piper, one of the largest firms in the world.
Facebook sued those firms in October, saying they knew or should have known Ceglia’s lawsuit was a fraud, but plowed ahead “for the purpose of extorting a lucrative and unwarranted settlement.”
Facebook also said those lawyers stayed with the case even after a lawyer at Kasowitz Benson Torres & Friedman, who also represented Ceglia, warned he had found “smoking-gun” evidence of fraud. Kasowitz Benson soon withdrew from the case.
Posted by : Gizmeon

Facebook starts testing internal search engine for mobile: Report

Facebook starts testing internal search engine for mobile: Report
Facebook has started testing an internal search engine for its mobile app. According to a report by Techcrunch, some iOS users are now seeing an ‘add a link’ option alongside ‘add photos, locations and feelings’.
Basically, users can search a keyword in the link function and Facebook will then suggest a list of related news articles that one can post. This new change is being tested to make it simpler to search and share on mobile devices.
This means, one will no longer have to search, copy the URL and then paste it while using mobile phones. The report adds that the update is aimed at ‘Facebook’s recent effort to get publishers to post content directly to the site’.
This means users will be able to search and access content within Facebook, without the need for ‘Googling’ or ever leaving the social network. Facebook is used by many digital news organisations to share content and this move will help solidify its position as a content host. “By hosting content and allowing users to search for stories in its own app, Facebook is making it easy to read and share news without ever actually leaving Facebook,” the report adds.
There is no word on if the update will be made available to everyone. Moreover, it reportedly favours the user’s frequently visited websites or the ones with a higher rating.
Posted by : Gizmeon

Android M at Google I/O: To bring more privacy controls for users

Android M at Google I/O: To bring more privacy controls for users
The most recent leak suggests that Google is all set to announce its upcoming mobile OS iteration, Android M, at the I/O to be held later this month. Now, a Bloomberg report highlights that Android M will bring more ‘privacy controls’ to users.
The new iteration of Android will reportedly offer users more detailed choices over what data apps can access such as photos, contacts, and location data. This move closely follows Apple that recently added similar security features.
A ZDnet report adds that ‘the change would give a user more granular controls over their data and how its used, adding that the option has been present in the past — albeit hidden for developers’ use only’.
Though Google hasn’t officially announced Android M, a session called ‘Android for Work Update’ said, “Android M is bringing the power of Android to all kinds of workplaces.” Google is known to name its mobile OS versions in alphabetical order, so it’s quite likely that after Lollipop, the next name will begin with the letter ‘M’. Google quickly pulled out the description, but not before ArsTechnica got its hands on a screenshot.
From Muffin to Malai barfi, the guess game for the name has already begun.
Posted by : Gizmeon

Fujifilm launches four new instant-print cameras starting at Rs 6441

Fujifilm launches four new instant-print cameras starting at Rs 6441
Fujifilm has launched four new cameras in the Instax series namely, Mini 8, Mini 25, Mini 50S and Mini 90, that can print photos instantly. These cameras are priced between Rs 6,441 and Rs 10,999.
The instax Mini 8 features a compact design and will be available in seven different colours. It comes with a simple operational system for instant pictures. There’s a brightness adjustment dial to allow taking photos in different modes.
Next in line is the instax Mini 25 that comes with a stylish, compact design that can take a selfie print instantly. The instax Mini 50S features a self-timer mode. The instax Mini 90 sports a classic/retro look with advanced features such as bulb and double exposures. It is also equipped with functions like macro mode and high performance flash.
Commenting on the occasion, Yasunobu Nishiyama said, “We are excited to launch the Instax series which has been well accepted in countries outside India. This range has been designed keeping in mind predominantly young age group and their requirements. Indian young population is experimental/ wants to seek new experiences and maintain their family values. Each camera has its own unique features, distinguishing one from the other and comes with 1 year warranty. Considering the growth of the market and the steady progress of the Indian economy, we have an extremely positive outlook for this series and expect it to be welcomed by customers of diverse needs in the country.”
The Mini 8 is priced at Rs 6441, Mini 25 at Rs 8045, Mini 50S at Rs 9147 and Mini 90 at Rs 10999.
Posted by : Gizmeon

Android M at Google I/O: Muffin, Mud pie or Malai barfi? The guessing game begins

Android M at Google I/O: Muffin, Mud pie or Malai barfi? The guessing game begins
While Google may have chosen to name its next version Lollipop over laddoo or licorice or whatever you wished, looks like the guessing game for its next iteration will begin soon. Yes, Google has disclosed the schedule for its I/O event to be held later this month and seems like Android M will be at the show.
One of the sessions called ‘Android for Work Update’ says, “Android M is bringing the power of Android to all kinds of workplaces.” Google is known to name its mobile OS versions in alphabetical order, so it’s quite likely that after Lollipop, the next name will begin with the letter ‘M’. According to ArsTechnica, Google has pulled out the description, but not before the news site got its hands on a screenshot.
So, its not yet official if Google is announcing its next iteration Android M at the event, but several users have already guessing a probable name. Some early favourites are Muffin, Mud pie and Meringue.
How about Indian dessert like Malai Barfi or Malpoa? In fact, last year a group of students from IIT-Kharagpur – which also happens to be Pichai’s alma mater – have been lobbying for the next version of Android to be named Lassi. Google also ensured the fun continues as it announced the next iteration simply as Android L and named it only after the version was ready to ship. This ensured a lot of speculation and buzz around the name.
Prior to that Google chose KitKat by booting out the long-time rumoured Key lime pie. Google had also created a landing page for Kitkat. It created similar buzz with reports about if Nestle’s paid Google or vice versa for using the name KitKat. However, John Lagerling, director of Android global partnerships, quickly said, “This is not a money-changing-hands kind of deal” . Keylime Pie reportedly got the boot as Google realised that not too many people knew the actual taste of a Keylime pie.
So what do you think? What ‘sweet’ name  will Google release for Android M? Let us know. We’d love to see more options.
Posted by : Gizmeon

Android M, Voice Access, Skybox and more things to expect at Google I/O 2015

Android M, Voice Access, Skybox and more things to expect at Google I/O 2015
Google I/O kicks off by the end of the month, and the search giant has now put out the schedule for the event. While Android M is said to be one of the biggest announcements, Google also has some nifty details up its sleeve to reveal at its upcoming event. Here’s a quick look at what to expect at Google I/O.
Android for Work
Google is expected to announce an update to the Android for Work, which was announced earlier this year. It aimed at making the software more appealing to corporations, a move that could help extend the Internet company’s reach into workplaces. At the event, Google is expected to bring Android to all type of work places. “The current implementation doesn’t work for high-security businesses, so we’re guessing that Android M and the new version of Work combine for even more app separation,” points out ArsTechnica.
Android M
The ‘Android for Work Update’ session says, “Android M is bringing the power of Android to all kinds of workplaces.” Google is known to name its mobile OS versions in alphabetical order, so it’s quite likely that after Lollipop, the next name will begin with the letter ‘M’. According to ArsTechnica, Google has pulled out the description, but not before the news site got its hands on a screenshot. From Muffin to Malai barfi, the guess game for the name has already begun.
Voice commands
With the ‘Your app, now available hands-free’ session, the company will be announcing ‘Voice Access’ that offers access to Android devices only via voice. This could probably mean a driving app or so. Moreover, it also means users need to remember a lot more voice commands to access the app. Google may have to work at ensuring the app understands varying accents and dialects.
A session called “The Earth in real time” talks about implementing Skybox. Those not in the know how, Google had bought satellite imaging company Skybox last year for around $500 million. The announcements are speculated to be around real-time satellite imaging.
Cloud Messaging
Google is also expected announce Cloud Messaging 3.0, a new version of Google’s push messaging platform.
Games for Chromecast
Google has also announced to be making more announcements for Chromecast. The description goes on, “designing for the mobile and television experience on multiple screens, and adapting existing game design patterns to a multi-screen interactive format.” There’s also another session covering, “Android and iOS mobile devices as game controllers to unleash new interaction models for Chromecast and other Cast devices.”
One can also expect some more on Polymer 1.0, Google’s UI toolkit at making websites that offer an app feel. Google’s Advanced Technologies and Products group may showcase a wearable at the show. Google is also known to be testing tools to woo developers, and we could possibly hear more on it at the show.
Posted by : Gizmeon

Apple Watch sparks gender divide, says study

Apple Watch sparks gender divide, says study
Looks like Apple Watch, despite all the hype surrounding its launch, has sparked a battle of the sexes, if one goes by the results of a new study.
A study by California-based data mining company CrowdFlower analysed more than 30,000 tweets since the launch of the Apple Watch on April 24 and found the split down gender lines.
Women were far more positive about the Watch before the launch and continue to be so now, the study said.
The study found 64 per cent of women tweeted positive feelings about the Apple Watch compared with 53 per cent of men, Time reported.
The majority of positive tweets about the Apple Watch concerned the use of apps on the Watch while the biggest complaint in negative tweets about the Watch were about the slow delivery for orders, the study found.
The study found that 70 per cent of all tweets about the Apple Watch were from gadget-obsessed guys. Also, people generally loved the fitness app which breaks down a healthy lifestyle into the daily goal of completing three rings of movement, standing and exercise.
But apps happen to be also one of the biggest concerns with the Apple Watch, with 22 per cent of negative tweets about app bugs.
Posted by : Gizmeon

Microsoft may not replace Windows 10; could be the last version of the OS

Microsoft may not replace Windows 10; could be the last version of the OS
News has it that there won’t be a Windows 11. Yes, Windows 10 is the last traditional release from the company, and Microsoft will improve it by adding enhancements and updates in the future.
TheVerge quotes Microsoft employee Jerry Nixon, a developer evangelist speaking at the company’s Ignite conference saying, “Right now we’re releasing Windows 10, and because Windows 10 is the last version of Windows, we’re all still working on Windows 10.”
He reportedly went on to explain how Microsoft has been working on the base of Windows 10 all through last year even when it launched Windows 8.1. The company will continue to further push updates to this latest OS, but will avoid releasing a complete new version.
The reason for this change is Microsoft reportedly plans to launch Windows as a service. However, doesn’t really explain how it plans to do so. “Microsoft has altered the way it engineers and delivers Windows, and the initial result is Windows 10. Instead of big releases, there will be regular improvements and updates. Part of this is achieved by splitting up operating system components like the Start Menu and built-in apps to be separate parts that can be updated independently to the entire Windows core operating system,” points out TheVerge report.
“Recent comments at Ignite about Windows 10 are reflective of the way Windows will be delivered as a service bringing new innovations and updates in an ongoing manner, with continuous value for our consumer and business customers,” a Microsoft spokesperson later told the news site.
The company recently announced the latest build for Windows 10. Read on to find out what’s new.
Posted by : Gizmeon

Late to the party, global banks try to muscle into India’s start-up boom

Late to the party, global banks try to muscle into India’s start-up boom
Global investment banks are scrambling to get a piece of the action from India’s booming technology start-ups, having missed out on the initial flurry of deal-making to their better-connected but much smaller domestic rivals.
Banks including Goldman Sachs, Citigroup and Morgan Stanley are looking to hire more bankers in India and are now regularly attending “bake-offs” to pitch for advisory roles on deals, according to several banking industry sources.
Foreign money has been pouring into India’s fast-growing e-commerce sector, with investors ranging from Japan’s Softbank Corp to Singapore’s Temasek Holdings and GIC Private Ltd piling in.
Many large global investment banks have stayed away from work in the emerging sector though due to the relatively small deal sizes.
Now they are stepping up efforts to build relationships while the companies are still young – learning lessons from China where many of them are struggling to compete with small boutique banks as Internet deals pick up speed.
“Several of these companies will be large IPO candidates in the next 12 to 24 months, so the big banks have to start positioning themselves for this,” said Harish HV, a partner in India at advisory firm Grant Thornton.
The number of venture funding deals for technology start-ups in India in the first quarter of 2015 was the highest in nine quarters and exceeded the number of such deals in China, according to data from CB Insights. The total value of investments in India topped $1 billion for the third straight quarter.
To compete with local rivals like Avendus Capital and Kotak Mahindra Capital, foreign banks are now pitching for relatively small deals at start-ups, hopeful they will eventually lead to more lucrative work, banking sources said.
Avendus, which focused on the tech sector before the deal momentum picked up, ranks fourth in the advisory league table for announced technology deals in India so far this year. That’s ahead of bigger global rivals including Credit Suisse, Bank of America Merrill Lynch and JPMorgan, according to Thomson Reuters data.
While Credit Suisse topped the fee income table with $7.7 million in India technology advisory fees in 2014, Avendus ranked second with $3.7 million from seven deals, according to data from Thomson Reuters/Freeman Consulting Co.
“We first looked at the sector and said ‘okay the sector is going to be sizeable. Who are the leading companies in this?,'” said Aashish Bhinde, head of Avendus’s digital and technology practice.
“Global investment banks were completely missing from the scene.”
Now foreign investment banks are starting to make in-roads. Jefferies’ India arm advised home shopping firm to raise about $20 million last month from Japan’s Mitsui & Co Ltd and some existing investors.
Citigroup Inc, which advised Indian online payment services provider One97 Communications in raising funds from Alibaba Group affiliate Ant Financial Services in February, is “very focused” on the internet space in India, said Madhur Deora, its managing director for investment banking in India.
Morgan Stanley and Goldman Sachs did not respond to requests for comments on their work with Indian technology start-ups.
While India has fewer Internet users than China, online sales could rise to over $100 billion in 2020 from $2.9 billion in 2013, making it the fastest-growing market globally, according to a Morgan Stanley research report.
This has led to global banks vying to offer services like loan financing to online retailers like Flipkart and Snapdeal, hoping this could help them secure mandates on any future IPOs, sources said.
“Fees on these IPOs would be much more Western style than the commoditized deals in India,” said an M&A banker with a large foreign bank, also one of the advisers on Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba Group Holding’s record $25 billion IPO last year.
For large IPOs, Indian tech companies would need the marketing muscles of big foreign banks. But the local banks have likely cemented strong enough relationships that their foreign rivals can not push them out entirely.
“I would be surprised if any investment bank out there is not rapidly building up their digital and tech practice given the pace and momentum with which the transactions are happening, which is good for the industry,” said Bhinde of Avendus.
Posted by : Gizmeon

Alibaba has a new CEO, but it’s still Jack’s house

Alibaba has a new CEO, but it’s still Jack’s house
When Alibaba Group Holding Ltd’s eccentric founder Jack Ma stepped down as CEO two years ago, he declared “the Internet belongs to young people,” and promised that most of the company’s leaders born in the 1960s would soon retreat from management.
On Thursday, that transition at the e-commerce behemoth appeared complete as Ma trumpeted the appointment of a fresh chief executive, Daniel Zhang, born in 1972, as part of a broader reshuffle.
Yet as the eight-year Alibaba veteran and current chief operating officer moves into the corner office, the firm remains as much Jack Ma’s company as it was when it was founded in his apartment 16 years ago.
Ma exerts an outsize influence on the company, holding the title of executive chairman and controlling a 6.26 percent stake as of end-2014, worth about $13.4 billion at Thursday’s closing price of $86 a share.
“No matter who the CEO is, Jack Ma still has ultimate control of the company,” said Henry Guo, an analyst at Summit Research.
If Ma is the visionary, Zhang’s job will be to deliver results quickly, especially as mobile commerce explodes. The company reported on Thursday that mobile transaction value in the March quarter accounted for more than 50 percent of the total for the first time.
For his part, Zhang brings a strong reputation to the job.
He was a “key architect”, the company said, of the hugely successful “Double 11″ shopping festival – also known as Singles Day, the Nov. 11 event that has overtaken Black Friday in the United States as the world’s largest online shopping event – and he helped get the Amazon-like Tmall platform off the ground.
“The business has to change because the market is changing. They need someone to really lead the company to adapt themselves to this environment,” said Tian Hou, of T.H. Capital Research in Beijing.
In a letter to staff on Thursday, Ma praised outgoing CEO Jonathan Lu, who will become a vice chairman and focus on developing talent. “Over these two years, Jonathan has had to face immense pressure and he embraced it with tremendous courage and sacrifice. It was in these two years that Alibaba’s business grew by leaps and bounds,” Ma wrote.
But Lu, who was born in 1969, also presided over a slump of more than 30 percent in Alibaba’s share price from its all-time high in mid-November that carved more than $70 billion off the stock’s value.
The company was also blindsided by Chinese regulators in January over intellectual property piracy and illegal business on Alibaba platforms. Ma quickly smoothed things over.
A company spokeswoman said speculation that Lu might have been removed for underperforming was wrong, adding that the transition had been planned since 2012.
Zhang will take over on Sunday – exactly two years after Lu took the helm. However he fares, the public face of Alibaba will be Ma’s.
“Investors, the Chinese government, CEOs and foreign heads of state courting Alibaba all beat a path to Jack’s door because of the weight he, as a founder, plays in the company internally and how it is perceived, rightly or wrongly,” said Duncan Clark, chairman and managing director at BDA China.
“In Jack’s shadow it’s hard to shine.”
Posted by : Gizmeon

Trai won’t display email addresses only if users specify

Trai won’t display email addresses only if users specify
After drawing flak for making public the email addresses of over 1 million respondents on its net neutrality and OTT regulatory framework consultation paper, the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (Trai) said it will not display addresses if users specifically state so in their counter comments.
A day before the deadline for counter comments to expire, Trai on Thursday said “all stakeholders are hereby informed that during submission of their counter comments, if anyone desires that his/her email ID should not be displayed, it may be specifically stated so in the email.”
The regulator has suggested people interested in sending their comments to have a “proper name for identification and display” in the counter comments.
“Such respondent should also include ‘Do not display my ID’ in the subject of the email,” Trai said.
The regulator had come under sharp criticism when it made the email addresses of over 10 lakh people public along with their response on Trai’s consultation on regulatory framework for OTT or internet based calling and messaging services like Viber, Skype, WhatsApp, Line, etc.
Trai said that it received a large number of e-mails from various stakeholders as comments and stakeholders also requested that their responses be published on the regulator’s website alongside other comments received in line with past practice regarding such public consultations.
After processing the received emails, filtering various spam emails, duplicate emails etc., and for proper display on the Web, these emails were uploaded on Trai website, the regulator said.
“Since many of the emails had only email ID as the header, for easy identification of the stakeholders comments, the comments were segregated date-wise along with their email IDs and uploaded,” Trai said.
Posted by : Gizmeon

Wednesday, 6 May 2015

Flash sale in seconds: Xiaomi Mi Band went out of stock in mere 7 seconds

Flash sale in seconds: Xiaomi Mi Band went out of stock in mere 7 seconds
Xiaomi Mi Band, which went on sale on May 5, was out of stock in mere 7 seconds, states Mi India. It was the first flash sale for the Mi Band and also, the first on its own Mi India store. As a special promotional offer, the first 1,000 registrants got the band at Re. 1.
However, we spoke to several users including one of our team members who managed to grab the device at Re 1 who feel the device went out of stock is mere 2-3 seconds.
Xiaomi launched the Mi Band in India last month alongside the Xiaomi Mi 4i at an event held in New Delhi. Just like all Xiaomi’s smartphones, the band is cheap compared to the ones available in the market priced at 999.
It isn’t a plain boring looking device and is available in a slew of colour options including bright pink, orange and blue. Just like most of the fitness trackers in the market, it tracks user movements and also sleeping patterns. One of the interesting feature is its ability to unlock a device.
Another notable feature is its battery life. Xiaomi claims that the tracker offers up to 30 days of standby time. Moreover, just like most of its competitors, it is water resistant, so you do not have to worry about little drizzles or liquid spills.
Posted by : Gizmeon

Google says more searches on mobile than desktop

Google says more searches on mobile than desktop
Throughout last year, there was buzz around more searches taking place on mobile than desktop. Now, its official. In its Adwords blog, the search giant writes, “More Google searches take place on mobile devices than on computers in 10 countries including the US and Japan.”
However, Google hasn’t divulged further on the number of mobile browser-based searches. Considering Google includes tablets and desktops in the same group, it is certain that by mobile searches it means only smartphones. This has also compelled Google to introduce a new ad experience on mobile that is designed for screen swipes rather than mouse clicks.
Besides, Google also seems to be working at wooing developers to choose Android over iOS. According to a report by TheInformation, the search giant is testing a new system that will allow developers to try out various versions of their apps’ profile pages in the Google Play store.
So, developers can now view if price changes help bring more revenue. For instance, they can lower the price of an app, just to see how many people download it. They can also experiment with varying layers, colour themes and video placement, and then gauge how people react to the changes.
“It might not seem like a significant change, but it gives developers a new level of flexibility they can’t get through Apple,” points out BusinessInsider.
The report also adds that building an app for both platforms simultaneously is expensive. So, developers have to start with either one, and mostly choose iOS over Android. Developers do so mainly because Android is fragmented and some app features may not work on all devices. Moreover, iPhone users are willing to pay more money, adds the report.
So, with this tool, Google is trying to help developers make more money.
Posted by : Gizmeon

Government stands for ensuring non-discriminatory access to Internet

Government stands for ensuring non-discriminatory access to Internet
Telecom minister Ravi Shankar Prasad said that the government stands for ensuring “non-discriminatory” access to internet.
“Government stands for ensuring non-discriminatory access to Internet for all citizens of the country,” Prasad said in the Rajya Sabha, as a calling attention motion was taken up on net neutrality.
“Current debate on net neutrality should be seen from this perspective… while resolving the issue harmoniously and consistently with constitutional principles,” he said.
The minister added that a final decision on net neutrality will be taken by the government.
“Whatever be the outcome of the consultation paper (of Trai) the decision will be taken by government,” he informed the Rajya Sabha.
In March, telecom regulator Trai released a paper inviting comments from users and companies on how over-the-top services should be regulated in the country. It asked stakeholders to send suggestions by April 24 and counter-arguments by May 8.
A six-member panel of the department of telecommunications (DoT) is also conducting a study on the issue and is likely to submit its report by mid-May.
The minister added: “Internet is one of the finest creations of human mind, it must belong to mankind, not to few”.
Net neutrality means that governments and internet service providers should treat all data on the Internet equally — therefore, not charging users, content, platform, site, application or mode of communication differentially.
Posted by : Gizmeon

Twitter kills off playable MS-DOS games in tweets

Twitter kills off playable MS-DOS games in tweets
Shortly after Twitter introduced a way to embed classic MS-DOS games in a tweet, the company has now disabled this feature as it goes against company policies to have a playable game within the website. Prior to this move, users could embed games in tweets and could share any of the 2,600 games or more in the Internet Archive’s library of MS-DOS games.
A report by The Guardian states that embedding interactive media, and specifically games, within Twitter Cards is against the social network’s terms of service. Twitter guidelines point out that, ‘Do not build end-to-end interactive experiences inside the video or audio player unrelated to Player Card content, such as the following: purchasing, gaming, polling, messaging and data entry.’
Following its policies, Twitter has now disabled the feature. But, users can yet visit the Internet Archive directly and play their favorite old classic games. A report by TechTimes pointed out that, it is possible for the game to return only if, developers work on another type of Twitter card to host the MS-DOS games.
“Instead, build these interactive experiences with our other Card types or enhance your Player Card content with links to your website or mobile application,” says Twitter in its Player Card’s guidelines.
Posted by : Gizmeon

Facebook opens to all developers in India

Facebook opens to all developers in India
Amidst the backlash in India, Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg has decided to loosen the grip on its free Internet service in India. This doesn’t mean, is now booted out of India, but it simply becomes an ‘open’ platform for all.
So, Facebook says any website can be accessed for free via the service. However, it isn’t as simple as it sounds. The social network has a long list of rules and regulations including it will only support websites that ditche HTTPS, JavaScript and other important things.
In its official Facebook post, the company has jotted down the guidelines that website accessing should follow:
1. Explore the entire Internet (but how?)
Facebook writes that the platform is aimed to give people valuable free services allowing them ‘to discover the entire wealth of online services and, ultimately become paying users of the internet’. Hence, participants ‘should encourage the exploration of the broader internet wherever possible’. However, it doesn’t really mention what exactly it expects from participating websites to encourage it.
2. Who can’t participate
Websites that require high-bandwidth won’t be a part of the service. It further mentions that services with VoIP, video, file transfer, high resolution photos, or high volume of photos can’t be a part of the service.
“Operators have made significant economic investments to bring the internet to people globally, and needs to be sustainable for operators so that they can continue to invest in the infrastructure to maintain, improve and expand their networks,” Facebook explains.
3. Tech specs
Participating websites should be built to optimise browsing on phones as well as smartphones, and work in limited bandwidth scenarios.
Websites should also be properly integrated with to allow zero rating and so should not require JavaScript or SSL/TLS/HTTPS. There’s also a list of technical guides. Check it here.
Evidently, Facebook’s new guidelines don’t really make it an ‘open’ platform. Looks like, the rules help to simply remodel what Facebook always had on its mind. Nikhil Pahwa of Medianama writes, “No matter what Facebook says about being a means of promoting Internet usage, it isn’t. It’s a fundamental, permanent change in the way the Internet works by splitting it into free vs paid access.”
He also points out at major security issues. “Without https (secure content), this means that telecom operators will also be able to snoop on your users, and through them, so will the government. Is Privacy a small price to pay for free access to a directory of services?,” he said.
The problems just don’t end here. Using Facebook’s means everyone has to comply to the social network’s rules and policy. Firstly, Facebook gets non-exclusive rights to your content. Then, every user accessing websites via will require a Facebook account.
So, every Indian going online will have no choice but to create a Facebook account. This would also mean, if your competitor is on, you will have no choice either.
“The reason why Times Internet publications remained on was that their competitors are also there. If one competitor chooses to come on board, you will have little choice but to also follow, else lose out on a potentially large user base. This gives Facebook access to data from across websites,” he explains further.
The report suggests that if really wants people in India to get online, then subsidising data packs of Rs 10-100 and allowing them to access whatever users want, could be a solution.
Last month, Trai received overwhelming response with over 11 lakh emails in support of Net Neutrality.  The responses are now out on its website and open to counter comments until May 8.
Meanwhile, the volunteer group, SavetheInternet, is requesting that in the absence of a recommendation from TRAI and any decision from the government, telecom companies should be restricted from rolling out any plans and services that violate Net Neutrality. The group has also requested support from political parties as the issue impacts both the freedom of access to the Internet as well as survival of thousands of Internet-enabled Indian startups trying to Make In India.
Posted by : Gizmeon

South Korea says to cooperate with Europe, US on Qualcomm probe

South Korea says to cooperate with Europe, US on Qualcomm probe
South Korea’s antitrust body said on Wednesday it would cooperate with counterparts in Europe and the United States as part of the regulator’s investigation into U.S. chip maker Qualcomm.
The Korea Fair Trade Commission did not specify what it was investigating Qualcomm for, but the company is facing regulatory probes into alleged anti-competitive practices in several countries and agreed to pay a $975 million fine in China early this year following a 14-month investigation.
The Korea Fair Trade Commission, in a statement, said its officials met counterparts from the European Commission on Monday and agreed to hold “working-level discussions” about the Qualcomm probe. It added that it would also work with the United States and other countries and examine similar cases abroad.
An earlier report points out that Qualcomm has launched a unit in China to help local smartphone makers expand operations in overseas markets. This is part of Qualcomm’s efforts to build strong relationship with China, specially since more than half of Qualcomm’s revenue comes from Chinese customers.
Qualcomm makes a lot of its profits by licensing out its wireless patents. A lot of Chinese phone makers had complained about Qualcomm pricing its technology unfairly, which led to a 15-month long investigation of the US company.
Posted by : Gizmeon

Xiaomi Mi Note Pro to go on sale in China

Xiaomi Mi Note Pro to go on sale in China
Xiaomi’s Mi Note Pro is all set to hit store shelves in China on May 12. Xiaomi’s founder, CEO Lei Jun announced the Mi Note and Mi Note Pro back in January, which he claimed will challenge iPhone 6 and 6 Plus in looks, size and in camera quality.
The Note Pro features a 5.7-inch screen – slightly larger than the 5.5-inch iPhone 6 Plus. It’s a 2K (2560 x 1440) display with a pixel density of 515 ppi. It features a 3D curved glass on the back and 2.5D curved glass on front.
It gets a 13MP rear camera with optical image stabilisation. It uses Sony’s CMOS sensor, with a f2.0 aperture for low-light shots. The company claims that it uses a dual-tone flash developed by Phillips for more natural-looking colours in photos. Taking a dig at Apple once again, Xiaomi said that the Mi Note’s main camera does not protrude out like the iPhone 6. Mi Note has a 4MP front camera with large 2 micron pixels.
It is backed by a 3090mAh battery, and comes with dual 4G SIM slots and runs a Snapdragon 801 processor backed by 4GB RAM. It will be available in 64GB onboard space, but there’s no card slot for increasing the storage capacity.
The Xiaomi Note Pro is priced at 3299 RMB, which is around Rs 32,900.
Posted by : Gizmeon

Snapchat enables users to share Discover content

Snapchat enables users to share Discover content
As of Tuesday, Snapchat users are able to trade clips with their friends, using the app’s updated Discover feature. To share music, news articles or video clips, simply tap and hold the desired Discover content, TechCrunch reports.
Discover was added to the popular photo-sharing app in January, as a way to enable users to access media such as CNN, Vice and Warner Music. Snapchat also announced yesterday a new feature called Snapcodes that enables users to add friends more easily.
To add a friend from now on, point your camera at a vector file of a Snapcode, an individualized QR code for a fellow user, and tap on your screen. The vectors can be used on websites or printed.
An earlier report states that Snapchat, the social network for users who like the security of disappearing messages, released its first transparency report showing hundreds of requests from US and foreign law enforcement agencies. Between November 1 and February 28, Snapchat said it received 375 requests from US law enforcement officials, and handed over at least some user data in 92 percent of those cases.
Outside the US, Snapchat received 28 requests and produced data in six of those cases. The requests came from Britain, Belgium, France, Canada, Ireland, Hungary and Norway.
Posted by : Gizmeon

It is not sustainable to offer the whole Internet for free, says Mark Zuckerberg

It is not sustainable to offer the whole Internet for free, says Mark Zuckerberg
As the net neutrality debate rages on, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg Monday said “it is not sustainable to offer the whole Internet for free” but is possible for platform to give basic services without any cost.
Facebook also said that is open to all content and application developers who meet “certain guidelines”. This follows criticism from free Internet advocates that the social networking site was “hand-picking services” violating principles of net neutrality.
Zuckerberg, who in the past had defended, said in his video blog posted Monday, that the programme supports itself.
“When people use free basic services, more of them then decide to pay to access the broader Internet and this enables operators to keep offering these basic services for free. It is not sustainable to offer the whole Internet for free,” he said.
But, it is sustainable to offer free basic services that are simpler, use less data and work on all low-end phones, he added.
The net neutrality debate in India was triggered after Airtel introduced an open marketing platform ‘Airtel Zero’ where the data charges were being borne by application developers. Facebook, which has tied up with Reliance Communications for initiative in India, too offer access 33 websites for free.
Free Internet advocates had raised objections to these platforms, saying there were in violation of net neutrality, which stands for equal treatment for all Internet traffic and any priority based on payment to service providers like telecom companies is seen as discriminatory.
Zuckerberg had earlier said principles of neutrality must co-exist with programmes like that encouraged bringing people online. aims to bring 5 billion people online and has partnered mobile operators, local entrepreneurs and companies for launching the initiative across various countries, including India.
“A reasonable definition of net neutrality is more inclusive. Access equals opportunity. Net neutrality shouldn’t prevent access. We need both. It’s not an equal Internet if a majority of people can’t participate,” he said.
Posted by : Gizmeon

Sony owns over 40 per cent of the image sensor market share

Sony owns over 40 per cent of the image sensor market share
Sony has already sold off its Vaio laptop division and back in January there were rumours of Sony planning to sell off its smartphone division as well. But there is one industry where it is leading from the front – imaging sensors.
While Sony’s camera market share is behind its Japanese rivals Canon and Nikon, the company is still making a lot of profits from the sale of image sensors to smartphone as well as camera makers says the Wall Street Journal. According to a market research estimate, in 2014 Sony made around 40.2 per cent of all image sensors. This number is far higher than any of its rivals in this segment.
Sony is followed by Omnivision which has a 15.7 per cent share and Samsung which has 15.2 per cent. All other image sensor makers combined account for 28.9 per cent share.
From Apple’s iPhones to Samsung’s Galaxy flagships to other players including Xiaomi, Motorola and so on, Sony also makes sensors for camera giant Nikon. With the iPhone 6 for instance, Sony charges Apple $20 per sensor and considering the massive sales of the iPhone 6  and iPhone 6 Plus, naturally the revenues for Sony also increase. That is just one smartphone company we are talking about. Samsung, which makes its own application chipsets as well as image sensors, still uses Sony’s image sensors in its flagship Galaxy S6 and Galaxy S6 Plus models.
The image sensor business of Sony has naturally got a higher priority over other consumer electronics business divisions. According to a Bloomberg report, Sony is reportedly investing 45 billion yen to expand its sensor manufacturing facilities in Nagasaki and Yamagata in Japan.
Apple has recently bought an Israel-based camera technology company, so it remains to be seen if Apple will continue using Sony image sensors for its future iPhone variants.
Posted by : Gizmeon