Friday, 24 April 2015

Xiaomi launches Mi 4i in India at Rs 12,999, Mi Band at Rs 999

Xiaomi launches Mi 4i in India at Rs 12,999, Mi Band at Rs 999
Xiaomi finally launched the Xiaomi Mi 4i at an event held in New Delhi on Thursday. The device is priced at Rs 12,999 and will go on sale on April 30. Registrations will start at 8 pm today on Flipkart. Initially, the device will be available on Flipkart, and later across all its channels including Mi website.
Xiaomi has given some serious thought to the new smartphone’s display. The Mi 4i features a 5 inch HD display along with a pixel density that goes up to 441ppi. Xiaomi claims that the smartphone has a higher color saturation than iPhone 6. It is a fully laminated OGS. In other features, the Mi 4i comes with Sunlight Display, a technology which allows the phone to do dynamic tone mapping, which in turn, keeps  the image quality balanced in bright sunlight.
The device is powered by a 64-bit Snapdragon 615 processor. It comes with four performance cores at 1.7 GHz, and four power saving cores at 1.1 GHz. They have been designed by Qualcomm India. The device owns a 2GB RAM and includes 16GB on-board storage.
In terms of camera, the smartphone sports a 13MP rear camera with f/2.0 aperture and dual tone flash and also includes torch feature for low light focusing. It also gets improved HDR feature.
For those selfie lovers, the Mi 4i sports a 5MP front facing camera. The beautify feature included comes with tools like wrinkle remover, skin smoothening and so on. It also gets a selfie timer feature.
The dual micro-SIM smartphone runs on Android’s latest Lollipop-based MI UI 6. It will feature Visual IVR to MIUI to bypass those long IVR calls by giving you a text output of preset options. MIUI supports six Indian languages – Hindi, Bengali, Kannada, Telugu, Malayalam, Tamil
In terms of connectivity, the device includes Bluetooth 4.1, 802.11ac, GPS/Glonass, Wi-Fi Direct and USB on-the-go. Xiaomi Mi 4i has a 3120 mAh battery. There’s a soft matte touch back cover with anti-grease coating as well.
Towards the end of the launch event, Xiaomi also launched its water-resistant Mi Band in India for Rs 999.
Posted by : Gizmeon

Google search mobile switch a revolution for some

Google search mobile switch a revolution for some
Google’s latest Internet revolution this week saw the web giant modify its search algorithm to favour mobile-friendly sites, in a bid to upstage Apple that US media branded a “mobilegeddon”.
US technology website WIRED described Tuesday’s algorithm switch as “likely the biggest change of the past three years.
“And it’s reminder of the wonderfully magnanimous yet deeply selfish way that Google uses its market power to accelerate changes across the rest of the Internet,” it added.
The change comes in the same week as a Google announcement it will launch its own US mobile wireless service, with considerable potential savings for customers using their devices at home and for international travel.
Google argues its algorithm revolution is good for users.
“We want to make sure they can find content that’s not only relevant and timely, but also easy to read and interact with on smaller mobile screens,” Google said in a statement to WIRED.
More than half of Internet searches worldwide are made on mobile phones, a trend that is driven by figures out of developing countries where smartphone penetration is higher than computers.
In 2011, a change to Google’s search algorithm affected 10% of English-language websites, while the 2012 change impacted some four percent, according to WIRED.
But the recent change, the extent of whose impact cannot yet be fully measured, has also sent shockwaves among brand owners and marketers, for whom online visibility is hugely important.
“Google has the power of life or death over some websites. A drop in Google ranking can mean a 60 to 80% loss in turnover,” e-marketing firm JVWEB’s president Jonathan Vidor told AFP. Even if mobile phones bring in only a small proportion of revenues, “everyone is scared Google might do something drastic”, Vidor added.
Contested impact
While it threatens to throw websites that have not been adapted to smartphone technology to the bottom of search rankings, the change introduced Tuesday has yet to cause the major impact experts had predicted.
“I observed absolutely no impact” on Tuesday said Benoit Sillard, director of leading French publisher CCM Benchmark, 40% of whose finance, women’s and news magazines online visits are via mobile.
“It will take at least a week before we see an initial impact, as the algorithm is going through a learning phase,” said Paul Amsellem, who heads a marketing, technology and mobile phone advertising firm, the Mobile Network Group.
Amsellem believes “Google has just lost its mobile search bet” by placing unrealistic — and ultimately unfulfilled — hopes in websites shifting over to mobile platforms en masse.
Mobile phone applications pioneered by Apple are still coming out on top in the race for the Internet throne.
Apple had placed its bets very early in the game on mobile phone downloads, Amsellem said, giving the technology icon the lead by taking control of applications, content and graphics, making users’ experience “the best it can be”.
Google’s Android apps are also hugely popular, but they tend to be less user-friendly than their Apple competitors.
Google risks losing users if its search results are not adequately adapted. It may even lose out in revenues from advertising and sponsored links — the company’s main source of money.
And Google earns less anyway if users go straight to apps, rather than use the search engine to get where they want to go. Ultimately, Google’s drastic move may mean users simply cannot find the site they’re looking for.
According to US magazine Techcrunch, 44 percent of Fortune 500 websites failed the search test, and another four percent of sites did not produce a result.
Posted by : Gizmeon

DoT calls advisory group meet on Net Neutrality on 27 April

DoT calls advisory group meet on Net Neutrality on 27 April
The Department of Telecom has called a meeting of Multistakeholder Advisory Group (MAG) to discuss net neutrality on April 27. “A committee has been constituted in Department of Telecommunications to examine various aspects of net neutrality.
The committee has decided to have interaction with MAG representatives. Accordingly, a meeting will be organised on April 27,” a DoT circular sent to MAG members said.
MAG was constituted by Department of Electronics and IT (DeitY) in February 2014. It has 39 members representing government, industry, academia and civil groups.
According to the list of members announced by DeitY at the time of MAG formation, officers from DeitY, DoT, Ministry of External Affairs, Information and Broadcast Ministry, Home Ministry, Law Ministry and National Security Council Secretariat represent government in the group.
Indian CERT, NIXI, National Informatic Centre are among bodies representing technical community in MAG.
Besides, industry chambers CII, FICCI, Nasscom, Assocham and sectoral bodies CMAI, ISPAI, COAI, IAMAI, ICA, AUSPI and others are on the board. Internet Society, Centre for Science Development and Media Studies, Digital Empowerment Foundation, Centre forInternet and Society are among members that represent civil society in the group.
Posted by : Gizmeon

BSNL offers unlimited free calling at night from landline

BSNL offers unlimited free calling at night from landline
BSNL has announced an unlimited free calling scheme for its landline users that will allow them to call any landline and mobile number across service providers in India from May 1.
“This unlimited free night calling shall be available from 9 pm to 7 am,” a company statement said on.
The scheme, seen to help BSNL boost its landline business, covers all major landline general plans of rural and urban areas, landline special plans and all major combo (landline and broadband) plans.
“BSNL landline phone offers voice clarity. Now landline customers can make unlimited calls comfortably anywhere in India to all networks from 9 pm to 7 am without paying call charges,” the statement added.
According to latest data from the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (Trai), BSNL, which dominates the landline market, was the biggest loser of fixed-line customers in February while Airtel emerged as top gainer.
The company had over 1.66 crore landlines at the end of February. Even after losing 162,556 landline customers in February, the company dominated the market with 62.26 per cent share.
Posted by : Gizmeon

Microsoft shares rise by 3.1 percent, beat Wall Street expectations

Microsoft shares rise by 3.1 percent, beat Wall Street expectations
Microsoft reported revenue and profit above Wall Street expectations, as sales of its hardware and cloud-computing services helped to offset a decline in the company’s core Windows business.
Shares rose 3.1 percent to $44.70 in after-hours trading.
“The company beat across the board,” said FBR Capital markets analyst Daniel Ives. “The Street will cheer these results as it appears Microsoft is back on the right track after a head-scratching performance last quarter.”
Sales of Windows to computer manufacturers to install on new PCs fell 19 percent in the quarter, reflecting a sharp dip from a year ago when Windows got a brief boost from consumers rushing to buy new machines after Microsoft stopped support for the 14-year-old XP operating system.
That decline was offset by higher revenue from its Surface tablet, back-end server software and cloud-related offerings such as its online Office 365 suite of applications.
The company said its commercial cloud-related revenue for the quarter more than doubled, and was now running at $6.3 billion a year. said on Thursday its quarterly cloud revenue rose almost 50 percent to $1.57 billion, suggesting a similar annual number.
Microsoft’s overall revenue rose 6 percent to $21.7 billion, above Wall Street’s average forecast of $21.1 billion, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.
Taking out the effects of the strong U.S. dollar on currency rates, Microsoft said revenue would have risen 9 percent. Earnings per share declined to 61 cents per share from 68 cents in the year-ago quarter. Analysts had expected 51 cents, on average.
Posted by : Gizmeon

China’s smartphone makers bet on cricket, Bollywood to conquer India

China’s smartphone makers bet on cricket, Bollywood to conquer India
China’s smartphone makers are drafting in cricket teams and Bollywood stars to conquer India, their largest overseas market and a key testing ground for their international expansion, as they try to rebrand as more than just sellers of cheap handsets.
Xiaomi Technology – the fast-growing No.3 global smartphone maker valued at $45 billion after a December funding round – hosted its first global launch outside of China in New Delhi on Thursday, unveiling its feature-heavy Mi 4i model that supports six Indian languages at 12,999 rupees ($205).
“It speaks volumes to our focus on India, our intentions, and (is about) really putting our investment where we believe the future of the company is,” Hugo Barra, Xiaomi’s vice president of international operations, said.
And they are not alone. Manufacturers including Gionee, Huawei Technologies and Lenovo are trying out new retail strategies, marketing plans and research for devices in India, as they look to push into new markets.
Huawei and Gionee, for instance, are sponsoring franchises in the Indian Premier League, a wildly popular cricket tournament, while Lenovo and Oppo have adverts featuring movie heartthrobs Ranbir Kapoor and Hrithik Roshan as they try to build brand appeal among ordinary Indians.
India is the world’s third-largest smartphone market, but with just one in 10 people using such handsets still has huge growth potential. Chinese smartphone makers are in many cases unknown outside India’s larger cities, but they are beginning to win market share from better known rivals such as Samsung Electronics Co Ltd and even homegrown Micromax, which in the fourth quarter became the country’s leading handset supplier.
With growth saturating at home, companies from China and Taiwan have either entered or ramped up India operations over the past year. Six were among the top 20 smartphone vendors in the December quarter.
Based on shipments data tracked by research firm Canalys, the top five Chinese smartphone companies and Taiwan’s Asustek Computer Inc together accounted for 13 percent of shipments in the period.
Fast growth and cut-throat competition has forced the new Chinese entrants to intensify their sales push, adapting plans previously tried out in China to suit local customers.
Xiaomi, a five-year-old company known as China’s Apple, entered India in July last year through a tie-up with online retailer Flipkart. It later partnered a leading electronics retail chain with a pan-India presence to boost its sales.
Arvind Vohra, head of Chinese manufacturer Gionee’s India operations said, said he was focused on physical distribution, and would only then go online. Gionee sold 4 million devices and made almost $500 million in sales in the year ended March.
“There was a huge challenge with the stigma attached to Chinese brands initially,” said Rushabh Doshi, a Singapore-based analyst at research firm Canalys.
“A lot of new vendors are testing out online retail first, trying to see if the brand is picking up in India and then ramping up their operations based on the feedback they get from the consumer base.”
Industry watchers say that now a focus on research and local production will help Chinese firms offer high-end features at low cost, positioning them well in a market that will grow at around 36 percent a year over the next five years, according to consulting firm Zinnov.
Gionee, which was among the first Chinese device makers to enter India, has 1,200 employees working on R&D and expects to set up a manufacturing base in India.
For Xiaomi, the research on the processor used in the Mi 4i was led by a team in Bengaluru. The company could also make the phone locally once it sets up a manufacturing presence here, Barra said.
“(The Mi 4i) is not a Chinese design that is imported to India, this is a product that is designed with this market in mind,” he said.
Posted by : Gizmeon

Google shares rise after online ad sales drive revenue higher

Google shares rise after online ad sales drive revenue higher
    Google reported higher quarterly revenue and profit as rising online ad volume offset a hit from the strong dollar, sending the Internet company’s shares higher in after-hours trading.
Shares of the world’s No. 1 Internet search engine rose after the results were released, climbing 3.5 percent on Thursday to $577. While revenue and profit missed the forecasts of Wall Street analysts, many investors had been bracing for a weaker report, said BGC Financial analyst Colin Gillis.
The company has faced challenges in mobile advertising and is running up more expenses as it invests in new businesses.
“The concern was that the first quarter results could have been much worse,” Gillis said. “There’s a certain degree of relief rally happening.”
Revenue for the quarter that ended in March rose 12 percent to $17.26 billion, from $15.42 billion a year earlier. Analysts on average had expected revenue of $17.5 billion, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.
The rising dollar took a toll on results at Google, which generates about half of its revenue overseas.
“Excluding the net impact of foreign currency headwinds, revenue grew a healthy 17 percent year on year,” Google Chief Financial Officer Patrick Pichette said in a statement.
The number of ads, or paid clicks, rose 13 percent, while the average price of online ads, or “cost per click,” declined 7 percent.
Google’s ad revenue has been pressured as more consumers access its online services on mobiles devices such as smartphones and tablets, where ad rates are typically lower. In a conference call, Pichette highlighted mobile ads as a key source of revenue growth during the quarter. “We are experiencing real strength in mobile search,” he said.
The contribution of ad revenue from video platform YouTube “continues to grow at a strong rate year-over year,” he added. Brands are embracing YouTube’s TrueView service, where advertisers pay only when users opt not to skip an ad, he said.
Google’s advertising sales in the first quarter rose 11 percent to $15.51 billion.
The company, under increasing competition for mobile ad dollars from rivals such as Facebook Inc, tweaked its algorithm for mobile searches on Tuesday to favour sites that look good on smartphone screens.
Earlier this month, the European Union accused Google of abusing its dominance of Internet searches to push its own products.
Net income rose to $3.59 billion, or $5.20 per share, from $3.45 billion, or $5.04 per share. Excluding items, the company earned $6.57 per share, just missing analysts’ forecast of $6.60.
Posted by : Gizmeon

Facebook launches Hello for Android, a new caller ID-type app

Facebook launches Hello for Android, a new caller ID-type app
Facebook has launched a new caller ID-type app for Android users that uses data from Facebook to tell you who is calling and will help you block unwanted calls. The app called Hello matches phone numbers of incoming and outgoing calls to Facebook profiles to show you who you are talking to.
It also blocks calls from commonly blocked numbers and searches for businesses to call, reported.
The feature will only work if the caller has shared his number with Facebook and if you would normally be able to see that information. For example, if you share your number publicly, people with Hello downloaded will know it is you calling even if they do not have you as a contact.
Currently, Facebook is rolling out Hello for public testing in the US, Brazil and Nigeria. The app is available as a free download in the Google Play store.
This is how it works. Once downloaded, you sign in with Facebook, and give it permissions to sync your contacts with Facebook and interact with calls.
When a user gets a call, the app – built by Facebook’s Messenger team – shows information about who’s calling, even if that number is not saved in that user’s phone.
However, it will only show information that people have already shared with the user (or publicly) on Facebook.
Hello lets you “block” specific numbers which means they get sent directly to voice mail. One can use it to search for people and businesses on Facebook and call them with just one tap. The app also promotes the use of free calling over Wi-Fi, something that has long been a part of Messenger.
With permission, Hello will add profile pictures and other information to the contacts in your address book.
It can also serve as an enhanced version of your phone book, with extra information about friends and others shown inline as you scroll through contacts. Hello works and looks quite similar to caller ID app TrueCaller.
Posted by : Gizmeon

Google to websites: Be mobile-friendly or get buried in search results

Google to websites: Be mobile-friendly or get buried in search results
Google is introducing a new algorithm that affects how mobile search results appear — a significant change that will take anywhere from several days to a week to roll out.
Moving forward, when you do a Google search on mobile, search results will prioritize websites that the search engine deems "mobile-friendly" — ones that avoid software like Flash and feature larger text, easy-to-click links and a responsive design. Sites that aren’t up to snuff will likely appear lower in search results.
The change will impact millions of sites, more than Google's last major search ranking algorithm update, Google Panda. Panda, which was launched in 2011 and has been updated several times since then, downranked 12% of all sites that Google rated low-quality.
It's impossible to determine just how many of the Internet's 177 million sites are mobile-friendly, but Forrester Research estimates that just 38% of all enterprise web sites — sites for businesses with 1,000 or more employees — don’t meet Google’s criteria. That number doesn’t even include sites for small businesses that rely on location-based searches, which shoppers discover via queries like “pizza delivery in downtown San Francisco.”
For businesses,it's a sobering wake-up call: Get up to speed on mobile. Otherwise, get buried in search results, hemorrhage web traffic and lose revenues.
Many more consumers will be affected, too; 89% of all smartphone owners worldwide conduct searches on Google. It’s unclear how mobile and desktop search results will differ until the search ranking update is fully implemented, but users can expect a mobile experience that’s not only easier on the eyes, but also easier to navigate.
That’s key for Google to maintain a stranglehold on mobile search market share, but it doesn’t hurt the company’s bottom line, either. If users have better search experiences, they’re more likely to click on ads, Forrester Research analyst Ted Schadler explained.
Google doesn’t break out how much of its advertising revenues come from mobile, but research firm eMarketer estimates the company saw its market share dip from nearly 50% to 46% over the last three years. Facebook's market share, meanwhile, quadrupled to 21% during the same period.
Posted by : Gizmeon

Wednesday, 22 April 2015

Xiaomi hints at high-res display for its upcoming smartphone to be launched tomorrow

Xiaomi hints at high-res display for its upcoming smartphone to be launched tomorrow
Xiaomi is gearing up for an event named ‘Global Mi phone premiere’ which will take place in New Delhi on April 23, wherein the company is likely to launch the all new Mi 4i.
Citing a Chinese source, Android Headlines has now reportedly got its hands on the image of the new device, purportedly the Mi 4i.
The design, in general, resembles the Mi 4, but it still comes with a lot cosmetic changes. The leaked image gives a peek into the left side of the handset with front camera and shows the Mi logo on top. Compared to the Mi 4, it has slimmer bezels (almost invisble) and sensors are embedded in different positions at the front.
Xiaomi has been teasing ‘i is coming’ for sometime, and its most recent post on Facebook now hints at a superior display.
The company has posted two identical images, but one of them is blurred/pixelated, while the other is quite clear. The image has some text that reads, “Looks the same?” and “i Disagree”. The post also mentions, “Are all screens of the same size the same?” followed by hashtags for i Disagree and Mi Launch 2015. All hinting at the launch of the Mi 4i with a high-resolution display.
Though there is no word on the exact specs of the Mi 4i, it is rumoured to come with a 1.65GHz Snapdragon 615 octa-core 64-bit processor paired with 2GB RAM and will run on Android 5.0.2 Lollipop out-of-the-box. These specs closely resemble the unannounced Xiaomi device, dubbed ‘Ferrari’ that appeared in a benchmark listing last month.
India is an important market for Xiaomi. It has already announced that it will not be selling phones exclusively on Flipkart any more, and Snapdeal and Amazon will also be stocking Xiaomi phones. To reach out to more customers in India, Xiaomi has also decided to shed its ‘online-only’ image and team up with retail chain ‘The Mobile Store’ to sell select Mi smartphones, including the Xiaomi Mi 4.
Posted by : Gizmeon

Google about to launch its own wireless service in the US on Wednesday

Google about to launch its own wireless service in the US on Wednesday
Google is all set to launch its own wireless service in the US on Wednesday according to a report in the Wall Street Journal. This service will run on Sprint and T-Mobile’s networks and will only work on Google Nexus 6 as of now. The phone will switch between two networks depending on stronger signals, says The Verge.
This service will enable users to pay only for the data they have used each month. Wireless carriers in the US charge a fixed rate for buckets of data, which expires at the end of every month if not used. Google plans to do away with that. According a 2013 study by a company called Validas, users end up losing $28 each month on unused data.
Just like Google Fiber, the new Google wireless service will not be a mainstream offering, in the beginning at least. Sundar Pichai had said at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona that the wireless service was going to be a small scale experiment and would not disrupt the current wireless service provider industry.
According to Rajeev Chand, head of research at Rutberg & Company, an investment bank focussing on mobile industry, Google’s move into wireless services is important as it has the potential to disrupt the wireless industry just like Google Fiber has shaken up the cable and broadband industries.
According to WSJ, the Google wireless project has been in the works for two years now and is part of an effort to make internet access easier for people. Usage-based pricing is also expected to make wireless data more affordable for users said Chand.
Sprint chairman Masayoshi Son has agreed to carry Google’s wireless traffic only on the condition of volume limits and the ability to renegotiation if the Google service becomes too big and overshadows Sprint’s service in any way.
Posted by : Gizmeon

Motorola Moto E 4G launched at Rs 7999 on Flipkart

Motorola Moto E 4G launched at Rs 7999 on Flipkart
Motorola has launched the 4G variant of its entry level phone, the Moto E (2nd gen) which will be available for sale on Flipkart at Rs 7,999.
Announced in February, the Moto E 2015 sports a 4.5-inch display compared to the 4.3-inch display in the previous model and will have a 540 x 960 pixels resolution. The 3G version of the Moto E is powered by 1.2GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 200 32-bit processor and a 400MHz Adreno 302 GPU while the LTE version has a 1.2GHz quad-core 64-bit Qualcomm Snapdragon 410 processor and a 400MHz Adreno 306 GPU. It is coupled with 1GB RAM.
It comes with an internal storage of 8GB that can be further expanded up to 32GB via microSD card slot. In terms of camera, the device has a 5MP rear snapper along with an auto focus sensor and includes features like geo-tagging, panorama, and HDR. It also comes with a front-facing VGA camera. The Moto E 4G variant runs Android 5.0 Lollipop.
In terms of connectivity, the device has WiFi, GPS, Radio and Bluetooth. The water resistant Moto E is fueled by a 2390mAh battery compared to the 1980mAh seen in the previous model. The device will be available in Black and White variants.
The Moto E 3G version (second generation) smartphone is priced at Rs 6,999.
Posted by : Gizmeon

Amazon starts travel service Amazon Destinations

Amazon starts travel service Amazon Destinations
The site that sells everything from toilet paper to toys can now send you on a romantic getaway.
Amazon is expanding its travel service online, dubbed Amazon Destinations, the latest effort by the e-commerce site to bolster its service offerings. The travel service offers deals on hotels and getaways in three metro areas, Los Angeles, New York and Seattle, and their surrounding regions.
Amazon has offered travel deals since 2012 but those were mainly flash deals with discounted rates. Now, hotels can offer rooms at published rates as well as deal packages and discounts. Some examples of hotels included are Suncadia Resort near Seattle, which has a golf course and hiking trails, or Two Bunch Palms, a hot springs spa resort in Los Angeles.
The travel service is part of Amazon’s local site which offers discounts on restaurants, entertainment, travel and other offerings from local businesses.
It pits Amazon against travel service sites like Expedia and TripAdvisor. Amazon has been broadening its online service offerings across the board. Last month it launched Amazon Home Services, where businesses can sell to customers services like house cleaning and small renovation projects like TV wall mounting and garbage disposal installation.
The Seattle company is seeking to balance investments in new areas with turning a profit. Inc. reports first-quarter results. Shares rose $4.89 to $394.40 in afternoon trading.
Posted by : Gizmeon

Nokia bets software revolution will help avoid past merger errors

Nokia bets software revolution will help avoid past merger errors
Nokia’s acquisition of smaller rival Alcatel-Lucent may avoid the pitfalls that befell earlier telecom network equipment marriages, thanks to a revolution over the past decade in how products are launched and developed.
The brains and brawn of telecom networks today lie in software, which is programmable and flexible, and not in customised hardware as in the past. Products are more modular with open interfaces that allow equipment from different manufacturers to talk to each other.
That should make it quicker and cheaper to combine the two companies’ products, analysts and telecom executives said, and may help Nokia succeed where other acquisitions have struggled.
Nokia has promised $960 million of cost savings by 2019 from the Alcatel-Lucent acquisition, which is set to be completed in the first half of next year.
Analysts believe the biggest chunk will come from the wireless business where Nokia’s 4G mobile network products will eventually replace those of Alcatel, allowing it to trim expensive R&D budgets and redeploy engineers.
The history of mergers in the telecom equipment sector is poor – including those that brought Alcatel together with Lucent, and Nokia with Siemens in 2006.
The cost savings promised from those deals ended up being given back to customers via lower prices because rivals Ericsson and Huawei went on the attack to steal contracts while the companies were distracted by their integrations.
Culling product portfolios also proved costly and slow because of the need to keep supporting gear already installed in major telecom carriers’ networks. A mobile base station installed at an operator such as Verizon or Vodafone remains in service for a decade and the equipment maker commits a team of engineers to a “product development roadmap” to improve it over time.
This time more of those improvements can come from software upgrades so merging product lines will be easier, Nokia Chief Executive Rajeev Suri promised investors after unveiling the Alcatel deal. “While some of our past integration experiences have been painful at times, you should not be thinking about swap-out costs in the same way as in the past,” he said. Open interfaces, 4G technology and cloud computing “allow more rapid and efficient integration”, he added.
Getting the transition right is essential to achieving the synergies and avoiding alienating major customers such as Verizon or AT&T, the two leading carriers in the United States which have installed Alcatel-Lucent’s 4G technology.
“What took Alcatel-Lucent and Nokia Siemens four or five years to do on the product roadmaps last time around will only take two or three years this time,” said Pierre Ferragu, analyst at Bernstein Research.
However, Exane BNP Paribas analyst Alexandre Peterc is less confident and predicted that only half the promised 900 million euros in cost savings will materialise.
Risto Lehtilahti, union representative at Nokia’s R&D unit in Oulu, Finland, expressed concern that the company would lose momentum with clients during the integration, as it had during the Siemens merger and purchase of Motorola’s U.S. mobile assets.
“Market shares have never been sustained after these mergers. As we are going through the transition period and before the picture clarifies, part of the orders will go to the rivals Ericsson and Huawei,” he explained.
“The clients know what those vendors have and how their systems work, while it could take one or two years for us to come up with the product portfolio and client systems.”
Analysts have pointed to contracts at U.S. number three operator Sprint as vulnerable because Nokia and Alcatel are the two primary suppliers for the 4G rollout, and the carrier may want to bring back Ericsson to maintain competition.
China’s three mobile carriers, which are in the midst of a huge national 4G expansion, could also shift their spending a bit more to Ericsson since the state had mandated that foreign suppliers each get 10 percent of the contracts. After the deal Nokia would have 20 percent versus Ericsson’s 10 percent, which may prompt a rethink.
Analysts are divided over how much such “dis-synergies” could hurt Nokia, with Deutsche Bank saying contracts worth 1.5 billion euros are at risk and Bernstein putting it at less than one third of that level.
Nokia tried to reassure investors last week even as it admitted that some contracts could be at risk. “We know that in these kind of transactions there could be situations which are difficult to foresee beforehand… so we’re being prudent,” said Suri. The companies will also need to get ahead in the next product cycle. Bringing together Nokia’s strengths in wireless and Alcatel’s in Internet routing equipment positions the company for 5G, the next generation of mobile technology, when distinctions between fixed and mobile gear will largely disappear.
While 5G is not expected to be introduced until 2020, analysts say carriers will judge 5G suppliers by their ability to present a single product roadmap by late 2017 or face a loss of market share for future orders.
Posted by : Gizmeon

BlackBerry introduces security offering for ‘Internet of Things’ devices

BlackBerry introduces security offering for ‘Internet of Things’ devices
BlackBerry Ltd said it is launching a new certificate service that will help bring the security level it offers on smartphones to a slew of devices from cars to smart meters.
Certicom, a subsidiary of BlackBerry and an industry pioneer in elliptic curve cryptography, announced a new offering that it contends will secure millions of devices, expected to be part of the growing Internet of Things (IoT) sphere.
The company said it has already won a contract in Britain to issue certificates for the smart meter initiative there with more than 104 million smart meters and home energy management devices.
The service will make it much easier for companies rolling out such devices to authenticate and secure them, the company said. Separately, BlackBerry also outlined a plan to expand its research and development efforts on innovation and improvement in computer security.
The initiative is being dubbed BlackBerry Center for High Assurance Computing Excellence (CHACE).
Increased network and device security has become a huge focus for large North American corporations in the face of costly and damaging security breaches.
U.S. retailer Target Corp is still recovering from a major breach in 2013 in which 40 million payment card numbers and 70 million other pieces of customer data such as email addresses and phone numbers were stolen.
Michaels Stores, the biggest U.S. arts and crafts retailer, said last year it had suffered a security breach that may have affected about 2.6 million payment cards.
BlackBerry said the fail-then-patch approach to managing security risk has become a widely accepted practise, but through CHACE it plans to develop tools and techniques that deliver a far higher level of protection than is currently available.
Posted by : Gizmeon

Android Wear gets major update; adds Wi-Fi support, emojis and more

Android Wear gets major update; adds Wi-Fi support, emojis and more
Google announced major updates for its Android Wear software for smartwatches in a bid to increase usability and access to a range of information and apps right on one’s wrist.
The slew of new features include always-on modes to provide useful information such as locations on a map or lists — all available to the eye without turning on the screen — increased Wi-Fi function, extra usability gestures and the ability to draw emojis, according to the official Google Blog.
But that doesn’t mean drawing skills are necessarily a prerequisite. The new function allows users to respond to a message by drawing a picture — e.g., a smiley face or thumbs up — and Android Wear translates the picture into a corresponding emoji using a new handwriting recognition technology launched by Google last week.
All seven Android Wear watches will have access to the update over the next few weeks, starting with the soon-to-be-released LG Watch Urbane.
Posted by : Gizmeon

Twitter now allows users to receive ‘Direct Messages’ from anyone

Twitter now allows users to receive ‘Direct Messages’ from anyone
Micro-blogging site Twitter has brought in some significant changes to its feature, ‘Direct Messages’. Users will now be able to receive Direct Messages from anyone, even if they don’t follow them. Users can head to the Security and privacy settings page to enable the new feature. However, users who do not wish to receive messages from unknown people can take suitable steps to stop them as well.
Twitter announced that the new changes have been rolled out to users worldwide starting April 20. Twitter’s Official Blog stated, “Direct Messages are the best way to take your public Twitter conversations private. Today, we’re changing how direct messaging works so that it’s even easier for you to communicate one-to-one or with a chosen group of people, anywhere in the world.”
Apart from the ability to receive messages from anyone, Twitter has also updated its messaging rules, which means that users can now reply to anyone who sends them a Direct Message, regardless of whether or not that person follows them. Also, there is a new Direct Message button on profile pages for both Android and iOS. According to Twitter, these new changes can be useful for small businesses and celebrities as users will be able to communicate with them easily, without the need of a connection on Twitter.
Earlier this month, Twitter also revamped its homepage with a newer and fresher look in an attempt to woo users. The new homepage will mark a shift from the earlier simple log in page with a background photo.
Posted by : Gizmeon

New LED technology will make your Wi-Fi ten times faster

New LED technology will make your Wi-Fi ten times faster
A new technology that can increase the bandwidth of WiFi systems by 10 times, using LED lights to transmit information, has been developed.
The technology could be integrated with existing WiFi systems to reduce bandwidth problems in crowded locations, such as airport terminals or coffee shops, and in homes where several people have multiple WiFi devices.
Experts say that recent advances in LED technology have made it possible to modulate the LED light more rapidly, opening the possibility of using light for wireless
transmission in a “free space” optical communication system.
“In addition to improving the experience for users, the two big advantages of this system are that it uses inexpensive components, and it integrates with existing WiFi systems,” said Thinh Nguyen, an Oregon State University associate professor of electrical and computer engineering.
Nguyen worked with Alan Wang, an assistant professor of electrical and computer engineering, to build the first prototype.
The prototype, called WiFO, uses LEDs that are beyond the visual spectrum for humans and creates an invisible cone of light about one meter square in which the data can be received.
To address the issue of a small area of usability, the researchers created a hybrid system that can switch between several LED transmitters installed on a ceiling, and the existing WiFi system.
“I believe the WiFO system could be easily transformed into a marketable product, and we are currently looking for a company that is interested in further developing and licensing the technology,” Nguyen said.
The system can potentially send data at up to 100 megabits per second.
Although some current WiFi systems have similar bandwidth, it has to be divided by the number of devices, so each user might be receiving just 5 to 10 megabits per second, whereas the hybrid system could deliver 50-100 megabits to each user, researchers said.
In a home where telephones, tablets, computers, gaming systems, and televisions may all be connected to the internet, increased bandwidth would eliminate problems like video streaming that stalls and buffers.
The receivers are small photodiodes that cost less than a dollar each and could be connected through a USB port for current systems, or incorporated into the next generation of laptops, tablets, and smartphones.
Posted by : Gizmeon

Have too many embarrassing social media posts? Clear app deletes them for you

Have too many embarrassing social media posts? Clear app deletes them for you
Considering the increasingly social online world we are living in, there are moments when we update statuses or tweets or pictures which may seem fun at the time, but in retrospect can be embarrassing. Some posts can even cost you your jobs. Like it happened with the developer of Clear, an app that helps you delete those cringe-inducing statuses from your social networks.
Clear basically connects with your Facebook, Twitter and Instagram accounts and analyses your history so far. It will flag certain posts which the app thinks has inappropriate content. To separate out these posts from the harmless ones, Clear uses a combination of algorithms and IBM supercomputer Watson to filter results.
App developer of Clear, Ethan Czahor, made this app after he lost a job because of his tweets. Czahor who joined as the Chief Technology Officer (CTO) for American politician Jeb Bush’s campaign, had to resign from his post after a series of tweets from last couple of years were unearthed. In his defence, Czahor says that he was part of an improv comedy group back in the day and the tweets were meant to be joke material, which was taken out of context.
Czahor developed Clear, which identifies certain keywords and also zeros in on posts that mentions groups of people, such as women, LGBT community, nationalities and so on.
Sentiment analysis is done by IBM’s Watson which highlights posts with negative language. You then get a score at the end depending on how many posts have been flagged. You can then proceed to delete those posts.
According to Czahor quoted in Mashable, the app is still a work in progress and the accuracy will increase over time. In the near future Clear will also support identification of offensive or embarrassing photos.
The app is currently in Beta and is available on the iOS platform. You will be put on a waiting list before the app will be available to be downloaded.
Posted by : Gizmeon

Oppo Joy Plus budget smartphone launched in India at Rs 6990

Oppo Joy Plus budget smartphone launched in India at Rs 6990
Oppo has launched its all new budget smartphone dubbed Joy Plus at Rs 6,990. The company says the device will soon be available in stores across India, but hasn’t mentioned any specific date.
The dual-SIM smartphone sports a 4-inch display with 480 x 800 pixels of resolution, and pixel density of 245 ppi. It comes powered by MediaTek MT6572 dual-core 1.3GHz processor coupled with 1GB RAM. The 4GB onboard storage is expandable up to 32GB via a microSD card slot. The device comes with Sony’s second generation stacked CMOS camera sensor, fitted with a 3MP rear snapper and a 0.3MP front-facing camera.
The smartphone runs Color OS 2.0 based on Android 4.4, and comes fuelled by a 1700mAh Li-Ion removable battery. It measures 124mm×63mm x 9.9mm and weighs 125 grams.The white unit gets a frost matte gold frame and a pearlescent rear cover. It is also available with a blue rear cover and electroplated frame.
Commenting on the new launch, Tom Lu, CEO, Oppo Mobile India said, “Our aim at OPPO India is to provide our customers with ground-breaking technology at affordable prices. The Smartphone market in India is constantly evolving and we intend to reach across sections through our budget Smartphone, Joy Plus. We are looking at aggressive market penetration this year and we are confident that Joy Plus, packed with latest features will provide our customers more personal and reliable mobile experience.”
Posted by : Gizmeon

LG G4 to be launched on 28 April; likely to come with Snapdragon 808 SoC

LG G4 to be launched on 28 April; likely to come with Snapdragon 808 SoC
LG’s upcoming flagship device, the LG G4 will be launched on April 28 and details about the phone are emerging as we approach closer to the date. The latest update is that the phone will come with Qualcomm Snapdragon 808 system on chip.
Twitter user @iziHaterz tweeted the image of what seems like the LG G4 running the CPU-Z benchmark, which shows the SoC as Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 808.
Renowned tipster, Evan Blass aka @evleaks had tweeted out the image of the LG G4 some days back.
The LG G4 is expected to sport a 5.5-inch QHD IPS quantum display with 2560 x 1440 pixels of resolution. The device will pack in a 3,000mAh battery and a microSD card slot for expandable memory.
The LG G4 product page which had accidentally gone live for some time, taken down later, didn’t disclose the chipset of the G4. But from the screenshot above it will most likely be Snapdragon 808. We will know for sure only on April 28. The phone will come with 3GB of RAM. It is already known that the device will come with a 16MP f/1.8 camera.
The device measures 149.1 x 75.3 x 8.9mm, but the weight hasn’t been disclosed yet. LG also plans an official flip cover for its flagship. The accessory will be dipped in several colours including one with leather back.
Posted by : Gizmeon

Vodafone ties up with Goa postal department for bill payments

Vodafone ties up with Goa postal department for bill payments
Telecom major Vodafone India in collaboration with department of Posts in Goa has introduced bill payment facility through computerised post offices.
Vodafone has taken the initiative to introduce ‘pay through post office facility’ to make it simple, easy, secure and less time consuming for customers to make their bill payments, a company statement issued on Saturday said.
The facility is only for operator’s postpaid customers.
“Post offices are spread across the state and through this partnership, Vodafone takes bill payment facility closer to home for customers living in the interiors of the state,” it added.
“We strongly believe this postpaid bill payment facility will significantly enhance the convenience factor for our valued customers, in remitting their monthly mobile bills,” Ashish Chandra, Business Head, Maharashtra and Goa, Vodafone India said.
The facility is available at 53 computerised post offices and the company will look into extending the facility to remaining computerised post offices, he said.
Posted by : Gizmeon

Facebook, BMW, Audi and Uber show interest in Nokia Maps: Report

Facebook, BMW, Audi and Uber show interest in Nokia Maps: Report
Nokia’s maps business has drawn interest from at least four potential acquirers, including Facebook and a consortium of German carmakers BMW, Audi and Daimler, a German magazine reported.
Manager Magazin cited people familiar with the matter as saying local transportation service Uber is looking at the books of HERE, Nokia’s mapping unit, and that US private equity firm Hellman & Friedman is also interested. According to Manager Magazin, the book value of the unit is $2.15 billion.
Nokia and Facebook declined to comment on the report. Uber, Hellman & Friedman, BMW, Audi and Daimler were not immediately available for comment.
Finland’s Nokia said last week it had started a strategic review of HERE after announcing a takeover of network equipment rival Alcatel-Lucent.
Posted by : Gizmeon

Tech startups write letter to PM Modi asking him to save the Internet

Tech startups write letter to PM Modi asking him to save the Internet
One of the biggest debates over net neutrality were how programs like and Airtel Zero will destruct the startups community in India.
We’ve been hearing about how Net Neutrality is extremely important for small business owners, startups and entrepreneurs, who can simply launch their businesses online, advertise the products and sell them openly, without any discrimination on the basis of cost or speed. It is essential for innovation and creating job opportunities. Big companies like Google, Twitter and several others are born out of net neutrality. With increasing Internet penetration in India and given that we are becoming a breeding ground for startups and entrepreneurs, the lack of net neutrality could be worrisome.
Now, the team at, with its several members from startups, have drafted an open letter to PM Narendra Modi. The team is urging everyone who is a part of India’s startup ecosystem to sign the letter, asking TRAI to preserve the open, competitive internet by enforcing net neutrality.
The letter talks about how one of the Indian startups could go on to become the next Google or Amazon. It urges PM Modi to preserve the startup ecosystem and explains net neutrality will be in the public interest.
“We dream that an Indian startup may one day become the next Google, Facebook or Amazon. We know that you share our dream. We share another dream with you, the dream of a Digital India. We dream of this as Indians, and also as businesses that wish to serve a fast-growing Indian internet market. These dreams cannot be achieved without the open Internet,” the letter says.
The letter also talks about how startups will help fulfill his dream of Digital India. “Bringing them (people in India) online is not merely a question of infrastructure or affordability; there should first be demand for Internet access. No-one will begin using the Internet just because access is cheap or even free, if all the content and applications are in foreign languages and don’t solve their problems. The key to attaining a Digital India is to let Indian startups experiment and build the must-have apps for the next 100 crore Internet users,” it further adds.
The letter emphasizes on the effects of zero rating and its discrimination. “They (apps) are not free but bundled with a paid mobile connection, just as when a toothbrush is given “free” with toothpaste, it is really priced together as a bundle. They don’t even pretend to provide Internet access — the Internet has 100 crore websites and the freedom to start your own, while these offers only have a few dozen cherry-picked websites,” it reads.
The letter is also marked to Ravi Shankar Prasad, Minister of Communications and Information Technology and Nirmala Sitharaman, Minister of State for Commerce and Industry.
Read the complete letter below:
Shri Narendra Modi
Prime Minister of India
Copy to
Shri Ravi Shankar Prasad
Minister of Communications and Information Technology
Copy to
Smt. Nirmala Sitharaman
Minister of State for Commerce and Industry
Dated: April 24, 2015
Subject: Protect the Open Internet in India
Dear Sir,
We are writing to you as founders and stakeholders of Indian technology startups.
Each of us set out on this entrepreneurial journey with a dream to create a world-leading technology company from India. We dream that an Indian startup may one day become the next Google, Facebook or Amazon. We know that you share our dream.
We share another dream with you, the dream of a Digital India. We dream of this as Indians, and also as businesses that wish to serve a fast-growing Indian internet market.
These dreams cannot be achieved without the open Internet.
Preserving the Startup Ecosystem
The Internet is a fountain of creativity because it is a single, global market where anyone can offer a product and be reachable by every user. This results in global competition and exchange of ideas, and drives innovation and progress.
If startups or online service providers had to first obtain a government license, or pay each Internet Service Provider in the world (there are tens of thousands of them), this global market, competition and innovation would disappear.
This is what we stand to lose if telecom operators are allowed to strike deals to favour some online services over their competitors. Under these deals, companies may pay the ISP to make their competitors’ websites inaccessible, slower or more expensive to access than their own.
These practices, if allowed, will exclude promising startups from the Internet and end our dream of seeing them flourish. The western companies that dominate the Indian internet ecosystem today will use their deep pockets to perpetuate their position. The few startups that can afford it will be forced to find growth in foreign markets before they can return to India with the funds to pay ISPs, while the rest shut shop.
This would be a catastrophic outcome for our startup ecosystem.

Building a Digital India

India has the fastest growing internet user base in the world, but over 100 crore Indians still don’t use the Internet.
Bringing them online is not merely a question of infrastructure or affordability; there should first be demand for Internet access. No-one will begin using the Internet just because access is cheap or even free, if all the content and applications are in foreign languages and don’t solve their problems.
These content and applications will not be created by the large western companies that dominate the Internet today, but by Indian startups like us. We can only do this if there is a level playing field, freedom to innovate, and yes, competition to drive us. Which of our apps solves these problems best is a decision for each user to make, and not for a corporate gatekeeper.
As consumer demand rises, and the profitable market for data will drive an expansion in infrastructure. Cellular operators claim, contradicting their own annual reports, that providing internet access is not profitable enough to expand infrastructure. The fact that they haven’t increased prices and continue to advertize their internet plans heavily show that these claims are untrue.
The key to attaining a Digital India is to let Indian startups experiment and build the must-have apps for the next 100 crore Internet users.

Zero Rating is Harmful Discrimination

Some telecom operators and large foreign companies try to use Digital India against the open Internet. They attempt to justify a form of discrimination called zero-rating by saying it allows them to offer “free internet for the poor”. We must point out that these offerings are neither “free”, “the internet” nor “for the poor”.
They are not free but bundled with a paid mobile connection, just as when a toothbrush is given “free” with toothpaste, it is really priced together as a bundle. They don’t even pretend to provide Internet access — the Internet has 100 crore websites and the freedom to start your own, while these offers only have a few dozen cherry-picked websites. Finally, these plans are not marketed to the poor or those who currently lack access, but only to existing internet users of competing operators.
Some argue that even with these flaws a few bundled websites are better than none. On the contrary, permitting these plans will cause serious harm — as a proprietary alternative to the public Internet, it will slow down Internet adoption and delay Digital India. It must be noted that websites of government departments, educational institutions, healthcare providers and others are not accessible in these plans. In addition, these offers will also cause a collapse of competition as crores of Indians will be locked into a few cherry-picked services, resulting in a decline in quality of service and progress.
There are other, equally economical ways to offer non-internet users a bundled data plan to get acquainted with the Internet, that does not take away their freedom.

Net Neutrality is in the Public Interest

Our desire for a level playing field on the Internet is shared overwhelmingly by consumers. Over the last two weeks over 10 lakh of India’s best-informed citizens have written to TRAI to ask it to uphold equality on the Internet.
Many foreign nations share these views as well. Several, most recently Brazil, have passed laws to ensure “network neutrality” or non-discrimination by ISPs; many more countries like the US and European Union are in the process of doing so.

The Way Forward

We sincerely wish that our government would also protect the open, competitive Internet in India. We request that network neutrality is enforced and all discriminatory practices by ISPs are forbidden — including zero-rating, throttling, blocking, paid prioritization, toll-gating and others. We also hope that the regressive proposal to license online services will be dropped.
We, the startups that are at the forefront of creating the next wave of online applications, request you to take action now. We need you to protect our nation’s innovation ecosystem.
Best regards,
Posted by : Gizmeon

Trai can make a recommendation, but govt to take the final call

Trai can make a recommendation, but govt to take the final call
While everyone had an opinion on the ongoing net neutrality debate in India over the past couple of weeks, it is for the first time the government has spoken about the matter publicly. We’ve been hearing about how TRAI isn’t really buying Facebook’s or Airtel Zero programs and DoT is also batting for net neutrality, but telecom minister Ravi Shankar Prasad has come forth to reveal that government stands for free and open Internet.
Rahul Gandhi, who moved an adjournment motion in Lok Sabha said one million people are fighting for net neutrality and the govt is trying to carve out the net and hand it over to the corporates. Within moments of the speech, #RGforNetNeutrality started trending on Twitter.
In response, telecom minister Ravi Shankar Prasad said, “Our PM has said that everyone should have access to the internet.” Adding that the PM is the most respected person on social media in India, Prasad assured that the government stands for net neutrality and will ensure a non-discriminatory internet is available.
“Trai can make a recommendation under Trai act but the final decision rests with the government,” he further added.
He also questioned, “We would like to know how and why the UPA govt blocked Twitter handles.”
Unless you’ve been living in a cave, you must have at least heard or read the word ‘net neutrality’ over the last week. That’s the hottest ongoing debate all over the Internet/social media, in India at least. The ongoing net neutrality debate has seen people with extreme views and also some others who believe that India shouldn’t rush into making any decision and weigh the pros and cons on both sides before taking a drastic decision.
Airtel had created quite a stir with its new Zero marketing platform. However, massive outrage forced its partner Flipkart to walk out of Airtel Zero. Soon companies like Cleartrip and NDTV walked out of Facebook’s, a platform almost similar to Airtel Zero.
Protesting against the rules which threaten to redefine the Internet, a website called has been set up where anyone can send a mail directly to Trai, expressing their reluctance and discomfort about how telecom carriers are snatching away free Internet from them.  Those part of India’s startup ecosystem can also sign this letter asking PM Modi to preserve the open, competitive internet by enforcing net neutrality. Trai has already received over 9 lakh emails in support of net neutrality.
To know more about the net neutrality debate in India, download our free e-book.
Posted by : Gizmeon

WhatsApp for iOS updated to get voice calling feature

WhatsApp for iOS updated to get voice calling feature
As promised by Brian Acton at F8 conference, WhatsApp’s voice calling feature that was rolled out to Android users a while back is now being made available for iOS.
The new version of the Messenger available for download on the Apple App store reveals support for voice calling. It reads, “WhatsApp Calling: Call your friends and family using WhatsApp for free, even if they’re in another country. WhatsApp calls use your phone’s Internet connection rather than your cellular plan’s voice minutes. Data charges may apply. Note: WhatsApp Calling is rolling out slowly over the next several weeks.”
Whatapp is also updated to work with iOS 8’s new sharing system. This meansusers can share photos, videos, links and more using the share button in other apps. Then there’s the quick access button to the camera.
Though the new update is available for download right away, users may have to wait for the highly-anticipated voice calling feature. The feature isn’t rolled out to everyone yet, and will be released in phases.
It should work in a manner similar to WhatsApp for Android. In India, there are a lot of messenger apps which allow free peer-to-peer calling like Viber, Hike, Skype, Line and so on. But what gives WhatsApp an edge is the user base here, which comes to around 70 million active monthly users.
Meanwhile, WhatsApp voice-calling for Windows Phone is ‘still in works’. Those curious about the voice-calling feature for WhatsApp, read our first impressions for the Android version.
Posted by : Gizmeon

DoT to soon meet telcos on call drop issue: Ravi Shankar Prasad

DoT to soon meet telcos on call drop issue: Ravi Shankar Prasad
Telecom Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad today said the Department of Telecom (DoT) will soon call a meeting of all service providers to look into the problem of frequent call drops being faced by customers.
“I have asked my officials to call a meeting of all service providers regarding call drops faced by customers,” Prasad told PTI. Operators will be asked to improve quality of service, he added.
A group of BJP MPs have also complained to the Minister regarding frequent ‘call dropping’, excess billing and non-transparency by some private telecom operators.
The parliamentarians demanded action against the private telecom operators after proper investigation and alleged that the companies were not hearing complaints of the customers.
Mobile phone users have been complaining about the call drops, but telecom operators have not lived up to their expectations to rectify the problems and provide a good communication network.
Instead, the operators, cite lack of spectrum and hurdles of not allowing installation of mobile towers in residential areas due to radiation issues for call drops. Prasad, on several occasions, has said that the lack of spectrum is no excuse for not resolving the frequent problems of call drops on their networks.
He had also said if consumers continue to raise concerns about quality of service, then he would bring the issue to the notice of telecom regulator Trai for its consideration.
Posted by : Gizmeon