iPhone 7 Being Snapped Up in Asia, but Crowds Smaller Despite Sell-Out

iPhone 7 Being Snapped Up in Asia, but Crowds Smaller Despite Sell-Out

  • Underneath the usual fanfare, crowds were smaller than in past years
  • Apple will launch in its key Asian market China later on Friday
  • Sales in China will be the acid test for Apple’s year ahead

Apple fans from Sydney to Tokyo, the first to snap the new iPhone 7 off the shelves, cheered as they left stores on Friday brandishing their purchases, flanked by applauding sales staff.

But underneath the usual fanfare, and despite complaints that the larger size of the new phone and the new jet black colour were sold out, crowds were smaller than in past years.

 

Some 200 people were gathered in Sydney light drizzle for the privilege of being the first worldwide to hold an iPhone 7. Apple will launch in its key Asian market China later on Friday.

“It feels great to be the first in the world to have the iPhone 7. It was 100 percent worth it,” said Marcus Barsoum, a 16-year-old “diehard Apple fan” who spent two nights camped outside the Sydney store.

 

Weary but elated, Barsoum charged in to the store at 8am to the cheers of Apple staff. He emerged with a matte black iPhone 7 although he had wanted a iPhone 7 Pus in jet black.

 

Dale Adams, who works at J.P. Morgan in Sydney, arrived only 15 minutes before the store opened and was able to buy a iPhone 7 Plus, having ordered it online more than a week ago.

“I’m certainly not one of the hardcore Apple fans but I think the bigger capacity, better battery, better camera, that’s enough to make the jump,” he said.

Chatter about the launch on Chinese microblog Weibo has been far more muted than when the iPhone 6 debuted in 2014. An index of searches on Baidu, China’s equivalent of Google, shows the new phone lagging both the iPhone 6 and iPhone 5.

 

Sales in China will be the acid test for Apple’s year ahead: the mega success of the iPhone 6 in China drove sales last year, while the slower-burn iPhone 6s contributed to Apple’s first global revenue drop in over a decade earlier this year.

 

Intex Aqua S7 With 4G VoLTE Support, Fingerprint Sensor Launched

Intex Aqua S7 With 4G VoLTE Support, Fingerprint Sensor Launched at Rs. 9,499

  • Intex Aqua S7 has a 5-inch HD (1280 x 720 pixels) display
  • Aqua S7 packs 3GB of RAM and quad-core MediaTek MT6735 64-bit processor
  • The phone is available in Rose Gold, Dark Blue and Champagne colors

Intex has launched a new budget smartphone in India, the Aqua S7. Launched at an event in New Delhi on Monday, the 4G VoLTE-enabled Intex Aqua S7 has been priced at Rs. 9,499, and will come with the Reliance Jio Welcome Offer. The phone will be made available in Rose Gold, Dark Blue, and Champagne colour variants, however, exact availability was not detailed.

The dual-SIM Intex Aqua S7 runs Android 6.0 Marshmallow out of the box, and features a 5-inch HD (720×1280 pixels) display at Rs. 9,499. The smartphone is powered by a 64-bit 1.3GHz quad-core MediaTek MT6735 SoC coupled with Mali-T720 GPU and 3GB of RAM. Another highlight of the smartphone is that it sports a fingerprint sensor on the rear panel.

The smartphone sports a 13-megapixel rear camera with an LED flash module, and a 5-megapixel front camera. The Aqua S7 bears 16GB of inbuilt storage, which is expandable via microSD card. In terms of connectivity, the phone supports 4G, VoLTE, Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n, Bluetooth 4.0, FM radio, 3.5mm audio jack, and GPS/ A-GPS as options. The smartphone houses a 3200mAh battery. The Intex Aqua S7 measures 142.5×72.5×8.7mm and weighs 150 grams.

Intex last week launched smartphones Aqua Costa and Aqua 4.5 3G smartphones. The Intex Aqua Costa was launched at priced of Rs. 5,449 while the Intex Aqua 4.5 3G was priced at Rs. 3,349. Both smartphones are expected to be made available in India soon.

 

Samsung Shares Hit Over Galaxy Note Delays, Battery Explosion Claims

Samsung Shares Hit Over Galaxy Note Delays, Battery Explosion ClaimsTech giant Samsung Electronics touched two-week lows on Thursday on concerns for mobile earnings after it delayed shipments of its premium Galaxy Note 7 smartphone amid reports of exploding batteries.

The firm announced the delays for quality control testing late on Wednesday and also said Galaxy Note 7 shipments to South Korea’s top three mobile carriers had been halted, rattling investor hopes for strong second-half mobile earnings.

Quality control problems, if confirmed, could deal a major blow to the world’s top smartphone maker, which was counting on the Galaxy Note 7 to defend sales momentum against new Apple Inc phones expected to be unveiled next week.

“Apple is supposed to show off the iPhone 7 next week and this issue (with Samsung) has emerged, so the current state of things do not look good,” HDC Asset Management fund manager Park Jung-hoon said.

A decline in Samsung’s smartphone average selling prices and profits appeared inevitable given the current problems with the Galaxy Note 7, he added.
“Samsung will need to respond to this quickly in order to calm market jitters,” he said.

Samsung’s shares were down 3 percent at KRW 1.572 million (roughly Rs. 94,000) as of 0150 GMT, compared with a 0.8 percent drop for the broader market.

The South Korean firm did not elaborate on what potential problems it was testing for or whether shipments to other countries were affected. The South Korean mobile carriers affected are SK Telecom Co Ltd, KT Corp and LG Uplus Corp.

One user posted images of a charred Galaxy Note 7 on a South Korean website called Ppomppu, claiming the phone caught fire while charging. South Korean media have reported several similar incidents.

Samsung Electronics sister company Samsung SDI Co Ltd said that while it was one of the suppliers of Galaxy Note 7 batteries, it had received no information to suggest that its batteries were faulty.

The phone, which launched in South Korea and other markets on August 19, retails at KRW 988,900 ($887.23 or roughly Rs. 59,000) in South Korea.

Production problems for the curved displays for the Galaxy S6 Edge phone resulted in disappointing sales last year, and Samsung risks a repeat this year if it cannot address the Galaxy Note 7 problems quickly.

Hyundai Securities said in a report released on Thursday that the Galaxy Note 7’s problems appeared to be related to modules or parts, and that such “malfunctions” should be resolved “within a matter of few weeks.”

The brokerage retained its third-quarter operating profit forecast of KRW 8.5 trillion.

Samsung has said demand for the new phone is far exceeding demand, creating a shortage and forcing it to push back the launch in some markets. The firm has said it is utilising all possible means to boost production.

Samsung’s other premium smartphone models that launched in March, the Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge, have been huge hits and lifted earnings in the first half.

Reliance Jio SIM Offer Extended to These Smartphones

Reliance Jio SIM Offer Extended to These Smartphones

  • Reliance Jio SIM offer comes with 3 months of usage
  • Offer extended to Sony, Videocon, Sansui smartphones
  • Customers can walk in to Reliance stores to get a Jio SIM

The demand for Reliance Jio SIM is showing no signs of slowing down, and the telco is adding OEMs to its preview offer at the same rate. The names of Sony and smartphone bigwigs Videocon and Sansui are the latest to be added to the list of manufacturers whose smartphones qualify for a free Reliance Jio SIM.

All you need to do is to walk in to a Reliance Digital, Digital Xpress, or Digital Xpress Mini stores and submit your KYC documents. The offer is also applicable at select third-party retail outlets.

If you have one of these smartphones, you now qualify for a free Reliance Jio SIM:

Sony smartphones
Xperia X A, Xperia X A Ultra, Xperia X(F5122), Xperia Z5 Dual(E6883), Xperia Z5 Premium Dual

Videocon smartphones
Graphite1 V45ED, Krypton 3 V50JG, Q1, V50FA3, V50FG6

Sansui smartphones
S50 FD45S

Just follow these steps on a qualifying smartphone:

  1. Download & Open MyJio App from Play Store
  2. Tap on Get Jio SIM on the Banner
  3. Tap on Agree & Get Jio offer
  4. Select your location from the drop down
  5. Read through the steps and click on Next
  6. Offer Code can be viewed on the screen. Note down your offer code.
  7. Check the required documents for submission and visit the nearest Reliance Store.

 

While some stores are now offering a Reliance Jio SIM to anyone with a 4G SIM, others are still sticking by the book and providing them only to owners on smartphones that are on the ‘official’ whitelist.

As we’ve reported before, Reliance Jio SIM cards are also available to owners of the following smartphones and for all Lyf-branded smartphones:

Samsung phones
Grand Prime 4G, Galaxy J1, Galaxy J2, Galaxy J7, Galaxy J5, Galaxy S5 Plus, Galaxy A5, Galaxy A7, Galaxy Core Prime 4G, Galaxy S6, Galaxy J3 (2016), ON7, Galaxy A8, Galaxy S6 Edge, ON5, Galaxy Note 5, Galaxy Note 4, Galaxy Alpha, Galaxy S6 Edge Plus, Galaxy Note 4 Edge, Galaxy Note 5 Duos, Galaxy S5 Neo, S7, Galaxy A5 (2016), Galaxy A7 (2016), S7 Edge, A8 VE, J5 (2016), J7 (2016), ON5 Pro, ON7 Pro, Galaxy J2 (2016), J Max, Galaxy A9, Galaxy A9 Pro, Galaxy C5, Galaxy C7, Galaxy J2 Pro, Galaxy Note 7.

LG phones
K332 (K7 LTE), K520DY (Stylus 2), K520DY, H860 (LG G5), K500I (X Screen), K535D (Stylus 2 Plus), LGH630D (G4 Stylus 4G) & LGH 442 (LGC70 Spirit LTE)

Micromax phones
Bolt Selfie, Canvas 5, Canvas 5 Lite, Canvas 5 Lite Special Edition, Canvas 6, Canvas 6 Pro, Canvas Amaze 4G, Canvas Blaze 4G, Canvas Blaze 4G Plus, Canvas Evok, Canvas Fire 4G, Canvas Fire 4G plus, Canvas Fire 6, Canvas Juice 4G, Canvas Knight 2, Canvas Mega 2, Canvas Mega 4G, Canvas Nitro 4G, Canvas Pace 4G, Canvas Play 4G, Canvas Pulse 4G, Canvas Sliver 5, Canvas Tab, Canvas Unite 4, Canvas Xpress 4G, Unite 4 Plus, Unite 4 Pro

Yu phones
Yu Yureka, Yu Yutopia, YU Note, Yu Yuphoria, Yunicorn, Yunique, Yuphoria, Yureka Plus, Yureka S

Asus phones
ZenFone 2 Laser (ZE550KL), Zenfone 2 (ZE551ML), Zenfone Max (ZC550KL), Zenfone 2 Laser 5.0 (ZE500KL), Zenfone 2 (ZE550ML), Zenfone Selfie( ZD551KL), Zenfone 2 Laser (ZE601KL), Zenfone Zoom(ZX551ML), Zenfone Go 5.0 LTE (T500), Zenfone 3 ZE552KL, Zenfone 3 Laser( ZC551KL), Zenfone 3( ZE520KL), Zenfone 3( ZS570KL), Zenfone 3( ZU680KL)

Gionee phones
E8, F103 Pro, F103(1GB), F103(2GB), F103(3GB), M4, M5, M5 Lite, M5 Lite CDMA, M5 Plus, P5L, S Plus, S6, S6s, S7, V6L

Karbonn phones
Aura 1, Aura Power, Quattro L45 IPS, Quattro L50 HD, Quattro L51 HD, Quattro L52 VR, Quattro L55 HD

Lava phones
A71, A72, A76, A76 Plus, A88, A89, A97, Ivory s 4g, Lava V5 M, Pixel V2, V2s, X10, X11, X12, X17, X28, X38, X41, X41 Plus, X46, X50, X50 Plus, X81

Xolo phones
Black-1X M, era 1X, era 2X, era 4G, era 4K, era X

Panasonic phones
ELUGA L, ELUGA Switch, ELUGA Icon, T45, ELUGA I2 ( 1GB ), ELUGA L2, ELUGA Mark, ELUGA Turbo, ELUGA Arc, ELUGA I2 2GB, ELUGA I2 3GB, ELUGA I3, ELUGA Icon 2, ELUGA A2, ELUGA Note, P55 Novo 4G, ELUGA Arc 2, P77

TCL phones
FIT 5.5, Pride T500L, TCL 560, TCL 562

Alcatel phones
OneTouch X1, Pixi 4 -5, POP Star, POP3, POP4

 

At the moment, a Reliance Jio SIM comes with 3 months of unlimited calling, data, SMS, and access to Jio services like JioOnDemand. Reliance Jio – which is currently testing its network – is expected to do a commercial launch of its network in the ‘coming months’, according to Mukesh Ambani, Reliance Industries Limited Chairman. Ambani is said to have recently met Telecom Secretary JS Deepak to discuss rollout plans for Reliance Jio, which has accused incumbent players of not releasing sufficient interconnection ports during its test run of services.

 

Xiaomi to launch Mi 5 smartphone

 

NEW DELHI: The Chinese smartphone maker Xiaomi has revealed that it will be launching its much awaited flagship smartphone Xiaomi Mi 5 on 24th February. Xiaomi’s Senior VP Liwan Jiang has confirmed this via Weibo and further stated that the smartphone has also entered mass production and will have enough stocks at the time of its release.

The Chinese company will be organising a Spring conference on 24th February, where it is expected to officially launch the smartphone.

 According to earlier leaks, Xiaomi Mi 5 will have a 5.5-inch screen with 2K (1440x2560p) resolution and will run on the recently-launched 2.5GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 820 chipset. Said to be available in 16, 64 and 128GB storage options, the smartphone will have 4GB of RAM. Xiaomi will reportedly use Android 5.1-based MIUI 6 in Mi 5. The smartphone will also have a 20MP rear camera and 8MP front snapper. The 4G-capable top-end handset will feature a 3,800mAh battery and come in black and white colour options.
Recently, Xiaomi also launched its entry level smartphone named Xiaomi Redmi 3 in China. Xiaomi Redmi 3 sports a 5-inch HD (720p) display, which is the biggest screen size for the Redmi series yet. The smartphone comes with 2GB RAM and 16GB internal storage; since it features a hybrid dual-sim slot, users can expand storage up to 128GB via microSD card. It comes with a 13MP camera with f/2.0 aperture and phase-detection autofocus on the back and 5MP front camera with f/2.2 aperture in front.

LeEco eyes top 3 position in Indian smartphone market

LeEco also plans to bring its ecosystem of devices and services, including televisions and smart cycles, to the Indian market later this year.
NEW DELHI: Chinese firm LeEco said it hopes to grab a spot among the top three smartphone players in India within this year, on the back of its disruptive technology.

The company, which launched three new handsets, said it would also bring its ecosystem of devices and services including televisions and smart cycles to the Indian market later this year.

READ ALSO:LeEco makes India debut with LeMax, LeMax Sapphire and Le 1S smartphones

“We are very confident of our disruptive technologies. The specifications are world-class and the pricing is very competitive. We aim to be among the top 3 players in India in 2016,” LeEco India, COO, smart electronics business, Atul Jain told reporters.

READ ALSO:LeEco Max smartphone review: High on specs

Asked which players he expected to dislodge from the tally, Jain said it could be anyone — Samsung, Micromax or Intex.

India is one of fastest growing handset markets globally and is poised to overtake the US soon.

According to research firm IDC, shipments in India grew 21.4% year-on-year to 28.3 million units in the July- September 2015 quarter.

Samsung led the tally with 24% share, followed by Micromax (16.7%), Intex (10.8%), Lenovo Group – Lenovo and Motorola (9.5%) and Lava (4.7%). Talking to PTI, Jain said India will be a “critical market” for LeEco.

“We have launched our products in the US and India apart from China and we will go to the other markets as well. But India market will be critical for us,” he said.

He added that the company will expand its portfolio of products and bring its televisions and smart cycles to India within this year.

The aim is to provide consumers with new alternative of ecosystem based products consisting of platform, content, devices as well as applications, he said.

Founded in 2004, the Beijing-headquartered firm has a number of businesses, spanning from Internet TV, smart gadgets, large-screen applications, e-commerce and Internet-linked super-electric cars.
The company has already partnered Yupp TV and Eros in India for content sharing.
The company has launched three new devices — Le Max (Rs 32,999), Le1S (Rs 10,999) and Le Max Sapphire (Rs 69,999). The devices will be available February onwards on Flipkart through flash sales.

Motorola India to launch Moto X Force smartphone with shatterproof

NEW DELHI: Motorola has sent out invites for the launch of its Moto X Force smartphone in the Indian market. The smartphone, which features a shatterproof screen, is expected to cost over Rs 45,000 at launch.

The company will unveil Moto X Force in India at an event on February 1. Moto X Force was scheduled to launch in India in the month of January, but got delayed.

Moto X Force has a shatterproof display panel courtesy Motorola’s ShatterShield technology; the company is even offering a four-year warranty that covers damage to the display. The company has even used two touchscreen layers, so that the smartphone remains usable even

Moto X Force’s OLED display panel measures 5.4-inch in size and sports resolution of 1440x2560p. Under the hood is a 2GHz octa-core Snapdragon 810 processor with 3GB RAM, and storage options are 32GB and 64GB. The smartphone supports microSD cards of up to 2TB capacity.

 Motorola has preloaded Moto X Force with Android 5.1.1, not Android 6.0 (Marshmallow).
On the back is the 21MP camera with f/2.0 aperture and phase-detection autofocus and dual-LED flash, while a 5MP front camera with f/2.0 aperture, 1.4micron pixels and LED flash is in the front. For connectivity, Moto X Force has 4G, NFC, Bluetooth 4.1 LE, Wi-Fi with MIMO, and infrared. The battery capacity is rated at 3,760mAh and supports Turbo Charging technology for faster charging as well as Qi and PMA wireless charging standards.
Moto X Force is available in only black ballistic nylon finish with water repellent nano-coating. The smartphone, however, is not water resistant. It weighs 169 grams and measures 7.6mm at its thinnest point.
The 32GB unlocked variant of Moto X Force has been priced at 534 pounds in the UK, whereas the 64GB model costs 534 pounds.

Microsoft to Warn Email Users of Suspected Hacking by Governments

Microsoft to Warn Email Users of Suspected Hacking by Governments

Microsoft Corp said on Wednesday it will begin warning users of its Outlook.com email service when the company suspects that a government has been trying to hack into their accounts.

Microsoft told Reuters about the plan in a statement. It comes nine days after Reuters asked the company why it had decided not tell victims of a hacking campaign, discovered in 2011, that had targeted international leaders of China’s Tibetan and Uighur minorities in particular.

According to two former employees of Microsoft, the company’s own experts had concluded several years ago that Chinese authorities had been behind the campaign but the company did not pass on that information to users of its Hotmail service, which is now called Outlook.com.

In its statement, Microsoft said neither it nor the US government could pinpoint the sources of the hacking attacks and that they didn’t come from a single country.

The policy change at the world’s largest software company follows similar moves since October by Internet giants Facebook Inc, Twitter Inc and most recently Yahoo Inc. Google Inc pioneered the practise in 2012 and said it now alerts tens of thousands of users every few months. For two years, Microsoft has offered alerts about potential security breaches without specifying the likely suspect.

In the statement, Microsoft said: “As the threat landscape has evolved our approach has too, and we’ll now go beyond notification and guidance to specify if we reasonably believe the attacker is ‘state-sponsored’.”

Microsoft declined to say what role, if any, the Hotmail hacking campaign played in its policy change. The Hotmail attacks had also targeted diplomats, media workers, human rights lawyers, and others in sensitive positions inside China, according to the former employees.

Microsoft had told the targets to reset their passwords but did not tell them that they had been hacked. Five victims interviewed by Reuters said they had not taken the password request as an indication of hacking. Online free-speech activists and security experts have long called for more direct warnings, saying that they prompt behavioral changes from email users

LG G3 Starts Receiving Android 6.0 Marshmallow Update

LG G3 Starts Receiving Android 6.0 Marshmallow Update

LG has finally started rolling out its much-awaited Android 6.0 Marshmallow update for the LG G3. The update has started reaching handsets in Poland and will eventually reach G3 users in other regions.

The Android update can be installed via the PC Suite app as it is not available over-the-air (OTA) for now. Both the LG G3 16GB and 32GB inbuilt storage variants are eligible for the Android 6.0 Marshmallow update. The news came from social handles of LG Poland.

Some of the new features of Android 6.0 Marshmallow (previously just Android M) include revamped app permissions; Google Now on Tap feature; new Chrome feature that will change the Web experience for Android users; new ways to handle Web links; Android Pay mobile payment system is now official with Android M; new fingerprint APIs for developers to add into their apps, New Silent feature for sound and vibrate mode as well as a ‘Do Not Disturb’ mode to block all sounds or only alarms and notifications, and battery saver features called Doze that will make Android devices smart about managing power. Some of the other additions include new RAM manager, adoptable storage devices, new app drawer, auto backup and restore for apps, and support for USB Type-C ports.

LG has also detailed some of the features it added in the latest Android build including battery optimisation; Knock Code settings, which will be updated to offer an improved experience for the latest OS build; Direct Share, which will show users frequently shared combinations of recommended apps and people; Silent Mode sound profile; auto-brightness improved to be brighter when in a bright place and darker in a dark place; memory settings have been added to Settings > General > Memory to be easily accessible; screen for Apps settings has been simplified, and LG Bridge has now been renamed to LG AirDrive.

It is worth mentioning that LG G4 started receiving the Android 6.0 Marshmallow update in October this year.

OnePlus X to Be Available Without Invites in India on Thursday

oneplus_x_back_ndtv.jpg

You can finally purchase a OnePlus X without going through the hassle of getting an invite. The company has announced that it will be holding the first open sale for the smartphone in India on Thursday. The handset will be available for purchase from Amazon India, and sale starts midnight Wednesday.

The announcement comes a week after Carl Pei, the co-founder and public face of OnePlus, announced that the company was scrapping invitation system that was required when purchasing the OnePlus 2 smartphone. He added that the company will also be holding a three-day open sale for the OnePlus X smartphone starting December 5. Users in India were not eligible for that open sale. OnePlus 2, however, is available without an invite in India as well.

It is worth pointing out that unlike the global open sale for the OnePlus X which lasted for three days, users in India will only have one day to claim the smartphone without an invite. The handset with the Onyx variant was launched in India in October at a price point of Rs. 16,999.

For a refresh, the OnePlus X sports a 5-inch full-HD (1920×1080 pixels) display. It is powered by Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 801 quad-core SoC clocked at 2.3GHz and 3GB of RAM.

Other features of the OnePlus include 16GB of built-in storage expandable via microSD card (up to 128GB), a 13-megapixel rear camera, an 8-megapixel front facing snapper, and a 2525mAh non-removable battery. The dual-SIM capable smartphone supports 4G LTE, Wi-Fi, and other standard connectivity features.