Tuesday, 16 August 2016

Asus to launch Zenfone 3 phones in India today, might launch ZenPad 3 too


Asus will launch Zenfone 3 series phones in India. There are three phones in the Zenfone 3 series - Zenfone 3, Zenfone 3 Deluxe and Zenfone 3 Ultra. These phones were first unveiled at the Computex event in Taipei in May this year. Meanwhile, we are also expecting Asus to launch its recently announced ZenPad 3 tablet during the event as well.


The Zenfone 3 comes in gold, blue, black, and white colours. It has Corning Gorilla Glass coating on both front and back panels while an aluminimum frame protects its internals. The Zenfone 3 has a 5.5-inch LCD screen, a Snapdragon 625 processor, a 16-megapixel rear camera, an 8-megapixel front camera, a 3000 mAh battery, a fingerprint sensor, USB-C 2.0 port, 4GB RAM, and an expandable storage slot that can hold a micro SD card of up to 64GB. The Zenfone 3 is priced at $249 or Rs 16,755 respectively.

The Zenfone 3 Deluxe and Zenfone 3 Ultra have metal unibody. The Zenfone 3 Deluxe has been announced in gray, silver, and gold colours. It has a slightly bigger 5.7-inch 1080p OLED touchscreen, Snapdragon 820 processor, a 23-megapixel rear camera, USB-C 3.0 port, and 6GB RAM. The Deluxe is priced at $499 or Rs 33,577 approximately for the 6GB of RAM plus 64GB internal storage variant. A 256GB of Zenfone 3Deluxewill be launched later.

The Zenfone 3 Ultra has a huge 6.8-inch LCD screen that comes with full HD resolution. It is powered by a Snapdragon 652 processor and 4GB RAM. It too has a 23-megapixel rear camera, USB-C 3.0 port but comes with a bigger 4,600 mAh battery. The Zenfone 3 Ultra comes in gray, silver and pink colours. The Ultra has a price tag of $479 or Rs 32,238 approximately.

ZenPad 3 8.0 has a 7.9-inch IPS (2048×1536p) display that comes with anti-fingerprint coating. It comes with the 1.8 GHz hexa-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 650 processor, which is paired with Adreno 510 GPU. The tablet runs on Android 6.0 Marshmallow operating system that is wrapped under ZenUI 3.0 and for power, it comes bundled with a 4680 mAh non-removable battery which claims to offer up-to 11 hours of battery life.

The Asus ZenPad 3 8.0 comes in two variants - one with 2GB RAM with 16GB internal storage and the other with 4GB RAM with 32GB of internal storage. The ZenPad 3 8.0 memory can be further expanded by up-to 128GB via a micro SD card. The tablet has an 8-megapixel rear camera on the rear, and a 5-megapixel front-facing camera for video calling. Besides, the tablet offers 4G/LTE, WiFi (802.11 ac/b/g/n), Bluetooth 4.1, GPS/AGPS/GLONASS, USB Type-C, stereo speakers and a gyro and e-compass sensor. The tablet measures 205.4 x 136.4 x 7.57 mm and it weighs around 320 grams.

Xiaomi Redmi 3S, 3S Prime launched in India at Rs. 6,999, Rs. 8,999


Xiaomi has launched the Redmi 3S, Redmi 3S Prime in India. The device features a metal body and is available in two variants, one with 2GB RAM/16GB expandable storage and the other, Redmi 3S Prime, with 3GB RAM/32GB expandable storage. The devices are available in gold, dark grey, and silver colour variants and are priced at Rs. 6,999 and Rs. 8,999 respectively. The Xiaomi Redmi 3S Prime will be available from August 9, while the Redmi 3S will be available from August 19. Both devices will be available exclusively on Mi.com and Flipkart without pre-registration. The phone features a 5-inch HD display and is powered by a Qualcomm Snapdragon 430 SoC. The device also features 13MP camera at the back with PDAF, while at the front is a 5MP camera. The Redmi 3S Prime also features a fingerprint scanner located at the back of the device. While the device is smaller than the Redmi Note 3, it features a larger 4100mAh battery, which the company claims to last up to two days with moderate use. The Redmi 3S was already launched in China a couple of months ago.

The Redmi 3S, Redmi 3S Prime will be up against the likes of the Lenovo Vibe K5 Plus, Coolpad Note 3 and even the 2GB RAM variant of the Xiaomi Redmi Note 3. Judging by the specifications, Xiaomi has a very impressive device on its hands and the company might be able to emulate the success of the Xiaomi Redmi Note 3 with the new phone. Stay tuned for a full review of the new phone.

Google's video-calling app Duo


Announced at its I/O developer conference earlier this year, Google has finally made its video calling app - Duo, available to the general public. The app boasts features like end-to-end encryption and claims to deliver a great user experience. Duo is set to take on the likes of WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger and WhatsApp.

Here's all you need to know about Google's newest video calling app.
The 'Knock Knock' feature

Google Duo app comes with an interesting feature called 'Knock Knock,' which previews a short video of the caller before the call is picked. Once the user answers the call, the audio turns on and the two parties can start the conversation. Android users can use 'Knock Knock' directly from the lockscreen without opening Duo. On the other hand, iPhone users will have to launch the app to check who's calling them.

'Knock Knock' can be disabled

'Knock Knock' is only available with contacts that are in a user's phonebook. Users can also block any other users from calling them by disabling the 'Knock Knock' functionality. This feature can be altogether disabled from the app's settings.

User friendly interface

Duo flaunts an immaculate and simple user interface. Before a call is started, users can see icons to start a video call with their recent contacts. During a call, options are presented that can be used to mute audio, switch cameras and hang up the call.

Works well on slow connections

Google claims that Duo can operate well even on slow network connections . Although all calls on Duo are in HD quality, the app can automatically adjust the video quality based on network strength.


Like WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger is also multi-platform and is available on both iOS and Android.


With Duo, it seems that Google has managed to pick up quite some features from competing instant messengers (IMs) like WhatsApp and made them better with additional features like search functionality. Duo's features are likely to make things easier for users, as they will get search, booking and video calling features in one app. How well Duo manages to do against competitors like WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger, is something only time will be able to tell.

courtesy - TOI

Samsung to Launch 5000 mAh Battery phone in India

A Samsung phone packing in a mammoth 5,000mAh battery is set to be launched in India sometime next month, according to a new report. The phone in question is likely to be an ‘A series pro device," the report notes.
A Samsung A series Pro device with 5,000mAh battery - does that ring a bell? Yes, the handset could very well be the Galaxy A9 Pro (2016), which has already made its international debut - it was first launched in China back in March this year.

Needless to say, none of this has been officially confirmed by the South Korean company

Monday, 4 January 2016

Moto G (3rd Gen) gets Android 6.0 Marshmallow in India

Motorola has given a New Year’s treat to its Moto G3 users in India as the phones will now be get an Android 6.0 Marshmallow update.
“Here is something new and amazing for your Moto G (3rd Gen.), the Android 6.0 Marshmallow!” Motorola India announced on its Twitter account.
However, the exact date of the rollout was not mentioned in the tweet.
The third-generation phone of the Moto G series will now https://t.co/0etB1IncHibe upgraded from Android 5.1.1 (Lollipop) to Android 6.0.
The 2 GB update will add features like “Doze Mode” to extend the battery life, Google Now on Tap and simpler volume control and would remove the “Migrate” and “Assist” apps.
How to check for the update:
Generally, the phone would notify you about the update. If, however, one does not receive the notification, one can manually check for the update by going to Settings > About Phone > System Update.
The Moto G comes with a 5-inch HD display with a layer of Corning Gorilla Glass 3. It will sport the Android 5.1.1 OS along with proprietary Motorola features such as Moto Display, Quick Capture and Chop Twice. The phone will house a Qualcomm Snapdragon 410 SoC with a 1.4GHz quad-core processor. This will be paired with 1GB of RAM for the 8GB storage variant and 2GB RAM for the 16GB storage variant.

On the camera front, you will get a 13MP rear snapper along with a 5MP front-facing camera. The Moto G will come in the dual SIM configuration and will support 4G SIM cards as well. A 2,470mAh capacity battery completes the package.

Moto 360 2nd gen now available on Amazon in India

Motorola has started selling the second generation Moto 360 on Amazon in India. Previously exclusive to Flipkart, the smartwatch can now be purchased from the country's other major online retailer.
Amazon has four versions of the watch on sale. The black version is available in 46mm with black metal band and in 42mm with black leather band. The silver version is available in 46 and 42mm in the cognac leather band. Flipkart still has a leg up on Amazon as it also sells the silver metal and gold leather versions.
The prices are same as before, ranging from INR 19,999 ($301) for the cheapest model to INR 24,999 ($377) for the most expensive one.

Tuesday, 6 October 2015

iPhone 6S home button gets too hot to touch, complain some users

It has been barely a fortnight since the Apple iPhone 6S went on sale in some markets across the globe and some have already started facing issues. According to some users, Apple iPhone 6S’s Touch ID button gets very hot, thereby making it unusable.
Many users have complained about the same on Apple forumsA user going by the name JazzieFay wrote this on the forums, “i have had my phone since Friday, and this morning when I woke up the home button was burning hot and the screen is just black. I went to bed with it working just fine last night, plugged it in to charge, and now it won’t work. Nothing else is hot, not even the charging port, just the home button is on fire. I have had the phone unplugged for an hour and the button is still on fire.”
According to International Business Times, freelance designer Jonnie Hallman stated on October 5 on his Twitter account that his iPhone 6S shut down even though 50% of battery was still remaining and the home button became unbearably hot. This despite the fact that the device was in his pocket the entire day.
Another user named Hudmonkey had this solution to the issue, “I had the same problem today. I can’t tell you why it happened, but what fixed my phone was to hold the home button and the power button for about 10 seconds. The apple symbol popped-up and looked like a reboot. I plan to send an email to Apple Support as a follow-up, but hopefully that will get your phone back on for now.”
Apple has however, acknowledged that this was the first hardware related issue with the new iPhones. It has said that a software update would be released to fix some of these issues. It also went on to say that users can also get their hardware replaced in case the problems persisted.

Apple iPhone 6s, iPhone 6s Plus listed on Flipkart, retailer confirms pricing

Although Apple has not officially introduced the brand new iPhones – iPhone 6s, 6s Plus in India, the devices have already been spotted online with e-commerce players such as Flipkart, at exorbitant prices.
The iPhone 6s for the 16GB variant is priced at 64,836, 64GB variant at Rs 74,117 and the 128GB variant at Rs 83,401 respectively and will be available in Gold, Rose Gold, Silver, and Space Grey colour variants. The iPhone 6s Plus for the 16GB variant is priced at Rs 74,117, 64GB variant at Rs 83,401 and the 128GB variant at Rs 88,478 respectively.
However, these devices are not set to pre-order but are in fact, available for purchase. Even though Apple has not unveiled India pricing for the devices, it is expected that the devices will be priced almost the same as listed on Flipkart.
Image: Technology Personalized
In addition, a report by Technology Personalized states that Apple has sent out a circular to the re-sellers with updated pricing of other existing models as well. The iPhone 6 will now start at Rs 52,000, while the iPhone 6 Plus will start at Rs 62,000. iPhone 5s will be the starting model at price of Rs 35,000 for the 16GB.
The iPhone 6s and 6s Plus will rollout on 16 October in India. This will be the fastest iPhone rollout ever for the Indian market, coming less than a month after the latest models became available globally.
According to Ingram Micro India Pvt. Ltd, the iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus will be available beginning 12:01am local time on Friday, October 16 in over 2,500 retail locations across India. The launch event is also said to be held at over 80 cities across India.
A senior executive with a leading mobile retail brand said, “Except for the iPhone 6 16GB, the rest of the numbers are relevant. The iPhone 6 16GB is selling for around Rs 48500. Prices for the new phones are upward. The trend is similar to a commodity, and are fluctuating.”

Tuesday, 4 August 2015

This Computer Worm Could Break Into Your Apple Without You Even Knowing

There's a new type of worm that can break into Apple computers without being detected — and the creators say virtually the only way to get rid of it is to throw your laptop in the garbage.
Known as Thunderstrike 2, the worm was developed by security experts Xeno Kovah and Corey Kallenberg to raise awareness about Apple's security flaws. They say the worm is capable of spreading from one Mac to another, even if the computers don't share a network.
"[The attack is] really hard to detect… it's really hard to get rid of," Kovah told Wired, explaining that the worm embeds itself in a computer's firmware, the software that comes pre-installed and loads the operating system. "It's really hard to protect against something that's running inside the firmware… for most users that's really a throw-your-machine-away kind of situation," he said.
The problem is that Thunderstrike 2 can't be removed with software or traditional anti-malware programs; cleaning a machine requires programming the computer's chip. "Most people and organizations don't have the wherewithal to physically open up their machine and electrically reprogram the chip," Kovah said.
What makes Thunderstrike 2 so insidious is that it can spread between computers that aren't connected on the same network. To spread the worm, an attacker must first undermine the firmware on a Mac by sending malware through a phishing email or link. The malware could be programmed to infect the firmware — known as the Option ROM— of anything that's plugged into the computer, such as an Ethernet adapter. If that adapter were plugged into another computer, the malware would spread. When the second machine is turned on, the worm would spread to its firmware and become undetectable.
Kovah and Kallenberg say the implications of their discovery could have wide-ranging implications.
"Let's say you're running a uranium refining centrifuge plant and you don't have it connected to any networks, but people bring laptops into it and perhaps they share Ethernet adapters or external SSDs to bring data in and out," Kovah said. "Those SSDs have Option ROMs that could potentially carry this sort of infection. Perhaps because it's a secure environment they don't use Wi-Fi, so they have Ethernet adapters. Those adapters also have option ROMs that can carry this malicious firmware."
Kovah and Kallenberg say that the worm was developed to showcase vulnerabilities in Apple devices. They've notified Apple of their discovery, and the company has already fully patched one type of vulnerability and partially patched another, but three still remain unresolved.
This isn't the first time that Kovah and Kallenberg have revealed a gaping hole in computer security. Last year, they test a series of major PCs for a similar vulnerability and found that 80 percent — including brands like Dell, Lenovo, Samsung, and HP — were vulnerable to firmware worms.
"It turns out almost all of the attacks we found on PCs are also applicable to Macs," Kovah explained.
Kovah and Kallenberg plan to unveil their discovery in more detail on August 6 at the Black Hat security conference in Las Vegas. The goal is to push tech companies to take security more seriously.
"Some vendors like Dell and Lenovo have been very active in trying to rapidly remove vulnerabilities from their firmware," Kovah said.
"Most other vendors, including Apple as we are showing here, have not," he added. "We use our research to help raise awareness of firmware attacks, and show customers that they need to hold their vendors accountable for better firmware security."

Monday, 3 August 2015

Govt on porn ban: Did not mean to curtail internet freedom

As reactions to the government’s move to block porn sites rose to a crescendo on Monday, top communications ministry officials said it was merely meant to comply with the Supreme Court’s observations and not to curtail internet freedom.
“We are not a control-freak government and strongly object to the word Talibanisation,” communications minister Ravi Shankar Prasad said. “On the contrary, we are pushing for higher levels of internet use through Digital India.”
The Opposition had raised the T word to liken the restriction on porn sites to the ways of Afghanistan’s oppressive grouping.
According to data from Pornhub, one of the world’s biggest porn sites, India ranks in fifth place for the most daily visitors to the website. The website saw a total of 78.9 billion video views globally in 2014.
Prasad refused to go into the details of the action being taken, but a communications ministry official said an ombudsman could not be ruled out. “The ombudsman can hold discussions with parents’ associations, NGOs, journalists and other stakeholders on the issue,” said the official.
The Supreme Court, slated to take up the matter on August 10, had however issued no direction to block or ban porn sites. On the last date of hearing on July 8, a bench headed by Chief Justice of India HL Dattu had only asked the government to clarify its stand on a petition seeking to ban pornographic websites across India on the ground that they fuel crime against women.
“Such interim orders cannot be passed by this court. Somebody can come to the court and say, ‘Look, I am an adult and how can you stop me from watching it within the four walls of my room? It is a violation of Article 21 (right to personal liberty) of the Constitution.’ Yes, the issue is serious and some steps need to be taken… the Centre has to take a stand... let us see what stand the Centre will take,” Justice Dattu had observed.
Appearing for the Centre, additional solicitor general Pinky Anand had told the court the government was willing to take action against the “offending websites”.
The matter has been pending before the court since 2013. In an affidavit filed in August last year, the department of telecommunications had told the court it had constituted a cyber regulation advisory committee under the Information Technology Act to look into the issue.
Earlier, the Centre had expressed its inability to clamp down on such sites, saying it was technologically impossible.
It could well be."It is extremely easy to circumvent these blocks, using virtual private networks and proxies that anonymise your traffic," said Pranesh Prakash, policy director at the Centre for Internet and Society in Bengaluru.
A cursory Google search on how to unblock porn websites throws up millions of how-to and guides. These make a users’ web traffic anonymous by routing it through foreign servers.
The government can try to keep up with proxies and block them, too. But proxies change every day and there are dozens of functioning proxies to choose from.
But is it legal to circumvent blocks put in place by authorities by using VPNs and proxies? There is no law in India that prohibits viewing pornography, experts say. Section 67 of the Information Technology Act only deals with "publishing obscene information in electronic form".
This has been interpreted as a measure to criminalise the posting of pornographic content online. However, accessing that content privately – such as in one’s home – is not illegal, say experts.

Friday, 31 July 2015

OnePlus 2 invite registrations cross one million mark in mere 72 hours

OnePlus launched the much talked about OnePlus 2 in the world’s first virtual reality launch event on July 27. The Chinese company has promoted over a million people to register for the new device in a mere 72 hours. At the launch event, the company had stated that it sold 1.5 million OnePlus One smartphones since its launch. In comparison, then new phone has already received such a huge number of registrations or an invite to purchase the latest OnePlus 2.
OnePlus will be hosting a pop-up event in New York, San Francisco, London, Paris, Berlin, Milan, New Delhi, Bangalore, and Jakarta on July 31 where fans can experience the new OnePlus 2 smartphone.
Image: OnePlus

The 64GB OnePlus 2 will be available for purchase with an invite in India starting August 11, exclusively on Amazon. The 16GB OnePlus 2 with 3GB LPPDR4 RAM will be available later this year.  The company has also taken out the logo from the front. It sports a 5.5-inch 1080p display. As promised, the smartphone also comes with a fingerprint scanner and USB Type-C port. The fingerprint scanner is faster than the iPhone TouchID and lets you save up to five fingerprints, says OnePlus.
On the camera front, it comes with a 13-megapixel snapper. It also gets a new camera and a new solution that allows you to take 50MP photos and there’s also the slow motion mode. It comes powered by Snapdragon 810 coupled with 4GB of RAM.
It runs OxygenOS, and says it isn’t your pure Android. It comes with some significant changes. It allows you drastically change the look and feel of the device with a single switch. The colour mode will let you select custom accents colours, or even use dark mode. The OnePlus 2 has a 3300mAh battery.
A recent report suggests that after the launch of OnePlus 2, the company plans to offer a price drop for the OnePlus One. In conversation with Business Today, Vikas Agarwal, General Manager, OnePlus-India confirmed that the company will not discontinue any storage variant of the OnePlus One. However, he stated that consumers can expect a price drop for the OnePlus One in the coming days.

Tuesday, 7 July 2015

iPhone 6S to support twice the LTE speeds of iPhone 6

As is Apple’s typically strategy, this year’s iPhone will have the same outward appearance as last year’s model. Recent leaks seem to confirm that. Those leaks do, however, also point to a different logic board internally. One of these improvements should give the iPhone 6s double the LTE speeds compared to the iPhone 6.

According to 9to5Mac and images they were provided, the new iPhone logic board includes a Qualcomm MDM9635M chip. This chip, introduced in 2013, was designed to be backwards compatible with slower networks while still supporting newer LTE options. All of this is in a design that is also supposed to optimize power usage. For iPhone users, this can mean improved battery life, though with the current iPhone 6 battery life, we can also assume Apple will put those savings into powering some other new feature.

In terms of speeds, the chip has a potential download speed of 300 Mbps thanks to LTE Advanced. Upload speeds are no slouch, either, at 50 Mbps. In real world situations, users should expect to see download speeds closer to 225 Mbps. That’s still faster than what users typically would see at home on their wifi. Of course, even in areas where there is no LTE Advanced coverage, users can still get great speeds thanks to support of dual carrier HSUPA and dual band multi-carrier HSPA+.