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december FEBRUARY 2019  Rs 100


Your gateway to the world of mobility


five years in india


vivo U20, ASUS ZenBook Pro Duo (UX581), Infinix S5 and many more... @MyMobileMag





s vivo completes five glorious years in India we moved across the alleys of path travelled till now by this global smartphone brand. vivo which means


‘life’ has turned around the fortunes for itself by

Pankaj Mohindroo |

occupying the hearts of around 17 per cent young

Haider Ali Khan | Deputy Editor

Indian population. The numbers speak for itself. These are not just numbers but a confirmation to the brand’s identity and its acceptability that it now conveniently fits into the minds of millennial. vivo has achieved this through rigorous amount of investment in R&D to break several technological barriers which would not have been possible otherwise. Investment that speaks for itself when you see the giant manufacturing facility at Greater Noida in Uttar Pradesh employing more than 10,000 people


Ramesh Kumar Raja | Assistant Editor Vivek Singh Chauhan | Correspondent Pahi Mehra | Correspondent

DE S I G N Ajit Kumar Parashar | Sr. Graphic Designer

directly and manifold indirectly. With a capacity to produce more than 33 million handsets annually, vivo is now challenging other incumbents to follow or perish. vivo India is as new as Make in India initiative. Both made their way in India at almost similar time when Narendra Modi-led NDA government took over

M A R K ETIN G Puja Mohindroo | Manager - Business Sandeep Kumar | Sr. Manager – Marketing

in 2014. He is the man who coined this term, ‘Make In India’ to promote manufacturing within India thus to increase employment opportunities and cut on imports. vivo, at nascent stage in 2014 got this huge boost to establish its footprint in India and rest in history as we all know.

O P ER A TION S Deepak Kohli | Sr. Manager – Accounts

It’s not merely the marketing steps that have helped vivo to establish itself as a key dominant player in Indian smartphone market. Cricket and Bollywood may not be able to drive the numbers for you if you do not have it in your smartphones. These are secondary to innovations which any one has to

CIRC U L A TION B. G. Mathur | Manager- Production & Circulation

offer primarily. You sell a product not promises! vivo smartphones have been a champion in bringing new innovations, design and concepts to the smartphone world.


What stands apart for vivo from other smartphone vendor is that it has its own

Bejon Misra

manufacturing units located very close to the heart of India which helps in

Rajan Mathews

cutting time to the market and thus ensure easy availability of smartphones

S.D. Saxena

when required. It has talent and aspiration to be among the leading

Subhash Chandra

innovations providers to Indians in smartphone and mobility. With neck-to-

Sunil Dutt

neck competition and wafer-thin margin vivo has managed to be among top

Sonu Bhasin

three smartphone brands in India. From camera and music, vivo has come a

Uvaraj Natarajan

long way in these five years to proudly claim, “Love India, Love vivo”! Having said that, we now move into the last month of 2019, and concludes


with our special feature on the smartphones and brands that dominated this

Editorial :

eventful year. With my team, I wish and hope it to continue in 2020 adding

Marketing :

new innovations and concepts to reality.

Circulation : Phone : 011—46206161 Fax : 011—41520637

Happy Reading! n Edited, published, printed and owned by Pankaj Mohindroo, Published from 203, Kanchenjunga Building | 18, Barakhamba Road | Connaught Place | New Delhi-110001. Printed at HT Media Ltd. Plot No. 8, Udyog Vihar, Greater Noida, Uttar Pradesh - 201306

Pankaj Mohindroo editor-in-chief

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04 | december 2019

The publishers regret that they cannot accept liability for errors and omissions contained in this publication, however caused. The opinions and the views contained in this publication are not necessarily those of the publishers. Readers are advised to seek specialist advice before acting on information contained in this publication, which is provided for general use and may not be appropriate for the reader’s particular circumstances. The ownership of trademarks is acknowledged.

Volume XIV, Issue XI, December 2019





46 24 Style Notes 10  letters 11  Newsbits

CEO, Route Mobile

Everyone Must Get Ready for


in 2020

Rahul Pandey – Managing

Director, UTStarcom India


Amlan Bhattacharjya –

Founder and CEO, Brand Eyes

19 Just In Get a close look at new


smartphones now in the



20 Lead Story vivo Completes Five Glorious Years In India

Face to Face 27 Manvendra K Chandola – CEO, Riversong India


Green, Chang-Ching-Lin –

Karl Peter Kilb III - CEO,

Boloro Global Shankar S (Director) & Josh

Jacobson (Senior Director) – Product Management,


Rohan Verma – CEO and

Executive Director, MapmyIndia

Feature 30

Smartphones, brands that

ruled the Indian audience in 2019



06 | december 2019


Signs of Recovery in Global

Smartphone Market


A Record-High in India

Smartphone Shipments


India PC Market Still Going


Yahoo Mail

Regional Marketing Head, MSI Rajdip Gupta - MD and Group

Market Insight

5 Biggest Technology Trends

Burn Test 50 vivo U20

52 Infinix S5 54 EVM EnAble + Power Bank 55 CLAW G9 56 ZenBook Pro Duo (UX581)


What's Inside

contents Apptastic 63

By Invitation 66 Online Appearance Crucial in

VMate Yahoo Mail (Reimagined)


WPS Office 2020


Jai Sharma, Founder, Jai

83 My Guide The most comprehensive

Sharma Solutions

feature and price list of

Today's Market Space –




Mobile Apps Revolutionising

HR Practices in Today’s Workplaces – Udit Agarwal,

Consumer Insight 64

Why Music Makes Us Feel,

According to AI


Censorship for Streaming



Binge-Watching Up 23% in



Founder and CEO, Legistify

mobile devices

108 Add Ons

Founder and CEO, TrackOlap

The latest and the best of


earphones and Bluetooth

Live Streaming Overshadowed

gadgets and accessories, from

Social Media Landscape in

speakers to mobile chargers

2019 – Puneet Sharma, a

and power banks

brand strategist and communications consultant


Technology making legal

122 Vantage Point LOVE versus MILK is OVER

system/services accessible,

now – Faisal Kawoosa,

efficient, transparent and

Founder and Chief Analyst,

affordable – Akshat Singhal,



68 79


Total number of pages = 124




so that they may come out

The topics which you guys

We, as the regular

of the woods in a very short

cover are very timely,

reader and subscriber of

span of time.

properly researched and





My Mobile, love to read

—Harminder Singh, Lucknow

the gadgets, mobiles and apps more often in the

balanced. Your last issue presented a diverse portfolio of Reliance Jio and other

magazine rather than going

I found the information

to any website. The main

provided by you very

source of our tech content

convenient also get the right

comes from My Mobile

explanation about the new

My Mobile is so dear to me

magazine. The unmatched

launched device of Apple

that I keep waiting for it

My trust and passion of

quality of the product keeps

iphone11. Thanks for

every month. The amount of

reading My Mobile keeps

it in a different league

sharing the review which

refreshing and informative

on increasing as the

altogether. Just-ins,

help a lot to the new buying

news it has outstands the

topics which you have

Consumer and Industry


others in the moment. A

Tested Apple iPhone 11, OnePlus 7T, Nokia 7.2, Oppo Reno2 Z, Coolpad Cool 5, Realme XT, Motorola e6S and many more...


Google Pixel 4

Face to Face

Vikas Agarwal GM, OnePlus India



incumbents. —Priyal Goswami, Kolkata


—Vikash Gubrele, Pune

been covering are

Insights always come

matchless like the last issue

handy. An ideal tech

of November (Jio Retracts

magazine should follow

I want to thank My Mobile

to survive the brunt of time

Free Calling) was very

your footsteps.

team for their continuous

and competition.

informative about

—Varun, Mumbai

company’s offering now.

magazine running since last 14 years has to be that great

—Deval, Ahmadabad

effort to provide the unique and latest content in mobile

While the Big News and

Dear @Editor-in-Chief, it is

and technology domain.

The My Mobile magazine

Consumer Insights are

very sad to hear that

What I like the most as a

has always kept me ahead

wholesome informative,


reader is the Burn Tests as

with my peers in knowing

Infocus and Face to Face

companies in India are

it gives an overall

about the latest

are my favorite.

incurring huge losses and

comparison of the devices.

technologies. I am very fond

thousands of its employees

Thank you so much, guys!

of this magazine since my

are on the verge of losing

Keep rocking.

early days and would love to

—Anishka, New Delhi

—Sushant Singh, Patna

Dear My Mobile team, it

their hard earned jobs.

gives me an immense

Furthermore, the incumbent

knowledge of mobile

government at the center

Dear Team My Mobile, it

ecosystem which you guys

should immediately attend

was pleasure as well as

deliver through the

the SOS (Save Our Souls)

informative to read your

magazine and it’s simply

call of the telcos and bail

monthly issue.

brilliant. I really liked review

them out of the deep crisis,

aspires knowledge. —Hina, Cochin

of ASUS ROG Phone 2 in your burn tests. Majority of readers or the users might not be aware of the whole insight about any latest mobile or technology but what we get from it, which is very helpful and deep. It is a must have for those who want to get useful and correct information. —Gautam Kalra, Delhi

10 | december 2019

recommend it to those who

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Motorola brings back ‘Razr’ as new foldable smartphone

extended to both sides, making the display wider, according to reports. The device seemed a lot more like an e-reader than a smartphone. LG is also working on a smartphone with a rollable display. As per the sketches of the device, the display is so large that it can be rolled up twice around the device’s housing, and one would be able to roll it out as much as they want. Xiaomi patents a phone with secondary rear display, quad cameras

Lenovo-owned Motorola has unveiled a new flippable smartphone that marked a generation – Razr. The new Motorola Razr is the first-ever clamshell-style flexible display smartphone that folds completely, bringing an instantly familiar yet totally unique, mobile consumer experience. The smartphone sports a 6.2-inch Flex View display with 21:9 aspect ratio. On the device’s external 2.7-inch interactive Quick View display, users can connect with important information on the go. In the US, the device will be available exclusively on Verizon with pre-order starting on December 26, 2019, for $62.49 a month for 24 months on Verizon Device Payment. It will be available in store starting in January 2020 at Verizon and select Walmart locations, as well as on The new Motorola Razr will also be on pre-order in select markets across Europe starting in December. Razr will also be available in Latin America, Asia and Australia. LG patents handset with extendable display

Realme set to disrupt premium segment China’s Xiaomi has patented a new dualdisplay smartphone with quad rear cameras setup. According to the patent, the primary display is like any other phone with ultraslim bezels and earpiece up top. Meanwhile, the secondary display on the new Xiaomipatented phone is as small in size as the quad-camera housing on the back. As per reports, the secondary display will most likely show caller ID and notification alerts when the phone is placed face down. Additionally, there is no selfie camera on the front which suggests the secondary display might serve as a view-finder well to click selfies with the rear cameras. Recently, the company patented a foldable smartphone with a five pop-up camera setup. TikTok owner unveils its first smartphone Chinese company ByteDance that owns TikTok has finally introduced its longrumoured smartphone named Nut Pro 3 under the Smartisan brand in China. The device is up for sale in China for 2,899

South Korean electronics major LG has patented a new handset with extendable display that doubles the screen surface. The patent has been registered with the WIPO (World Intellectual Property Office) and was published recently with some sketches. The phone looks like a standard smartphone, but the screen can be

yuan or $412. The device, also known as Jianguo Pro 3, was developed in tandem with smartphone makers, Smartisan, and retains the same name as Smartisan’s current line of devices. ByteDance acquired a bunch of Smartisan patents and talent. ByteDance then helped make the Jianguo Pro 3 and packed it with branded features. Apparently, it didn’t decide to change the naming scheme. The new device lets users access Douyin -- the Chinese version of TikTok -- just by swiping up on the lock screen. Meanwhile, the Nut Pro 3 smartphone runs Qualcomm’s latest Snapdragon 855+ chipset, and has four rear sensors, including a 48MP camera and is powered by a 4,000mAh battery. The smartphone has up to 12GB RAM and 256GB storage.

What’s Up


Making its entry into India’s premium segment with the launch of X2 Pro to take on the likes of OnePlus, Samsung and Apple, Chinese brand Realme is now claiming to disrupt the segment with a slew of premium phones. It is also planning to launch an exclusive offline smartphone series in the first quarter of 2020. The devices will focus on battery and camera. “We wanted to change the definition of the premium segment. It is not about pricing but giving experience. We are offering all features from the latest chipset to the fastest charging. We will keep on expanding the portfolio. It is just an entry and we have many more devices to come,” Madhav Sheth, India CEO, said recently. Besides, Realme has increased its focus on offline expansion and is aiming to increase its offline touchpoints from 7000 to 35000 by 2020 calendar year-end. “Offline is about the experience, but it is not limited to premium phones,” Sheth said. Oppo developing its own chipset Taking a cue from Huawei and Samsung

December 2019 | 11

What’s Up

newsbits who make their own processors, Chinese handset maker Oppo is now working to release its proprietary mobile chipset. The

processor will be reportedly used to drive future Oppo models. According to a trademark filed in EUIPO (European Union Intellectual Property Office), Oppo’s chip will be called Oppo M1. According to reports quoting people familiar with the matter, Oppo has hired engineers from Speadtrum as well as MediaTek to work on the M1 chip. Oppo is also working to offer 5G services on all smartphones in 2020 that can cost more than $420, which is roughly Rs 30,000. Meanwhile, the Chinese smartphone maker is looking to make India a global export hub. 88% Indians use mobiles for online payment

Around 88 per cent Indian consumers use mobile devices for online payment, according to a joint report by PayPal and IPSOS. The report further said that bill payments and fashion are the key sectors where app purchases take place and over half the volume of online sales is made through in-app purchases. Around 51 per cent of online sales volume has been made via in-app purchases, it added. “88 per cent of the surveyed Indians use a mobile device to make payments, way above the global average of 71 per cent,” the report said recently. The report is part of a global survey carried out during 23 July and 25 August, 2019. ‘PayPal the IPSOS mCommerce Report’ also said that 81 per cent of the merchants in India are optimised to accept mobile payments to meet the growing demand and responding

12 | december 2019

to consumer preferences, against the global average of 63 per cent merchants. OnMobile partners Gionee to build, manage mobile entertainment Bengaluru-based mobile entertainment company OnMobile Global has joined hands with Jaina Group-owned Gionee brand to launch products such as contest platform, games, themes, tones, and videos. The sole purpose of its mobile entertainment platform is to increase engagement for the user and generate incremental revenue for Gionee. “Our partnership with Gionee to build and manage its mobile entertainment ecosystem is a reflection of the trust and credibility we have built over the years in

India,” said Sanjay Bhambri, President and CEO, OnMobile. Besides interesting and contextual topics for contest, it will also offer mobile game subscription services, high-definition tones and video streaming solutions. 15% of the overall revenue generated from the contest services will be invested in gratification to drive engagement, OnMobile claimed. Google buys Fitbit for $2.1 Bn Google has acquired the US wearable device maker Fitbit Inc at a fully diluted equity value of USD 2.1 billion. Google paid USD 7.35 per share to Fitbit for the

OS platform, the company can build better smartwatches and fitness trackers in the Android ecosystem. The new fitness trackers could incorporate better integration with smartphones using Google’s Fit apps as well. Builder Now brings app ideas to life in minutes

App building platform has launched an instant prototyping tool that helps anyone take their first step in designing an app and making their business idea a reality in as little as 10 minutes. The tool, called Builder Now, went live on November 21 at the world’s leading start-up event, Slush in Helsinki. Builder Now lets people explore ideas and show how they can work, before investing time and money into development. It’s fast, free, and trims out hours of specification writing and meetings, by letting you try rather than talk about user journeys. Builder CEO and Co-founder Sachin Dev Duggal, said, “Thousands of people have had an idea for a softwarebased business, or for tailor-made software for their business, but don’t know where to start. At Builder, we want to make it as easy as possible for anyone with an idea in their head to take it to the next level. Builder Now is a game changer in the software development industry.” Likee teams up with Indus App Bazaar to expand reach Popular short video platform Likee has collaborated with Indus App Bazaar to expand its reach in the Indian markets.

deal. With this, Google is all set to add a new set of devices in its series of hardware products. Google in a blog post announced: “The company will be adding the wearables to its “strong foundation” of products including Pixel smartphones, Pixelbook, Nest family of devices and others.” Buying Fitbit is an advantage to Google as it is an already successful brand and with its Wear


Likee is now available on Indus App Bazaar for free download and usage. Indus App Bazaar currently caters to 60 million users every day and is a preferred app store among Indians who like to discover and consume digital content in their local or regional languages. As partners, both Likee and App Bazaar aim to achieve mutual objectives of content localization, enhancing user-experience with easy-touse apps and encouraging diversity. Likee is a highly-interactive short-video creation app, and the diverse content in local languages on the platform further improves the user experience. With this partnership, Likee aims to invite more users to create content in the language of their choice, share their life moments in engaging video formats and connect with like-minded people. Facebook rolls out meme-making app named ‘Whale’

Social media major Facebook has released a new meme-making app – Whale – that is currently available on the Canadian App Store. Its listing says it can be used to edit your own photos or images from a library of stock photos. You can then share your creations on social media platforms such as Instagram and Messenger. The app’s listing confirms that it’s been developed by Facebook’s New Product Experimentation (NPE) team, which was set up earlier this year to develop new experimental apps for the social media giant. At the time, Facebook said it was using the separate brand name to set the expectation that its apps could change rapidly, or even shut down if the company finds that they’re not useful for people. NPE is also credited with releasing two other apps called Bump and Aux. These apps are intended to help the company discover new features and services that people like. Digital Mall of Asia raises Rs 22 crore funding Virtual e-commerce platform Digital Mall of Asia (DMA), which is designed to offer

immersive shopping experiences to consumers, raised Rs 22 crore in a fresh funding round recently. The investment

was made by real estate investor Satish Jain through his company Amour Infrastructure. DMA will use the funds to scale up product development and branding initiatives, thus creating largescale awareness about its key offerings followed by an upcoming launch in the Indian e-commerce space. An initiative by Yokeasia Malls, DMA is set to go live in January 2020. It is a mix of ‘digital malls’ and ‘digital shops’ that aims to offer a virtual mall environment to consumers while providing a safe investment and selling platform to retailers and vendors across India. To operate on DMA, vendors and retailers will be required to rent a shop in their desired city, tower, and floor. The new-age virtual mall will run on a zerocommission model, which means retailers will only be required to pay a fixed monthly rent of as low as Rs 10,000 as compared to other e-commerce portals that also charge a commission in addition to rent. Infotainment platform Hungama Kids launched

Digital entertainment company Hungama recently launched Hungama Kids, a platform for kids, parents and teachers to access content created and curated specifically for them. The destination will provide a comprehensive learning experience for children of all age-groups, teachers and parents by offering relevant and targeted content across diverse academic and parental topics. Hungama Kids’ library consists of over 500 videos in English and Hindi with new content added every day to ensure age-appropriate

entertainment with ample academic opportunities. The app provides a userfriendly interface with separate sections for kids and parents. The content is further categorized to suit the different needs of the diverse target audience – toddlers, school-going children, pre-adolescents and adolescents. Users get access to a universe of academic topics such as language practice, general knowledge, science, maths, social sciences and career guidance. This is in addition to infotainment videos covering nursery rhymes, bedtime stories, poems and more.

What’s Up


Hike brings HikeMoji avatars in 9 languages for hyperlocal communication

Homegrown messaging platform Hike has launched HikeMoji, personalised avatars, for users to bring their funnest, most expressive selves online with over 1000+ hairstyles, facial features, bindis, local clothing, nose pins and more. To start with, users also get 100+ exclusive stickers of their HikeMoji in any of the 7 regional languages available in addition to English and Hindi. With this, HikeMoji becomes the first and only made in India hyperlocal avatar that is customizable with local components and languages. Once on the Hike Sticker Chat app, users can take a selfie that then gets converted into a base HikeMoji on top of which users can begin to customize their HikeMoji. Users can create their own HikeMoji and access exclusive HikeMoji Stickers of themselves on Hike Sticker Chat app available for download on Google Play and App Store. Oppo, Ericsson to strengthen 5G collaboration with joint lab Chinese smartphone maker Oppo has announced the launch of a 5G joint laboratory with Swedish technology major Ericsson which will serve to deepen the two companies’ collaboration in the area of 5G. Through the new lab, Oppo and Ericsson will also promote global collaboration, share with each other cutting-edge 5G

December 2019 | 13

What’s Up

newsbits technologies and help optimize 5G products and network performance to accelerate the large-scale deployment of 5G globally. Oppo and Ericsson have been

process. “The resolution of Reliance Communications Ltd is now imminent under the NCLT process. In light of these developments, I hereby tender my resignation as director of Reliance Communications Ltd, with immediate effect. Let me take this opportunity to thank all the directors for their longstanding support.” Sony to set up R&D centre in Bengaluru Japanese tech giant Sony recently announced setting up of a R&D center in India to tap into the country’s sizeable pool

working closely to contribute to the evolution of 5G technologies and have also signed a global patent license agreement, laying a solid foundation for their ongoing, in-depth collaboration in the 5G era. Since the third quarter of 2018, the two partners have been running joint 5G tests on Oppo’s 5G handset and Ericsson’s 5G infrastructure with local operator partners in Sweden, Germany and China as part of an effort to accelerate the commercial availability of 5G products. Anil Ambani quits as Chairman of bankrupt RCom

Beleaguered tycoon Anil Ambani has resigned as director of the bankrupt Reliance Communications (RComm), thus ceasing to be the chairman of the mobile phone company he had led since 2006. “Reliance Communications has been admitted under the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code since May 15, 2018. The resolution professional has been in control of the company and the board has been superseded,” Ambani said in his resignation letter dated November 15 to the board of directors of RCom and to Ashish Nanavaty, the resolution professional from Deloitte running the telco’s insolvency

14 | december 2019

of talent, with plans for multiple sites. The first centre in the country will be opened in Bengaluru by 2020 becoming one of the seven Sony’s global research centres. The brand in a statement said that it looks to expand the diversity of its global R&D operations and this move will strengthen its research and development capabilities in India as it seeks to promote research activities and foster the growth of a diverse pool of engineering talent. Sony in May 2019 had announced its exit from the mobile segment as it faced stiff competition from Chinese brands resulting in sharp decline of its handset sales while assuring that its customer services will be available for the existing customers. Trai mandates minimum call ringer duration of 30 seconds The Telecom Regulatory Authority of India has mandated a minimum ring duration of

30 seconds for outgoing mobile calls before they are disconnected, and 60 seconds for such calls to landlines, a view that was backed by the older operators Bharti Airtel and Vodafone Idea but

opposed by Reliance Jio, which wanted a shorter span of 15-to-20 seconds. The Trai regulation, issued recently, though has mandated the terminating or “destination network” to initiate the “force release” or call disconnection process after the specified minimum ring span, and not the originating network. This is since it feels “the terminating network is in the best position to determine the no-answer condition”. Accordingly, the telecom regulator has mandated the terminating network to disconnect the incoming call -- in this case -- after the minimum ring span and simultaneously inform the originating network. But in the event, the originating network does not receive the message, it can disconnect the call from its end after 90 seconds. Web inventor Berners-Lee launches plan to stop internet abuse World Wide Web inventor Tim Berners-Lee

recently unveiled a “Contract for the Web” to halt “misuse” by governments, companies and individuals, bringing several capitals and tech titans like Google aboard. “If we don’t act now -- and act together -- to prevent the web being misused by those who want to exploit, divide and undermine, we are at risk of squandering” its potential for good, Berners-Lee said in a statement from his World Wide Web Foundation. Credited with laying the groundwork for the web -- the universe of multimedia webpages accessible via the internet -- in 1989, the computer scientist has since last year been developing the so-called Contract for the Web. His unveiling of the final document recently comes as government, business and civil society leaders gather in Berlin for the four-day UN Internet Governance Forum. Virtual trading game Moneybhai launched in India Financial platform Moneycontrol has introduced Moneybhai, a unique investing


simulation platform aimed at giving an opportunity to learn trading by experiencing markets in real time with real data using virtual currency. The platform seeks to provide hands-on experience and learnings of the market by allowing users to make

amazing new products. After the US, Letstrack has plans to launch their operations shortly in Europe and North America as well. With the pilot in US, Letstrack has crossed more than 10K app registrations in the country. Over the next few months, the company is expecting higher growth and momentum from the US market. Currently focusing 100K US users, Letstrack is working with some OEMs from US market to expand nationwide. Rewired.GG pumps in 14 million more euros into Team Vitality to expand in India Rewired.GG, a 50-million-euro esports venture fund that invests in the global

risk-free investments. With an aim to inculcate the quality of risk-taking and to advocate the ability to learn finance, the investing stimulation platform targets newly-turned investors in the age-group of 18-34. The company says that it will use real data from stock markets to reproduce the experience of using a real online brokerage account. The functioning of Moneybhai will see every player receive virtual money of Rs 1 crore in their portfolio account with a maximum limit for trading set at Rs 1 crore per day. Letstrack expands footprints to US market

After gaining its substantial ground in the India market, IoT-based vehicle tracking solutions provider Letstrack has entered the US market, with an aim to become a global tech player. The company is launching in US with all its products – Letstrack Personal series, Letstrack Bike series, Letstrack Premium, Letstrack Plug and Play, Letstrack Special and a few

growth of esports, has invested a further 14 million euros into Team Vitality, taking its total investment to 34 million euros. The funds will be used to support the continued growth of Team Vitality as the team pursues expansion across India, where it will be acquiring new players and launching a network of esports academies. The team, which was founded in 2013 with 10,000 euros, aims to be one of the world’s first $1 billion esports teams. The recent investment, along with the 20 million euros that Team Vitality received from Rewired. GG in November 2018, is thought to be the largest investment into a European esports team to date. Team Vitality is one of the biggest esports teams in Europe and boasts some of the world’s top esports players and coaches. Startups drive adoption of Telegram in India End-to-end encrypted messaging platform Telegram, which has over 200 million users globally and which is patronised by journalists, public officials and protest movements, is now gaining a huge following in India. According to a report, it has seen nearly 65% increase in user count this year; the MAU figure (Android alone) stood at around 2.9 crore in September. Small and medium-sized enterprises and

startups, which use the app for marketing and customer engagement, are driving this bump in interest. Edtech firms use it to

reach test-prep users, companies in other sectors rely on it for influencer marketing, and small businesses love its unique application programming interface (API) and bot feature to engage with customers and analyse data. According to Prabhu Ram, head, Industry Intelligence Group at CyberMedia Research, businesses prefer Telegram because it marries capabilities of WhatsApp and Snapchat — it’s secure, private and accessible. Access across multiple devices and no restrictions on the number of group members and file sizes are also a big selling point.

What’s Up


Homefoodi partners Dunzo to bring homemade delicacies delivered at your doorstep Noida-based ecommerce platform Homefoodi has partnered with hyper-local delivery marketplace Dunzo to provide home-made food made by chefs delivered right at your doorstep. Through this

partnership, Homefoodi aims to reach out to the end-users by allowing consumers to select from a wide range of homemade food that can be ordered anytime by the consumers. Homefoodi had recently launched its one of a kind mobile application in the NCR town of Noida which is dedicated to providing the customers with home-cooked authentic food. The company has started this application with an initiative to help “Ghar Ki Lakshmi” transforming into “Bharat Ki Lakshmi” with a focus to providing women employment opportunities and a platform for them to display their expert culinary skills. n

December 2019 | 15

First Look


Infinix S5 Lite


ranssion’s brand Infinix has launched another variant of its recentlylaunched S5 smartphone, called the Infinix S5 Lite in India. Priced at Rs

7,999, the all-new smartphone is available in shades of Midnight Black, Quetzal Cyan and Violet. The Infinix S5 Lite flaunts a 6.6-inch HD+ screen with a Punch-Hole Super Cinema Display and has a 90.5 per cent screen to body ratio for edge-to-edge access of the display, protected in 2.5D glass with a brightness of 480 nits and LCD IPS screen type. The smartphone sports 16MP AI triple camera with 2MP depth and a dedicated low light sensor along with Quad LED Flash for low light photography. The AI-enabled auto scene detection shifts images through 8 scenes and is also enabled with custom Bokeh mode through which one can control the amount of background blur in photographs. The 16MP in-display selfie camera comes equipped with AI portrait, AI 3D face beauty and WideSelfie. The smartphone is backed by Helio P22 64 bit octa-core processor and comes paired with 4GB RAM and 64GB internal storage that can be expanded up to 256GB via a dedicated micro SD card slot. The smartphone offers multifunctional fingerprint sensor and face unlock options. The S5 Lite runs the latest Android 9.0 operating system powered by XOS 5.5 Cheetah layer. It houses a 4,000mAh big battery. Additionally, it is equipped with a digital well-being feature that allows users to monitor their digital lifestyle in real-time. The feature enables users to detach whenever they want to and set time limits for using particular apps. It also aids in security by allowing you to hide apps that contain personal and sensitive information such as banking or social media apps. Through Smart Gestures, the S5 Lite adds massively to the convenience aspect by allowing users to answer calls, change music, take screenshots, etc. with simple gestures. The smartphone is available for

sale on Flipkart. n


First Look


Realme X2 Pro


ppo spin-off brand Realme has launched its new flagship

The smartphone features a rear quad camera set-up

smartphone under the X series -- Realme X2 Pro -- that is

consisting of a 64MP main lens, a 13MP 2x optical zoom lens,

available in two colour variants, Neptune Blue and Lunar

an 8MP 115° Super Wide-Angle Anti-Distortion lens and a


portrait lens. The 64MP main lens has f/1.8 large aperture. The

The smartphone comes in two storage variants -- 8GB+128GB

phone comes with a 16-megapixel selfie camera.

and 12GB+256GB -- priced at Rs 29,999 and Rs 33,999,

Other important features of Realme X2 Pro include in-screen

respectively. One can purchase it on Flipkart and realme.

fingerprint sensor, dual nano SIM, Bluetooth, and 3.5mm


headphone jack. The X2 Pro also gets an optical in-display

The Realme X2 Pro has got a Master Edition as well in Red

fingerprint sensor.

Brick and Concrete colour and is available in 12GB+256 GB

The Realme X2 Pro is the most affordable smartphone

variant at Rs 34,999. It uses a Snapdragon 855+ with UFS

featuring a display with 90Hz refresh rate. The only

3.0. Primarily, the Realme X2 Pro is powered by a 50W Super

other phones in India to feature a similar display include the

VOOC Flash Charger which charges the phone to 100 per cent

OnePlus 7T, OnePlus 7T Pro and Nubia Red Magic 3s and the

in about 35 minutes. It is equipped with a 4,000mAh

Asus ROG Phone 2 (which gets an even faster 120Hz refresh


rate display). n

december 2019 | 17

First Look


Vivo Y19


hinese smartphone brand Vivo has unveiled a new device in

by credit card down-payment, zero down-payment schemes

its Y-series portfolio -- Vivo Y19 -- priced at Rs 13,990, and

available on paper finance through Bajaj Finance and HDFC

it is available in Magnetic Black and Spring White colour variants across all offline partner outlets as well as all online channels like Vivo India E-store and leading online platforms.

Paper Finance. No cost EMI (up to 12 months on bank credit cards and debit cards) and benefits worth Rs 6,000 from Reliance Jio. n

The Y19 features a 16.58cm (6.53) FHD+ Halo FullView Display with a 19.5:9 aspect ratio. The Y19 comes with 4GB RAM and 128GB internal storage that allows you to play games, watch videos or enjoy your social world without a glitch. Powered by a 5,000mAh battery, the Y19 is equipped with an AI triple rear camera setup (16MP+8MP+2MP) and Macro capabilities for capturing small details, with 18W Dual Engine fast charging. Consumers buying Vivo Y19 online can also avail special offers like 5 per cent cash back on HDFC and ICICI bank credit and debit cards. 10 per cent cash back on HDB paper finance

18 | december 2019


Sharp Aquos V


harp has added a new phone to its Aquos series -Sharp Aquos V -- that is currently available in

Taiwan priced at 6,990 Taiwan Dollars (TWD) (roughly Rs 16,400) in a sole Starry Black colour option. The phone features a 5.9-inch full-HD+ display with thick bezels at the top and bottom, and sports a physical rear-mounted fingerprint sensor. The Sharp phone measures 157x76x9mm and weighs 173 grams. The smartphone is powered by Snapdragon 835 SoC coupled with 4GB RAM and 64GB internal storage that can be further expanded via a microSD card up to 256GB. It boots Android 9 Pie out of the



box. In the imaging department, the Sharp Aquos V’s dual rear camera setup includes a 13MP primary camera with OIS (optical image stabilisation) support. It is assisted by a 13MP monochrome sensor with an f/2.0 aperture. There’s an 8MP selfie camera with an f/2.0 aperture and EIS (electronic image stabilisation) support. The connectivity features are standard including 4G LTE, dual-SIM slots, dual-band Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 5.0, USB Type-C port, and GPS. A 3,090mAh battery keeps the whole package alive. The phone is now up for grabs in Taiwan, but there is no word on its availability in the international markets, including India. n

december 2019 | 19


lead story

vivo Completes Five Glorious Years In India


We travelled five years of journey with the brand to understand the genesis of innovations and numerous firsts which it has offered till date for smartphone lovers and industry. In pursuit, we explored many other diverse ways of communicating the brand effectively to all by vivo India. By Haider Ali Khan


ove India, Love vivo”!

also a huge employer of Indian workforce

made vivo a household name across

This is what vivo has

now. Currently, vivo India employs nearly

geographies in India which would not have

encompassed as

10,000 men and women directly across its

been possible with any other medium to

a phrase in its five

expanded manufacturing facilities which

that effect. With that success, vivo India

are into its second phase of expansion.

also patched up with the forgotten sports

years of journey from camera and music. You can feel the sense of relevance this

Limelight Exclusive

lead story

of India like Kabaddi which is liked,

global premium brand has for India and


Indians. It has so heavily invested in India

Since its inception in India vivo researched,

overall. vivo took title sponsorship of Pro

with both capital and emotions that it no

read and understood the dynamics to be a

Kabaddi League as well and made it a

applauded by hinterland and the masses

longer stands as an unreliable brand. We would love talk about this remarkable smartphone brand born out of BBK clan to understand it better and tries to know what value we Indians hold for vivo.

History vivo India is as new as Make in India initiative. Both made their way in India at almost similar time when Narendra Modiled NDA government took over in 2014. He is the man who coined this term, ‘Make In India’ to promote manufacturing within India thus to increase employment opportunities and cut on imports. vivo, at nascent stage in 2014 got this huge boost to establish its footprint in India and rest in history as we all know. vivo is so much established today in India that it now holds 17 per cent of world’s second most populous country as per Counterpoint Q3

successful venture in India. Predominantly,

popular sport again in India, encouraged by

2019 data which is a huge number and not

it requires a mix of Bollywood and Cricket,

both, investors, viewers and broadcasters

an easy feat to achieve. I remember being

which vivo did very efficiently. vivo became

alike. vivo certainly helped the talent of the

there on the inauguration of vivo India’s

the title sponsor for Indian Premier League

Tier 2 and 3 towns and villages to come out

first manufacturing unit at Greater Noida

(IPL) in 2015 and continues to do so.

and made their presence felt in India and

in Uttar Pradesh witnessing the birth of a

Cricket is a religion in India we all know it,

abroad. These minute understanding and

new smartphone player in India and now it

and that religion has helped a lot in making

rightful association made vivo a credible

stands as one of the key dominant player

vivo what it is today. The acceptability IPL

and trustworthy brand in India and the

not only here but across the world and

has generated for a smartphone brand

pursuit is still on. Moving parallel is the

december 2019 | 21


lead story

Path Breaking Innovations By vivo

vivo launched the world’s thinnest smartphone at the time of its release called X5Max.

It became the first smartphone brand to launch a smartphone with world’s first Moonlight Selfie Camera having 24MP FullView Display in the form of V7 and V7+.

vivo was also the first to launch a 20MP dual front camera smartphone in vivo V5Plus.

vivo was the first brand to add a dedicated Hi-Fi quality audio chip in vivo X1.

At MWC Shanghai 2017, vivo unveiled the industry’s first vivo UnderDisplay Fingerprint Scanning Solution.

association of vivo with heavyweights of Indian Film Fraternity. From Ranveer Singh to Aamir Khan and now Sara Ali Khan, vivo knows exactly how and what sells in India. Endorsing vivo range of smartphone series; V, Z, Y, S, U and NEX, these Bollywood stars helped a lot in achieving the 17 per cent of market share which vivo now enjoys in India. Later on, vivo did partnerships with Big Boss and Kaun Banega Crorepati to become a mass brand with visual appeal. Not limiting itself to India only, vivo signed a pact with FIFA to be the official sponsor of the 2018 and 2022 FIFA

global presence. Going with the trend,

player beating around bushes. In a price-

World Cup, sealing a strong sense of

vivo India made its commitment with

driven market like India vivo has created a

PUBG Mobile as well to give an upper

niche for itself with right sets of products

hand to its community by sponsoring

and intelligent pricings coupled with

the tournament in 2019. These are the

smart marketing.

38 | december 2019

testaments of investments required and

vivo attributes its steady, ever-

needed for growth by a vocal and ferocious

increasing market share and presence

brand like vivo. The name vivo now stands

to its effective after sales services and

earned with these major steps taken by

relentless focus on offline channels.

the brand in its five years of operations in

In the last five years, the global

India. It’s not like any other smartphone

smartphone brand, vivo, has worked


vivo is equally poised to go leaps and bounds if it continues its India focus with a right mix of investment and proper marketing. India is bound to be an electronics manufacturing hub by 2022 and for that companies like vivo has to play its role which it’s already doing. With the expansion of Phase 1 manufacturing vivo now aims to produce nearly 33 million smartphones per annum


lead story

with equal employment opportunities being provided at the same time. vivo plans to invest INR 7,500 crore in India to meet the growing demands for its smartphones here. Similarly, vivo continues to focus on At CES 2018, vivo displayed a ready-toproduce smartphone with the world’s first in-display fingerprint scanning technology and it launched X20 Plus UD in China with this unique technology.

In Feb 2018, vivo launched APEX FullView Concept Smartphone with Half-Screen In-Display Fingerprint Scanning, Elevating Front Camera and Screen SoundCasting Technology which we later saw in vivo NEX.

The APEX 2019 Concept Smartphone is vivo’s latest effort to showcase the smartphone of tomorrow without any physical buttons or port openings, no headphone jack or a USB port.

extensively in the offline space to cover

not have it in your smartphones. These are

the length and breadth of India as well as

secondary to innovations which any one

online. vivo is the only global smartphone

has to offer primarily. You sell a product

company to have a ‘Company Owned and

not promises! vivo smartphones have been

Company Operated’ model of service

a champion in bringing new innovations,

centers which ensures a hassle-free

design and concepts to the smartphone

experience at the very end. As a smart

world. vivo NEX was one such smartphone

business entity, vivo does not fully rely on

that broke many R&D and technological

offline channels for growth as it already

barriers by introducing concepts such as

has online-specific smartphones available

Screen SoundCasting technology. Many

across platforms like Amazon and Flipkart

such innovations followed consecutively

to reach every pocket in this country.

in vivo smartphones such as front pop-up

Innovations It’s not merely these marketing steps that have helped vivo to establish itself as a key

camera and in-display fingerprint scanner. There were many other firsts which vivo achieved.

dominant player in Indian smartphone


market. Cricket and Bollywood may not be

vivo’s future in India is as bright as India

able to drive the numbers for you if you do

itself. With the thrust on manufacturing

offline and online channels for sustainable growth in India. What stands apart from other smartphone vendor is that vivo has its own manufacturing units located very close to the heart of India which helps in cutting time to the market and thus ensure easy availability of smartphones when required. As an admirer of new technology and innovations, we would love to see vivo entering into other businesses as did by its sister concern, OnePlus, with OnePlus TV. It has talent and aspiration to be among the leading innovations providers to Indians in smartphone and mobility. From camera and music, vivo has come a long way in these five years to proudly say, “Love India, Love vivo”! n

december 2019 | 23


lead interview

“Our growth in India has been a combination of extensive distribution network, reliable afterTo understand the brand better, we spoke with Nipun Marya, Director-Brand Strategy, vivo India, who’s been more vocal in disclosing of facts. As vivo now completes five years, how

most innovative and variegated product

tech lovers continuously by coming-up

Indianised has the brand become? vivo

offerings catering to all customer segments

with innovations that add value to our

has been deeply invested in the Indian

in India.

consumer’s daily life and ensure a

market and has established its footprint

When we started operations in the

as an internationally Indian brand in the

Indian market in 2014, we had multiple

As part of vivo’s absolute commitment

country. We entered the Indian market

challenges. We had to begin our journey

to the Indian market and in line with the

with long-term plans and a clear strategy

by building strong brand recall and

much-lauded ‘Make in India’ initiative, we

to keep the consumers at the center of all

also gain the trust of the consumers.

are also making substantial investments

operations. We always tried to provide the

Over the years, we have surprised the

and generating employment opportunities

delightful experience.

in the country through our manufacturing facility. We have announced the investment of over 7,500 crores so far and have produced over 10 thousand jobs in the country. All the devices that are manufactured in India are entirely consumed in India. Hence, vivo is as Indian as any company can be. According to the latest GFK report, vivo recorded 48 per cent growth in terms of volume and 33 per cent growth in terms of value, at a time when the industry grew by 11 per cent and 9 per cent respectively. vivo also registered its highest ever market share of 22.5 per cent by value in India, as per GFk. More than the numbers, it is heartening to see the warmth we have received by the Indian consumer. This warmth has indeed catapulted us as one of the top smartphone makers in the country. What have you learnt out of these five years in India? Do you regret anything doing or not doing here? Indeed, the journey has been thrilling so far, and we believe there is a long way for us to be successful. In this ultra-competitive, dynamic and challenging mobile handset market, we have come to realize that disruption is the name of the game. If a smartphone company is not disruptive or innovating, it becomes challenging to survive. We take a

38 | december 2019


strong product portfolio across price segments, sales service and substantial marketing inputs” lot of pride in saying that vivo, as a brand

smartphone markets.

has elevated its focus from just music

through the product or service. Right from creating brand recall to reaching out

& camera to an ‘innovation’ led brand.

vivo loves to associate with Bollywood and

to audience pan-India, these associations

Today, Customer-centric innovation

Cricket. Are they your mantra for success?

have been instrumental in building our

is at the heart of everything we do. For

As a brand, vivo believes in promoting and

brand value and product awareness.

the next few years, vivo will continue to

celebrating the spirit of sports and love for

pursue the innovation streak by launching

Bollywood in India. We market ourselves

vivo continues to grow steadily in terms of

unique products with stylish design, latest

through any platform that we think would

market share in India. Do offline channel

technology and powerful performance

excite our audience. This approach also

and after sales service play an important

to match the fast-paced lifestyle of

helps us understand our customers better

catalyst for this brand acceptance? For a


and build a high recall in their minds.

market as diverse and vast as India, all

As we march ahead, we understand that

We have collaborated with the biggest


lead interview

smartphone players must leverage the

the way our products make a difference in

vast potential of both the online and

the consumers’ lives will eventually

offline channels to reach the corners of

“According to the this great nation. vivo entered the Indian going forward. Hence, we market in 2014 with a clear focus on the latest GFk report, vivo shall continue to draw recorded 48 per cent growth in terms offline channel. Our unremitting focus learnings through has been on creating hassle-free of volume and 33 per cent growth in our well-designed seamless experience consumers, research program terms of value, at a time when the industry not only at the time of purchase to understand our but also in terms of reliable aftergrew by 11 per cent and 9 per cent consumer psyche sale service. Our growth so far has respectively. vivo also registered its highest to bring suitable been a result of multiple factors, ever market share of 22.5 per cent by products. and the offline channel has been our core focus area for sales and value in India. More than the numbers, vivo did many firsts in distribution strategy. Our presence it is heartening to see the warmth the smartphone segment. with 250 company-owned retail stores, we have received by the Where does it come from? Is it around 30 thousand VBAs, approximately the buyers that drive innovations 70 thousand General Trade Stores, 3882 Indian consumer” define our success and growth

or the competition to stay ahead of the

Modern Trade Outlets and over 600

rests? vivo stands strong to its core belief

service centres have strengthened our

that is truly innovating for the consumer.

celebrities in the industry along with

foothold across the length and breadth of

We believe that success should be the

associations with India’s most significant

the country.

result not a goal. Adhering to this belief, we

sporting extravaganza – the Indian

Furthermore, at vivo, we believe that

have created ground-breaking innovations

Premier League, Pro Kabaddi League

the real value for handling any after-

with the consumers’ needs as our guiding

(PKL), Big Boss, Kaun Banega Crorepati

sale customer query does not just end

star. We have always tried to ensure that

(KBC) etc. For any brand looking at

at offering a quick turnaround, but to

we understand our consumer’s needs the

reaching out to an already enthused and

provide a superior end-to-end brand

best and continue to deliver stylish and

passionate audience on their terms, these

experience. For us, it is not just limited

innovative products. vivo’s performance

collaboration and partnerships provide an

to selling our smartphones but also about

in the market so far is the result of great

effective channel.

the post-purchase consumer experience.

effort to understand consumer behaviors

We at vivo, through our messaging,

vivo is the only smartphone company to

and we believe that we are on the right

try to establish that we share the same

have a ‘Company Owned and Company

trajectory in sustaining our position as

perspective, values and ambition as our

Operated’ model of service centers which

one of the top smartphone players in the

partner and offer a similar experience

ensures a hassle-free experience.

december 2019 | 25


lead interview We have received a tremendous

expansion aims to meet the surge in

growth for Indian smartphone sector and

response for our extensive portfolio of

domestic demands for vivo smartphones.

further demonstrate its commitment to

offline smartphones over the years, which

With the additional manufacturing facility,

the “Make in India” initiative. As a key

have helped vivo capture significant

player in the fastest-growing smartphone

market share in India. According to the

segment, vivo recognizes the potential

“Our presence 22.5% market share, which has been with 250 company-owned its highest ever in India. retail stores, around 30 thousand vivo has recently expanded its VBAs, approximately 70 thousand Phase 1 manufacturing with General Trade Stores, 3882 Modern new workforce and additional Trade Outlets and over 600 service smartphones output per month. What does vivo aspires out of centres have strengthened our this? It is a testament to our foothold across the length and unremitting focus and commitment breadth of the to the Indian market. vivo was one of the first smartphone companies to set country”

of this market and its contribution to the

latest GFK report, vivo has recorded

overall GDP of the nation. How does your future look like in India? If you look at our journey so far, we have worked towards creating a superior end-to-end experience for our consumers. Our growth in India has been a combination of multiple factors - strong product portfolio across price segments, extensive distribution network (both offline and online), reliable after-sales service and substantial marketing inputs to build a strong brand. Going forward, we look to build a stable platform to do long-term business in India. We believe that if we continue to offer the right products to our consumers, we shall automatically command the respect of everyone. We also plan to put more resources into numerous areas including product development and research, strategic partnerships and customer experience. With all these measures in place, we are confident that our growth will continue in the Indian market. We shall remain committed to providing an extraordinary experience to our consumers through our products and aim to offer the best of technology to cater to the vast audience in the Indian market. Any message for our readers This year we would be completing five glorious years in the country. We have been successful in creating a successful brand and achieve substantial market share, but this is just the beginning of our journey. In the time to come and will continue to build a

up its manufacturing facility in India.

we have also increased our workforce

strong foundation to create a successful

With the roll-out of phase 1 of vivo’s new

to 10000 at the factory by additionally

long-term brand in India and continuously

manufacturing facility in Uttar Pradesh,

adding 2000 employees.

bring innovative products backed by an

vivo will now be able to produce more

vivo India aspires to embark upon

than 33 million devices annually. This

a long term plan to boost the economic

26 | december 2019

aggressive marketing strategy. n


face to face

“We are here for the long term” Riversong has some big plans for the India market and wants to be among the top three players in the smart device category. Manvendra K Chandola, CEO, Riversong India discusses more about the same, in a conversation with Vivek Singh Chauhan. Excerpts: Riversong has been unveiling a lot of

a very clear thought in our mind and we

smartwatches and ear-pods. How is the

are going step by step. Consumer insight is

business going? As of now, we have

the most important and critical thing which

launched three EarPods which is TWS

every company should understand before

(Air X3, Air X5 and Air X5 plus) and one

making any strategy. We have started our

smartwatch named “Motive” that comes

offline operation this year and currently,

in two variants -- one with a black metal

our strategy is to bring the best partner

chain which was the limited edition and

on board, and we have good partners who

the other one comes with the strap. As per

believed in our brand and come on board.

the business we are doing great.

Currently, we are present in 19 states

upgraded feature and colours.

and by the end of this year we’ll be present In our previous conversation, you said you

pan India. We are doing investment

What is your approach to the after-sales

are eyeing 7 per cent market share by Q4,

in building our brand in India. A lot of

service which remains an issue for the

2020? How close you are at the moment?

marketing activities are in the pipeline

majority of electronics companies? After-

Yes, we had a discussion during our last

which will be started to post our presence.

sales is the backbone of any electronics

interaction on smartwatch category. We’ve

But yes, as of now, we are supporting our

company and we are looking forward to

reached to the point where the demand for

brand by using Digital / PR and Retail

supporting consumers by giving them a

our smartwatch is higher than we planned.

visibility elements.

better customer support experience. We

We are moving in the right direction where

have a customer care number on which

will achieve our goal to get market share by

If we go by the price, Riversong Motive was

any consumer can call and get the solution

7 per cent in 2020 Q4 in the smartwatch

a mind-blowing smartwatch in the budget

of their problem. Along with that we have


segment. Can we expect an enhanced

a customer care email ID on which a

version of the watch with more features that

consumer can write a mail and it will be

The brand is doing well but still many are

can compete with high-end watches? We

attended by our expert. Besides, we have

unaware of it? What is the company’s strategy

got a fantastic response from the market.

a product replacement policy across India

in creating awareness about the existence of

The Motive was launched in May and we

at the retail points.

the brand? Yes, I agree with your point that

received great response from the retailer

where a lot of players are doing investment

and consumer. Like every product, we have

Which platform has been more beneficial for

to create their visibility in the market, we are

a clear roadmap for Motive too. We are in

the brand -- online or offline? We strongly

taking a different route. Our main focus is

the process and very soon, you will see the

believe in the offline channel. The potential

to create our presence through Digital and

upgraded version of Motive.

is huge. We have a very clear strategy from

PR alone with support with BTL elements.

day one to focus on the same. But, we are

As of now, we are focusing to increase our

What are the expansion plans of your

also present in the online space. Our 99

presence pan India. We are here for the

company in term of new products? As of

per cent of business is coming from the

long term and want to be among the top

now, we have launched a few products in

offline channel. We believe if we can do

three players in the smart device.

each category. Our product team is working

offline business with full transparency with

on different segments like power bank,

channel partners then anyone can make

What is your go-to-market strategy? What are

smart device and audio. Very soon, you

your outreach and investment plans? We have

will see our new product line with a more

the business profitable. n

december 2019 | 27

In Conversation

face to face

“We are looking at making our products more affordable and accessible” Taiwan-based Micro-Star International or popularly known as MSI has recently refreshed its lineup of productivity and creator-centric laptops in India by launching eight new models across the Creator, Modern, Prestige, and the P-series. The eight laptops across the series come with 15 configurations up for grabs. The top-end MSI Creator-series laptops offer up to a 4K display with True Color technology and 144Hz refresh rate, Thunderbolt 3 support, and Wi-Fi 6 connectivity among other features. Green, Chang-ChingLin, Regional Marketing Head, MSI says that they have received an overwhelming response and believes that it is a strategic market for the brand. Our correspondent Vivek Singh Chauhan spoke to Green, when we discussed MSI growth, expansion plans etc. Here are the edited excerpts. How important is the Indian market for MSI?

a huge potential to grow in the laptop

build the eco-system. The way consumers

India is a key focus market for MSI and

industry. We understand that every

are now choosing and buying laptops is

we will invest in building an eco-system

consumer has a unique set of needs and

continuously evolving according to as per

here. We have received an overwhelming

demands. As a brand, we are constantly

the latest technology being offered in the

response and believe that it is a strategic

working towards offering products that


market for us primarily because there is

best fit our consumers.

We’ve recently unveiled our Content

So far, our brand has received over-

Creation Series, with a complete product

whelming feedback in terms of our

line in India. The Content Creation series is

products, quality and after-sales services.

currently available exclusively on Flipkart.

Our products are pushing boundaries and

com. In addition to this, Ingram Micro is

providing an exceptional user experience

the sole distributor for the new series.

to all our consumers.

The new product line-up starts from Rs

India was the first market where we

59,990 and goes up to Rs 269,990.

launched the new gaming laptop line-up

The line-up includes 15 laptops across

with the latest NVIDIA GeForce RTX GPU.

3 series; namely Creator, Prestige and

We also unveiled a complete product line

Modern and series and we have a positive

up of the new ‘Content Creation’ Series

outlook in terms of response from the

in India. These were the first laptops

Indian consumer.

powered by a 10th Gen Intel 6-Core CPU and also debuting the exclusive True Pixel

India is a highly cluttered market with each


player trying to get the maximum share of the pie. How do you stand out in such a scenario?

How much growth the company is

MSI is always focussed on product

targeting in the country? The innovation

differentiation, quality and reliability. With

in the laptop industry has been steadily

the increasing cluttered laptop market,

gaining ground in recent years. With

there is a need to build relevance for the

the growing popularity of the gaming

brand and highlight its USP’s with our

landscape, gamer communities and

huge portfolio of products.

engineering talent, there is now a need to

78 | december 2019

To maintain our standard of being a


high-end reliable brand, we have launched

Can we expect a dual-screen laptop from

flaunts a new cosmological warship style

a variety of series to cater to a wide range of

MSI in the recent future? Our brand is

design and misty grey colour. It features a

audience in the gaming segment. To build

well known for clamshell designs, which

per-key RGB keyboard with Steel Series.

our portfolio further, we are also looking at

has been highly appreciated by the

The GP75 Leopard sports a 17.3-inch

making our products more affordable and

consumers. While we keep experimenting

FHD display. It is also equipped with the

accessible and plan to bring more price-

with designs and investing in new

latest 9th Gen Core i7 processor and up to

friendly models to the market to fulfil the

technology, we believe our unique design

RTX 2060 Nvidia graphics card.

needs of the consumers.

has created a stir in the industry. We will

We have also recently launched the

Our ultimate goal is to offer a complete

continue to innovate for the market and

Content Creation Series that start at

range of high-end to everyday use laptops;

bring in newer technologies as and when

Rs. 59,990 understanding the need for

from gaming to content creation.

we see the need to.

an affordable price range for different

In the gaming portfolio, MSI currently

consumers in the market and will launch

has around 8 different series of laptops

There are a lot of devices coming in the

with about 50 SKU’s and are looking

market such as portable foldable devices.

forward to adding another 15 SKU’s by

Do you think that it may affect your business?

How efficient the recently launched products

the first half of 2020.

At MSI, we always produce the most

can be for editing purpose? MSI’s Content

comprehensive product line and are

Creation series is designed for creators --

What is your market share in India in the

constantly working towards providing

who need to express their ideas or stories

laptop segment and where do you plan to

the most comprehensive equipment

through a digital format. Our laptops

take it? MSI currently has a market share

for the gamers as well as non-gamers

are ideal especially for video editing,

of 15 per cent in gaming laptops and are

through our latest products. Since we

photography, and illusion purpose.

looking to increase the share to 18-20

are already investing in a lot of high-end

The wide monitor display with true and

per cent by the end of this year. Further,

and performance-driven markers for the

authentic colour enhances the user

with the launch of the Content Creation

past years, we believe our target audience

experience which matters to all the digital

Series, we are also aiming at growing our

doesn’t lie in the portable foldable

artists. Adding to all of these innovative

presence in this segment as well.

device space. With our ground-breaking

features, Content Creation series have

technology and pristine design, we wish to

a long battery with a sleek and stylish

meet the needs of our consumers always.


are always happy to see other companies

Most of the Indian consumers are quite

Online or offline! Which platform is more

bringing innovative products to the

price-centric. What is your parameter for

effective from the revenue point of view?

market. India is still a nascent market

affordability in India? As we all know, India

We’ll be actively operating in both online

and building the community and bringing

is a very price-sensitive market and the

and offline channels. With the growing

innovative products to the market is of

way consumers buy their laptops are

number of gamers and the professional

utmost importance.

ASUS has recently come up with a dual-

more such products in 2020.

In Conversation

face to face

screen laptop? What’s your take on this? We

continuously evolving. This means that

community in the country, their needs

We were one of the firsts in the laptop

brands need to have a diverse portfolio of

are constantly evolving and we need to

industry to bring the over-clocking

products and price points that appeal to

be present on offline as well as online

laptop; the first mechanical keyboard on

a wide range of consumers.

retailers. With the launch of our fifth

the laptop; the first to embed the eye-

Earlier this year, we were excited to

and sixth exclusive experience store in

tracking devices and also introduced

announce that MSI was the first brand to

Coimbatore and Lucknow respectively, we

the True Pixel Display feature which

debut the 9th Gen. Intel Core i9 Processors

have taken the total count to six exclusive

achieves high colour accuracy. Besides

in the gaming series. Furthermore, the

experience stores in the country and are

this, we have our creator center that can

GTX 16 series graphics cards also provide

opening two more exclusive experience

optimize the performance on most of the

a more affordable graphics solution for

stores in New Delhi & Hyderabad this year.

well-known creation software such as

gamers while still attaining a high level of

We will continue to increase our footprint

Adobe Series or Autodesk. As a gaming

performance. With these new additions to

in the country and plan to have 18-20

laptop focussed brand, MSI invests a

our product portfolio, we not only aim at

exclusive experience stores by the end of

lot to ensure that we give consumers an

offering gamers the best experience but

next year. Our products will also available

unforgettable experience and therefore

also want to make gaming more inclusive.

on leading e-commerce players Amazon.

wish to make many such breakthroughs

The GP Series is an affordable laptop

in the future.

aimed at budget gamers. The GP75

in, and PayTM mall. n

december 2019 | 29

Year Ender


Smartphones, brands that ruled the Indian audience in 2019


he year 2019 has been a tremendous year for the Indian

India Top 5 Smartphone Companies, 3Q19 Unit Market Share

smartphone industry as it

shipped a record 46.6 million units in the third quarter of 2019, with 26.5 per cent quarter-over-quarter (QoQ) and 9.3 per cent year-over-year (YoY) growth, according to an International Data Corporation’s (IDC) report. Xiaomi has now been India’s top smartphone seller for nine straight quarters. The company has become a constant headache for Samsung in the world’s second-largest smartphone market as sales have slowed pretty much everywhere else in the world. As smartphone shipments slow or decline in most of the world, India has emerged as an outlier that continues to show strong momentum as tens of millions of people purchase their first handset in the country each quarter.

Here are the top five brands (by IDC): Xiaomi recorded its highest ever smartphone shipments in a quarter with 12.6 million units, growing at 8.5 per cent YoY. The Redmi 7A and Redmi Note 7 Pro were the highest shipped

models in the overall smartphone

Source: IDC Quartel Mobile Phone Tracker, 2019 shipments, making vivo theNovember third-largest

market. Samsung was the only vendor amongst the top five to fall, dropping

online vendor with a market share of 8.2 per cent. realme climbed to the fourth position

8.5 per cent YoY in the third quarter.

in the third quarter, as its shipments

The lag between older Galaxy A series

grew multifold YoY in the third quarter,

(Galaxy A10, 50, etc.) and the refreshed

driven by heavy shipments of its

Galaxy As (Galaxy A10s, A50s etc.)

affordable C2 model and its newly

series just before the Diwali quarter led

launched 5 and 3i series. The vendor’s

to this sharp decline.

online share was at an all-time high

vivo registered a strong YoY growth

of 26.5 per cent in the third quarter,

of 58.7 per cent in third quarter on

up from 16.5 per cent in the previous

the back of its affordable Y series


(Y12, Y91/i) The newly-launched

Oppo slipped to the fifth position, but

exclusive online Z/U series accounted

with a YoY growth of 92.3 per cent. Its

for more than 20 per cent of its overall

A5s was the fifth-highest shipped model in the overall smartphone market. India has become a hub for global launches, if not, the smartphones are made available fast. In 2019, we saw a lot of smartphones -- in both budgeted to premium smartphones -- in the country with new designs, camera trend etc. Here are the top smartphones that ruled the Indian users in 2019. n

108 | october 2019


Huawei P30 Pro


hinese technology giant Huawei that recently received

a 90-Days License Extension From

the US, launched its flagship smartphones -- P30 Pro and P30 Lite -- earlier this year in India. Talking about the P30 Pro, it is available in two colour options -- Breathing Crystal or Aurora -- at Rs 71,990. P30 Pro features a 6.47-inch full HD+ OLED display with curved glass and dewdrop notch. The smartphone is powered by the company’s 7nm processor Kirin 980 and runs Android 9.0 Pie operating system topped with the company’s layer of customisation EMUI 9.0. Users can further expand the storage up to 256GB by adding a microSD card. The Huawei P30 Pro sports a 40MP main sensor with f/1.6 aperture, OIS a 20MP Ultra Wide Angle lens with f/2.2 aperture, 8MP telephoto lens and a ToF Depth sensor. The smartphone offers a 10x hybrid zoom and 50x digital zoom functionality. On the front, users will find a 32MP selfie camera with f/2.0 aperture. The hybrid dualSIM smartphone comes equipped with an in-display fingerprint sensor and IP68 rating which makes the device dust and waterresistant. The smartphone houses 4,200mAh battery with Huawei’s SuperCharge fast-charging technology. The smartphone offers dual 4G, VoLTE, 3G, WiFi, Bluetooth 5, GPS, NFC and USB Type C.

Apple iPhone 11


an Francisco-based tech giant Apple launched iPhone 11 in three storage variants -- 64GB, 128GB and 256GB -- starting at Rs

64,900. It features a 6.1-inch LCD and carries a bezel-less display with screen protection to avoid scratches. It comes with a waterproof and dustproof body. The screen carries a pixel density of 324 PPI. The iPhone 11 is armed with dual primary cameras -- 12MP+12MP lenses assisted by a Back-illuminated sensor (BSI) that helps to click crisp and clear images. The setup is also capable of recording highdefinition videos. There is a 12MP front camera accompanied by a Retina Flash. The front snapper does well, which capturing excellent selfies and also assists to facilitate video calling. The device is powered by two processors -- a 2.65GHz Lightning dual-core and a 1.52GHz Thunder quad-core. The processors are placed on an

Apple A13 Bionic chipset and are coupled with a 4GB RAM and Apple GPU. It houses a 3110mAh Li-ion battery that can provide the required power backup to keep it alive for long hours. It comes with a wide range of connectivity options such as 4G with VoLTE, Wi-Fi, mobile hotspot, Bluetooth, GPS and NFC.

OnePlus 7T Pro


hinese smartphone maker OnePlus launched its much-anticipated

phone -- OnePlus 7T Pro -- this year. The 8GB+ 256GB variant was announced at Rs 53,999 while the McLaren Edition (12GB+256GB) for Rs 58,999. OnePlus 7T Pro

smartphone has a Fluid AMOLED display. It has a resolution of 1440 x 3120 pixels and 515 ppi pixel density.

Year Ender


It has an aspect ratio of 19.5:9 and a screen-to-body ratio of 88.3 per cent. Powered by the Qualcomm Snapdragon 855 Plus, the device claims 15 per cent faster graphics rendering and faster processing speeds. It runs on Android v10 (Q) operating system and is powered by Octa-core (2.96 GHz, Single core, Kryo 485 + 2.42 GHz, Tri core, Kryo 485 + 1.8 GHz, Quadcore, Kryo 485) processor. On the camera front, the smartphone sports a 16 MP front camera and a triple camera setup on the rear (48MP+16MP+ 8MP camera) with features like Fixed Focus. It is backed by a 4,085mAh battery. Connectivity features in the smartphone include WiFi, Bluetooth, GPS, Volte, NFC and more. With 256

GB of UFS 3.0

storage and 12GB RAM, the OnePlus 7T Pro McLaren Edition pairs flagship hardware with refined software for blazing-fast performance. It also touts the latest Qualcomm Snapdragon 855 Plus Mobile Platform to save all your most valued apps, photos and music.

december 2019 | 31

Year Ender

Feature Honor View20

Oppo Reno2 20x zoom



hinese handset maker Honor launched its flagship smartphone

-- View20 -- in India in January. Priced

hinese smartphone maker Oppo announced the successor of its

Reno series in India this year. Priced at

at Rs 37,999, the base variant of

Rs 36,990, the smartphone comes in

the device comes with 6GB RAM and

8GB+256GB inbuilt storage option. The

128GB internal storage. The device is

device is available in two colour options

also available in 8GB+256GB storage

-- Ocean Blue and Luminous Black. The

option. It runs Android 9.0 and has

smartphone features a 6.55-inch dynamic

Magic UI2.0.1 as a user interface.

AMOLED full-screen FHD+ resolution with 93.1 per cent screen to

Honor View20 amused the consumers

body ratio and Corning Gorilla Glass 6 protection. It has Gorilla Glass

as it featured a 48MP Artificial (AI)-

5 protection at the back. The Reno 2 runs on Colour OS 6.1-based on

driven rear camera and the world’s first

Android 9 Pie. It has a 6.55-inch dynamic AMOLED full-screen FHD+

25MP in-screen front camera. The rear

resolution with 93.1 per cent screen to body ratio and Corning Gorilla Glass 6 protection. It has Gorilla Glass 5 protection at the back. It is powered by the Qualcomm Snapdragon 730G processor and runs Colour OS 6.1-based on Android 9 Pie. The device boasts of a quadcamera setup at the back. It has a 48MP IMX 586 sensor with OIS and EIS, 13MP telephoto lens, 8MP wide-angle lens and a 2MP mono lens for better portraits. The camera also has 5x Hybrid zooming feature along with Ultra Dark Mode and Ultra Steady video mode. Like the Reno 10x Zoom, the Reno 2 also has a ‘Shark Fin’ front camera pop up with 16MP sensor. It is backed by a 4000mAh battery and support VOOC 3.1 flash charge technology. The smartphone also has an indisplay fingerprint scanner and 3.5mm headphone jack.

Asus 6Z


aiwanese tech major Asus unveiled its flagship smartphone -Asus 6z -- this year in India. Priced at Rs 31,999 for 6GB+64GB

variant, the smartphone is also available in two other storage variants -- 6GB RAM and 128GB version and 8GB RAM and 256GB variant.

The smartphone comes in Midnight Black and Twilight Silver colour camera sensor, boosted by Kirin 980 chipset, supports new 48MP “AI Ultra Clarity” mode to produce photos with unmatched detail and clarity even if it is zoomed multiple times. The device also features 25MP AI-driven in-screen front camera design. It provides a notchless viewing experience. The Honor View 20 sports a 6.4-inch Full HD+ display. The smartphone runs Android 9.0 Pie operating system-based Magic UI 2.0 interface. It houses 4,000mAh battery with SuperCharge support. On the connectivity front, the smartphone offers 4G, VoLTE, 3G, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, GPS, NFC and USB Type C.

32 | december 2019

options. The major highlight of the device is its flip camera setup -- a 48MP main sensor with Dual LED Flash, f/1.79 aperture and a 13MP secondary camera with 125-degree ultra-wide lens and f/2.4 aperture. The flip camera works as both rear and front camera. The smartphone sports a 6.46-inch full HD+ display with 19.5:9 aspect ratio and 92 per cent screen-to-body ratio. The display is also protected with a coating of Corning Gorilla Glass 6 on top. It is powered by Qualcomm Snapdragon 855 processor. The handset runs Android 9.0 Pie operating system topped with the company’s layer of customisation Zen UI. It houses a 5000mAh battery with Qualcomm Quick Charge 4.0 support for fast charging. In terms of connectivity, it offers, dual 4G, VoLTE, 3G, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, GPS and USB Type C.


vivo v17 Pro

Oppo F11 Pro


arlier this year, Chinese smartphone brand Oppo launched two new

smartphones in its F-series. Dubbed


nder its V-series, Chinese smartphone maker vivo has announced its new smartphone -- vivo V17 Pro -- that comes with a six-

camera setup comprised of dual popup selfie sensors at the front and a quad-camera setup at the rear. Priced at Rs 29,990, the smartphone comes in only one variant of 8GB RAM+128GB of storage. The V17 Pro sports a 6.44-inch full HD+ display with 20:9 aspect ratio. The smartphone gets a dual popup selfie camera setup of 32MP primary sensor + 8MP ultra-wide-angle lens on the front. The ultra-wide-angle lens is capable of capturing a 105-degree field of view. At the back, there is a quad-camera setup of 48MP primary sensor + 8MP wide camera + 2MP depth camera setup and a 13MP telephoto lens. The smartphone is powered by the Qualcomm Snapdragon 675 processor and is backed by a 4,100mAh battery. It also comes with the support for 22.5W vivo flash fast charging technology. Connectivity options include Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, 4G, VoLTE, USB Type-C port, etc. The smartphone also comes with a sensor like Proximity sensor, in-display fingerprint sensor, Gyroscope, GPS, and more.

as the Oppo F11 Pro and Oppo F11, both the smartphones offer similar specifications. However, The Pro version of the device created hype among the consumers as it highlighted a pop-up selfie camera. The Oppo F11 Pro with 6GB RAM and 64GB of internal storage

Year Ender


was launched at Rs 24,990. The smartphones come in two colour options -- Thunder Black and Aurora Green. The smartphone features a 6.5-inch (16.5 cm) FHD+ Panoramic display with a screen-tobody ratio of 90.9 per cent and an aspect ratio of 19:9. The phone also comes

Redmi K20 Pro

with a new



hinese smartphone maker Xiaomi unveiled two new phones for the Indian consumers under its K series -- Redmi K20 and K20 Pro.

The Pro version of the device has wooed a lot of users and garnered a lot of new customers. Starting at Rs 27,999, the smartphone comes in two storage options -- 6GB+128 and 8GB+256GB -- and three colour options -- Glacier Blue, Flame Red and Carbon Black. The

smartphone features a 6.39-inch AMOLED screen and comes in FHD+ resolution. It offers a 91.6 per cent screen-to-body ratio. In terms of optics, Redmi K20 Pro features a triple rear camera setup on the back and a 20MP pop-up selfie camera. The main camera on the back is a 48MP shooter. The Redmi K20 uses Sony IMX582 sensor while Redmi K20 Pro gets Sony IMX586 sensor. The main camera is paired with an 8MP telephoto and 13MP ultra-wide-angle camera. The phone runs on Qualcomm’s top-end processor Snapdragon 855 paired with Adreno 640 GPU for enhanced gaming performance. The handset offers Game Turbo 2.0 and has an 8-layer graphite cooling system. The device pack a 4,000mAh battery and comes with 27W SonicCharge fast charge that is said to take 15 minutes to charge the smartphone enough to last over 10 hours of 4G talk time. It runs MIUI 10 based on Android 9 Pie. Connectivity options on both the phones include Wi-Fi 802.11ac, Bluetooth v5.0, GPS/ A-GPS, NFC, USB Type-C and a 3.5mm headphone jack.

triple-colour design at the back. The smartphone comes equipped with a dual rear camera setup of 48MP+5MP with an f/1.79 aperture along with LED flash. For selfies, the company has also equipped the phone with a 16MP pop-up selfie camera with f/2.4 aperture. In terms of video capabilities, the Oppo F11 Pro can shoot in 1080p resolution videos at 30FPS. It is powered by the octa-core Mediatek Helio P70 processor with an expandable storage option up to 256GB via microSD. The phone houses a 4,000mAh battery that supports VOOC 3.0 fast charging.

december 2019 | 33

Year Ender

Feature Motorola One Vision

realme XT



enovo-owned Motorola has expanded its product lineup in

India, this year, with the launch of its

hinese smartphone maker Realme finally took the veil off its first 64MP

quad-camera phone in India. The base

Android One smartphone -- Motorola

model with 4GB RAM and 64GB storage

One Vision. The smartphone is

is priced at Rs 15,999, while users can

another addition to the burgeoning

also opt for higher variant as per their use

mid-range segment in India. Priced

-- 6GB+64GB or 8GB+128GB -- as per

at Rs 19,999, the smartphone comes

their use. It comes with a 6.4-inch FHD+

in Sapphire Blue and Brown colour

Super AMOLED screen with 1080x3240 pixel resolution and 91.9 per

options. The smartphone features a

cent screen-to-body ratio. The display offers a water-drop notch and an

6.3-inch Full HD+ display with 21:9

in-display fingerprint sensor for security along with the hyperbola 3D

aspect ratio. The display is protected

glass design. The handset comes with a quad-lens camera at the back -- a

with a coating of scratch-resistant

64MP primary camera sensor, an 8MP ultra-wide lens, 2MP portrait lens

glass. The phone sports a dual rear

and another 2MP ultra-macro lens. For selfies, the smartphone boasts a

camera setup that offers a 48MP

16MP camera with Sony IMX471 sensor. The smartphone is powered by

main sensor with Night Vision mode,

Qualcomm Snapdragon 712 SoC octa-core processor with Adreno 616

Quad Pixel technology, Dual LED

GPU and runs on ColorOS 6 based on Android 9 Pie operating system. The

flash and a 5MP secondary sensor

device houses 4,000mAh battery that comes with VOOC 3.0 fast charge

with f/2.2 aperture. The front of the

support and in-box 20w adapter. The handset also boasts of Dolby Atmos

smartphone is home to a 25MP selfie

sound support.

camera. The smartphone is powered by 2.2GHz octa-core Samsung Exynos 9609 processor and runs

Redmi Note 7 Pro


hinese smartphone maker Xiaomi’s Redmi Note 7 Pro, the handset is the company’s first smartphone with 48MP camera, was among one

of the most anticipated phones of 2019. The company has priced Xiaomi Redmi Note 7 Pro (6GB+64GB) variant at Rs 13,999. It is also available in 6GB+128GB variant in three colour options -- Neptune Blue, Space Black and Nebula Red. The smartphone features a 6.3-inch full HD+ display with 19:9 aspect ratio and sports a dot notch screen. The display also offers two modes -- Sunlight Display and Reading Mode. The smartphone will automatically

adjust the brightness depending if you are indoors or outdoors. The Redmi Note 7 Pro comes with a 2.5D curved glass design on both front and back. The smartphone is also protected with a layer of Corning Gorilla Glass 5 on both front and back panels. On the camera front, Xiaomi Redmi Note 7 Pro comes with the dual rear camera setup. The device sports a 48MP primary sensor paired with a 5MP depth sensor with LED flash. The 48MP main camera comes Android 9.0 Pie operating system out-of-the-box and offers 4GB RAM and 128GB internal storage which can be expanded up to 512GB by adding a microSD card. It houses a 3,500 mAh battery with 15W TurboPower fast charging. On the connectivity front, it offers dual 4G, 3G, WiFi, Bluetooth, GPS, NFC and USB Type C.

34 | december 2019

with a Sony IMX586 sensor and f/1.79 aperture. The 48MP camera is there in the Pro mode and otherwise, the smartphone will capture 12MP images. There’s a 13MP front camera for selfies. The Xiaomi Redmi Note 7 Pro is powered by an octa-

core Qualcomm Snapdragon 675 processor

and runs Android

9.0 Pie operating system topped with

company’s layer of

MIUI 10. The smartphone houses a

4000mAh battery Qualcomm Quick front, the

and supports fast charging with Charge 4.0. On the connectivity smartphone offers Dual 4G, VoLTE, 3G, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, GPS and USB Type-C.


Realme 5

Infinix Hot 8



hinese smartphone maker Oppo’s sister company Realme announced

its Realme 5 along with Realme 5 Pro.

hina-based Transsion Holdings smartphone brand Infinix’s Hot 8

boasts of triple rear camera setup and

The lower version of the device is among

a 5,000mAh battery as its highlights.

one of the top phones in the budgeted

Priced at Rs 6,999, the smartphone

segment. Realme 5 was launched in India at Rs

is available in two colour options

9,999 for the 3GB+32GB storage variant. However,

Quetzal Cyan and Cosmic Purple. The

the smartphone is also available in 4GB+64GB and

smartphone sports a 6.52-inch IPS

4GB+128GB storage variants. Realme 5 sports 6.5-inch HD+ display

LCD screen of HD+ resolution with

with Corning Gorilla Glass 3+ for protection and comes in Crystal Blue

20:9 aspect ratio. On the camera

and Crystal Purple colour variants. The Realme 5 features a quad rear

front, the Infinix Hot 8 offers an 8MP

camera setup with a 12MP primary camera, an 8MP sensor, a 2MP macro

selfie camera. On the back, there is a

lens and a 2MP portrait lens. On the front, the device comes equipped

triple camera setup comprising 13MP

with a 13MP selfie camera with AI beautification technology. The dual-

primary sensor, a 2MP depth sensor

smartphone is powered by Qualcomm Snapdragon 665 SoC and runs Color

and allow-light

OS 6.0 based on Android 9 Pie. It Realme houses a 5,000mAh battery.

sensor. There is

Connectivity options on the Realme 5 include 4G VoLTE, Wi-Fi 802.11ac,

also support for

Bluetooth v5.0, a GPS/ A-GPS, a3.5mm headphone jack, and a Micro-USB

Custom Bokeh, AI

port. Sensors onboard include an accelerometer, ambient light sensor,

HDR, AI Beauty,

gyroscope, a magnetometer, and a proximity sensor.

Panorama. The

Year Ender


device is powered

vivo U10

by MediaTek


he Chinese smartphone brand vivo has also launched a budget

core processor

smartphone this year to compete with other brands in this segment.

and coupled with

Helio P22 octa-

Starting at Rs 8,990, the smartphone comes in three storage and variants

4GB RAM and

-- 3GB+32GB, 3GB+64GB and 4GB+64GB. Vivo U10 can be purchased

64GB internal

in two colour options -- Electric Blue and Thunder Black. The vivo U10

storage that can

comes equipped with 6.35-inch HD+ IPS display

be expanded up

with a waterdrop notch on the top. It also boasts

to 256GB. It runs

of triple-lens camera setup at the back. This

on XOS 5.0 based on Android 9.0 Pie

consists of a 13MP primary camera, 8MP wide-


angle secondary camera and a third 2MP lens as a

The smartphone houses a

depth sensor. The smartphone comes powered by

5,000mAh battery. In terms of

Qualcomm Snapdragon 665 octa-core processor

connectivity, the smartphone offers

and runs on FunTouch OS based on Android 9 Pie

dual-SIM support, Wi-Fi, GPS, OTG,

operating system. The smartphone features a rear-

Bluetooth 5.0 and a fingerprint sensor

mounted fingerprint sensor at the back for security.

as connectivity options. Sensors

Vivo U10 will be backed by 5,000mAh battery with

on the device include G-Sensor,

18 watt fast charging support.

Proximity, Light, Compass.



slow down, on the back of low consumer demand and

ccording to CMR’s India Mobile Handset Market

decreased shipments, in light of the existing channel

Review Report for the third quarter, mobile phone

inventory,” Anand Priya Singh, Analyst-IIG, CMR, said in

shipments are likely to touch 280 million units by the end of the fourth quarter this year. “Going forward, on the back of the record shipments in Q3 2019, we anticipate the fourth-quarter growth to

a report. It will be interesting to see how the smartphone industry will perform in the upcoming year.

december 2019 | 35



5 Biggest Technology Trends Everyone Must Get Ready for in 2020 By Pahi Mehra


n this modern era it seems like

a new edition in the

everything around us is constantly

world, but it has already

changing and getting better, and

transformed its way and

just like everything else technology is

made a place in the list of

also evolving faster than ever.

top technology trends.

As we enter into a new decade,

Computers are now

technology will continue to accelerate,

capable of learning

we will likely to see some massive

about the world just like

developments in 2020. Technology is

humans, and this is all

evolving at such a rapid pace that the

possible because of the

annual prediction of trends can seem

enormous increase in

out-of-date even before they go live. As

computing power and

technology is evolving, it is enabling

data, which has enabled

fact that the 5th generation of mobile

even faster progress, causing an

AI to advance at a lightning speed in a

internet connectivity is going to give us

acceleration of the rate of change, until

brief time.

super-fast download and upload speed

eventually, it will become exponential. So, companies and individuals

This is the sole reason why most of the companies have started to explore

as well as more stable connections. And by the time 2020 comes, the

that don’t keep up with some of the

how they can use AI to improve the

world would be under the spell of fast

major tech trends, run the risk of being

customer experience and streamline

internet connection already!

left behind. And with so many new

their business, by using personalization,

terms and technologies coming out

chatbots, behavior pattern

became available for the first time in

almost every day it is hard to keep up

reorganization and customer service

2019 in some parts of the world, they

with it. Here, take a closer look at the

automation. And this is predicted to

were mostly still expensive and limited

technological trends that are likely to

continue in 2020 as well, with massive

to functioning in confined areas or major

bring significant innovations growth in


cities. 2020 is likely to be the year

the upcoming decade.

Artificial Intelligence as a Service Artificial Intelligence may seem like

And while people will increasingly

when 5G really starts to fly, with more

become used to with the technology, it

affordable data plans as well as greatly

also poses the threat of snatching away

improved coverage.

a lot of jobs in the coming year. The

The super-fast data network will not

faster AI will become more precise, the

only give us the ability to stream movies

less human intelligence it will need.

and music at the higher quality when

What is in store for the future of digital transformation?

5G Data Network Everyone in the world is aware of the

108 | october 2019

While 5G mobile data networks

we’re on the move but it will become more usable than the wired networks running into our homes and businesses. It will bring benefits like high internet speed, lower latency, and higher


capacities. These benefits will make 5G

relation between

one of the prime future technological

voice and

trends in 2020 and beyond.

technology was talking to our own



mobile devices, but it is long gone now.

Blockchain is a technology that is likely

Automation is a big tech term and can

We have seen some major developments

to get you a blank look, if mentioned to a

often be unclear as to what exactly it

in voice technology, from traditional

non-tech-savvy company. But 2020 can

means. It ultimately means technologies

text messaging the assistants to voice

finally be the year when that changes.

like cloud computing, updated robotics,


Almost half the population doesn’t have

big data. Almost all the software

any idea about this technology; however,

companies out there have made this

Siri have already acquainted us with

the rate at which it is growing it has

technology the key driver of their

the power of voice in conducting

made a pivotal place as one of the top


everyday tasks, the applications have

technological trends to look out for. Blockchain is essentially a digital

From packaging juice boxes to

While technologies like Alexa and

still remained very limited. In the brief

delivering pizza in self-driving vehicles,

time of their existence these assistants

record book that registers all the online

automation has evolved in time from

have somehow fallen short of human

transactions and it is secured due to its

doing routine tasks to a lot more


encrypted and decentralized nature.

complex, even decision-making tasks.

During 2019 there were some arguments

Automation has clearly moved ahead

that the technology is over-hyped and not

from its involvement in the production

as useful as seen. However, continued

lines to other spheres.

investments from tech giants like FedEx, IBM, Walmart and Mastercard showed



And there are a number of ways automation will create its presence around us by becoming one of the most awaited new technologies of 2020. With other technologies like Robotics, Machine Learning, and Artificial Intelligence, processes across multiple industries like Food and Beverage, Medical, and Customer Service is expected to become further streamlined and automated by the time 2020 hits

some real confidence in the technology, which led to an increase in quick adoption by smaller players. Amid all the speculations in the

our doors. While these are all expected routines of Automation technology, there is one

But we can expect the Voice-based

more interesting innovation coming out.

applications to make a mark in 2020.

market, famous US based social

In 2020 we will see efficiently working

The near future with a set of new

media giant, Facebook, is also fighting

autonomous vehicles. Amid a lot of test

upcoming technology trends will find

its way to launch its own blockchain-

runs and speculations Tesla is one of the

itself conducting more operations with

based crypto currently Libra, which

examples of this, while Volkswagen has

a voice command. In only a matter of

has already created a stir. And if

also invested big time in its autonomous

time, every device around us will be able

everything’s goes as planned 2020 will

vehicle project, and other companies

to function and perform actions with

see some major developments with the

are also coming up with same projects

a command of our voice. Voice-based


around the world.

applications will find a greater place in

People who are currently unaware of what Blockchain and Cryptocurrencies


are, and where they can spend them, will

The future of technologies in 2020 will

start doing their everyday transactions

be incomplete without Voice.

with them.

There was a time when the only

users’ everyday activities. n So here are 5 best technological trends that are going to see mass adoption in 2020. Are you ready for them?

December 2019 | 37

In Conversation

face to face

“RCS is the future of messaging” Messaging has undergone a massive change with the arrival of new platforms, from WhatsApp and Messenger to WeChat. And the latest one to rock this space in India is the Rich Communication Services (RCS), which is said to be an answer to the government’s localisation problems. It has often been called SMS 2.0 and close to Apple’s iMessage. To discuss more about the RCS and how it can be a feasible replacement for instant messaging apps, Ramesh Kumar Raja talked to Rajdip Gupta, MD and Group CEO of Route Mobile, a cloud communication platform provider for over the top players and mobile network operators (MNO). Excerpts: How do you look at the trend of messaging

the messaging industry.

utility providers, restaurants, etc. using a

in India? The A2P (application-to-person)

Currently, the market is divided

single advanced messaging application.

messaging is going to touch 7.4 billion

between SMS, different OTT providers

A reputed research report predicted

messages daily by 2022 and the number

and RCS. The user base for major IP

that by 2020, 85 per cent of customer

of smartphone users in India is predicted

messaging services is predicted to exceed

interactions will be managed without a

to leap by 2022, there will be 829 million

4 billion users globally and will provide

human and the AI chatbots will play a key

smartphone users in India. As per GSMA,

opportunities for operators to innovate

role in that transformation.

there are greater than 300 million active

and offer new messaging services for

Future will see aggregators providing

users of RCS (Rich Communication

enterprises and deliver more promising

enhanced advanced messaging with

Services) and it is set to have a market

outcomes for end-users as they have done

chatbots and plugins to deliver the richer

worth of $74 billion by 2021. The GSMA

for RCS.

experience to consumers while giving

report reveals that there is a consumer-

As AI chatbot technology matures,

enterprises to take advantage of the direct

driven demand for different types of

it will make customer service intuitive,

nature of application-to-person (A2P) IP

messaging, over 51 per cent of them

personalised and more chat-based than

messaging in future.

expect 24/7/365 answers and service

before. Customers will interact with banks,

from businesses. It is an exciting time for

e-commerce sites, airlines, railways,

38 | december 2019

The recent WhatsApp snoopgate row


has brought to light the ugly picture of

and sending and receiving messages use

with an SMS fallback mechanism if the

an instant messaging platform that how

cellular data. This also makes it possible

message is not delivered. Unlike SMS, it

one’s data is not secure. What’s your take

to send a message via Wi-Fi if your mobile

is not limited to 160 characters.

on it? The biggest market for WhatsApp

data signal is low, or if you are low on data.

OTT messaging services have now

is in India with over 200 million users

RCS provides even more finesse in terms

become platforms to introduce and

which sometimes crosses 300 million.

of cloud communication for business as

monetise new services, such as music,

Digital transformation has always

compared to iMessage and has serious

gaming and payments that are enhanced

come with a risk of data security and

advantages over it. Previously, iMessaging

by the use of chatbots and AI. WeChat

any messenger platform can be a target

was a gold standard in messaging.

and Kakkao are such examples in Asia.

of such an advanced attack, however,

RCS supports Google Pay in selected

unfortunately, Whatsapp was targeted

As RCS has a universal profile in India,

regions and other popular third-party

as it is the most popular messenger in

it will work with any phone, although

payment options which will lead to faster

India and almost every Indian has a

Apple will need to include this support

checkout which in turn will lead to a higher

WhatsApp application installed on

on devices. Google has even bought

conversion rate.

their smartphone. Whatsapp Business

Jibe Mobile and is using the Jibe Cloud

RCS is more like an open platform

Solutions is working to upgrade its

platform. This has helped Google enable

supported by a complex ecosystem,

encryption feature with Nasscom and the

which is collaborative and competitive

central government.

at the same time and offers the “RCS has same benefits as SMS in terms of features similar to iMessage, What needs to be done to ensure guaranteed message delivery, secure such sort of incidents never happen connection, extremely low latency, such as rich message texting and again? Is data localization the regulatory compliance, and sending and receiving messages use solution to it? Data localisation much more. cellular data. This also makes it possible is one of the solutions, not Unlike popular OTT apps, to send a message via Wi-Fi if your mobile the only solution. As the RCS’ commercial models do data travels over an operator not monetize user data to data signal is low, or if you are low on network, it stays within the enable targeted advertising. data. RCS provides even more finesse country’s border and within in terms of cloud communication for its jurisdiction of laws. With Does RCS hold any importance other messaging apps, the to iPhones/iOS as well, especially business as compared to iMessage data travels through a company’s considering its very own messaging and has serious advantages servers, thereby crossing the platform? The RCS partnership over it” country’s borders and making it out of with Samsung and Android messages reach of its legal jurisdiction.

In Conversation

face to face

provides a successful means for cloud and business messaging, which puts in

There’s a lot of buzz around Rich Communication Services. Do you think it’ll

direct competition with Apple’s iMessage carriers to launch RCS quickly.

be a game-changer in an industry where the

which has its perks over the complicated messaging involved across Android

majority of people use Android smartphones?

Can you please tell us about the technicalities

phones. However, RCS also has certain

As of 2019, Android holds 91 per cent

involved and how RCS is going to impact

serious advantages over iMessage. If

share of the smartphone operating system

other platforms? Owing to the technological

Apple joins hands with RCS messaging,

market in India and almost 75 per cent

challenges and rigidness involved in

there will be a unified messaging standard

worldwide, which makes a serious game-

developing a medium as efficient yet

across all handsets and wireless carriers.

changer, not only for the Android users but

simple as that of an SMS, RCS began its

It would be seamless for brands and

also for the iOS users, as it will offer stiff

journey at a steady pace. Considering the

software providers as they would have a

competition to iMessage.

need of having a two-way communication

single standard type of message to every

In the past, iMessage had been a strong

process, RCS Business Messaging is the

subscriber instead of creating two separate

contender that has swayed Android users

answer that addresses all the limitations

experiences of separately structured texts.

to iOS systems. RCS has features similar

of traditional one-way messaging. It is

Currently, although the content is the

to iMessage, such as rich message texting

an enhancement to an SMS as it comes

same, the difference lies in the structure

december 2019 | 39

In Conversation

face to face of the message. It depends on how Apple

messaging and this association will

few carriers is still pending. Even though

or RCS wants that structure to look like on

showcase innovative approach, enhance the

RCS has a universal profile in India, phones

its mobile phones.

momentum for various industries, towards

need to have this support but most of them

RCS has a universal profile that was

advanced messaging and accelerate the

don’t have, which has slowed down the

launched in India in 2016, which makes

awareness of next-generation technology


it flexible on any mobile device, while

in India.

the same is not with iOS. As long as the

The future will see RCS go completely app less and consumers in India using

wireless provider, device manufacturer,

What’s your expectation and what’re the

it for payments, customer support

and operating system support the feature,

challenges with regard to RCS in India?

and much more. For example, Uber will

messages can be shared using this new

Has it the potential to disrupt the messaging

not need an app, all transactions can

standard, unlike iOS.

landscape over here? RCS supports all

happen on RCS. Chatting with a friend or a relative will be a similar experience

Since RCS is mostly said to be about

to chatting via RCS for a car booking “Google has company. finally come out and decided it is for a general smartphone users? An entire customer journey can be The industry has been constantly mapped with RCS: to give the Rich communication Allows users to chat working for over a decade on RCS experience to over a billion Android directly with the driver, protocol. Google has finally users by rolling out its RCS protocol that will sending pick up messages, come out and decided to give make purchases, upgrades, the Rich communication let users experience features like group chat or changes via a simple, yet experience to over a billion functionality, high-res attachments, typing rich chat experience Android users by rolling out indicators etc for P2P communications. Provides a self-service its RCS protocol that will let option that is available users experience features Features like carousels-suggested replies, rich round-the-clock. like group chat functionality, cards and more such A2P features Find a driver in high-res attachments, typing for enterprises/brands are enabled a nearby location or track indicators etc for P2P (personthe location of the driver via maps. to-person) communications. on the beta version of Android Sends location-based Features like carousels-suggested messages as well” business communication, how relevant





replies, rich cards and more such A2P

personalised responses, guided

features for enterprises/brands are enabled

navigation, delivering notifications and

on the beta version of Android messages

Android devices in India. Currently,

advice that is suited to the user’s needs

as well. Currently, to experience RCS, the

Vodafone, Airtel and Jio are the three major

and preference via suggested actions and

Android users have to update their Android

service providers which will support RCS in

replies via a chatbot. Thus, RCS gets a

Messaging Client which is nothing but the

India. However, Reliance Jio has already

faster query resolution through guidance

messages app to the beta version from the

introduced RCS services to its customers. It

at every step than with an app.

Play Store.

has brought LTE-quality RCS voice services

Facilitates digital payment transactions


It lets users chat with their contacts and

to about 100 million customers in less than

as RCS is integrated with third-party

exchange high-resolution images, GIFs,

six months with JioCall, which turned out to

payment apps such as Google Pay and

emoji, stickers, videos and audio messages

be the largest RCS active user base across


from within the chat session. It also allows

the globe.

users to send and receive messages over

Any Android smartphone user on any

From a UX point of view, users would not

Wi-Fi or mobile data -- unlike traditional

telecom operator can now opt for RCS.

like to go to a third screen and open an

SMS messages that require cellular

When RCS, having a Universal Profile, was

app. It is a lot of work when everything

network connectivity. Just like SMS, RCS

launched in 2016, about two OS makers,

can be done on their regular native

uses mobile number as the identifier for

47 mobile operators, and 11 smartphone

messaging app via RCS. Users do not

the recipient.

makers came forward to support it. All

want to download multiple apps for every

Android users can now install RCS within

brand when all this can be done within

few minutes.

the native messaging on mobile with new

Route Mobile recently joined hands with Google to bring RCS in India. What’s the

Although most major national carriers

way forward plan? RCS is the future of

are on board, the interoperability with a

40 | december 2019

technology. n



Mega 3-in-1 International Sourcing Fair –

Your Gateway to International Sourcing

Mumbai, Maharashtra, India: 3 International Sourcing Fairs, 1 Location

with our decision to participate at this

Appliances Exhibition (CEI) showcased


a wide range of products like Home

Prashant Salunkhe of NPAV Antivirus

Entertainment, Telecommunications,

@ Home World Expo – Future Living

said, “Ours is an IT product and as such

In-Vehicle Electronics, Digital Imaging

India Consumer Electronics & Home

was a unique product on display at this

Equipment, Healthcare Electronics,

fair. However, the positive responses we

Wearables, Computers & Peripherals,

got made us believe that this is, in fact, a

Office Automation & Equipment,

very good platform.”

Large Appliances, Kitchen Appliances,

n n

Appliances Exhibition The 17th China Products (Mumbai


India) Exhibition

Home Appliances and Personal Care

The Mega 3-In-1 International Sourcing

Nehal Ganatra of Bhalaria Metal Craft

Fair took place at the Bombay Exhibition

stated, “This is the second time we are

Centre (BEC), Goregaon East, Mumbai,

participating at this show and we are

The 17th China Products (Mumbai

from November 14-16, 2019, presenting

pleased with the quality of serious industry

India) Exhibition saw pavilions of various

quality international suppliers for

buyers visiting this show. Buyers from

provinces of China including Hong Kong

Home Décor, Consumer Electronics &

top e-commerce and other companies

and Guangdong presenting their specialty


from India and abroad visited and we are


The essence of this trade platform was to make available quality and innovative consumer products from different parts

pleased about the business prospects we are cultivating on this platform.” The Mega 3-In-1 International Sourcing

of the world to discerning Indian buyers.

Fair bridged the

More than 9500 Indian businesspeople


from across the country took advantage

gap by boosting

of the show to forge new business ties


with global manufacturers and traders.


Exhibitors were also pleased with the

Products showcased included Hotel Supplies, Gifts & Stationery, Toys & Games, Building Materials, Construction

t ra d i n g


quality of buyers who visited them and


spoke positively of new deals being made


in new markets with buyers showing

The fair brings

positive interest in their products.

together the

Gaurav Pardeshi of Roidmi said,



home décor,

“Buyers from across India visited us and

consumer electronics & appliances and

Equipment, Auto Parts & Accessories,

made serious inquiries. We were surprised

other relevant industries under one roof.

Machinery, Hardware, Garments &

that people as far as South and East India

@Home World Expo - Future Living

Fashion Accessories, Office Supplies &

visited this show and with the number

is the premium B2B home exhibition

Equipment, Medical & Pharmaceuticals

of positive enquiries generated on this

and international business platform

and many more.

platform we will be participating in this

showcasing multiple categories to

To increase business opportunities, the

show next year as well.”

make Indian industries and trade

Mega 3-In-1 International Sourcing Fair

Lepu Technologies’ Vivek Jhawar said,

more competitive. The major exhibit

created networking pavilions, customised

“We are a medical technology company

categories at the Expo were Home Décor,

one-to-one business matching and

but the interest showed in our products by

Home Furniture, Tableware & Glassware,

industry seminars. The show brought

the visitors was nothing short of amazing.

Kitchen Essentials Decorative Lighting

together focused buyers and exhibitors

We were not aware that interest would be

and Wellness.

from multiple categories, creating a

so high at this show and are very pleased

The India Consumer Electronics & Home

winning synergy for everybody. n

The exhibition is organized by SingEx Exhibitions Pte Ltd (Singapore), Worldex-Singex Exhibition (Guangzhou) Co. Ltd and Worldex India Exhibition and Promotion Pvt. Ltd. For further information visit: OR OR

In Conversation

face to face

“India moving in right direction to become telecom equipment leader” UTStarcom helps network operators thrive by offering their customers the most innovative, reliable and cost-effective communication services. The product line includes innovative, technologically advanced platforms that leverage expertise in packet optical communications, routing and switching technologies, broadband access, wireless communications and synchronization. UTStarcom is investing heavily to further develop key products that provide the infrastructure for future of networking with intelligent Segment Routing (SR)-based routers, broadband access solutions, synchronization equipment and Software Defined Networking platforms. Our correspondent Vivek Singh Chauhan spoke to Rahul Pandey, Managing Director, UTStarcom India, to know more on same. Here’s the edited excerpt of the interaction. How important the Indian market is for

disruptive products and solutions to

How much dominance of 5G we can expect

you? What are your expansion plans? As

largely address the needs of the Indian

in your services?India is gearing up for

a global telecom infrastructure provider,

market. Furthermore, to meet the price

5G roll-out and is actively participating

UTStarcom provides next-generation

requirements of the market, we embrace

in carving the future of global telecom

broadband telecommunication solutions

the ‘Make in India’ campaign and work

sector. Along with technology

to our customers worldwide. Specifically,

with local manufacturing companies to

advancement, the country is emerging

India has been one of the key markets

produce our equipment in India.

as an active contributor to the industry’s

in the last several years for us. We have

standardization process. One of the

been working with customers in India

important aspects related to 5G rollout

and the SAARC region including key

is the transport network infrastructure

telecom operators and service providers

– a critical pre-requisite and enabler of

since 2001. Our mission in India is

efficient 5G network deployment. That is

to build faster, more reliable and cost-

where UTStarcom’s solutions come into

effective networks based on the latest

play providing excellent transport network

technologies, enabling fast adoption of

for 5G based on our cutting-edge packet

modern communication services across

optical networking technologies and

India. We are consistently working on


42 | december 2019


Our next-generation communications

hubs for telecom equipment. The

applications in a cost-effective manner,

platform SkyFlux integrates several key

country is strategically moving in the

offering excellent network flexibility

technologies including Flex Ethernet

right direction to take the centre stage

and service agility, very high bandwidth

(FlexE) lightweight TDM Ethernet

of telecom equipment manufacturing.

and overall network capacity, excellent

transport, Segment Routing tunnelling

As we are seeing more demand in the

scalability, multi-layer network slicing,

technology, and highly accurate time

Indian market, we think it is crucial to

extra-low latency, very high timing

synchronization over the packet, all

have the local talent to customise our

accuracy, and many others. The solution

tightly integrated with Software Defined

technology accordingly. To meet the price

is optimized for use by mobile network

Networking (SDN) platform. We believe

requirements of the market, we embrace

operators and broadband service providers

that this unique platform provides a

the ‘Make in India’ campaign and work

as an efficient backhaul/metro aggregation/

perfect solution for 4G/5G mobile network

with local manufacturing companies to

transport network.

transport that can meet all the complex

produce our equipment in India.


What kind of products can we expect from How would you address the complex

you in the coming times? We are very much

What are your investment and expansion

requirements of 5G networks, cloud-based

determined to continue focusing our

plans in India with a focus on 5G and

services and video streaming applications?

main efforts on our key areas of expertise

development of other solutions for emerging market segments including IoT, smart retail, and intelligent network edge? UTStarcom has always been a company that drives innovation, not afraid to experiment and be the first to develop and/ or integrate new technologies into our products and solutions. With constant innovation and attention to customers’ needs, we significantly deliver an attractive offering to our existing and potential customers in today’s

– packet optical networking solutions,

“With favourable policies, the rise in mobile telephony and deeper penetration of smart devices, India has a huge potential to become one of the biggest manufacturing hubs for telecom equipment”

challenging and dynamic telecom market.

broadband access and SDN. With coming of 5G and growing demand for IoT, M2M, Smart Cities, Cloud-based services and Data Center Interconnect, as well as in view of encouraging plans related to development of fiber and wireless infrastructure in our key international markets, we see a lot of opportunities for us in which we can apply our knowledge and spirit of innovation for the benefit of the industry, supporting smooth roll-outs of 5G and fast adoption of other new

We are very optimistic about India’s 5G

applications. At the same time, we are

technology roadmap. We have already

5G mobile technology and emerging

interested in exploring and continuing

started our engagement with stakeholders

new applications including AR/VR, IoT,

our investments into the development of

on the next-generation of technology. With

automated driving, Cloud-based services,

solutions for emerging market segments

5G, we have developed various solutions

video streaming and many other bring

including IoT, smart retail, and intelligent

including slicing packet network and we

a variety of requirements to transport

network edge.

have successfully passed through some

network infrastructure for bandwidth,

At the recently concluded Indian

of the commercial trials. In this quarter

latency, timing accuracy, reliability,

Mobile Congress 2019, we have also

we are expecting the big business globally

energy efficiency, cost. While satisfying

showcased our product portfolio for

from three major operators which will be

each individual requirement is possible

5G based on Next Generation

later announced by the company. In India,

with existing networking solutions, the

Technologies comprising Slicing

it is yet not started because the spectrum

telecommunications industry is facing a

Based Transport Solution, 5G Indoor

is yet not given.

huge challenge of meeting them all on

Coverage Solution and solutions for end

the same transport network infrastructure

to end network synchronization. Our

serving 5G or other access technologies.

exhibit also included optimized solutions

Do you think India will become a centre of telecom equipment manufacturing and

The SkyFlux SPN platform combines

for mobile backhaul, metro aggregation,

low-cost telecom products? If so, then how?

advanced technologies, high performance

broadband access, Network Core, Smart

With favourable policies, the rise in mobile

and clever architecture of Slicing Packet

Cities and more, which enable Service

telephony and deeper penetration of smart

Network (SPN) technology to enable

Providers to evolve their Networks

devices, India has a huge potential to

network operators to meet the complex

significantly. n

become one of the biggest manufacturing

mix of requirements from 5G and other

In Conversation

face to face

december 2019 | 43


Market insight

Signs of Recovery in Global Smartphone Market While Samsung led the market with 21% share, Realme emerged as the fastest growing brand, jumping to seventh spot


he global smartphone market

India and China, the two top-focus markets

markets such as Europe, Latin America and

remained almost flat during

for every player in the mobile value chain. In

Middle East due to the lack of shipping new

Q3 2019, reaching 380

India, smartphone OEMs started preparing

models with Google services gives a window

million units in shipments,

early for the festive Diwali season this year

of opportunity especially Samsung, Xiaomi

as compared to 379.8 million units in Q3

with healthy channel buildups. In China,

and others to capture share away.”

2018. In terms of brands, Huawei, Realme

Huawei, Oppo and Vivo (HOV) continued

“Huawei, though will have to be careful

and Samsung registered positive growth,

to see healthy channel demand ahead of

of the inventory levels in domestic market

increasing their market share globally.

National Day Golden Week holiday break

as the market could quickly transition to

Stronger demand in India and China in

in October which led the market to grow

the upcoming 5G wave which could affect

September helped the global smartphone

a positive 6% sequentially. This along

its market share in coming quarters,”

market to halt the seven-month streak of

with upcoming holiday season in the

Pathak added.

year-on-year (YoY) declines.

next quarter, should drive up the overall

Peter Richardson, Research Director at

Commenting on the smartphone market

smartphone demand into a positive growth

Counterpoint, while commenting on the

recovery, Shobhit Srivastava, Research

territory for the second half of this year

5G progress, highlighted, “The 5G rollouts

Analyst at Counterpoint Research, noted,

compared to the last year.”

from both networks and devices over the

“The global smartphone market ended a

Huawei continued to defy the market

past twelve months have been faster than

long period of continuous YoY declines in

decline with a 4% increase in market share

the 4G era, and we expect the rollouts to

Q3 2019 due to increased shipments in


further accelerate going into 2020. 5G

Talking about Huawei’s continued

smartphones already accounted for 2%

growth, Tarun Pathak, Associate Director

of the market in Q3 2019, growing over

at Counterpoint Research, said,

200% sequentially. China has already

“The US trade ban on Huawei

commenced rolling out the 5G networks

did not affect the overall

and the massive market scale it brings for

brand’s shipments and

the entire industry will make 2020 the

growth in Q3 2019 after

breakout year for 5G. This should catalyze

the uncertainties in June.

the slowing smartphone volume demand

Huawei’s strategy to

over the past couple of years and certainly

supplement its decline

continue to boost the upward trend in the

in overseas market share

overall smartphone Average-Selling-Price

with domestic push


paid off handsomely. The rising sense of

Key Takeaways:

nationalism towards

• The top three brands, Samsung, Huawei

Huawei amidst US-

and Apple, together cornered almost

China trade war coupled

half of the smartphone market, with

with aggressive go-to-market

the rest of the market left for hundreds

strategy in China helped Huawei

44 | december 2019

of other brands to compete fiercely.

boost mindshare and marketshare

• Samsung continued its growth at

domestically. Outside China, the

8.4% YoY, capturing over one-fifth of

widening gap being created in overseas

the global smartphone market. This


Exhibit: Smartphone Shipment Market Share 2019 Q3 Global Smartphone Shipments (Millions Units)






























“The US trade ban on Huawei did not affect the overall brand’s shipments and growth in Q3 2019 after the uncertainties in June. Huawei’s strategy to supplement its decline in overseas market share with domestic push paid off handsomely. The rising sense of nationalism towards Huawei amidst US-China trade war coupled with aggressive go-to-market strategy in China helped Huawei boost mindshare and marketshare domestically” – Tarun Pathak, Associate Director, Counterpoint Research









Total Global Smartphone Shipments (% Share)






































**Lenovo includes Motorola


*Huawei includes Honor

Source : Counterpoint Research

and maintain momentum. Huawei’s

as well as introducing a new palette of

loss in overseas market would be a big

colours, stimulated demand during the

opportunity for Samsung in coming

last week of September offsetting the


sharp annual decline earlier months.

• Huawei grew a very healthy 28.5%

• Realme remained the fastest-growing

YoY globally. It captured a record 40%

brand for the second time. It also

market share in the Chinese smartphone

climbed up the ladder in global rankings

market. As it continues its aggressive

since its last appearance. This is one of

push in the market, it will have to keep

the fastest ramp-ups of companies to

a check on inventory levels in China and

date. Strong performances in India and

Europe in Q4 2019.

expansions overseas drove its growth.

• Apple iPhone shipments were down

This was also the fourth consecutive

4%, and as a result revenues fell 11%

quarter that Realme was within the top

YoY. The positive response for the latest

5 brands in India.

iPhone 11 series during the tail end of

• BBK Group (Oppo, Vivo, Realme and

the quarter is a silver lining for Apple

OnePlus) is close to becoming the

going into the holiday season quarter.

largest smartphone manufacturer group

In US pre-orders and the first week

globally, accounting for over 20% of the

is due to strong Note 10 and Galaxy A

of sales saw early adopters buying

global smartphone market and three of

series sales. The company also posted

more of the iPhone 11 Pro Max and

its brands in the top 10.

an increased profit with an improved

iPhone 11 Pro but the iPhone 11 rose

The market consolidated further with

product mix. The company will continue

quickly then on into the top seller’s list.

the top 10 brands’ market share increasing

to launch new A series smartphones,

Apple’s price corrections in China and

to 83% from 78% a year ago. n

including some models with 5G, to try

elsewhere with the iPhone 11 and XR,


Market insight

december 2019 | 45


Market insight

A Record-High in India Smartphone Shipments While Xiaomi continues to lead with one number position, Realme, Vivo, OnePlus and itel were the fastest growing brands shipping record volumes in Q3 2019


efying the economic

of digital content consumption, commerce

Oppo reached a record sell-in levels in Q3

slowdown trends in other

and communication, the smartphone has

2019. The growth and maturity of online

sectors, the India smartphone

become central to people’s lives taking a

channels from serving more zip codes than

shipments hit a record high

priority in terms of their share of wallet.

ever coupled with greater customer service,

of 49 million units, posting a 10 per cent

Further, the smartphone brands continue to

attractive promotions from discounts to

year-on-year growth in the third quarter

expand their product portfolio with attractive

cashback to EMI and exchange offers will

of 2019, according to a research from

advanced features from quad camera to

be pivotal in driving smartphone sales

Counterpoint’s Market Monitor service.

full view display to fast-charging larger

during this festive season and also taking a

The growth was driven by a spell of new

battery for the mainstream and the mass

large share from the offline channels.

launches in the run up to the all-important

market. As a result, this holiday season,

While the smartphone market registered

festive season, aggressive marketing and

we estimate the demand for smartphones

double-digit growth YoY, the feature phone

attractive promotions from discounts

will supersede other categories despite

market witnessed a steep decline of approx.

and cashbacks to no cost EMI on online

uncertain economic climate.”

37% YoY due to the slowdown in the new

channels and exchange offers. Meanwhile,

Speaking of the competitive landscape,

shipments from Reliance Jio as the operator

feature phone sales registered a steep

Anshika Jain, Research Analyst at

was focused on clearing the older JioPhone

decline of approximately 37 percent year-

Counterpoint Research, said, “The

inventory ahead of Diwali season. As a result,

on-year during the quarter.

smartphone shipments reached a record-

the players such as itel, Lava and Karbonn

Talking about the market dynamics, Karn

level, now accounting for two in three

registered positive annual growth despite

Chauhan, Research Analyst at Counterpoint

mobile phones sold. This was mainly driven

the overall segment declined. In fact, itel

Research, said, “The India smartphone

by the spree of pre-festive season launches,

emerged as the number two feature phone

market grew double digits reaching a record

aggressive marketing and incentivised

brand in Q3 2019.

49 million units in Q3 2019 offsetting

channel strategy to maintain sufficient

the ongoing economic slowdown in other

inventory to cash in on the festive season.

Market Summary:

sectors. Given maturity of users in terms

Chinese brands Xiaomi, Vivo, Realme and

• Xiaomi recorded the highest ever

46 | december 2019

shipments with a 26% share. Its

India Smartphone Shipment Market Share (%)

Q3 2018

Q3 2019




segment. Redmi 7A, Redmi Note 7




Pro and Redmi Note 7S were the best







YoY, however, it has shown 3% growth




QoQ driven by its budget segment







Q3 2018

Q3 2019






















shipments grew 7% YoY driven by good performance of its models in the online

performing smartphones for the brand. • Samsung shipments declined by 4%

device Galaxy A2 Core and its upgraded A series and M series (A30s, M30s, A10s, A50s and M10s). Samsung

“Given maturity of users in terms of digital content consumption, commerce and communication, the smartphone has become central to people’s lives taking a priority in terms of their share of wallet. Further, the smartphone brands continue to expand their product portfolio with attractive advanced features from quad camera to full view display to fast-charging larger battery for the mainstream and the mass market”

—Karn Chauhan Research Analyst, Counterpoint

India Feature Phone Shipment Market Share (%)

registered sequential as well as annual strong in the premium segment due to the introduction of Galaxy Note 10 series in the third quarter. • Vivo reached its highest ever share in the India smartphone market driven by good performance of its mid-segment series (Vivo S1 and Y17) and increased focus towards the online segment with its recently launched devices, U10, Z1X and Z1 Pro. • Realme also recorded its highest ever shipments and is the fastest growing brand registering a 6x growth as compared to last year when it entered the Indian market. Driven by an attractive spec and design focused mid-tier portfolio and aggressive online channel strategy, promotions, the Realme saw consistent growth in the market since its entry. Towards the end of the quarter, Realme raced to third largest brand with strong sell-in into the channels ahead of the festive season. Realme C2, Realme 3i and Realme 5 series were the best-selling devices for the brand in Q3 2019.


Market insight

Oppo grew 12% YoY, due to demand for its budget segment device A5s and steady performance of its F11 series. • itel grew 40% YoY driven by strong offline expansion, focus on upgrading its affordable series with new features and localized marketing strategy. itel was the number one smartphone brand in less than Rs 5,000 (US$ 70) retail price segment in offline channels. • Transsion Group (itel, Infinix and Tecno), together was ranked the number six OEM in the India smartphone market during Q3 2019. • OnePlus emerged as the number one premium smartphone brand in Q3 2019 with its shipments getting almost doubled as compared to last year driven by its newly launched device, OnePlus 7T and discount offers on its OnePlus 7 series. • Apple made an entry into the top 10 smartphone brands due to price cuts on XR model along with good channel demand for of its newly launched iPhone 11. n

december 2019 | 47

In Conversation

face to face

“Skullcandy is focused to grow and provide amazing products for Indian consumers” US-based audio brand Skullcandy that markets headphones, earphones, hands-free devices, audio backpacks, MP3 players and other products, was founded by Rick Alden and cofounder Cris Williams in 2003. Amlan Bhattacharjya, Founder and CEO of Brand Eyes, the official distributor of the brand in India, spoke to our correspondent Vivek Singh Chauhan about many things, including their marketing strategy and product portfolio. Bhattacharjya founded Brand Eyes in 2008 with a clear goal to deliver to the Indian consumers the latest trends in consumer electronics and become a leading digital lifestyle distribution company in India. Here’s the edited excerpt of the interaction. What are the innovations that we can expect

known as noise cancellation, or active

transmit the L channel (left) and the

from Skullcandy aimed at disrupting the

noise reduction (ANR), is a method for

channel R (right) separately.

audio segment in India? Currently, we are

reducing unwanted sound by the addition

We intend to disrupt this segment

focusing on active noise control (ANC) and

of a second sound specifically designed to

with some innovative features like Tile

true wireless stereo (TWS) segment as it

cancel the first. TWS refers to a technology

Bluetooth Tracking, Wireless Charging,

is a natural evolution for the industry at

which allows you to pair two audio devices

Lightning Port, USB C port products with

this point.

via Bluetooth, meaning that you can

rich audio to address the needs of the

Active noise control (ANC), also

discerning consumer.

“We intend to disrupt this segment with some innovative features like Tile Bluetooth Tracking, Wireless Charging, Lightning Port, USB C port products with rich audio to address the needs of the discerning consumer” 48 | december 2019

Can you briefly share your product portfolio? Currently, we cater a full suite of products fulfilling the requirement of the consumer with varied lifestyle. ANC is a focused segment for us and we intend to be a serious contender in this segment. Presently we have three ANC products in our portfolio in different form factors with more in the pipeline. What according to you is the most successful product of yours till now? In the headphones


face to face we have two product offerings, the Venue being our first product that featured ANC and our latest offering is the Crusher ANC. In the TWS, we have 3 products at this time. We met with great success with Indy and we are going strong with our latest launch in this segment the Sesh, which brings great features and rich audio experience at a pocket-friendly price. In the in-ear category, we have our latest avatar of Method with ANC feature and backed by Tile to provide you with the motivation for your workouts. Talking about the most successful product until now is a difficult thing to answer. There have been multiple success stories over the years. The Indian market

“Our target audience is anyone who appreciates good sound quality and a feature-rich product. As the market is constantly evolving, we see a mix of demographics who are the customers of Skullcandy with the common denominating factor being the appreciation for quality audio”

What is your approach to the “aftersales service”? After-sales service is an aspect for any brand to succeed. We are confident about the build and quality of the product and it goes through rigorous

has embraced the brand and we have

Skullcandy is a prominent name in the

QC checks before any products are

some great products under our belt.

industry in India and we are focused to


If we talk about headphones, we have

grow and provide some amazing products

We provide two years warranty on our

had great success with Crusher BT and

for the Indian consumer. Our target

entire product range and have to service

now with Crusher ANC, we are expecting it

audience is anyone who appreciates good

centres PAN India.

to be a runaway success as it features the

sound quality and a feature-rich product.

signature immersive bass of the Crusher

As the market is constantly evolving,

What are your outreach and investment plans

family with added features like ANC, Tile

we see a mix of demographics who are

and which platform you are going to exploit

Tracking and Personalized audio.

the customers of Skullcandy with the

more, online or offline? We have made

common denominating factor being the

significant investments in the offline

appreciation for quality audio.

space by deploying endcaps in the retail

In the in-ear segment, we have Ink’d wireless which is a great product that has been loved by the Indian consumer since

environment for customer experience

the day it was launched and now, we have

Amid the competition from high-end audio

and will continue to do so in the future.

launched a refreshed lineup for Ink’d with

brands, what is Skullcandy’s go-to-market

We have also started a unique campaign

the Ink’d Plus Active paired with Tile with

strategy? Our focus with any new product

called the “12 Moods” which features

the rich audio experience.

is to provide the customers with a rich

new limited-edition products every

product description across all platforms,

month which is exclusively available on

How important the Indian market is for

a good product, enhanced product, backed with rich content

Skullcandy? Who is your targeted audience?

experience at the offline store with robust

which features a new music video every

Indian market is very important for us.

after-sales service.

month. We connect through social media channels with our fans, clubbing it with contests and giveaways every month to keep our fans coming back for more. We are also focused on the millennials and take part in various college activities PAN India. We try to keep a healthy balance between online and offline as we want our fans to be able to connect with us and enjoy our products no matter which medium they choose. n

december 2019 | 49

Tried & Tested


vivo U20

Upgraded Display, Processor with Huge Battery


ne very good


the bottom side of the phone

and punchy. The big-screen

thing about vivo

The new vivo U20 holds an

has a 3.5mm headphone

space of the phone under

which allows

aesthetic appeal to it which

jack, micro USB port, and a

such range is surely an

it to be in the

comes from the racing black

speaker grille. The front fascia

advantageous point on which

ace of top competitors is the

color of the phone. The shiny

of the phone is dominated by

the company is capitalizing.

broad frame of the company

color on the rear side also

the screen and at the rear side

The viewing angles are very

which incorporates all the

forms some patterns when

lies triple rear camera sensors

wide and good allowing you

price segment and does not

light falls on it making the

placed vertically enclosed in

to enjoy any function on

focus on emphasizing too

phone look very beautiful.

an aluminum frame followed

the screen quite nicely and

much only on one area and

The body composition of

by an LED flash. At the

this is made possible due to

the best example of it could

the phone is of plastic but

rear side lies the physical

19:5:9 aspect ratio of the

be the launch of its new U

still, the rear side has a shiny

fingerprint sensor which is

phone. The brightness of the

series phone mostly known

finish to it but this shiny rear

placed very accurately within

phone is quite good as well

for its budget range. The

side has a disadvantage as

easy reach and on top of all it

making the screen visible

successor of the previous U10

well which is that it attracts

is very quick to respond to the

under bright daylight as well.

the new vivo U20 is the latest

smudges. The phone has a


The screen has a resolution of

launch from the company.

reasonable body and also fits

While the competition in the

the palm quite comfortably.


mid-range segment is heating

The physical overview of the

The new vivo U20 has arrived

has bezels running around

up and meanwhile launching

phone includes the power

with all canons loaded to

the screen and more of it was

a budget range phone

button and the volume

lure the buyers and this

visible on the lower screen

shows that the company is

rockers on the right side of

can be witnessed from the


well aware of the market

the phone whereas towards

6.53 inches HD screen of

demands and modulates itself

the left side lies the triple slot

the phone which is an IPS


according to it. So let’s check

SIM tray meaning a dedicated

LCD capacitive touchscreen.

vivo U20 is running on

out the new vivo U20 in this

slot for microSD card. The top

The colors reproduced are

Funtouch 9.0 based on

review of ours.

side of the phone is blank and

very good as they are bright

Android 9.0 Pie. The OS of

50 | december 2019

1080x2340 pixels and has 395 PPI density. The screen


verdict Looks

08 /10


08 /10


08 /10


10 /10

Value For Money

08 /10

Attractive Suffice

In Sync


the offer various smart features that you can make use of like

by using a microSD card.




Ultra Game mode and others.


The work efficiency of the

The main highlight of the

new Vivo U20 is something

new vivo U20 is the camera

which is making the phone

quality which it possesses


to set new benchmarks

and the capability of the

under the range which it falls.

camera to deliver stunning

Battery, Display

vivo U20 has emerged as

images. The new vivo U20 is

one of the best and fast

making the tag attached to

processing phones under its

vivo of camera-centric more

range and this is achieved by

prominent and higher. The

using Qualcomm Snapdragon

rear cameras, when tested at

675 processor where two of

daylight, were quite amazing

its octa cores are clocked at

as they captured images of

2.0GHz Kyro 460 Gold and

superior quality with proper

the six cores are clocked at

color reproduction and color

1.7GHz Kyro 460 Silver.

saturation which amazed

Multitasking was very easy

us. The detailing of the rear

and fluent and we did not

sensor is very good plus the

encounter any lag there. The

ultrawide shots are amazing

touch response is also very

as well as the phone has a

smooth and fast which is very

dedicated sensor to take care

rare to find in phones of such

of it. Edge detection was on

price range but what is more

point as well. To make all this

surprising is that the new

possible vivo has used 16MP

Vivo has used 6GB RAM to

primary rear sensor with an

support the processor which

aperture of f/1.8 which is also

aperture of f/2.0.

might will be the first time

the wide lens of the phone.

where a smartphone is holing

The secondary sensor of the


such RAM size. Gaming on

phone is 8MP with an aperture

the phone was quite good as

of f/2.2 which is the ultrawide

well as because we were able

lens of the phone. The third

to play big games on it with

sensor is of 2 MP with an

a slight degradation in the

aperture of f/2.4. The images

graphics quality but overall the

captured at night were also

graphics level was very good

quite good as there was very

and games like PUBG, Asphalt

less amount of noise effects

ran smoothly. The internal

and graining was noticed

storage of the phone is 64GB

only when the resolution of

which can be further expanded

the camera was increased.

a single charge. But what more Vivo could have done to make the phone an epitome of smartphones under the price range in which it falls could have been the usage of Type-C port which is missing in the phone and thus having a normal charging speed.

Conclusion vivo U20 is a decent upgrade from its predecessor, vivo U10, where there’s

Cons Plastic Back

(For detailed specifications, please refer to My Guide)

improvement in display size and a new agile chipset. The battery remains the same

Tried & Tested


having enormous life cycle but, lack of Type-C is quite strange if this is an upgrade.

What we loved about the rear

The set of triple rear camera

camera is the ability to keep the images in their natural form with no over softening. The selfies captured by the phone were quite brilliant and as we talked about maintaining the original colors and skin tone the selfies were also able to hold on to that which we loved. The selfie camera is 16MP with an

Another power point of the new vivo U20 which is providing the phone an upper hand under

is capable of daily tasks while

the price segment in which

there’s an upgrade in selfie

it falls. The new vivo U20

department with a 16MP

holds a powerful battery of

lens. Priced at Rs 10,990 for

5,000mAh which can easily

the 4GB+64GB, vivo U20 is

outlast a day. While testing

a healthy upgrade available

the battery longevity, it was

today. n

able to easily last a day with

december 2019 | 51

Infinix S5

Offers A Lot To Keep You Happy


ranssion’s brand

Infinix recently launched


There is a quad-camera setup

Infinix appears to

the S5 smartphone which

The smartphone appears

along with an LED flash at

be on a roll these

promises to be a perfect blend

to be somewhat similar to

the back of the device. You

days. It has been

of innovation of affordability.

its predecessor in the ‘S’

also find a fingerprint sensor

launching a new smartphone

The Infinix S5 happens to

series i.e. the Infinix S4. It is

placed towards the center. On

almost every month this

be a first in its price to sport

sturdily built and looks quite

the right side of the phone,

year, thanks to its increasing

a punch-hole camera with

stylish. However, instead of

there is a volume rocker

recognition in the Indian

Super Cinema display that

the waterdrop notch that is

and power button. The left

market. The more-recent

drives the mobile viewing

present in its predecessor,

side of the device has triple

festive season had been quite

experience several notches

the Infinix S5 offers a more

card slots (two SIMs and

special for this brand, when

higher. Priced at Rs 8,999,

fashionable punch-hole

a microSD card). A micro-

its devices attained greater

the handset comes equipped

camera. Up front, it sports

USB port for charging, a

visibility, grabbing eyeballs

with a 4+64 RAM/ROM

a big 6.6-inch HD+ display.

3.5mm headphone jack and

with their enticing specs and

combination in Quetzal Cyan

A thin bezel is there on the

a speaker grille are placed at

affordable prices, resulting in

and Violet colour options.

right, left and top sides of the

the bottom.

an unprecedented sale. And now, continuing its winning streak,

58 | december 2019

Let’s get into the detail of this phone to arrive at a conclusion.

display. The bottom bezel is slightly thick akin to many


other Android phones.

The 6.6-inch display in this

The rear of the S5 is made

Infinix phone offers an HD+

up of reflective polycarbonate,

(1600×720 pixels) resolution

and it sports what the

and 20:9 aspect ratio. The

company calls ‘crystal

punch-hole design at the

feather’ pattern design, with a

front allows the device to

glossy finish, which happens

offer a screen-to-body ratio

to be in trend nowadays. The

of 90.5 per cent. The display

patterns ensued that the

is quite bright and you will

fingerprint smudges didn’t

find no problem to read any

ever look like an eyesore.

content under direct sunlight.


The smartphone offers good

precise and worth relying on.

vibrant colour reproduction

On the connectivity front, the

and contrast. While it’s bright

device comes with 3-in-1 card

during the day, there’s an eye-

slot (Dual Nano SIM along

care mode for those who prefer

with a dedicated microSD card

using the device deep into the

slot), VoLTE, WiFi, Bluetooth

night. Overall, the display is

5.0, GPS with A-GPS,

quite good and I didn’t find

GLONASS and a MicroUSB

any variation in contrast and


sharpness while watching videos.

The smartphone will not disappoint you as far as its


performance is concerned.

The handset packs a MediaTek


Helio P22 SoC under the

In terms of optics, the Infinix

hood, accompanied by

S5 comes equipped with a

4GB of RAM and 64GB of

quad-camera setup at the

internal storage, which is

back. This setup includes a

further expandable up to

16MP sensor, a 5MP wide

256GB via microSD card. The

lens, a Super macro lens, and

performance of this phone is

a depth sensor. There is also a

unexpectedly good in general

quad-LED flash on the back.

use, and multi-tasking was no

It offers support for features

problem at all. It can do a bit

like Custom Bokeh, AI HDR,

of gaming as well, but for that

AI Beauty and Panorama

graphics settings must be kept

modes. On the front, there

low. Interestingly, even PUBG

is a 32MP AI selfie sensor

Mobile worked well in low

with f/2.0 aperture. The front

graphics settings. Taken as a

camera supports AI Portrait,

whole, the Infinix S5 is a good

AI 3D Face Beauty, WideSelfie

device for casual gamers.

modes as well as AR-

It runs Android 9 Piebased XOS 5.5. The phone’s UI comes pre-loaded with

verdict Looks

09 /10


09 /10


08 /10


09 /10

Value For Money

09 /10

Premium A Big Draw Smooth

A Powerhouse Extraordinary at its price point




browsers. It did not consume too much time to charge the device fully from zero.

Conclusion The smartphone stands tall in every department, especially considering its price. It looks decent with a punch-hole display. It delivers a smooth


Display and Processor Cameras (For detailed specifications, please refer to My Guide)

also does a decent job in daylight. However, the phone struggles in low light conditions as the image quality drops drastically. Overall, the phone has beaten our expectations for

enabled Animoji features. The camera app is quite simple, having a

which need to be deleted, in

lot of features such as video,

order to free storage space

AI camera, beauty, AR shot

and make a way for the apps

and panorama. Besides, there

and tools of your choice.

are also some pre-installed

a budget smartphone to have

However, there are also some

filters in this app. You can

extraordinary cameras.

user-centric features as well

make good HD video with this

such as bike mode, one-hand

phone. If you look at their

Battery The Infinix S5 is powered by

disturb, eye-care and book

performance, the rear camera

a 4,000mAh battery with AI

reading, etc.

is quite decent in the daylight

power management, which

conditions. The AI helps give

absolutely is a major selling

unlocking the phone, as face-

a further boost to the image

point of this device. Although

unlock feature, fingerprint

output as it can automatically

it could run almost two days

sensor, and pattern lock work

detect the scene and lighting.

with its regular functions, the

perfectly. They are quite

Similarly, the selfie camera

battery lasted for over a day

There is no issue with

social media and surfing

performance and has a long

unwanted apps or bloatware,

support, game mode, do-not

while playing games, using

Tried & Tested


battery life. Cameras are a big draw over here. Its processor, coupled with 4GB of RAM, is more than sufficient to run the device without any glitches. Overall, the Infinix S5 offers a lot that’ll keep you happy, if you are looking for a handset in the sub-10K category. n

december 2019 | 53

Tried & Tested


EVM EnAble+ Power Bank

A Supercharger in your Pocket


ith data-

But to narrow down your

built using lithium polymer


heavy smart-

challenge here are some

cells that help battery to be


simple thumb rule, you

fully recharged for longer

compatible with all android


And the power bank is

should keep in mind while

period of time. There is a 9

devices, tablets, cameras

the battery faster, power bank

hunting for the right power

layers protection from short

and iPod, headphones and

has become a must-have

bank for yourself. If you’re a

circuits, current and voltage

even an iPhone. Apart from

accessory for the users on the

traveler always go for

overloads and protection

these it is also the only

move. But selecting the right

the combo of light and

against overheating, so, it is

power bank in the market

one with so many options

powerful, and nowadays

completely safe.

that comes with 2-years of

in the market can be a little

anything below 10,000 mAh


is impractical. But that can

two color variants Black and

also have 500 + service

add up a lot of weight to your

White, and a little matt in

centers across India, which is


texture but looks stylish and

very accessible.

Which is why the EnAble + from EVM should be the perfect choice

simple. The portable power

warranty and the company

bank has dual input charging


options of micro USB and

For its asking price which is

type c, with two USB output,

between Rs 949 to Rs 999,

is the brand

it also allow users to use both

the product offers a lot. It


the charging point at the

has good capacity and output

under the

same point.

for two devices, with good

for you. EVM

company Pin Peripheral Pvt. It is ‘Made in India’ consumer electronic brand.

Design and Power The EnAble + power

Comparing with the

components and good looks,

power-packed battery, the

if you are looking for a light-

EnAble + is just 180 gm in

weight quick charging speed,

weight, it is too light to carry

it got it all!

around everywhere, which

The digital indicator

is impressive. It is a perfect

adds on a cheery on top of

choice for those who are

it, with its portability and

always on a move, you can

comparability. If you are a

carry it everywhere.

traveler or always on a go,

It also has a digital

this EnAble + Power Bank

indicator on the front which

should be on your must have

helps in keeping a track of

list. Considering the asked

charge, ensuring you exactly

amount the product offers a

and it is designed for a

know so that you don’t run

lot! n

user friendly usage. It is

into surprises, which is very

bank is packed with 10000 mAh battery

54 | december 2019

The power bank comes in


Tried & Tested



Be A Part of the Game


aming on

combined with the ear wings


will keep you comfortable for

using bulky

multiple hours of gaming.


The earphones feature

headphones with a mic,

10 mm drivers. There are

can actually be irritating,

two mic options – one is the

especially in a hot and

default in-line mic attached

humid country like ours.

to the left earphone cable,

To make things better,

which works quite well for

homegrown CLAW, which

calls and regular use. For

stands for Consumer Lifestyle

additional clarity, there’s

Accessories Worldwide,

an additional gaming

has come up with the G9

microphone bundled, better

earphones that have been

suited for communication

designed and optimised to

during multiplayer gaming

help gamers feel lighter and

sessions. Also, included is a

relaxed. Retailing at Rs 990,

3.5mm to 2 x 3.5mm adapter

the G9 gaming earphones

for connection to desktop

with dual microphone for

PCs. such as Play/Pause, Answer/

hear footsteps, gunshots

comes in Black, Green and

better suited for gaming on

Reject, Previous/Next Track

allowing you to know exactly

Red colour options. Let’s get

the go, the CLAW G9 is not

and even brings up Voice

where your enemy is located

into the detail of this product

restricted to that purpose

Assistant. The dual flange

at all times.

to find out how worthy it is for

only. You can also use this for

ear-tips offer superior noise


listening to music and while

isolation keeping you focused

produce crisp and clear

watching a movie. Thanks to

on the game by obstructing

sound, they are quite loud

mobile, PCs and consoles,

Design and Features

Although this device is

Although the earphones

its dual flange ear tips and ear

all outside distractions while

overall. The company seems

The ergonomically-designed

wings, it doesn’t awkwardly

the silicone ear hook design

to have given a priority to the

CLAW G9 is as portable as

fall off the ears.

ensures a secure fit in your

highs at the cost of sacrificing

ears. The 10 mm drivers

the mids and lows, which

produce immersive 3D stereo

seems unfortunate since

sound with enhanced bass

the earphones end up being

earphones essentially are, regular gaming headsets

Functionalities and Performance

which are quite bulky. The

Just like other earphones,

1.2m cable that it offers

the CLAW G9 offers a

is very strong and heavy-

multi-function button that

duty owing to textured TPE

allows you to control actions

totally different from the

which helps in gaming

useful only in the context of

scenarios so you can

playing intense shooters or in multiplayer gaming.

material, which is also rigid


enough to not get knotted

The CLAW G9 looks pretty

easily when you carry it

decent, in terms of design

around in a bag or pocket.

and justifies its price with its

The CLAW G9 offers two

unique features as standalone

pairs of ear tips in the box,

gaming earphones. It’s

besides the dual flange ear

something you cannot

tips that the earphones have

ignore. n

on by default. The ear tips

december 2019 | 55

Tried & Tested


ZenBook Pro Duo (UX581) Bulky yet Beautiful Laptop for Professionals


aiwanese tech

recently unveiled its dual-

available at Rs 245,420 on

inch 4K OLED display

major Asus

screen laptop series in India

Amazon and here’s how it

with another 4K 14.1-inch

is doing well

which comprises ZenBook


secondary display, an elite

in terms of

Duo (UX481) and ZenBook

graphics engine and a set

innovation in their gaming

Pro Duo (UX581) and at a


smartphones or laptops.

starting price Rs 89,990 and

TAsus continues to deliver

components. Constructed

Recently, a report by the

Rs 209,990, respectively.

designs that are at once

from sturdy aluminium, the

timeless, innovative and

Celestial Blue is alluring. The

research firm International

ZenBook Pro Duo

of top-end performance

Data Corporation (IDC) stated

(UX581) is built for creative

undeniably Asus. The

shiny Asus logo at the right

that the brand registered 43.6

professionals, so there’s no

ZenBook Pro Duo (UX581)

of the centre is the epicentre

per cent year-over-year growth

compromise on connectivity.

looks like any other laptop but

of Asus’ beloved concentric-

and was able to capture a 5.3

A full set of high-performance

slightly thicker. It certainly

circle pattern. Upon opening

per cent market share in the

I/O ports -- including the

isn’t for everyone. But for

the lid, the company’s

third quarter of this year. The

latest Thunderbolt 3 USB- C

creative professionals who

ErgoLift hinge deploys, gently

company recorded its highest

port -- give you dongle-free

cannot get a rig because

raising the keyboard deck

ever shipments in the country,

connectivity whatever you’re

they are always on the move,

to a 4.5-degree angle for

mainly driven by strong

doing, wherever you are. The

the laptop represents a

a more comfortable typing

growth in the online channel.

latest Intel Wi-Fi 6 with Gig+

very viable alternative. The

and viewing experience. The

The company, which has

(802.11ax) takes wireless

laptop’s internal systems were

full-size keyboard resides in

been aggressively expanding

speeds to the next level.

redesigned to accommodate

the space typically reserved

its demanding specifications

for the palm rest, with the

that now include a 15.6-

touchpad or number Pad

its online as well as offline presence in the country, has

56 | DECEMBER 2019

We reviewed the upgraded variant of the laptop that is


sequestered in the lower-right

settings before creating.

corner. At the bottom front lip

The main 15.6-inch display

of the laptop, you’ll see the

features ultra-vivid colours

Alexa light bar, which signals

and deep blacks (DisplayHDR

that the digital assistant is

500 True Black compliant),

processing your request. Asus

with a cinema-grade 100-per

finishes the look by housing its

cent DCI-P3 colour gamut and

ports in gleaming, chamfered

100,000:1 contrast ratio. The

edges. At the top of the deck,

brightness level on this screen

you’ll find Asus’ ScreenPad:

is nothing short of impressive

a massive second display that

and colours are accurate

runs the length of the deck.

enough to handle sensitive

It’s a visually stunning element

work. The display also handles

that, when paired with the

Adobe RGB and sRGB

4K OLED display above,

relatively well. The second

makes for a captivating scene.

14-inch 4K LCD screen act

However, despite the matte

as an extension of the primary

panel, the ScreenPad Plus is

display and is quite useful in

quite the fingerprint magnet.

several instances. You can

On the right side, you get a

open up to five apps between

USB Type-A 3.1 Gen 2 ports,

both screens. The bottom

Thunderbolt 3 and an audio

panel runs two to three apps

jack. Along the left, you have

side-by-side, while the main

another USB Type-A port, a

screen on the top can run your

full-size HDMI 2.0 port and

primary app. Asus has also

a DC-in port. At 2.5kg and

incorporated several shortcuts

14.1 x 9.7 x 0.9 inches, it’s

to make the transition of apps

significantly heavier than HP

between the two screens

Spectre x360, Dell XPS 15

seamless. The ScreenPad

and Apple MacBook Pro.

Plus gives you on-the-go

Display/ Keyboard/ ScreenPad Plus

Tried & Tested


computing as you’ve never experienced before. A series of handy built-in apps help boost

The two 4K screens are the

your productivity. Quick Key

highlighted features of this

allows one-tap automation of

laptop. The first screen on the

complex keyboard sequences,

ZenBook Pro Duo is a 15.6-

and Handwriting lets you input

inch 4K OLED touchscreen

text intuitively. There are also

with an excellent brightness

useful quick controls such

and contrast levels, while the

as App Switcher, ViewMax

second screen, ScreenPad

and Task Swap for intuitive

Plus, located right under

interactions between the

the main display is a 4K IPS

main display and ScreenPad

touchscreen with 32:9 aspect

Plus. Unfortunately, most

ratio. The second screen has a

games don’t play nice with

3,840 x 1,100 resolution and

the ScreenPad Plus, so you

runs the entire length of the

can’t play on the second

laptop. The 4K OLED screen

display. But I’m not sure most

is Pantone Validated, ensuring

gamers would want to play on

you don’t need to tweak any

a smaller screen, unless it’s

DECEMBER 2019 | 57

Tried & Tested

burntest a smartphone or Nintendo

impressive, the ScreenPad

accelerate ray-traced scene

that are certified by Harman

Switch, anyway. But it would

Plus is quite dim compared

creation and can encode

Kardon for pumping out the

be cool if you could manage

to the main display, but that’s

high-quality video in real-

sound. It has an IR Windows

tertiary functions like game

primarily down to the panel

time. You can also game on

Hello camera, which works in

menus and inventory down

technology. The matte finish

this card. The company has

the dark and is excellent for

there. Task Group lets you

contributes to that dimness

gone the extra mile to ensure

video conferencing. Moreover,

lock into work mode by

but also acts as a protective

that the powerful components

Asus also includes a Stylus

opening multiple tasks with

layer from scratches and

inside the ZenBook Pro Duo

that works on both the main

a single touch. And now

fingerprint smudges. The

can deliver without throttling.

and secondary display.

you can drag any Windows

Duo’s OLED panel averaged

This two-screen laptop uses

The Stylus is excellent for

app or in-app toolbar onto

322 nits of brightness, while

the ErgoLift design, we saw

sketching and taking notes,

ScreenPad Plus to give you

the ScreenPad hit 289 nits.

on the Zephyrus S series, to

but you can even use it to

more room to work on the

Neither score managed to

improve airflow by keeping it

launch apps.

main display, wherever you

match the 343-nit average.

flowing smoothly from under

are. The Launcher is the

The MacBook Pro and

the chassis. The new cooling


fastest way to launch your

Spectre outshone both

system with a newly designed

We feel second displays on

favourite apps on ScreenPad

screens at 403 and 483 nits,

fan and five heat pipes help

laptops aren’t a new concept

Plus. Simply tap or click an

respectively. But nothing

keep the ZenBook Pro Duo

and Asus had quite a library

app icon to launch the app.

could hold a candle to the

cool under pressure. Although

of dual screens in the early

XPS 15’s 626

Asus is billing the Duo as a

2000s. However, this is


content creation/productivity

arguably one of the most

machine, with an Nvidia

innovative laptops in the

GeForce RTX 2060 GPU with

present time. It’s opulent,

ZenBook Pro

6GB of VRAM, the notebook

indulgent and surprisingly

Duo is powered

is more than capable of

useful once you get the

by up to a 9th

playing traditional games or

hang of it. Having the ability

Generation Intel

VR titles.

to quickly access hotkeys,


Core i9 eight-core

launch several programs at

processor, the


latest gaming-

The ZenBook Pro Duo gets

screen real estate is a big

grade NVIDIA

a pretty big 71Wh 8-cell

boon. But there are a couple

GeForce RTX

Rechargeable Li-Polymer

of flies in the ointment.

2060 graphics

battery pack. But with 4K

As beautiful as OLED and

once and still have ample

You can also personalize

and blisteringly fast

OLED panels, it is natural

4K panels are, they can do

it by adding new apps

storage. This ultra-powerful

that they can do a number

a number on battery life,

from the main screen to

combination ensures that

on a laptop’s battery life. The

especially when you throw

the Launcher or removing

ZenBook Pro Duo takes

Duo gets the double whammy

high-powered specs into the

apps from the Launcher

professional-quality tasks

here, as it also sports a power-

mix. In terms of performance,

by clicking the edit button

in its stride, such as multi-

consuming discrete GPU and

the hardware inside is pretty

in the top right corner. The

layer photo or video editing,

a second 4K panel. In terms

powerful, while the cooling

touch interface can be used

3D graphics rendering or

of battery life, the laptop

system is quite effective in

to drag and drop apps into

even game live-streaming. It

lasted around three hours on

helping users make optimal

position or stretch a single

also offers 32GB 2666MHz

a single charge on a rigorous

use of that hardware without

app across the full length of

DDR4 RAM and a 1TB

usage. The battery life is a


both screens. A button on

PCIe SSD for storage. The

little disappointing.

the keyboard allows you to

RTX 2060 is equipped with

switch the content on both

Nvidia’s Studio Drivers and

Audio/ Camera/ Pen

for everyone but creative

screens in an instant. While

is capable of enabling real-

The ZenBook Pro Duo utilises

professionals. n

both touchscreens are pretty

time video effects. It can also

two bottom-firing speakers

58 | DECEMBER 2019

The ZenBook Pro Duo (UX581) certainly isn’t


In Conversation

face to face

“Fraudsters are becoming increasingly more sophisticated” The country is undergoing rapid transformation to a digital economy with almost every citizen having a mobile phone. This rapid change has led to dramatic increases in fraud, data protection and privacy concerns. Hence, authenticating a subscriber with absolute certainty is critical to carry forward the digital momentum over the next few years. Boloro’s patented authentication platform addresses all of these needs. It may help banks, governments, e-commerce retailers and other players looking to eliminate the risk of theft and fraud and comply with PSD2, GDPR and other regulations. Our correspondent Vivek Singh Chauhan spoke to Karl Peter Kilb III, Chief Executive Officer, Boloro Global Limited to know about the company’s patented authentication platform in details. Here are the edited excerpts. What kind of solution is your company

have any phone and any operating system,

work closely with the operators, as the

providing and how effective is it when we

Apple or Android, or even the most basic

operators have the origination data and the

talk about securing the data present in our operating system? The solution separates the authentication from the Internet and the operating system. It uses a unique memorized pin that must be entered in response to a secure message sent on your phone in connection with a specific transaction that isn’t processed until you validate it with your pin. You can create your pin with alpha-numerical codes. The process is compatible with all smartphones and feature phones, and the pin is specific

SIM data so they would know if there had

“It is important that users start being pro-active. There is a push on creating an entirely mobile digital society -- a push to get away from cash, a push to promote transparency”

to your device. If you change your phone,

been any SIM swap or if the SIM had been misdirected in any way, and they would flag and block the transaction. Also, the backend reports record exactly what has happened at the time. There are content logs. This comprehensive data-board tells you exactly what happened when the authentication request took place. Was the transaction denied or did the user enter the right pin to validate the transaction? This information is available to the government, bank or whoever is

you would register a new pin for your phone

using Boloro to securitize their customers.

number. Boloro’s Authentication Solution

feature phone. All mobile phones have

If a government or bank has installed the

works on any phone anywhere, so you can

access to the secure USSD channel. We

solution, then it would have a real-time

60 | december 2019


view into its customer transactions,

company focuses on providing real security

Authentication has been certified by the

preventing fraud.

through the trusted mobile phone in your

GSMA - the Global System for Mobile

hand to make the user confident about

Communications - and we work very

Technology is changing and so are the

participating in the digital economy. We

closely with the operators.

fraudsters trying to steal people’s hard-

work with the customer’s mobile network

earned money. How are you keeping up with

providers for authentication, ensuring

Are you trying to inspire your users to switch

the ever-changing dynamics? Fraudsters are

a layer of security that complements

from reactive to active measures?Users

becoming increasingly more sophisticated

and supplements the existing system.

must start being pro-active. There is a

and if everything is on the Internet and

To elaborate, only the customer has its

push on creating an entirely mobile digital

everything is touching your phone operating

physical phone and knows its memorised

society - a push to get away from cash, a

system, the fraudsters can easily hack into

pin. Even if the phone was lost or stolen,

push to promote transparency. Everybody

your accounts. They are using Malware

or a hacker got into the customer’s e-mail

is trying to figure out how to move to a

through applications to access your phone;

account, or malware got into the operating

digital economy, but security must be

they use SIM swaps to redirect your phone.

system, the message that is sent to validate

the primary focus because if you do not

So, if all of these techniques are being

each transaction using Boloro wouldn’t

have a secure platform, digital solutions

used, they could be using your face to get

be affected because the message doesn’t

do not work. Fraudsters are becoming

access to your phone. You could be using

touch the Internet or the operating system.

more advanced over time, but our multi-

multiple forms of authentication, such as

The authentication message is sent

channel and multi-factor solution provides

your face, finger, or voice to get access to

separately through a network-initiated

total security. Our goal is that everybody

your phone, but any of those things can be

USSD (Unstructured Supplementary

in India protects themselves with this

compromised and somebody else can get

Service Data) or a push-USSD channel,

solution. We are not worried about

access to your phone.

which is a secure signalling channel that

branding; we are worried about protecting

every operator on the planet has. Boloro

people’s money.

If you use Boloro, even when your

In Conversation

face to face

biometric data gets compromised, a fraudster cannot be you because only you have your physical mobile phone and your memorised pin - it’s another lock - a separate secure impenetrable lock that sits on top of your applications. So, even if all else fails - a hacker got in, malware is on the operating system, biometric data is around on the street - you have a safety guard - that last layer of security your physical phone and your memorised pin. We have not seen any way in which the fraudster can defeat Boloro because the channel itself is controlled by the mobile network operator, the phone is in the user’s possession, and only the user knows the memorised pin. Nobody has access to the channel except the mobile network operator. All how the fraudster tries to commit fraud to come back to the operating system or the Internet, and we avoid them. Your company statement says: “Stop identity threats and prevent fraud by putting real security in your hands.” Could you give us insight and how does Boloro work? Our

december 2019 | 61

In Conversation

face to face Is there any kind of collaboration between

usage, but also has a population with

already have the connectivity that is

the government agencies and private

hundreds of millions of people who are

being deployed here. The bank or the

cybersecurity solution providers like you in

still on feature phones. Boloro is the

government is already communicating

trying to create safer cyberspace? If so, how

best solution for smartphones because

with their customer, so there is no change

is that going? It would be ideal for us to

we avoid the Internet and the operating

in that. You can license the solution on a

collaborate directly with the government.

system, which are inherently vulnerable to

white-label basis and host the solution,

The government is strongly focused

attack. With our solution, people in rural

and the messaging happens on the

on identification for all citizens. When

India can also validate their transactions

operator-certified, totally secure channel.

you think about identifying all citizens,

on their basic feature phone, making it

the question is “who are you?” The

very accessible to all citizens. It is true

Do you think that India is heading successfully

government may know what you look like,

security and it accomplishes all the goals

towards creating an e-governance society?

your biometric information and your voice

that the government has – digital economy,

Is there any example you would like to quote

- that is who you are. However, the more

cash replacement, transparency, fraud

from where we could derive inspiration and

important question for authentication is

prevention, financial inclusion - all of these

work on creating similar solutions? India is

“Is this you?” The best way to answer it

ahead of the curve and has a chance to be

a real leader in this space. Mobile adoption “Boloro’s solution is a key to e-governance, e-commerce, is compatible with all mobile everything the government is online banking and digital payments. doing. Each time you are trying phones, meaning there can be India can have a very mobile and to validate your identity; you entrepreneurial economy and uniform deployment throughout India. don’t have to rely only on I see this as a great thing, as The country is increasing smartphone usage, biometrics, as biometrics long as the necessary security but also has a population with hundreds of can be easily hacked measures are in place. We or replicated. The first want to work directly with the millions of people who are still on feature question in identification government, the banks and phones. With our solution, people in rural can be answered by the other financial institutions India can also validate their transactions government and the second to make sure all of these can also be answered by the transactions are secure. Working on their basic feature phone, making government, in collaboration in partnership with the government it very accessible to all with Boloro’s solution, which and the financial institutions, we citizens” can be hosted and branded by the can create a mobile, digital economic is to use the Boloro authentication as a complement or supplement with

government. And, this can be done in a

infrastructure which will allow anybody

way that is secure and in concurrence

things are done and the consumer does not

in the country to participate because I

with data protection and privacy

have to do anything, because they already

think financial inclusion is very important


have a phone, they do not need to upgrade

and a big goal of the government in India.

the phone, they already know how to use a

Also, our solution creates a complete audit

Our government is working towards a

pin and the authentication message pops

history of every transaction the customer

cashless economy. That means in future such

up on the phone. It is extremely simple,

has done and that audit trail can become

agile technologies are going to be used by the

extremely user-friendly and instantaneous

a credit history of all of their payments.

citizens who have limited or no knowledge

and it also removes all the excuses about

This can be used for helping with securing

of how to protect themselves from such

hosting your data in your own country. You

loans and credit for financial inclusion and

challenges. Is it possible to create easier and

can host the solution in the government

bringing the customer into the economy.

more accessible solutions keeping in mind

offices, in the bank location, or you can

We are looking at India and working on

that we have such diverse demographics?

put it anywhere and have all the security

everything that the government is trying

We have to think about how diverse India

data hosted in-country.

to accomplish: the digital economy,

is. Boloro’s solution is compatible with

The solution does not require building

mobile transparency, cash replacement,

all mobile phones, meaning there can be

any infrastructure or any additional

financial inclusion and data protection

uniform deployment throughout India.

investment from anybody. We are using

and privacy. n

The country is increasing smartphone

the existing infrastructure. The operators

62 | december 2019





A trending short video platform to earn money and fame


aunched in 2017, VMate has

login with FB credentials.

emerged as one of the fastest

The login process, too, is

growing short video platforms.

very simple, with only 2-3

The platform offers in-built easy-to-use

steps to follow.

video editing tools, amazing VR stickers and interesting duet function to create unforgettable moments and interact with people in VMate community. VMate is said to have a special focus on India, and is available in multiple regional languages apart from Hindi and English. In India, VMate is being embraced by users and content creators in cities, small towns and also in villages. As witnessed, the platform is fondly used by millions of Indians to celebrate various festivals or important events such as Holi, Republic Day, Dussehra, etc and has evolved to be a celebratory digital destination across for innovative festive contests, and over

Turning the table around with video features

here, we will explore the features on the

The fun part on VMate is not limited to

users, which you can translate into


viewing funny and creative videos, but

currency. The virtual gift sharing part is

you can quickly become a content creator

very interesting, as the users can receive

by making your videos and raise the

pleasant surprises and who doesn’t

The app can be easily located on the

fun quotient. In fact, VMate is the first

like surprises? By joining VMate, you

Android platform, India’s most significant

platform to have introduced innovative

welcome infotainment into your life, and

mobile OS and can be downloaded for

VR stickers designed especially for

the platform has the edge over others as

free. The 29 MB file is easy on phone’s

the Indian market, that allow users to

you can earn both money and fame on

storage space as compared to other short-

transition to newer virtual environment


video apps available. The app has more


India. VMate is trending among youth

Downloading the app

than 100 million downloads so far.

Getting started

The process of making videos on

community member, you can also send and receive virtual gifts from other VMate


VMate is a pretty simple. With a single

Overall, the experience of exploring

tap on the large red ‘Record’ icon, resting

infotaining content as well as creating

On opening the app, you directly enter

at the bottom of the screen, you will

videos on VMate is very smooth and

into the world of entertainment as you

be presented with options to include

simple, a perfect platform for anyone and

are welcomed with trending videos on

stickers, filters and background music

everyone to start making magical videos.

your screen. Simply tap on the video of

and other trendy AR filters that make

We also found that the app is backed

choice to start enjoying or scroll down

your videos more dynamic. To add these

with robust recommendation tools. Post

to explore more videos. The interface is

fun elements, one only has to go through

using the app for sometime, a user is

pretty smooth as you go through various

the extensive lists under each category

organically presented with the videos as

pages on the app. While you can enjoy

and simply tap on the desired sticker

per his/her preferences on the screen.

viewing videos, but to comment on or

or filter to be included in the video. You

This makes a user’s experience more

like a video, you will have to create an

can review the video and then press

intriguing. n

account or link the app with Facebook to

upload to share it with your network. As a

december 2019 | 63


consumer insight

Why Music Makes Us Feel, According to AI In a new paper, a team of USC computer scientists and psychologists teamed up to investigate how music affects how you act, feel and think. The team found that the brain responded to pulse clarity, or the strength of the beat, and that change in rhythm and timbre, or the introduction of new instruments also brought about an uptick in response. Additionally, the researchers also found that galvanic skin response (a measure of sweat) increased after the entrance of a new instrument or start of a musical crescendo.


our heart beats faster, palms sweat and part of your brain called the Heschl’s gyrus lights up like a Christmas

tree. Chances are, you’ve never thought about what happens to your brain and body when you listen to music in such a detailed way. But it’s a question that has puzzled scientists for decades: Why does something as abstract as music provoke such a consistent response? In a new study, a team of USC researchers, with the help of artificial intelligence, investigated how music affects listeners’ brains, bodies and emotions The research team looked at heart rate, galvanic skin response (or sweat gland activity), brain activity and subjective feelings of happiness and sadness in a group of volunteers as they listened to three pieces of unfamiliar music. Of the 74 musical features examined, the researchers found dynamics, register, rhythm and harmony were particularly helpful in predicting listeners’ response. “Taking a holistic view of music perception, using all different kinds of musical predictors, gives us an

40 | december 2019


unprecedented insight into how our bodies

increase in the complexity level of the song.

of time—for instance, looking at the brain

and brains respond to music,” said the

In essence, the more instruments are in the

reacting to two seconds of music.

study’s lead author Tim Greer, a computer

song, the more people responded. (Think:

By contrast, in this study, using

science PhD student and a member of the

the first section of Mike Oldfield’s Tubular

algorithms to analyze data gathered in the

USC Signal Analysis and Interpretation

Bells, as the song builds to a crescendo by

lab, the scientists were able to look at how

Laboratory (SAIL).

adding more instruments.)

people felt while listening to music over

Contrast is crucial

And the saddest note of all? That award

longer periods of time, not only from brain

goes to the raised 7th note of the minor

scans, but also combining data from other

Amongst their findings, the researchers

scale. The study found the note F# in a


noted that music powerfully influenced

song in the key of G minor was positively

parts of the brain in the auditory complex

correlated with high sadness ratings.

called the Heschls’ gyrus and the superior temporal gyrus.

“Novel multimodal computing approaches help not just illuminate human

That might be the reason the narrator’s

affective experiences to music at the brain

anguish is almost palpable in The Animals’

and body level, but in connecting them to

Specifically, the brain responded to

House of the Rising Sun, which uses the

how actually individuals feel and articulate

pulse clarity, or the strength of the beat (put

raised 7th of the minor scale to launch into

their experiences,” said Professor Shrikanth

simply: your gyri will be looking lively when

each increasingly emotional verse.

(Shri) Narayanan, study co-author, Niki

New territory

and professor of electrical and computer

rhythm and timbre, or the introduction of

For this experiment, the team selected

engineering and computer science.

new instruments, brings about the uptick in

three emotional pieces of music that did not

response. In other words, contrast is crucial.

contain lyrics and were not highly familiar,

For instance, the gyri activate when there is

so no element of memory was attached to

Feeling good

a change in dynamics, or “loudness.”

the listeners’ emotional response. (Hearing

In addition to helping researchers identify

listening to Lady Gaga’s Bad Romance). They also found that changing dynamics,

and C. L. Max Nikias Chair in Engineering

“This is new territory,” added Habibi.

“If a song is loud throughout, there’s

a song that played in the background during

songs for the perfect workout, study or

not a lot of dynamic variability, and the

a wisdom tooth extraction, for instance,

sleep playlist, the research has therapeutic

experience will not be as powerful as if the

might skew your perception.)

applications — music has been shown to

composer uses a change in loudness,” said

In the neuroimaging experiment, 40

Greer, himself a composer who plays sax

volunteers listened to a series of sad

and keyboard.

calm anxiety, ease pain and help people with disabilities or dementia.

or happy musical excerpts, while their

“From a therapy perspective, music is

“It’s the songwriter’s job to take you on

brains were scanned using MRI. This was

a really good tool to induce emotion and

a rollercoaster of emotions in under three

conducted at USC’s Brain and Creativity

engage a better mood,” said Habibi.

minutes, and dynamic variability is one of

Institute by Assal Habibi, an assistant

“Using this research, we can design

the ways this is achieved.”

professor of psychology at USC Dornsife,

musical stimuli for therapy in depression

So, if you’re listening to a whole album

and her team, including Matthew Sachs, a

and other mood disorders. It also helps us

of black metal, which is consistently loud,

postdoctoral scholar currently at Columbia

understand how emotions are processed in

you’re probably not going to see a response.


the brain.”

But if you’re listening to Nirvana’s Smells

To measure physical reaction, 60 people

According to the researchers, future

Like Teen Spirit, which goes from a quiet

listened to music on headphones, while

studies could look at how different types

verse to loud chorus and back again, it’s a

their heart activity and skin conductance

of music can positively manipulate our

different story.

were measured. The same group also rated

emotional responses and whether the intent

the intensity of emotion (happy or sad) from

of the composer matches the listener’s

1 to 10 while listening to the music.

perception of a piece of music.

The team also discovered that galvanic skin response—basically, a measure of sweat — increased after the entrance

Then, the computer scientists crunched

The paper, titled “A Multimodal View

of a new instrument or start of a musical

the data using AI algorithms to determine

into Music’s Effect on Human Neural,


which auditory features people responded

Physiological, and Emotional Experience,”

to consistently.

was presented at ACM Multimedia, Oct. 22.

“When each new instrument enters, you

In the past, neuroscientists trying to

The research team also includes Ben Ma,

better understand the impact of music on

a USC Viterbi undergraduate in computer

In addition, the most stimulating

the body, brain and emotions have analyzed

science and a member of USC SAIL. n

moments in music were preceded by an

MRI brain scans over very short segments

can see a spike in the collective response of the skin,” said Greer.


Consumer insight

december 2019 | 65

by Invitation

Guest Column

Online Appearance Crucial in Today’s Market Space By Jai Sharma


he world that boasts about its

digital footprints. As per the World Internet

on the locality, the type of commodities or

wireless and smart technology,

Usage and Population Statistics 2019 Mid-

services that the store has to offer. But the

is rather chained down with

Year report, out of the 7,716,223,209 total

former would still be limited majorly to the

cell phones and computers

population, over 4,536,248,808 people

civilians of the city or rather the locality the

are connected to the internet.

store is situated in. Now, imagine this store

connected to the internet. Every other person is glued to their screen day in and day

On the contrary, imagine a brick and

opting for the means of online appearance

out, browsing content and information of

mortar store setting up its new business in a

to boost its sales. By utilizing the different

different sorts. And for such a world, people

market area. On a daily basis, how many eyes

platforms and means of the internet, the

being away from this inter-connected realm

would this store catch and how many sales

store can catch the eyes and attention from

are rather considered as ghosts, having no

would it make? The latter would depend

across the globe, not limiting to its locality alone. This is what the internet has to offer for businesses in the market space. Indeed, the importance of online appearance in this inter-connected world is not an alien concept. The trend of online marketing started creating waves in the first decade of this millennium and is reaching newer peaks with the advancement of technologies.

66 | december 2019


From the dial-up connections to VR, the world has seen the transition of marketing going more and more digital, and lesser of physical. It has come to a point where the advertisements are not only informative but interactive in nature. Individuals have presented ads in relation to their preferences, funneling down the approach for the businesses out there. As per Forbes, an average American internet user consumes 4,000-10,000 on a daily basis. So, not only it is crucial to leverage the true potential of the internet, but it is much more important to use it in the right manner with campaigns and

a very crucial role in making that brand

brands but public figures maintain their

messaging, in order to get the needed

famous, as what people see more is what

online presence and image. The creator


they trust in. This is how the appearance

of Facebook, Mark Zuckerberg shares his

of a brand gets reciprocated in its sales,

vision of commissioning US Elections

In simple words, what people consume is what they believe in, and this consumption

on his brilliant social media platform in

of information majorly affects their

the future to come. This would again be

brand, instead of a new entrant, owing

his books, “with great power comes great

Guest Column

by invitation

“What people buying decisions, talking from the dependent on the reach of the internet, human psychological aspect. which is massive already, along see often, it is what they buy, For achieving the same, with the image of candidates instantly or later. A person would brands strive on creating appearing in the elections. impactful campaigns But, leveraging the power rather go for a ‘famous’ cellphone brand, that will attract their of online appearance is instead of a new entrant, owing to the fact audience to read not as easy as it seems. and later, believe It surely can manage that the ‘famous’ brand has invested much in in the brand. What crises and bear fruitful creating its online presence, be it the business revolutionizes results, but on the other the industry by hand, even a small error website or the social media handles. This a spectacular on this online medium is how it became famous, undoubtedly the campaign, wins the can create crises as well. crown and rules. Whether it is a brand or an features and performance of both the Further, what individual, everyone needs brands’ cellphones are at par. But the people see often, it is to ensure that the campaigns what they buy, instantly and content shared on this winner is the one who has invested or later. A person would medium are ethical and correct. It wisely in its appearance” rather go for a ‘famous’ cellphone is how great Stan Lee quoted in one of to the fact that the ‘famous’ brand has invested much in creating its online

responsibility”. Hence, the brands and raising its value over time.

individuals need to be responsible while

presence, be it the business website or

For ages, it has remained a fact that

executing their ideas on the internet to

the social media handles. This is how it

the image is everything. Just the ways

avoid any controversy. For the audience

became famous, undoubtedly the features

of managing this image have evolved

and performance of both the brands’

with time. Businesses spend millions of

that can help boost up sales and profits, it can take them down too. n

cellphones are at par. But the winner is

dollars in setting up their websites and

the one who has invested wisely in its

online presence to maintain the image.

appearance. And this appearance plays

The time has arrived where not only

The author is Founder, Jai Sharma Solutions.

december 2019 | 67


Market insight

India PC Market Still Going Strong Lenovo retained its number one position, followed closely by HP in the India traditional PC market that grew by 15.8% in the third quarter of 2019


he good old PCs are still

strong traction for both desktops and

going strong in the era of all-


Diwali offers. Learning from last year’s inventory

pervasive mobile phones. The

“Strong demand from the start-up

issues, some vendors were cautious to

India traditional PC market

ecosystem, BFSI segment, and very large

avoid extra stocking this time and shipped

inclusive of desktops, notebooks, and

enterprises, along with the Tamil Nadu

in a phased manner, leading to a weak

workstations, shipped 3.1 million units,

education deal, helped the commercial

consumer quarter as compared to 3Q18.

up 15.8% year-over-year (YoY) during

segment provide much-needed growth

However, Asus, Acer and Apple were

the third quarter of 2019, according to

to the Indian PC market,” says Bharath

aggressive in billing for online festivals

new data from the International Data

Shenoy, Market Analyst, PC, IDC India.

and registered higher double-digit growth

Corporation (IDC) Worldwide Quarterly

“Vendors have procured inventory to

in their online shipments. Also, this

Personal Computing Device Tracker. This

target Windows 10 refreshes in small and

Diwali, e-tailers extended the sales and

growth was mainly driven by the second

medium enterprises. Hence, the SMB

continued the bank and discount offers

phase of shipments to the Electronics

segment is expected to be

Corporation of Tamil Nadu Ltd. (ELCOT)

relatively softer in 2019Q4,

under its ongoing initiative of free

although education deals

distribution of laptops in the state. Also,

and global account refreshes

as Windows 7 is near to its scheduled end

are expected to maintain the

in early 2020, corporate and enterprise

momentum,” adds Bharath.

users accelerated their upgrades to Windows 10.

While the commercial segment witnessed healthy

The Desktop category saw a 10.6%

growth, the consumer

YoY growth in its shipments, mainly

segment was down by 4.2%

contributed by Windows 10 refresh buying

from the same quarter a year

from the banking sector. Notebooks grew

ago. However, it grew 49%

18% annually on the back of education

sequentially driven by multiple

deals as well as growth in both corporate

mega online festivals and

and SMB segments, as these enterprises scaled up their purchases for Windows 10 migrations.

Segment Highlights The commercial segment witnessed a 39% YoY growth, as vendors shipped a total of 1.7 million units in 3Q19. Even outside of the ELCOT deal, the commercial segment grew 15.7% annually, as it witnessed

68 | december 2019

for almost a month, which helped them to manage almost similar volumes as last year. Regardless of vendors’ efforts

India PC Market, Top Five companies, Market Share, Year-overYear Growth, 3Q19

to maintain the price parity between the offline and online channels, the retail segment witnessed a 6.9% decline when compared to 3Q18. “As we see consumers shifting


Market insight

entertainment and content consumption to smartphones, PCs are becoming a conscious purchase in India. Consumers are comfortable to wait for discounts and offers while looking to buy or upgrade

with a 28.5% market share in 3Q19. Its

their PCs,” says Jaipal Singh, Associate

shipments grew 55.4% YoY on the back

Research Manager, IDC India. “Looking

of the ELCOT deal. Outside the ELCOT,

at opportunities, branded PC gaming is

Lenovo was able to win a few large

a growth area in the next few quarters.

BFSI deals, which helped the brand to

Although India’s gaming market is

maintain triple-digit growth in the overall

dominated by mobile phones, gamers

commercial segment for the second

have already started preferring PCs for a

quarter in a row.

more immersive experience as their best alternate,” adds Singh.

Top 5 Company Highlights: Lenovo retained its leadership position

“As we see consumers shifting entertainment and content consumption to smartphones, PCs are becoming a conscious purchase in India. Consumers are comfortable to wait for discounts and offers while looking to buy or upgrade their PCs… Looking at opportunities, branded PC gaming is a growth area in the next few quarters. Although India’s gaming market is dominated by mobile phones, gamers have already started preferring PCs for a more immersive experience as their best alternate”

—Jaipal Singh Associate Research Manager, IDC India

HP Inc. maintained its second position with a 26.4% market share, as its shipments grew 9.9% from the previous quarter. One large education deal where HP was the main supplier was postponed to the following quarter, which led to a slight 0.6% decline in its shipments when compared to the same time a year ago. Dell Technologies ranked third with a 19.7% market share in 3Q19, as its commercial shipments grew 24.1% annually. However, its consumer shipments fell 27.3%, resulting in a 0.6% decline in its overall shipments compared to the same period last year. Acer Group maintained its 4th position with 11.9% market share, as its commercial shipments grew 21.3% annually and its consumer segment grew 2.8% YoY in 3Q19. A couple of wins in the BFSI and education segments helped the brand to record a 13.7% annual growth in its overall shipments. Asus registered 43.6% YoY growth and was able to capture a 5.3% market share in 3Q19. Asus recorded its highest ever shipments in the country, mainly driven by strong growth in the online channel.n

december 2019 | 69

Guest Column

by Invitation

Mobile Apps Revolutionising HR Practices in Today’s Workplaces By Udit Agarwal


echnology is all around us,

each device aims to be more universally

as building blocks of a bigger technological

whether it’s our phones,

compatible, more integrated, enabling you

offering. While this is in the personal realm,

computers or TVs, we use

to carry out and manage everything in a

the professional world is also increasingly

some form of it every single

single place. This is where apps come into

adopting the use of new technology to

day. The advent of emerging technologies

the picture, and our mobile devices are

streamline internal processes.

has further optimised our usage to bring

one place that is greatly personalised and

Given this increasing dependence, but

in greater convenience, efficiency and

customised because of the kind of apps we

also the optimisation and level of efficiency

engagement. One thing common to most

have. We are so used to using apps that we

that apps bring about, organisations have

of the technology we use today is that

don’t treat them as separate but, instead,

begun implementing them to better manage, engage with, and enable more convenience for their employees. This task falls with the HR departments, and is making their lives (and those of employees) a little easier, one click at a time. The extent of this is further corroborated by McKinsey research, which states that close to 56% of typical HR tasks, from hiring to retirement, can potentially be automated by using current technologies. Let us look into some of the ways in which this is being done:

Greater efficiency in recruitment practices Up until a few years ago, for HR teams, recruitment meant long hours, tedious paperwork and largely monotonous, manual tasks while screening candidates.Now, with processes becoming digitised, it is easier for HR to automate the screening process, filter out relevant candidates and carry out followups accordingly via an app, with real-time communication.

Digital attendance processes Given that most organisations, especially those operating on a large scale, have several employees to keep track of, apps

70 | november 2019


are coming into play to manage daily

While this comes in handy for

processes for each employee. This includes

monitoring and improving performance,

automating processes for attendance,

apps can also play a key role in

leave, documentation, policies and

facilitating better security for every

reimbursements and can be done for

employee. Through features such as

employees operating out of multiple

GPS alerts and sensors, start/stop


reports for work carried out, employers

Guest Column

by invitation

For example, if an employee wants to take leave, instead of going through

“With the automated, digital nature of apps improving them to simply select convenience manifold, it eliminates the the day on which need for HR teams to spend hours on they need leave. administrative tasks and, instead, allows them If it is approved, it will remain as to turn to more pressing issues and value is, but if it is not, addition for the organisation. Gone are the days through the app, when HR departments were stuck with stacks the manager can of papers, organising employee information decline a certain day if necessary. and dealing with compliance issues. S i m i l a r l y, f o r Technology has stepped in to integrate daily attendance, and streamline all these employees can simply processes� punch in/out from anywhere, multiple verbal approvals and emails, such apps allow

as the apps can use geo-tagging, geo-fencing and shift management to ensure this is done correctly. Since all of it

can ensure that have a comprehensive

is digital, employees can see their current

view of employee activity to ensure they

and past records, seeing how many hours

are on the correct route and location at

of their employees without being overly

they’ve clocked in, how many leaves they

all times.

intrusive, and allow employees to engage

have left, and how many they have already taken.

Facilitating remote collaboration, performance management and security

Enhancing employee engagement

with the desired function/department in a seamless manner. With the automated, digital nature of apps improving convenience

With real-time communication, through

manifold, it eliminates the need for HR

one-to-one chat and broadcast groups with

teams to spend hours on administrative

text and attachment features, apps can play

tasks and, instead, allows them to turn to

At any point in time, multiple teams from

a key role in taking employee engagement

more pressing issues and value addition for

different locations may be working on

to the next level. They can also streamline

the organisation. Gone are the days when

something together. By integrating real-time

feedback processes with inbuilt features to

HR departments were stuck with stacks of

performance reports based on numerous

create custom surveys and forms based on

papers, organising employee information

data points, HRM apps facilitate better

the requirement. Employees simply have

and dealing with compliance issues.

management of the workforce on the field

to fill it out on the app or webs portal. HR

Technology has stepped in to integrate and

with employee tracking. This also helps

teams can then collate the feedback and

streamline all these processes, bringing

teams to carry out remote collaboration

implement new processes/policies or alter

in greater efficiency, cost-cutting and all-

seamlessly, as everyone is communicating

existing ones accordingly.

round optimised productivity within the

instantly creating and prioritizing tasks,

New-age technology has provided HR

and each employee can be assessed on

teams, as well as employees, new avenues

areas where they excel, and those that need

for complete transparency. The key, here, is


that they allow organisations to keep track

organisation. n The author is Founder and CEO, TrackOlap

december 2019 | 71

In Conversation

face to face

“Yahoo continues to be on top of the users requirements�

Emails have become an integral part of our lives and the way we use it have changed a lot over the years, from one-to-one communications to an all-in-one depository where you keep your newsletters, credentials and of course the miscellaneous junk. All of this in one place can lead to an overwhelmingly messy inbox. And when we say Mails! A lot of us, who have been using it for some time, usually come down to Yahoo Mail. Yahoo can be traced back to 1997 when it started and by 2011, it had 281 million users globally. But there have been some ups and downs with the company, Yahoo which came as an internet star, tumbled to hold its position in the market. Amid all the struggles Yahoo still remains one of the most popular email services on the web with over 227 million monthly active users. It recently got a fresh coat of paint on its Yahoo mail application. Shankar S, Director and Josh Jacobson, Senior Director of Product Management for Yahoo Mail in a conversation with Pahi Mehra revealed how Yahoo has survived all these years and how this new version is here to stay.

72 | december 2019


face to face What was the reason behind this revamp of

What kind of responses do you think these

take advantage of the app’s features,

Yahoo Mail? Shiv: Mails today are a lot more

new up gradations will get? Josh: The

making Yahoo Mail a multi-purpose inbox,

than just a medium of communicating

user’s relationship with email has evolved

designed to help organize people’s lives in

with our friends and family. People use

over the years, and the ways in which

the way they need it.

it to store and organize personal records,

they use personal and business emails

Further, we make efforts to make our

travel itineraries, and billing info. We use

have also started to diverge. However,

services accessible to all and therefore,

it to source deals to shop from our favorite

email apps haven’t kept pace with these

in India, we provide support in 6 Indian

brands and we use it to jot down notes.

changes. Today, corporate email is largely

languages as well.

Today, it’s more important than ever to

synonymous with massive threads with

have an efficient and stress-free inbox.

far too many colleagues cc’d. Meanwhile,

There have been some direct comparisons

Therefore, we wanted to create an app

personal email has become the primary

of Yahoo Mail and Gmail, do you think Gmail

that would make Yahoo stand out of all

method for communicating with brands

is a threat to you? Shiv: Strength of e-mails

the other apps.

and businesses. Sometimes those

is based on its openness so having one

Further, to ensure that we deliver a

messages and updates are useful. Other

application being strong or not strong

product that stands out and is perfectly

times, people don’t want to be bothered

is a threat. E-mail is an ecosystem and

fitting our people’s continuous changing

with it... at least not right now - but you

different people have different needs; a

requirements we deep-dived our

know you’ll need to find it later.

consumer might choose what suits them

understanding of their requirements. We

Keeping that in mind, user satisfaction

conducted a research and found out some

has always been a priority focus area for

key issues that users these days are facing

us, we keep researching about the top

tell you that

while using electronic mail channels:

emerging trends to stay on top of our


the best. We


Phones are getting bigger and bigger,

consumers’ requirements. Therefore, we

these days

so it was difficult to reach the menu at the

were certain that the new upgrade will get

are mostly

top of the screen with one hand.

a positive response. Till now, users have


While most understood that they

responded extremely positively to the new

with too many

could probably unsubscribe from certain

update. They like the new layout and easy-

emails in their

messages, the process was confusing,

to-use design and find functions such as


and they weren’t sure if opening the email

the unsubscribe option very intuitive and

therefore, the

or clicking within it might lead to even

helpful. We are seeing more downloads


more spam. While typing into a search

of the Yahoo Mail app and more users

bit becomes

box maybe one way to find things like

onboard the Yahoo Mail service.

too much of

attachments, it was hard to know what


a hassle for

exactly to search for, so people would

Yahoo has a lot of competitors in the markets


mostly just randomly scroll through their

like Gmail and Microsoft Outlook, Apple Mail,

new design of

email, and often give up.

and all these providers hold a very good

the Yahoo Mail

In general, people felt all the important

position in terms of popularity and consumer

app is directly addressing this challenge

data was getting buried amidst a sea of

base in India, so how are you standing out

and enabling our users with a seamless

unimportant messages and them just

with this competition? Shiv: We have done

and hassle-free experience. Even for users

couldn’t keep up with trying to delete it

intensive research in India and across

that are currently using services from other


the globe and observed that there are a

providers, they can log in to Yahoo Mail app

lot of e-mail ideas that are universally

through other email accounts like Gmail


and Outlook and still, enjoy the advantages

Everyone uses email a little bit differently, so there is certainly no “one size fits all” approach.


While I can’t comment on other

of our app’s features, making Yahoo Mail

After about one year of planning,

services, what I can tell you is that our

a multi-purpose inbox, designed to help

prototyping, testing, and listening, we

users enjoy and appreciate Yahoo Mail.

organize people’s lives in the way they

worked as a team to solve these issues.

On Android and iOS, we have received a

need it.

With this, we have successfully built an

rating of 4.6 stars with close to 7million

app that not just bridges all these gaps

reviews from users worldwide.

but also provides a lot more benefits to the users.

How is this version of Yahoo Mail different

In fact, users can log in with other email

from the previous one? Shiv: The all-new

accounts like Gmail and Outlook and still

app comes with the following exciting

december 2019 | 73

In Conversation

face to face features that are available for our users

text resizing as well as a smart color

Yahoo Mail apps receive great ratings

in India.

inversion to increase contrast for low vision

and continue to grow their user base


at a healthy clip, we’re always seeking

The navigation bar: Users can now find things in their inbox much faster

Deals: See all the deals and offers from

improvement. We have listened to our

than before and everything is accessible

your inbox in one clean view, organized

users every day (via ratings, reviews, direct

within a thumb’s reach. All folders can be

based by category and the quality of

feedback and surveys), and invited a few

accessed and viewed along the bottom

the deal. Browse by store, location, or

of them into our office once a week to learn

in what we call the “Joy Bar”, which can

recommended deals, and save your

how we could solve any issues they’ve had

be customized based on our customers’

favorites. Unusually great deals (like 50%

with their email experience

needs. All that’s required is to tap the

from a store that normally only gives 20%)

3-dot “More” menu on the right, tap

are highlighted as well.

You had a major data breach in 2016,

Groceries: Save money on the essentials

where almost 1 billion user’s information

with the new Grocery View. Browse & save

was compromised, so, how secure is Yahoo

Unsubscribe: This is specifically

offers from local stores and connect your

mail now? Josh: On data breach, we’re

designed for users who are sick of all the

store loyalty card to automatically apply

not authorized to speak about the

junk mails. The new Subscriptions View

your saved coupons at checkout.

background and previous events, but

“Customize”, then drag and drop the icons into the joy bar.

features helps our users to view all the

you can refer to public statements. On

mailing lists they have subscribed to and

Yahoo holds a big loyal consumers bank,

security and privacy, protecting our users’

lets them unsubscribe with just one tap.

who still uses it, so how are these new

data is a top priority for us and we invest

Attachments: With this feature, the

changes or this new version will be helpful

considerably in this effort. We strive to

users can easily find email attachments

to them? Shiv: We are very excited about

be transparent with users about how and

like photos or documents that you’ve sent

this product because it’s a clear example

when we use data, as well as empower

or received in one place. Quickly filter by

of how we are helping consumers take

their controls over how and when their data

sent, received, and file type.

control and live a better life. They’ll spend

is used. Our new privacy dashboard, for

Notifications: This feature allows

less time looking for information on their

example, is a particularly helpful feature

our users to choose to have or not have

inbox and spend more time on other

for our users.

notifications about every single email

productive activities. In other words, with

that comes in. The users choose from

the all-new version of the app, our users

Yahoo had been very stagnant and there was

categories including Active Updates --

will spend less time managing their life,

no visible growth from past some time, so what

shipping confirmations, real-time package

and more time living it.

were the reasons behind it? Josh: Yahoo Mail

tracking, and flight status updates. They

has been around for the longest time and is

can also select from 11 unique sounds

You have two versions of Yahoo Mail, paid

a pioneer in the industry. There may have

and apply different settings to each of your

and unpaid, so what are the differences

been ups and downs, but we have always

accounts to help keep them separate.

between the two? Shiv: There’s Yahoo Mail

been a consumer-focused company. From

Themes: There is now a whole new range

Pro which is the monthly and yearly paid

the very beginning, people at Yahoo knew

of theme color options. Users can choose

version for premium support. It strips out

how to understand the needs of the user.

from 14 different colors, all available in

the advertisements that aren’t related to

It has been twenty years since Yahoo has

light or dark mode. If you have iOS13 or

the user. The unpaid version comes with

been developed, and we continue to be on

Android 10, the dark mode will change

all the advertisements.

top of the user’s requirements.

Josh: In addition to these, we have

We have seen some ups and downs with

of new emerging trends and people’s

some other features that are not available

Yahoo mail in the past, so do you think this

requirements have seen a complete

for our users in India but available in other

new version is here to stay? Josh: Absolutely

transformation. This was the biggest

countries. The same is listed as below:

and you will only see this improving

inspiration for us to redesign the Yahoo

Accessibility: Yahoo Mail was designed

further. We believe it is essential to listen

Mail app and serve our users with better

with accessibility as a priority. The new

to consumers and understand their needs.

features that no other app provides. The

version of the app has been optimized for

We’ve been listening to what users want

all-new Yahoo Mail app exciting features

screen readers like Talkback on Android

and will continue to maintain and update

and is designed to help organize people’s

and Voice Over on iOS for users who have

Yahoo Mail based on this.

lives in the way they need. n

automatically with the device.

vision impairment. It supports dynamic

74 | december 2019

Over the years we have seen a lot

For example, while our existing


Live Streaming overshadowed Social Media Landscape in 2019 By Puneet Sharma


ive streaming - a dream of

and consumption, many global communities

into the rising video content consumption

yesteryears’ innovators in the

were built to enable users to create videos

various brands and even individuals created

digital field is now considered as

of their choice and share with their friends

high-end videos with editing, special effects

an inevitable game-changer in

and families. BIGO Technology and Byte

and more. This gave power to only selected

the social media landscape. In 2017, many

Dance are the major players in the market,

groups to create videos due to the cost of

experts from around the globe acknowledged

where BIGO Technology has carved a niche

equipment and manpower involved in the

live streaming as the ultimate future on social

for itself and has 69 technical patents and

process. However, the concept of live video

media platforms and today 28% of internet

around 414 patents are under the process of

due to the very nature of it does away with any

users from around the globe spend time

application. Other platforms like Helo, Hago,

of the aspects mentioned above. From a live

watching live videos and they are spending

Vigo Video, etc. are also active in their own

video, people do not expect and do not aim

3x of their online surfing time to watch videos.

niche where regional contents are one of the

to create a high-end video rather it is viewed

To understand the buzz around the concept

prime markets for the expansion of this genre

as a powerful tool to convey a message in real

of live streaming, let’s look into the history

of entertainment. The new-age social media

time without any edits or cuts.

of video and its evolution along with various

platforms’ endeavour is to create video-based

Therefore, many live video creating and

other factors contributing to the popularity of

communities to empower the common man

sharing platforms are gaining popularity.

live streaming.

and strengthen virtual global connectivity

These communities allow users to leverage live

by encouraging people to use their unique

videos creatively. For example, businesses can

talents and on advanced video creation

create an account to connect and sell products

platforms. The pull has been the use case of

locally and/or across state/nation boundaries.

The evolution of video content While the rest of the world experienced growth in consumption of video content early in 2006-7 with YouTube’s acquisition by Google, launch of video sharing feature on Facebook, and more. In India, video consumption, TV channels’ streaming online and other video streaming platforms experienced a boost with the introduction of data plans by Reliance Jio in 2015 at extremely low prices as compared to those offered by other telecom operators. Many attribute the growth in internet usage in India to Reliance and their disruptive data distribution strategy. Today, India accounts for 12% of the world’s

The live video tool enables the users to share

“Live streaming empowers the common man to be heard and seen uniquely and therefore it is well accepted among internet users. Live streaming promotes the authenticity of the real-world scenarios which is well received by the general audience”

quick updates of the products, its range, price, discounts and more. Any user with internet connectivity and smartphone go live and reach out to his/her audience and tell them about these new features of the product. Live streaming empowers the common man to be heard and seen uniquely and therefore it is well accepted among internet users. Live streaming promotes the authenticity of the real-world scenarios which is well received by the general audience. Today, live streaming garner higher traffic than any other kind of video content on social

total population using the internet, and data usage in 2019 has doubled as compared to

AI and the unique set of stickers and effects

media. Many influencers across fields are

last year.

which makes the user to create something

also using live video streaming to connect

very unique and provide a different flavour

with the masses and engage them with

from others.

their unique talents like lip syncing, dance,

Globally, video content is undoubtedly the most popular among internet users and this can be confirmed by the fact that 30% of Google search queries were for the word ‘video’ in 2018.

Rise of a parallel video-based social communities With the popularity of video content creation

Guest Column

by invitation

Live streaming video and its future

singing, makeup classes, culinary classes, astro sessions, etc. The parallel rise of video content and lower data prices to access that

The popularity of live streaming videos and

content provided a big boost in video content

wide acceptance of it can be attributed to

consumption in India. n

the change in video making and sharing dynamics of this concept. Earlier, tapping

The author is a brand strategist and communications consultant.

december 2019 | 75

In Conversation

face to face

“MapmyIndia aims to make the world a better place by bringing the benefits of maps, location technologies and IoT to everyone” Homegrown MapmyIndia has carved a niche for itself in the area of navigation and telematics, which is mostly dominated by Google in India. With over two decades of technological innovations in mapping technologies, the company has built comprehensive, accurate and feature enriched map datasets. MapmyIndia’s Move app is one such initiative that enables you to remotely track and monitor the locations of your vehicles and loved ones, while being updated on the vehicle health, misuse and any unsafe driving behavior. Rohan Verma, CEO and Executive Director of MapmyIndia, shares more about the company and its app, in a conversation with Ramesh Kumar Raja. Excerpts: Since Google Maps happens to be the de-

This has enabled us to develop products

we continuously improve our maps and

facto navigation app for majority of users

and solutions that are highly localized,

provide enhanced search and navigation

in India, what motivated you to foray into

best in class, made in India and made for


this space? We have been mapping the

India. MapmyIndia Move app also draws

length and breadth of this vast country for

from these insights.

Yes AR/VR is offered in our Move app. We would love users to try it.

nearly two decades. This has helped us to

The superior value proposition

understand, not just the geography of India

of the Move app is based on the

What makes MapmyIndia different from

but also develop a deep understanding of

comprehensiveness and unique

other platforms? Move app offers users

its people, dialects, languages, sensitivities

capabilities of the mapping data, map

unmatched features, flexibility and a

(social, regulatory and much more) etc.

APIs, IoT devices, navigation, telematics,

broader spectrum of use than any other

GIS, analytics and mobility. Our solutions

competitive solution:

have been tried and tested in the B2B and

Address level data - Users can navigate

B2B2C space. Also, MapmyIndia solutions

exactly to the doorstep of their destination

have touched the lives of more than 200

- house address or building - we have

mn Indians directly or indirectly.

connected the last mile, while other map

We are confident that Move app will be

apps mostly can’t navigate to the exact

a great option for the users for it is unique,

address. The user still has to ask or look

scalable, customizable and a made in

around once she reaches a location. But

India solution that will make a difference

that’s not the case with MapmyIndia

to their lives.

Move, say you want to reach S360, Greater Kailash II; the app will take you to

Can you please tell us about the technicalities

the exact doorstep.

involved in delivering navigation/tracking

Powered by MapmyIndia maps -

services? Does AI/AR/VR have any role to

MapmyIndia maps are much more

play in this regard? The core aspects of

detailed, comprehensive and precise. So

navigation, tracking are high quality map

not just does Move app offer all the same

data, software and GPS based

features like voice navigation, live traffic

IoT hardware all 3 of which

updates, searching stores and places

MapmyIndia is an expert

nearby etc. as other map apps do, but the

in. AI is a core part of our

user also gets unparalleled accuracy and

technology as using AI



Remote vehicle tracking and integration

technology expertise. Our passion and

window access to all of them, creating an

with the Move ecosystem - The Move

ambition means necessarily that we offer

ecosystem. This added advantage is also

app enables you to remotely track and

to consumers our products and services

drawing many users.

monitor the locations of your vehicles

as well, so that we can directly impact

and loved ones, while being updated on

millions and hopefully, billions of their

Are you looking for collaboration with

the vehicle health, misuse and any unsafe

lives for the better.

smartphone players similar to Google Maps

driving behavior. With Move app, you can

We have been experiencing profitable

that comes inbuilt with Android phones?

do much more than just live location

YoY growth for the last 25 years.

Although being pre-installed in the

sharing, it allows you to integrate all

Our solutions are highly monetized,

device is a big advantage, not all popular

Move IoT devices, within this single app.

encompassing the B2B and B2B2C

apps come pre-loaded on smartphones.

MapmyIndia provides IoT devices called

space. MapmyIndia has served 5000+

The adoption may take some time but

Move Devices which can be plugged in

enterprise customers with solutions

if the product is good, users eventually

or installed in all your vehicles and these

having touched almost every sector

gravitate to it. We are confident about the

send back information about the location,

quality of the Move app, which offers a

movement, health and driver behavior

great alternative and ensures that users

“The Move app always find and reach their destination regardless of where you are visconveniently. Besides, Move is an takes a unique social/community a-vis your vehicle. indigenously-developed app by an approach to make our roads, Power to the user - Move Indian company. We understand neighborhood, cities and country safer and takes a unique social/ like no one else just for the community approach reason that we are Indians. better. Move allows users to see and report to make our roads, hyper local issues pinpointed to specific neighborhood, cities What’s your strategy to be a locations - for example, where traffic jams, and country safer and prominent player in the given better. Move allows segment? MapmyIndia potholes, water logging, fire burning, garbage users to see and report is already a partner of dumps, broken street lights, unsafe areas, hyper local issues choice amongst Automotive accidents and crimes have happened etc. pinpointed to specific OEMs, BFSI, Logistic, locations - for example, FMCG companies, to name this allows you as a user to know where traffic jams, potholes, a few. We command more than about and avoid such unsafe water logging, fire burning, 80% share in the Indian automotive areas or routes” garbage dumps, broken street lights, sector. Governments and government of your vehicles to your Move app,

unsafe areas, accidents and crimes have

bodies use our solutions extensively. We

happened etc. - this allows you as a user

viz. automotive, ecommerce, BFSI,

have partnered with ISRO for satellite

to know about and avoid such unsafe

government, corporate, tech developer and

imagery and our devices and solutions

areas or routes. At once the Move app

fleet/logistics sectors among others. And

are compatible with NavIC, the Indian

keeps you safe, and assists the concerned

MapmyIndia enjoys a dominant position

equivalent of the GPS. This provides a

authorities in the upkeep of roads/

in most of the sectors it operates.

big comfort to the departments that are

neighborhoods/cities etc. We moderate

accustomed to using ISRO’s satellite

the user contributed information and also

How is the response of Move app on Google

imagery. They can use MapmyIndia

combine it with analytics from IoT sensors

Play and App Store? With users realizing

maps mashed up with that. We being an

placed in vehicles and across the country

the strong value proposition offered,

entrenched Indian company and working

and partner with government authorities to

the MapmyIndia Move app is getting

with the government, offer our users the

improve reliability and responsiveness.

great traction on both Android and iOS

comfort of being compliant with the GOI

platforms. As I have already explained

guidelines. We also have a strong presence

Who are your prominent subscribers in

that Move app offers unique platform,

amongst the developer community. We

India and what is your business model?

with value proposition going much

offer them the best-in-class MapmyIndia

MapmyIndia’s mission is to make the world

beyond navigation and tracking. The app

Map APIs that are fully scalable. Our

a better place by bringing the benefits of

downloads are also aided by the popularity

pricing plans ensure maximum economy

maps, location technologies and IoT to

of our Move devices. Since the Move app

everyone, leveraging our unique data and

integrates all Move devices to offer a single

while being high on flexibility. n

In Conversation

face to face

december 2019 | 77


consumer insight

Censorship for Streaming Platforms Surprisingly, more than half of Indians want content to be regulated on platforms such as Netflix, Amazon Prime, Hotstar etc


ven as the government is considering censorship on digital platforms, the majority of people in India (57%)

9 in 10 people in India think content should be regualted by the Government Do you think content (either on TV, films or online channels) should be regulated by the government?% who said this

think that censorship is required for online streaming platforms such as Netflix, Amazon Prime, Hotstar, Voot, and so on, according to a new research by YouGov, an internet-based market research and data analytics firm. While 27% think it is not required, one in six (16%) are unsure of it,

Source : YouGov

the study says.

censorship. Nine in ten (91%) said

content regulation for online streaming

content- either on TV, films or online, should

platforms, close to half (47%) said they

be regulated by the government, either

feel better quality content will be created

always (as said by 40%) or sometimes

as well as watched by people due to

(51%). Interestingly, men are more likely

this change. However, some people feel

than women to say they want content to

otherwise and hint at a gloomy outcome-

be regulated always (45% vs 34%) while

piracy and illegal downloading will increase

women are more likely to want censorship

(32%) and the quality of content will suffer

sometime (56% vs 46%).

due to this (30%).

According to the research, most people

When it comes to the possible impact

feel (59%) a lot of offensive content,

on viewership, people in India are equally

unsuitable for public viewing, is being

divided. 29% think censorship will lead

created nowadays and hence should be

to an increase in viewership on online

censored. Almost as many (57%) fear that

streaming platforms but almost as many

inappropriate content can have an adverse

(28%) think the opposite- it will decrease

impact on children. Close to half (47%)

tune-ins into these platforms.

Naturally, the older age cohorts are

find it uncomfortable to watch certain types

People in West India are most likely

more likely to affirm to content regulation

of content around family and hence wants

to feel the negative impact strongly.

than the younger ones. Amongst all the

some regulation.

Compared to the other regions, not only

age groups, GenX is most likely to say

Even though the majority (57%) thinks

do more people in this region (37%) think

censorship is needed while GenZ is least

content censorship is important, many

this move will lead to a slump in online

likely to say so (66% vs 35%), the study

(36%) believe regulation should only be

viewership, just as many (38%) feel the

points out.

for mass mediums like TV and films but

quality of content will suffer as well due to

not for online mediums.

this move. n

In general, an overwhelming majority of Indians support some form of content

78 | december 2019

When asked about the likely effects of


Consumer insight

Binge-Watching Up 23% in India As streaming video reaches an all-time high, delivering on viewers’ high-performance expectations is a key to retaining subscribers


nline video streaming has

the survey is that smartphones are the

now reached an all-time high

primary streaming device. Digital devices

as the world now watches

such as computers and laptops came next

them for 6 hours and 48

on the list followed by a connected device

minutes weekly – with the same figure for

or a smart TV. The top spot as the most

Indians being 8 hours and 33 minutes or

popular content in India was shared by

1 hour 45 minutes higher than the global

both TV Shows and News, with Movies and

average. This is according to the new “State

professionally-developed content on social

of Online Video 2019” research report by

media coming next on the list.

Limelight Networks, a leading provider of edge cloud services.

“India is quickly opening up to the idea of online video streaming,” said Ashwin

The report also found that the time

Rao, Director - Sales, Limelight Networks,

spent on binge-watching is also on the rise

India. This ongoing trend has been

in India, jumping more than 23 per cent

highlighted time and again by our State of

from last year to an average of 2 hours, 25

Online Video studies over the years. Now,

TV remains higher than online video

minutes at a time. In the global survey,

as data costs are further lowering and

across every country except Singapore

Indians were also less apprehensive of pre-

smartphone penetration increasing, people

roll advertisements, with 84.8 per cent

living even in the remotest of regions are

• Price sensitivity is the deciding factor

being either affirmative or neutral if the

coming under the fold of digital technology

in video subscriptions. Increasing price

content is free. The survey also revealed

and services. It is opening new avenues for

continues to be the primary reason why

that Indians mostly watch online videos

India’s content creators and aggregators

people claimed (28 per cent) they will

from home, followed by travel or commute.

to tap the burgeoning market with

cancel their cable subscription. 15 per

Since India is new to the digital bandwagon,

quality programming and seamless user

cent Indians said they will do so if all

it doesn’t come as a surprise that 89 per

experiences. Limelight Networks enables

content they watch becomes available

cent are also subscribed to cable TV. This

them to do precisely the same, while also


figure was observed to be the lowest for

tapping the global market with its robust

• Streaming advertisements shouldn’t

Japan, where the subscriptions turned out

and highly scalable global infrastructure

disrupt the viewing experience. Global

to be just 39 per cent or less than half as

– leaving no stone unturned in terms of

consumers are most accepting of ads

compared to India.

content delivery.”

during an online video if they can skip

The study also pointed out that the

and India.

it (59 per cent) or if it’s a short ad before

adoption of dedicated streaming devices

Additional insights:

is also gradually increasing in India. 27

• Broadcast viewing takes a hit as

• Mobile phones are the preferred

per cent of the respondents owned Google

online videos become more popular.

online streaming devices. Like the last

Chromecast and 34 per cent owned

Broadcast videos are bearing the brunt

year, smartphones continue to be the

Amazon Fire TV Stick. 18 per cent of the

of smartphone adoption in India as

primary streaming device for Indians

respondents didn’t have any streaming

the users are looking towards them for

followed by computers. However, there

device at all. Another key takeaway from

their primary entertainment. Online

was also an increase in video viewing

video watching has

via tablet this year. It needs to be also

now officially become

noted that smartphones have overtaken

the preferred go-to

computers as the preferred streaming

entertainment alternative

device for global consumers for the first

for Indians. Global

time. n

viewership for traditional

a free video (57 per cent). december 2019 | 79

Guest Column

by Invitation

Technology making legal system/ services – accessible, efficient, transparent and affordable By Akshat Singhal


he Indian judicial system

how can the law firms be behind! Many

result of every argument put forth in any

has come a long way, though

leading firms in India have recently

case and can identify patterns in cases that

still not perfect, the entry of

incorporated Artificial Intelligence tools

lead to certain outcomes.

cutting edge technology has

in their systems. These AI solutions help

Searching for a case law is just a matter of

made many processes/services accessible,

lawyers capture relevant clauses and

clicks: Online search and archive platforms

seamless and speedy. Gone are the days

have made it simpler for lawyers, their

when courts gave a drab and archaic look.

clients and law students to search cases/

internet without any middleman. It is not

and clients can access the data of the

uncommon to witness an important court

pending cases in courts throughout India.

“There are Nowadays, these are modern buildings precedents. Moreover, it has made it easier online lawyer marketplaces equipped with state-of-the-art for people with pending cases to get the gadgetry – WiFi, Servers, Cloud status of their case online instead like Legistify that have revolutionised services and Video conferencing of running after their lawyers and the way the legal system in India works, by to name a few. Portals of the wasting time. Earlier, the only providing fixed cost legal services. One can Supreme Court of India, the solution for finding cases was High Courts and other allied very cumbersome - the time easily consult a lawyer and book a legal websites have cut a lot of consuming manual search for service in just a matter of minutes. Some of red tape and have brought the relevant case files in court these platforms also provide free legal advice many legal services onto libraries. services to individuals looking for basic advice. the user’s mobile screen. National grid to search Routine things like for pending cases: Another They also offer a platform where individuals/ hearing dates, cancellation/ important innovation has been entrepreneurs seeking legal services postponements, case status, the introduction of the National can connect with the independent judges bench, appointments etc. Judicial Data Grid (NJDG), which is can now be directly accessed over the an online portal through which lawyers legal firms” hearing happening via video conferencing, in case one or another party has a genuine reason for not being able to be physically present in the courtroom. Technology has considerably reduced the time-space gap, saving millions of hapless litigants, their time, money and sweat. Making litigation data and facts driven: With courts upping the ante on technology,

80 | december 2019

important information from structured contracts and other documents. This proves to be extremely useful while reviewing complicated long-drawn contracts and agreements. Also, Artificial intelligence legal software is helping to predict the probable outcome of a pending case with remarkable accuracy. AI, by the use of analytical algorithms, can predict the end

NJDG works as a monitoring tool to identify, manage and reduce pendency of cases. It can be accessed through www.njdg.ecourts. Reducing the burden of the courts: The development of Online Dispute Resolution (ODR) has been remarkable in this century. ODR is basically a branch of dispute resolution which uses technology


to facilitate the resolution of disputes

and firms track cause list, receive updates

Online lawyer marketplaces: Every

between parties. It primarily involves

on the status of the case, perform research

litigant needs a lawyer – competent,

negotiation, mediation or arbitration, or

and track invoices. Advocates can also

accessible, dependable and affordable.

a combination of all three. So, in other

subscribe for case alerts and hearing alerts

Hence, last but not least, there are online

words, it can be said to be an online form of

with the help of these tools. Furthermore

lawyer marketplaces like Legistify that have

ADR (Alternate Dispute Resolution). ODR

management tools like Kleos from Wolters

revolutionised the way the legal system in

involves the creation of a virtual replica of

Kluwer, automates workflow and helps

India works, by providing fixed cost legal

physical setting and conduct proceedings

law firms in defining routine processes.

services. One can easily consult a lawyer

by using various means of information

Also, they increase efficiency, improve

and book a legal service in just a matter

exchange consisting email, SMS, digitized

organization and establish accountability

of minutes. Some of these platforms

documents, grid computing as well as video

at any law firm. Nevertheless, legal

also provide free legal advice services to

and teleconferencing. Some other benefits

technology can help any firm keep better

individuals looking for basic advice. They

of ODR are that it is efficient, economical,

client records, track client communication,

also offer a platform where individuals/

non-confrontational, requires less physical

and promise complete online security and

entrepreneurs seeking legal services can

interaction and minimizes physical storage

data secrecy.

connect with the independent legal firms,

Do-it-yourself document creation tools:

taking their legal practice to the next levels.

Numerous document generation tools have

The lawyers can expand their services by

started using WhatsApp and SMS services

been launched in the past few years which

acquiring more clients from different parts

for serving summons. Courts have also

provide various standardised documents

introduced interactive voice response

like Contracts, Affidavits, NDA, Wills etc.

system (IVR) and Helpline contacts,

All you need to do is fill in the required

through which the litigants and applicants

details in the tool and hit the generate

can stay updated on their individual case

button. This has proved to be extremely


helpful for advocates who can now simply

of documents. More comprehensive and accurate

Guest Column

by invitation

evidence analysis: One of the most remarkable impacts of technology has been seen in the judicial procedural domain. Almost all leading courts in India are using technological tools to analyse evidence. For instance, fingerprint matching is conducted with the help of software like NEXA, voice matching through SESTEK, and DNA matching using tools like iNquiry, Lasergene and Sequencher. Besides these, numerous tools have been used by courts for matching handwriting, blood samples and reconstructing the images of suspects. Keeping the litigants informed: Courts these days have also started sending SMS alerts of hearing dates and cause list. This not only saves time of advocates and clients but helps lawyers in ensuring that they do not miss a court hearing. All you need to do is download the eCourts Services mobile app or you can log onto in. Some High Courts in India have also

Tech-driven administration and

generate documents through these tools

management tools: Various law practice

instead of wasting hours in drafting each

management tools have surfaced in the

document manually and reviewing them for

past few years which are helping advocates

grammatical and other errors.

of the globe. At the same time, they can continue their services at a law firm or by working independently. And the best part is that the Legistify platform is sector or domain agnostic - the expertise/services on offer include civil and criminal litigation services for individuals and companies of any scale or size.n The author is Founder and CEO, Legistify, a leading legal technology platform.

december 2019 | 81




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    


Yahoo Mail (Reimagined) An inbox for new-age users


to communicate. We rely

Stand-out features in Yahoo Mail:

on our (multiple) inboxes

• Design refresh and deeper

ost of us don’t just use email

to do this and much more. To store

customization: A revamped

and organize our personal records,

interface that is built with today’s

travel itineraries and all kinds of billing

taller mobile screens in mind

info. And there’s shopping – we use

allows for intuitive one-hand usage

our inbox to source deals to shop from

with the new navigation bar at the

our favourite brands. Of course with

bottom of the screen. The layout

so much going on, the information

is cleaner, colourful, easier to

overload can be overwhelming. Today,

use, and customizable. You can

it’s more important than ever to have an

personalize your push notifications

efficient and stress-free inbox and that’s

to highlight which type of mail you

a direction the inbox is now moving in.

wish to be alerted to (personal vs.

Inside the new Yahoo Mail app

promotional) and tailor your inbox with custom colour themes and sounds. There is also a drag

Yahoo Mail recently overhauled and

and drop interface with fun

rolled out a new version of its Mail


app – completely reimagining the way

• Photos and files in one

people use and even think about their

place: Easily find email

inboxes. The new Yahoo Mail recognizes

attachments like photos

that everyone uses email a little bit

or documents that you’ve

differently, getting rid of the “one size

sent or received in one

fits all” approach. The Yahoo Mail app

place. Quickly filter by sent,

empowers users to personalize and

received, and file type.

control their inboxes, focusing on what

(No more endlessly scouting for

for work, Yahoo for

matters most to them. A big part of this

important files, travel documents,

home, and Gmail

event tickets, and photos!)

for everything else,

comes through a revamped design and features that organize the clutter in

• Manage email subscriptions: Sick

the Yahoo Mail app

your inbox. The app now offers greater

of junk mail? You can browse the

makes it easy to keep

customization and much more choice in

emails you are subscribed to and

everything in its right

an easy to use and intuitive experience.

unsubscribe from any newsletter


Additionally, users can log in with other

with a single tap without leaving

email accounts like Gmail and Outlook

the app.

and still take advantage of the app’s

• Log in with other email accounts:

• Available in 50 different languages: The app is available in 50 different

features, making Yahoo Mail a multi-

Users can log in with other email

languages, including 8 Indian

purpose inbox.

accounts like Gmail and Outlook

languages – Bengali, Gujarati, Hindi,

and still take advantage of the app’s

Malayalam, Kannada, Marathi,

A USP we love: Yahoo Mail offers 1 terabyte (TB) of free storage. Compare

features. Add your Outlook, AOL or

Tamil and Telugu.

that to the 15GB from most other email

Gmail accounts and keep everything

What do users think? The Yahoo Mail

services – where the only way out is to

in one place. Custom settings,

app remains a top productivity app, with

delete and free up space or alternatively

colours and notifications make it a

4.5 stars on Google Play Store and 4.6

buy more space through a storage

breeze to keep your email accounts

stars on the App Store. n


separate. So, if you’re using Outlook

december 2019 | 105



WPS Office 2020

Ensure your productivity with this fully-loaded Office suite


ingsoft’s flagship office

you can conference call via WPS Office


software suite WPS

2020) and Wired Projection. If you’re a

WPS Spreadsheet is again the equivalent

Office 2020 was recently

first-time user, I suggest going through

of MS Spreadsheet. I tried doing a

launched globally, including in India.

individual pre-installed guides on how to

simple expense statement and found it

WPS (expanded Writer, Presenter,

use Writer, Presenter and Spreadsheet,

quite easy to navigate. Enter your “=”

Spreadsheet) Office is set to disrupt

which you’ll find on the home screen.

sign, choose the tab, select the operation

By clicking the “Plus” icon, a screen

of arithmetic. Adding or moving columns

will appear, this is where you can

and rows can be done effortlessly.

start accessing Writer, Presenter and

Personally, I really liked the design of


a multifunction keyboard. With “Tab”,


columns etc. With “fx∑”, you can enter

Writer is the documentation software and

specific formulae or select from a range

the traditional mind-

my experience with it has been seamless.

of pre-identified formulae.

set of having MS

If you have used MS Word, I guarantee

Office as the regular

that the UI/UX is already in your muscle

software tool and

memory. The dashboard will allow you to

intends to challenge

use all functions you ideally use on the

Wired & Wireless Projection and Conferencing

the status-quo. I tried

“Home” tab on Word: these are Fonts,

Apart from the functionalities of Writer,

the premium and free

Font size, Highlight, Bold, Underline,

Presenter and Spreadsheet, WPS Office

versions of WPS Office

Spacing etc. I also noticed all fonts are

comes with a mixed bag of features

2020 on my iPhone,

supported on WPS Office 2020, which

that could come in very handy on-

and here’s my review of the suite.

makes it easier to switch between office

the-go. There is an option to conduct

I downloaded the WPS Office

suites, without facing any formatting

conference calls which helps in seamless

2020 suite from App Store,

issues. If you experiment with the app

collaborations between team members

Android users can download it

just long enough, you will get a hang of it

and colleagues. Obviously, other parties

from Play Store.

quite fast.

will need to have WPS Office 2020

Kickstarting the app


Upon opening the app, we see a

With WPS Presenter, making simple

either a wired or a wireless connection,

screen with multiple functions on

and complex presentations on-the-go

meaning you don’t necessarily need to

top, these include QR Camera,

(besides viewing) is quite easy. This is the

carry your laptop with you.

File Transfer, Conferencing (Yes,

same as your MS PowerPoint-the layout,

in order to use this function. You can also project your files via a projector by

feel, formats, templates- all remain the


same. On the freemium version, I noticed

Overall, my experience with this office

that if you want to access more layouts

suite on iPhone has been great. I would

on Presentation, these aren’t already

surely recommend using the free version

installed on the device, you’ll have to tap

or purchase the premium one for Rs

the layout and juxtaposition you want,

2,149, per year. This is quite affordable

once done it will download it for you. Do

if you compare it with MS Office Home,

note that you will need internet access

which costs Rs 5,299 and Office 265

for the app to download the layout or

Personal is priced at Rs 4,199 per year.n

juxtaposition you want.

108 | october 2019

you can move around tabs, edit rows and





It could be the best deal for scanning documents on your phone


aving an app that allows you to scan your document on the go is always useful, rather

than just clicking pictures and sending them, especially when you need to send documents for official purposes. This is when CamScanner comes into play. CamScanner is an intelligent document management solution for individuals,


small businesses, organizations,

While if you

governments and schools. It is the

are a VIP user,

perfect fit for those who want to digitize,

make annotations or add customized

there are some

scan, sync, share and manage various


major updates

contents on all devices. CamScanner is one of the most robust

• Collaborate On Scans - Share with

waiting for you

your friends by collaborating, or via

such as High

scanning applications for smartphone

email, WhatsApp, WeChat or via link

Quality scans,

worldwide. You can scan anything you’d

to other social networks.

Edit OCR results

like, including your receipts. Processing

• Sync across Devices - Sync docs

and Export as .txt

is quick and easy, and there are even

across smartphones, tablets and

files, Take a photo

options for converting to PDF or JPEG.


of a paper form

It even has a file system, allowing you

• Wireless Print, Fax globally - Support

and convert the

to tag your scans and organize them in

wireless printing. You can also fax to

photo to Excel

categorized folders.

more than 30 countries and regions

version, Create

CamScanner has recently updated its

• Cloud backup - Real-time

Doc Collage for

app, keeping the Indian market in mind.

synchronization of files to the cloud,

multiple pages,

Some of these updates include features

Secure backup and never lost.

plus 10GB cloud

such as:

Upload all your docs to Evernote,

space and tons of

• High-quality scan - Recording and

Google Drive, Box, Dropbox, OneDrive

other beneficial

managing your various documents, receipts, notes and whiteboard discussions easily. • Auto edge cropping - Capture

• Form recognition - Take a photo of a paper form and convert the photo to Excel version • Book Scan (Only Android) - Shoot a

features. Whether you are a student, a scientist, a housewife or an engineer, there are some parts of life

document by phone, remove busy

book, automatically split the left and

background, generate high resolution

right pages, and straighten the bent

the go. At such instances, CamScanner

JPEG or PDF file


is the perfect app for you. There are 3

• OCR, Convert image to text - Auto

• PPT model - Special PPT shooting

when we need to scan our documents on

variants of the app available at Google

OCR for easy search. Convert images

mode, shooting PPT automatic edge

Play and App Store – one being free,

to text files. Support 16 languages

cutting, without manual focus and

the other two provides with additional

make the effect more clear.

features capable of solving all your scanning and editing problems. n

including Chinese, English, Japanese and Korean. • Rich Editing Functions - Add notes,

• Identification model - Support automatic generation of certificate

december 2019 | 107

Gadget Corner

add-ons 1More Portable Bluetooth Speaker Your travel companion


xpanding its product portfolio, consumer audio brand 1More has now launched its portable

Bluetooth speaker in India. The speaker features the

Price: INR 10,999

company’s self-invented Bluetooth 4.2 for seamless encoding and decoding transmission giving you an undisturbed wireless listening experience. It also features a 3.5 mm audio jack for wired playback when required. The 1More portable Bluetooth speaker comes with multiple pairing modes-enabled allowing you to pair two 1More speakers together.

Digital Signal Processing (DSP) technology in this

The speaker is powered by a 2,600mAh battery, which

speaker controls the frequency output at different volume

claims to give you 12 hours of continuous music play. It

levels. The 0.75” Tweeter and 3.3” Woofer paired with

comes with a special Nano coating, earning it an IPX4

the smart algorithm of the DSP chipset adjusts the treble,

rating, protecting you against water and sweat. The cloth-

midrange and bass dynamically to maintain a balanced

like exterior and lightweight portable design allows you

sound field at all volume levels. It is currently available

to store and carry your Bluetooth speaker with ease. The

in Black colour at

Amazon Echo Flex A plug-in smart speaker with Alexa built-in


mazon India has brought a new product for your

standard electrical outlet. It is a mini form of the Echo

household, called the Echo Flex plug-in smart

speaker with Alexa built in. It can respond to your regular

speaker that saves on space by plugging directly into a

Hey Alexa commands and can perform the functions of the regular Echo speakers. These include making hands-

Price: INR 2,999

free calls to other Echo device users, play your favourite music and control the smart gadgets like lights etc. The other interesting feature is that the Amazon Echo Flex can be used to charge your mobile phone through a USB-A type cord. The charger is rated up to 7.5W. Amazon claims they have developed this product after they received the feedback from their customers. The general sense was people were wondering where they may keep the Echo or Echo Dot speakers. The company simply solved this dilemma by releasing this Echo Flex speaker that does not require any space, just the plug socket. If you are not happy with the audio level from this Echo Flex device, you can use the 3.5mm audio output jack on it to plug extra speaker of a larger size. The shipments are expected to commence on December 10. Amazon is also offering a free Wipro smart LED bulb (9W) worth Rs 2,099 on the purchase of every Echo Flex.n

108 | december 2019


Gadget Corner

add-ons Anker 10W Wireless Charging Pad No need to remove cases


igital product maker Anker has come up with its first 10W wireless charging pad in India, which

comes with the unique Fast Charge Mode to charge devices up to 2x faster. The charging pad is designed ultra-thin to fit perfectly on any desk or nightstand. The

Price: INR 3,499

premium design also comes with breathing LEDs that indicate device and charger status. The indicator will

features such as temperature control, overcurrent

turn off when charging is complete. Its anti-slip surface

protection, over voltage protection and more, ensuring

and soft protective edges keep your phone from sliding

total protection for the devices and usage. The Qi-

off during charging.

certified charging pad is compatible with most of the

There is no need to remove cases/covers while a

devices, and comes with 18 months’ warranty and a 3ft

device is getting charged. The exclusive Multifunctional

micro USB cable. The product in Black is available with

Intelligent Protect Technology ensures advanced safety

leading retail and ecommerce stores in India.n

Ambrane Infinity Made for music and travel enthusiasts


omegrown tech firm Ambrane has introduced the

portability, the Infinity 5W claims to be extremely light in

Infinity 5W (BT47) Bluetooth speaker with stereo

weight and compact in size so that you can stow it away

sound experience. Designed in wireless fashion for easy

in your bag and carry anywhere with ease. The speaker comes with a 1,200mAh battery that can work up to 4

Price: INR 1,999

hours non-stop. It also features an inbuilt microphone so that it can be used for hands-free calling. It can be connected to another speaker in such a manner that both connected speakers play unanimously to give greater dispersion of music. The latest Bluetooth version 5.0 used in the portable speaker makes it a dynamic performer that works easily within a distance of 10 meters without any disruption. No more worries about dirt and water splashes while carrying this speaker outdoors, as it meets IPX6 quality standards. The waterproof attribute makes it best for pool parties. The body of the speaker is covered with mesh material which prevents it from shocks and sudden falling. It is available in Black colour with retail and ecommerce stores across India.n


add-ons Beyerdynamic Blue Byrd Feel free like a bird


erman audio equipment maker Beyerdynamic has come up with its Blue Byrd in-ear headphones in

India, which are lightweight and convenient to use. Featuring the innovative MOSAYC sound personalization, they are said to be made for everyone who loves absolute freedom and perfect musical enjoyment. Their casing is based on the remarkable design featured by the Beyerdynamic Xelento and has been perfectly adjusted to the ergonomics of the human ear. They claim to offer a stylish design and perfect craftsmanship. Their battery lifetime of up to six hours makes these headphones great mobile companions that can be recharged quickly via USB Type C charger. With its universal three-button remote for iOS and Android devices, Bluetooth technology and the latest audio codecs like aptX and AAC, the Blue Byrd combines maximum convenience and best wireless sound quality, Beyerdynamic claimed. Additionally, they feature the audio codec aptX Low Latency, which provides perfect lip synchronicity when using the headphones with modern

Price: INR 10,499 TVs as well as compatible notebooks or tablets. The Beyerdynamic Blue Byrd can be purchased in India via Headphonezone, Flipkart and Amazon.n

Blurams Dome Pro The smart security camera with Facial Recognition feature


ntelligent imaging solutions provider Blurams has

Amazon. The Blurams Dome Pro comes with the Facial

launched its first smart security camera called Dome

Recognition feature which will help create a database

Pro for the Indian consumers

of friends and family members who regularly visit one’s

and it will be available on

house. The smart security camera comes equipped with a built-in Bluetooth chip which enables family members

Price: INR 4,449

to view 4 cameras on one screen via their Android / iOS phones and Web app for privacy. Other features include distortion correction, 3D noise reduction, 2-way audio, built-in m i c r o p h o n e a n d s p e a k e r, u p t o 1 2 8 G B microSD cards, and 24 hours free cloud storage services for the lifetime. The Blurams Dome Pro camera has an 8-meter range with 8pcs IR-LEDs for night vision, which turns on automatically in low light so one can see clearly even in the dark. It works with Alexa and Google Assistant and offers two-way audio, “listen and talk back” through the camera from a smartphone.n

DECEMBER 2019 | 111

Gadget Corner

add-ons Digitek DBS 008 Designed to deliver high definition sound on the go


omegrown consumer technology brand Digitek has expanded its DBS series of Bluetooth speakers with

the launch of DBS 008, which is a palm-sized 6 Watt deep bass speaker designed to deliver high definition sound on the go, with harmonic distortion for less than 3%. The Digitek DBS 008 comes packed with Bluetooth version

5.0 + EDR and can be easily connected to smartphones, tablets, laptops and other Bluetooth-enabled devices. This compact device also sports a screw mount holder to secure the device while being outside. For connectivity, the speaker also supports AUX input, USB input and TWS. Music enthusiasts can also connect to their favourite FM channel on-the-move and add charm to their radio listening experience. The other notable features of this speaker are the built-in microphone

over 7 hours of music or 4-5 hours of call time when

and line-in facility to enhance the calling experience. It

charged for complete 3 hours. The Digitek DBS 008

sports 800mAh rechargeable battery which can deliver

speaker is available on Amazon and Flipkart.n

Boat Airdopes 201 Keep moving with your favourite tunes


ifestyle audio brand Boat has launched Airdopes

hours of playtime while each earbud works for 3 hours

201 portable true wireless earbuds, to target the

on a single charge. When in use the Capacitive Touch

youthful consumer base in India. The product claims

Controls allow you to pick tracks and answer calls with

to offer premium HD sound powered with audio drivers

zero hindrance. The sensors on the side of each earbud

that gently leads you down the road of nirvana. The

make for a fun all function encompassing interaction

Boat Airdopes 201 has a sleek and lightweight design

with mono and stereo hands-free communication for an

that is meant for today’s millennial generation who are

ergonomic secure fit experience while on the go. The

trendsetters and demand style and sound at affordable

earbuds are IPX 4 sweat and waterproof. It carries a 1

price points.

year warranty and is available at Amazon. n

The Boat Airdopes 201 is powered by Bluetooth V5.0 which offers stable connectivity along with a clear stereo sound and allows for high ranges of movement as you groove to the effing dope beat. The premium 470mAh charging case allows for easy manoeuvrability as you ride the highest waves of nirvana on your Boat with a total 9

112 | december 2019

Price : INR 2,499

Gadget Corner

Cadyce Universal Travel Adapter It can easily fit in your pocket


adyce, an innovator in hardware solutions, mobile and computer accessories, and networking technology,

has announced the availability their Universal Travel Adapter in India. When it comes to must-have products while traveling worldwide, this is the utmost essential product to carry. After making waves on the international stage with its premium range of Display Adapters, Computer peripherals, and USB Type C cables, the IT giant is firming up its existence in the masses across remote areas as well. The tiny cube has smooth edges and can easily fit in your pocket and has three different blade options that can hide away easily after its use. To adapt the adapter

desired AC output as well as converts power to 5V/2.5A

in a new country, just push and turn the corresponding

and can be used via two USB-A outlets. The adapter

knob for the kind of outlet you need and the desired

comes with a built-in LED indicator as well as a built

blades will emerge and latch in place. The adapter can

in fuse for safety. Radically compact, lightweight and

be used in 150 countries and has blades suitable for the

stylish design, Cadyce’s Universal Power Adapter Cube

US, UK, EU and Australia. The handy device can give you

is available in three colours- Red, Black and Green.n

Pioneer DMH-Z5290BT A car infotainment system that ensures quality drive with quality entertainment


apanese car infotainment brand Pioneer has introduced

with Spotify, and a lot of other dynamic features are said

DMH-Z5290BT, a high-end car infotainment system,

to make this product an uncompromising choice for car

which claims to be packed with dozens of matchless


features and is targeted to auto-enthusiasts to whom

The Pioneer DMH-Z5290BT also has 13-Band EQ

quality drive completes with quality entertainment. A

for advanced audio settings, 3-way network mode, and

17.6 cm wide display, Android Auto and Apple CarPlay

advanced sound retriever which ensure the gearheads

connectivity, smartphone videos via WebLink, full HD video

a safe, convenient, and entertaining journey in their

playback via USB, hard drive playability, compatibility

favorite wagon. Some other distinct features in DMH-

Price : INR 24,490

Z5290BT are dual camera inputs, quick smartphone charging, and video out option for rear-seat display. “This product is designed and launched to keep in mind smart consumers who demand Hi-resolution Audio and Video playback in car, seamless smartphone connectivity, and all this on a wide screen,” said Hideaki ISHII, Managing Director of Pioneer India. DMHZ5290BT operates on voice commands, which helps in distraction-free communication and navigation and ensures a safe drive. n

DECEMBER 2019 | 113

Gadget Corner

add-ons Hifiman TWS600 Having an exceptional Bluetooth range of 150 meters


ersonal audio brand Hifiman has come up with a new true wireless earbud called TWS600 in India

Price : INR 12,999

that offers a technological twist with Bluetooth that extends reception as far as 150 meters/490 feet. The

maximum sensitivity, which is critical for achieving the

TWS600 features Hifiman’s topological diaphragm:

best possible sound from smartphones, tablets and

each earbud’s diaphragm, which converts mechanical

other low-voltage portable devices.

vibrations to sound, is covered with a nano particle coating that contributes to greater sonic detail.

The TWS600 earphones provide 5.5 hours of playtime, with an additional 33 hours available from

Created by and for music lovers who demand the

the portable charging case. Designed for active use,

best imaginable sonics from their earphones, the

the TWS600 is IPX4-rated for resistance to sweat and

TWS600 includes several ingredients that are unique

dirt. Its ultra-low latency characteristics allow users

to the brand. For example, the company’s Advanced

to enjoy videos without audible delay. The Hifiman

Alloy Voice Coil maximizes vocal clarity and full-range

TWS600 true wireless earphones are available in India

sonic reproduction, while the Hi-tech Magnet ensures

via Amazon. n

FutureBuds Make your musical journey smooth with these earbuds by HiFuture


hinese personal audio brand HiFuture has entered

with auto-activation of environmental noise cancellation

India with the launch of true wireless earbuds with


magnetic charging case called the FutureBuds, which

FutureBuds are enabled with touch controls so that

include several ingredients that are unique to the brand.

you can, play, pause, skip tracks and even answer or

The earphones boast a rich, authentic sound with a subtle

reject calls, with one touch. You can simply control

and elegant design. These stylish Bluetooth earphones

your music, calls and voice assistant through intuitive

which are compatible across all platforms pack the

touchpad technology built into both earbuds. Other

latest Bluetooth v5.0

features include, Auto - pairing for seamless experience,

technology for longer

gesture recognition due to precision sensors where when

battery life, faster

the future buds are removed from the ears, the music

pairing and seamless

automatically stops and Google Voice/ Siri Support.

connectivity with your

The Type C and Fast Charge chip used in the design of

device up to 10 meters.

FutureBuds can charge for 15 mins and play music for 3

FutureBuds have built-in

hours. A single charge gives 6 hours of battery and total

high definition 4 mics

battery life available with the case is 25 hours, due to

and DSP technology that

the intelligent power management chip and 500mAh of

Price : INR 6,999

114 | december 2019

ensures crystal clear

battery built in sleek charging case. FutureBuds come

telephonic conversation

in White and Black colours and are available at Amazon

even in a crowded place

and Flipkart in India.n


Stuffcool 10,000mAh Power Bank Palm-size powerhouse for your phone


omegrown tech accessory brand Stuffcool has

with 18W power delivery to charge compatible devices

come up with a power bank, which claims to be

50-70% faster. The power bank offers 10,000mAh

very compact with QC3.0 compatibility and Type-C port

battery which is enough to charge your iPhone 2.4 times or your Android phone more than twice. It has 1 USB output – with Quick Charge 3.0 compatibility (max 18W) that can power up your smartphone/tablet faster than conventional 1A chargers/power banks. It also comes with a Type-C 18Watts Power Delivery port to fast charge the iPhones up to 50% in 30 minutes and can also charge the power bank at a similar super-speed. The Stuffcool power bank is unsurprisingly the lightest and most compact – as long as a credit card. Its build

Gadget Corner


quality and overall feel are really premium. The textured body gives firm grip to hold the power bank. There are LEDs to show the charge level and functionality of the power bank, the company said in a statement. The product carries a 6-month warranty and is available online at, Amazon and Flipkart.n

Price : INR 1,799

Soundcore Liberty Power your commute with this device


ew-age tech firm Anker’s sub-brand Soundcore

coated drivers produce superior sound across the entire

has launched its Liberty true wireless earbuds that

frequency range. The advanced audio technology delivers

promise the ultimate surround sound experience with

exceptional clarity with delicately tuned signature

non-stop 100-hour playtime and smart AI technology.


With IPX-5 rated protection, the sweat-proof headphones

The 8 hours of playtime on a single charge ensures

claim to match the toughest workouts.

long battery, boosted by the powerful charging case for an

The Liberty’s revolutionary graphene-

incredible 100 hours of playtime. The Liberty’s upgraded

Price : INR 9,999

design also lets you hear phone calls, in stereo for crystalclear conversations. You can easily switch between playing music and attending your phone calls. The unique GripFit technology ensures Liberty fits comfortably, yet securely in your ear. Simply slide in and turn to lock with EarWings for additional grip. You can personalise your Liberty with the addition of silky smooth liquid silicon EarTips and GripJackets in multiple sizes. The earbuds also come with smart assistant access, a single button-press that activates the AI assistant. The Liberty’s microphones are also optimised for voice recognition. The product is available in the shade of Black at leading retail and ecommerce stores in India. n

DECEMBER 2019 | 115

Gadget Corner

add-ons Tenda Dual Band Wireless Wi-Fi Adapter Enjoy high-speed connectivity on the move


etworking devices and equipment brand Tenda

USB socket. The Tenda U12

has launched the U12 AC1300 dual band wireless

comes with WPS button

Wi-Fi USB 3.0 adapter providing high-speed Wi-Fi

which provides advanced

technology in a compact and portable package, improving


connectivity on the go at an affordable price. Uniquely

supporting both WPA and

designed to be carried in your pocket, the Tenda U12

WPA2 encryption protocol

makes on-the-go mobile surfing easy, thanks to its dual-

at the push of a button.

band wireless AC technology. The Tenda U12 delivers

It is also compatible with

Wi-Fi speed up to 867 Mbps on 5 GHz or 400 Mbps on

Windows XP/7/8.1/10, Mac

2.4 GHz. It uses USB 3.0 interface which has a 10 times

OS 10.6-10.2, and Linux

faster transfer rate than USB 2.0.

OS to address various


Due to its high-speed and 256 -QAM technology, the

wireless requirements.

Tenda U12 is able to support all online activities, from

It is available through

HD video streaming to lag-free online gaming and web

authorized partners,

surfing. More specifically, it takes only 200 seconds

reseller channels and

to download a 2GB movie offering a thrilling cyber

e-commerce portals at a

experience. U12 comes equipped with an extension

price of Rs 4,000 across

cable to extend the USB connection length, making it

India. n

more convenient to plug the USB device in and out of the

Price : INR 4,000

Zoook Upbeat Offering comfortable fit to enjoy music during workouts


rench brand Zoook has launched Upbeat Sports

choice during a high-intensity workout. Its sleek built

wireless Bluetooth headphones in India. The

with splash-proof and sweat-proof material enables easy

headphones are built to uplift the spirits of its users

and stress-free usage. The snug fit loop over each earbud

by delivering music in its

Price : INR 999

further ensures a comfortable and closest fit possible.

pristine form. Its Bluetooth

The bigger sound drivers integrated with the

V5.0 ensures seamless

headphones along with aptX HD delivers best-in-ear

connectivity with devices

sound. The Zoook Upbeat sports wireless headphones

such as smartphones,

are also designed for receiving phone calls through its

laptops, tablets, etc, and

high-performance mic, especially designed for taking

its HD sound coupled

phone calls. The device comes with a compact and



comprehensive control panel that allows the users to

adds to the overall user

receive calls, redial with the double press and also

experience making it

enhance their music listening experience with one-press

robust and addictive. These

buttons for play next or previous, pause, volume up and

headphones by Zoook sport

down. It has a 70mAh battery, and when charged for

a magnetic latch making it

complete 1-2 hours, the Zoook Upbeat delivers playback

a perfect music companion

time for up to 5 hours and a standby time up to 100

for fitness enthusiasts who

hours, with operating distance of 33 ft from the source

love to draw motivation

device. These headphones are available in Black colour

from the music of their

at leading online and offline stores in India.n



add-ons ERD 3Amp Triple USB Smartphone Car Charger (Product Code - CC 33) Charging your device was never this easy on the car


omegrown mobile accessories brand ERD

What’s more, it ensures stabilized

Technologies has come up with the 3Amp Triple

output, low ripple and low interference

USB Smartphone Car Charger with product code CC- 33

and comes with short circuit and

in India. It’s a world class miniature electronics product,

overload protection. It has high

based on battery charging 1.2 protocol. The device

efficiency and consumes less

comes with Micro USB Data Cable and can charge three

energy. Built with high gloss

smartphones at a time. The charger ensures super fast

poly carbonate (PC) cabinet, it

charging and is based on advanced SMD Technology.

has special protection for touch phones. This ERD smartphone

Features • World class miniature electronics product • Based on battery charging 1.2 protocol • Comes with Micro USB Data Cable • Can charge 3 smartphones at a time • Super Fast Charging • Advanced SMD Technology Based • Inside Instrument Setting • Stabilized output, low ripple, low interference • Short circuit, overload protection • High-efficiency, low energy consumption • Special protection for Touch Phones • High Gloss Poly Carbonate (PC) Cabinet Inbuilt Automatic Voltage Booster

car charger has inbuilt automatic voltage booster. As is the reputation of the company, one can be sure that this charger too comes with highest international quality standard and must have gone through rigorous tests before it was introduced in the market. n

Specifications • Input Voltage: 12-24V DC • Output Voltage: 5V DC • Output Current: 3 Amp (Max) • Output Wattage: 15 Watt (Max)

Blaupunkt 4K Palladium Series Ultra HD LED TV Smart in true sense!


erman electronics major Blaupunkt has come up

with 1GB RAM. Moreover, the latest 4K Palladium Series

with the new 4K Palladium Series Ultra HD Smart

allows a Bombastic Sound experience complete with

LED televisions in India. The all-new Blaupunkt smart

surround sound. The TV claims to come with a premium

TVs are available in 109 cm (43”) at Rs 19,999, 124 cm

metallic frame which no other brand offers at this price

(49”) at Rs 22,999, 127 (50”) at Rs 25,999 and 140 cm


(55”) with a resolution of 3840 x 2160 pixel, and have a

The Android-based TV also allows unlimited content

slim form factor with sleek metallic bezel. The television

from preloaded apps like Netfix, Hotstar, Prime Video

is powered by Cortex-A53 Quad Core 1.5GHz processor

and Youtube directly from the home screen. You can also mirror your smartphone’s screen on the screen of this TV by using the Blaupunkt’s Smart Series Miracasting feature. Furthermore, the TV series also comes with gaming feature which enables users to play their favourite games on the television. In addition, the television provides wireless connectivity allowing fast and reliable streaming without messy cables. The 4K Palladium Series is available for purchase on Flipkart.n

DECEMBER 2019 | 117

Gadget Corner

add-ons Air Ok Vistar Comfort The smart air purifier that can be controlled via your smartphone


T Madras incubated clean-tech startup Air Ok Technologies has launched its Vistar Comfort series

of air purifiers, which are easy-to-operate with UniTouch Interface that comes with a complete glass finish look. Users can control the device’s function either via the digital control panel provided on the top of the purifier or via their smartphones by connecting Wi-Fi enabled Vistar Comfort with the help of AirOk app. The app is available across platforms, including

Android and iOS. All the variants under Vistar Comfort

filter that is built with special media to absorb Carbon

(450i, 550i, and 650i) sport cloud connectivity, smart

Dioxide (CO2) and many other acidic gases in the air

switch and Particle Sensor. The variants differ only in

to make the workplace atmosphere clean, healthier and

the area coverage within which they can provide clean air

lively. These purifiers demand low maintenance with filter

and the pricing of each variant is set accordingly. Vistar

replacement in every 8-12 months depending upon the

Comfort air purifiers come packed with EGAPA Comfort

Carbon Dioxide (CO2) concentration levels.n

Gizmore Home Audio and Party Speakers Experience music together


omegrown brand Gizmore has forayed into the

has bundled a remote control as well. The GizBar series

home audio and outdoor party speakers segment

include 6000 model that comes with a price tag of Rs

with the launch of 15 new models under different series.

6,999. The soundbar comes with subwoofer support

The different series include Wheelz, Tall Boy, GizBar,

along with power LED indicator, Bluetooth/AUX/USB

Surround, Squad and Trio. The Wheelz features different

connectivity options. The Surround series comes with

models including T25000 for Rs 19,999, T6000 for

two models including 5101 for Rs 7,999 and 5150 for

Rs 13,999, T2500 for Rs 8499, T1500 for Rs 4999

Rs 4,999. The series comes with 5.1 multimedia speaker

and T1000 for Rs 2,999. The series comes loaded with

with digital LED display, remote control and an FM radio.

a DJ trolly through which one can move the outdoor

It also comes with USB/SD Card/Bluetooth connectivity

speakers along with RGB Light. It also features mic and

options. The Squad series comes with different models

guitar output along with dual mic

including 4104 for Rs 3,999, 4103

support. The series is also loaded

for Rs 7,499, 4102 for Rs 6,499

with digital LED display and

and 4101 for Rs 5,999. The series

comes with full function remote

comes with 4.1 multimedia speakers,


LED display, USB/SD Card/Bluetooth

The Tall Boy series includes two

connectivity, Full Function Remote

models with DT8000 and ST6000

Control and an FM Radio. Lastly, the

for Rs 11,999 and Rs 8499

Trio series comes with 2101 model

respectively. The series features

priced at Rs 3,599. The series features

dual/single tower speaker along

2.1 multimedia speaker, LED Display,

with touch controls and digital

USB/SD Card/Bluetooth connectivity,

LED display. It also features dual-

Full Function Remote Control and an

mic support and the company

FM Radio. n

118 | december 2019


Gadget Corner

add-ons Logitech G Pro and G Pro X Sound like a Pro and hear like one with these gaming headsets


ogitech has launched two new Pro gaming headsets, called the G Pro and the G Pro X in India. Designed

and engineered in collaboration with top esports athletes, the newest additions to the Logitech G lineup of gaming gear combine incredible comfort and durability with high performing sound and voice technology, so gamers of all abilities can hear and sound like a pro. The Pro

X marks the debut of Blue VO!CE software, developed in partnership with the industry-leading microphone

effects including a compressor, de-esser, and de-popper.

expertise of Blue Microphones practising using Logitech

To help pros with their rigorous training and travel

G HUB advanced gaming software. Blue VO!CE is a suite

schedules, the new gaming headsets were developed

of real-time microphone effects that enables clean,

from the ground up to be comfortable enough to be worn

professional voice communication. The result is you can

for hours, while still having incredibly high durability.

tune your voice based on your individual preferences, so

This lightweight design is constructed from aluminium

teammates can hear you better, or you can sound like a

and steel and features soft memory foam earpads and a

professional streamer.

premium leatherette-wrapped headband. An extra set of

Out of the box, gamers can use the Blue VO!CE

velour-covered earpads is included with the Pro X. The

integrated recording and playback function to quickly

headsets are expected to be available across major online

select a preset filter profile and see which one sounds

and offline retail stores in India. n

right for their voice’s unique tone and volume. And, for

Price: INR 9,995 (G Pro); INR 13,995 (G Pro X)

gamers interested in another level of customization, Blue VO!CE’s advanced mode offers a full set of pro-grade

Pebble Impulse A feature-packed smartwatch to track your on-the-go lifestyle


igital lifestyle accessories brand Pebble has

and your sleep pattern to calculate your deep sleep time,

introduced a fitness watch called Impulse in India.

light sleep time and awake time.

The device comes with Multi-Sports Mode that records your

The all-new fitness tracker also monitors blood pressure

exercising data in different sport modes. The smartwatch

- it is capable of displaying blood pressure any time during

is also capable of keeping a tab on your calorie intake,

workouts, and tracks the SpO2 (Peripheral capillary oxygen

which will help you in achieving your fitness goals. The

saturation) level in the blood through the oxygen monitor

Impulse fitness watch also comes with a sleep monitoring

technology. The Pebble Impluse also packs features like

feature which combines the real-time dynamic heart rate

message alerts and notifications from WhatsApp and other

Price: INR 1,999

social apps. It will also alert you when someone calls on your phone or when you receive an email. You can also change music tracks and reject calls directly from the smartwatch. According to the company, the newlylaunched device is capable of delivering a battery backup of seven days in a single charge. The product is available with leading retail stores and e-commerce platforms across India.n

142 | april 2018



Vantage Point

LOVE versus MILK is OVER now In 2020, OVER brands will be the most interesting brands fighting battle for the mass market of Smartphones in India.


By Faisal Kawoosa

arket is dynamic so are the

Transformation journey continues, the CIOs,

only brand which is still stroking through the

market dynamics. Some

CDOs and CISOs are increasingly realising

swim. Lava will continue to be a brand in

3-4 years back when the

the need of securing the Smartphones as

Smartphones and shall have a role to play in

Chinese origin brands were

well. In fact, many businesses of modern

Entry and Basic Smartphone segments.

entering into the market and Indian brands

times, have more Smartphone workers

The main fight will be among the OVER

were still coming to terms with the reality, I

than those using Laptops and Desktops.

(OPPO, Vivo, Xiaomi and Realme) brands.

had proposed it to be a fight between LOVE

The aggregation business has partners who

These brands already enjoy over 60% of the

(Lenovo, OPPO, Vivo and Xiaomi) and MILK

are connected through Smartphones only.

sales share in Smartphones and this may

(Micromax, Intex, Lava and Karbonn). So

How will the security custodians of these

go up in 2020. In 2020, every 2 out of 3

effectively two strong blocks of Chinese and

organisations ensure that they are not put

Smartphones sold may actually come from

Indian brands were face off in the market

to risk due to vulnerabilities that exist in

OVER brands.

and eventually the whole dynamics changed,

the Smartphone arena, which could be

This market change no longer keeps LOVE

which we all are witness to.

coming from employees and such extended

and MILK segmentation relevant. Another


significant reason is the supply chain for these

However, as is true with every market trend, this LOVE and MILK

brands is by now pretty much

segmentation is no more

similar. So any LOVE brand is

relevant. Year 2019 has seen

as much as Indian as is any

the market consolidating with

MILK brand and any MILK

only a handful strong players

brand is as much as Chinese

after the mass market. Of

as LOVE brand if we go by

course, there are brands with

the composition of the value

their specific propositions and

chain of these two brands.

niche like OnePlus, Apple and

Mere origin of a brand does

Nokia. Samsung remains the

not decide the segmentation;

only incumbent which is still in

there are other factors too. The

business and will continue to. It

supply chain of brands across

may see some ups and downs,

any categorisation is more or

but has all the resilience to come

less same and the good news is

back. Even if it slips from numero

India is increasingly becoming

uno, it will continue to be a

a part of this supply chain.

significant player in the Smartphone game.

The only underdog in the game I see is

While Apple, OnePlus and Nokia will

Huawei/Honor. This is the only brand hard to

continue with their specific pitch which will

predict and could throw up several surprises.

So, let’s welcome OVER brands in 2020

not attract masses, these brands will continue

With the global trade postures, Huawei/Honor

and observe how market dynamics play

to chart growth stories. Among these Nokia

would definitely want to pump aggressively

out in 2020 and beyond. For masses it’s

might not have been able to get to the level

in a market like India and 2020 we may see

going to be 5 OVERS (OPPO, Vivo, Xiaomi,

in Smartphones where it could, however, I

that actually happen in a big way. So, from

Realme and Samsung) to choose from.

see a lot of things changing for the brand in

the Chinese block we may see BBK, Xiaomi

Rest niche segments will be catered by

2020. There are a lot of enterprises across

and Huawei as the three groups aggressive

Apple, OnePlus, Nokia, Lava and Huawei/

verticals where I see the security concern is

in 2020 for Smartphones in India.

Honor could be a surprise. These are the

growing especially, taking the view that along

Coming back to the mass market, the

the enterprise ICT value chain, Smartphones

Indian brands have almost lost the battle.

are the most vulnerable yet very deep, omni

Micromax, Intex and Karbonn has almost

and scattered within organisations. As Digital

given up at different levels, while Lava is the

122 | DECEMBER 2019

Indeed, the contribution has to increase and should go up to the potential India has.

brands to watch in 2020. That sums up all for the year! n The author is Founder and Chief Analyst at techARC




RNI REG NO. DELENG/2005/15033 DL (ND) : 11/6100/2018-19-20 Posting Date 26th to 31st every month Publishing Date : 22-11-19

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