India

India

ASUS is rolling out VoLTE support for Zenfone 3 devices

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In a press release, ASUS has announced the availability of VoLTE support for the Zenfone 3 series of smartphones. The update will be rolled out via a FOTA update.

The VoLTE support is rolling out for following the devices launched in 2016:

  • Zenfone 3 Deluxe 5.7″ ZS570KL
  • Zenfone 3 5.2” ZE520KL
  • Zenfone 3 5.5” ZE552KL
  • Zenfone 3 Laser ZC551KL
  • Zenfone 3 Max 5.2″ ZC520TL
  • Zenfone 3 Max 5.5” ZC553KL
  • Zenfone 3S Max 5.2″ ZC521TL

Besides the Zenfone 3 range, ASUS has also rolled out VoLTE support for few other older smartphones. These include Zenfone Max ZC550KL, Zenfone 2 Laser ZE550KL, and Zenfone Go 5.0 LTE ZB500KL.

The company has also shared that VoLTE support will also be offered on Zenfone 3 Ultra (ZU680KL) as well as Zenfone Selfie (ZD551KL) soon.

Manu Jain replaces Hugo Barra as VP of Xiaomi

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Manu Kumar Jain, a close colleague of Hugo Barra’s in the last few years and the head of Xiaomi’s Indian operations, has just been appointed as Barra’s replacement. The promotion sees Jain assume the title of vice president of Xiaomi while remaining the managing director of Xiaomi India.

Jain’s performance in India has been exceptional, taking Xiaomi to the number two spot in the sub-continent, but as a public face, is not as well known internationally as Barra. That said, Jain’s performance during the company’s expansion into India has made him a very recognizable and respected brand ambassador.

Jain has been with Xiaomi since 2014, before which he co-founded jabong.com, an online retail site as well as a tech startup called Gynger. Barra, who was previously the vp of product development for the Android team, will assume his new post at Facebook this month at the helm of Oculus’ VR efforts.

Samsung Galaxy On5 Pro and Galaxy On7 Pro get price cut in India

Samsung launched the Galaxy On5 Pro and Galaxy On7 Pro in India back in July 2016. The devices retailed for Rs. 9,190 and Rs. 11,190 and were exclusively available on Amazon. If you have been thinking of getting either of the two devices, you’re in luck. Both smartphones have recently received a price cut of Rs. 1,200.

This means that the Samsung Galaxy On5 Pro now retails for Rs. 7,990, while the Galaxy On7 Pro can be yours for Rs. 9,990. You can get them over at Amazon India in two color options — Gold or Black.

The Galaxy On5 Pro features a 5-inch display with a resolution of 1280 x 720 pixels and is powered by the Exynos 3475 chipset. It has 2 GB of RAM and only 16 GB of storage, which is expandable via a microSD card. The device is equipped with a primary 8 MP camera with an f/2.2 aperture as well as with a selfie snapper that has a 5 MP sensor. It also sports a removable 2,600 mAh battery and runs Android Marshmallow.

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Leaked logo suggests the larger Samsung Galaxy S8 will be dubbed S8+

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If you’re looking for something slightly bigger and a bit more powerful, the Galaxy On7 Pro might be more up your alley. The device has a 5.5-inch display with the same 1280 x 720 resolution.

You’ll find the Snapdragon 410 processor under the hood along with 2 GB of RAM. There’s 16 GB of space available for your apps, images, and other data, which can also be expanded. Other features worth mentioning are a 13 MP primary and a 5 MP secondary camera, a 3,000 mAh battery, and Android Marshmallow.

If you want to buy the Samsung Galaxy On5 Pro or Galaxy On7 Pro, visit Amazon’s website by clicking a button below.

Get the Samsung Galaxy On5 Pro
Get the Samsung Galaxy On7 Pro

Don’t miss out on the 4GB Honor 6X flash sale: register now

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A couple of weeks ago, Honor launched its mid-range 6X smartphone in India. Amazon had a flash sale for the version with 3 GB of RAM on February 2, which quickly sold out. Today, the retailer had another flash sale, but this time the slightly more powerful variant of the device with 4 GB of RAM was surprisingly also available for purchase.

If you’ve missed it, don’t worry. The next flash sale is scheduled for February 16, when you’ll again be able to get your hands on both versions of the device. The Honor 6X with 3 GB of RAM and 32 GB of storage will set you back Rs. 12,999, while the version with 4 GB of RAM and 64 GB of space can be yours for Rs. 15,999. Just be sure to register now so you don’t miss out again.

See also:

Honor 6X review

January 3, 2017

As a refresher, the Honor 6X sports a 5.5-inch 1080p display and is powered by the Kirin 655 chipset. It features a rear-facing dual-camera setup with 12 and 2 MP sensors as well as a metal body. You’ll find a fingerprint sensor on the back of the device and an 8 MP selfie snapper on the front.

Other features worth mentioning are a 3,340 mAh battery, expandable storage (up to 256 GB), and Android Marshmallow with Huawei’s custom EMUI on top. However, the device will get bumped up to Android 7.0 Nougat within the first half of the year.

If you’re interested in getting the device, make sure you register for the next flash sale. To do so, visit Amazon’s website by clicking the button below.

Register for the flash sale

HTC 10 Evo launches in India for Rs. 48,990

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The HTC 10 Evo, the international version of the HTC Bolt, was officially announced back in November 2016. The high-end device has now launched in India and is already available for purchase. You can buy the smartphone in Pearl Gold from HTC’s online store for Rs. 48,990.

The device comes with a 5.5-inch display with a resolution of 2560 x 1440 pixels. You’ll find Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 810 chipset under the hood along with 3 GB of RAM. There’s 32 GB of storage available that can be expanded for an additional 256 GB. The HTC 10 Evo comes equipped with a 16 MP primary camera with optical image stabilization and an f/2.0 aperture as well as a selfie snapper that has an 8 MP sensor.

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Flashbacks and Forecasts: HTC in 2017

2 weeks ago

The 3,200 mAh battery keeps the lights on, while the IP57 rating has your back in case you get the device wet. It can handle being submerged in up to one meter of water for up to 30 minutes.

Other features of the smartphone include the HTC BoomSound Adaptive Audio technology, a fingerprint scanner located on the front, and a metal body that looks quite similar to the HTC 10. It runs Android 7.0 Nougat with the added Sense user interface on top.

The HTC 10 Evo is already available, so if you want to buy it visit the company’s online store by clicking the button below.

Buy the HTC 10 Evo

Moto Z Play: Android update tracker (Update: Nougat OTA arriving in India)

Update, February 7: The Moto Z Play Android Nougat update is now rolling out in India. The update brings improvements like Doze on the Go, direct reply for notifications and multi-window support as well as many others. Look out for the update arriving OTA in the coming days and discover all of the additions that it has to offer at the Motorola Mobility support page.

Thanks for the tip, Abhilash Singh!

Welcome to the Moto Z Play and Moto Z Play Droid (the Verizon-exclusive version) Android update tracker page. This page covers Verizon and unlocked versions of the Moto Z Play with a quick reference table for each and a log with links to further details. It will be regularly updated with the latest Moto Z Play and Play Droid update information but we won’t be covering general security patches in this list.

We recommend you bookmark this page so you can stay up to date with the very latest updates.

Moto Z Play and Moto Z Play Droid Android Nougat update

Lenovo has rolled out the Moto Z Play Nougat update in Europe and India but it’s yet to hit the US. The company has, however, confirmed that it will land in the States in March for both the unlocked and Verizon versions.

Lenovo also recently launched a Nougat beta program for select users in its feedback network to assist with the Z Play’s software development before launch; this is still ongoing.

Moto Z Play / Moto Z Play Droid updates Android 6.0.1Android 7.0 Android 7.11
VerizonYesExpected: March, 2017TBA
US unlocked YesIn betaTBA

Compatibility

The Moto Z Play Droid is exclusive to Verizon and, as such, is incompatible with other networks. The US unlocked Moto Z Play is compatible with AT&T and T-Mobile but is not available for purchase through the carriers themselves. Both the Moto Z and Moto Z Play Droid are incompatible with Sprint as well as some other smaller networks.

For full carrier compatibility, check the official list.

Moto Z Play: Android update tracker (Update: Nougat OTA arriving in India)

Verizon Moto Z Play Droid update (XT1650-01):

  • January 18, 2017: Lenovo says the Nougat update will arrive to the Moto Z Play Droid in March.
  • December 29, 2016: Default notification volume level increased to match the volume level used in the original software release, you can increase or lower the notifications volume in Settings.

US unlocked Moto Z Play update (XT1635):

  • January 24, 2017: Lenovo seeks beta testers for the Nougat preview build.
  • January 18, 2017: Lenovo says Nougat update will arrive to the unlocked Moto Z Play in March.

International Moto Z Play update (XT1650-03):

  • February 6, 2017: Android Nougat starts rolling out to the Moto Z Play in India.
  • January 27, 2017: European Moto Z Play units begin receiving Nougat rollout OTA.

If you’ve received an update we’ve missed, hit the comments below or Tip Us!

ASUS ZenFone 3s Max launches with 5,000 mAh battery in India

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ASUS has launched the ZenFone 3s Max today in India. The new handset, sequel to the ZenFone 3 Max, is available in black and gold color variants from offline and online channels for ₹14,999 (~$222).

ASUS released the ZenFone 3 Max only three months ago in India but says it has expanded the series following the “overwhelming response” of that device.

One of the main draws of the ZenFone 3 Max was its battery capacity, which came in at 4,100 mAh. Likewise, the ZenFone 3s Max is set to deliver in this area with its 5,000 mAh capacity battery, which ASUS claims can provide “up to 38 days of 4G standby time, 28 hours of 3G talktime, and 25 hours of Web browsing.”

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Deal: ASUS OnHub Wireless Router, with Google WiFi support, for just $100 ($90 off)

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The ZenFone 3s Max also comes with all of the benefits of Android 7.0 Nougat out-of-the-box, as well as a HD display with 75 percent screen-to-body ratio and fingerprint scanner.

We’ve already had the opportunity to put the device through its paces in our full ZenFone 3s Max review — find out if it’s the right device for you at the link or check out its Flipkart listing here.

BlackBerry partners with Optiemus to make and sell Android-based phones in India

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BlackBerry continues to make deals to ensure its software services and branding continue to be sold around the world — even if they are no longer the ones really behind the hardware. Today, it announced a partnership with India-based Optiemus that will allow the company to make and sell Android-based phones in the country. The phones will use the BlackBerry brand and will also include BlackBerry-developed software and services.

See also:

BlackBerry quits designing their own phones

September 28, 2016

In addition to its home country of India, Optiemus will also sell its BlackBerry-branded Android phones in Sri Lanka, Nepal and Bangladesh. Under the terms of the agreement, BlackBerry will license its security software and services suite to the Optiemus-made phones, and will also offer regular Android security updates. The specific financial terms of the agreement were not disclosed. There’s no word on when the first Optiemus-made BlackBerry phones will go on sale, but the press announcement said more information will be revealed in the coming months.

BlackBerry is still a well-known name for smartphones around the world, and this agreement to have phones with that brand made and sold in India could be a huge deal for the Canadian company. BlackBerry has already announced a similar deal with TCL Communication that will allow it to make and sell Android phones with the BlackBerry name in the rest of the world. One exception is in Indonesia, where a company called PT BB Merah Putih will perform those duties in that country.

BlackBerry and TCL are already making plans to officially announced their next Android phone, code-named “Mercury”, in a few weeks at the 2017 Mobile World Congress trade show in Barcelona, Spain. The phone, which we got a chance to briefly check out at CES 2017, will be unveiled on Feb. 25 at a special press event. The phone is already getting a lot of attention for its hardware QWERTY keyboard, and it even made a quick cameo recently on the Tim Allen TV sitcom Last Man Standing.

Xiaomi wants to be the top smartphone vendor in India in 3-5 years

It looks like Xiaomi wants to be the top dog in India. In a recent interview with The Economic Times, Xiaomi India head Manu Jain said that the company’s goal is to become the biggest smartphone manufacturer in terms of sales in India within the next 3 to 5 years.

In order to achieve its goal, the Chinese manufacturer will have to ramp up production in the country. Xiaomi already has a manufacturing plant set up in India, which is located in Sri City in Andhra Pradesh but plans on opening more. Manu Jain mentioned that Xiaomi wants to open one or maybe even two factories that will allow the company to double or triple its production capacity.

Additionally, Xiaomi has high hopes for its Redmi Note 4 smartphone, that started selling in India a couple of weeks ago. The company wants to sell 7 million units this year. For comparison, its predecessor, the Redmi Note 3, is currently the best selling online smartphone in the country with sales of 3.6 million units in just 10 months. The Redmi Note 4 has proven to be quite popular among consumers so far, as Xiaomi managed to sell 250,000 units in just 10 minutes during its first flash sale in India.

See also:

Xiaomi won’t attend Mobile World Congress 2017

2 weeks ago

India is a very important market for smartphone manufacturers. In the last three years, smartphone sales have tripled in the country to 120 million in 2016. The market will continue to grow and is expected to double in size in terms of sales by the year 2020.

Xiaomi has been doing well in India. Last year, it doubled its smartphone sales and for the first time generated more than $1 billion in revenue. Despite its success, not everyone is happy with the company and its products. As already reported, some users have been complaining about poor after-sales support and lack of spare parts, among other things.

ZTE returns to the Indian market with Blade A2 Plus

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In a press conference in New Delhi today, ZTE officially launched its Blade A2 Plus mid-range smartphone in India marking its comeback in the market.

The highlight of the smartphone is its large 500mAh battery capacity. The device runs the dated Android 6.0 Marshmallow with their proprietary Mi-Favor skin on top of it. The 5.5-inch display device is powered by an octa-core MediaTek MT6750T processor with 4GB RAM and Mali T860 GPU for the graphics.

ZTE has established high-trust and credibility of consumers and clients globally through its path breaking innovation, customization and high-quality services. We are committed to establish ZTE in the Indian market by launching innovative products at disruptive prices to connect with the consumers.

– Sachin Batra, CMO, ZTE India Terminal

ZTE Blade A2 Plus Specifications

  • Operating System: Android 6.0 Marshmallow
  • Display: 5.5-inch Full HD (1920 x 1080) IPS LCD | Pixel Density 404ppi | 2.5D curved glass display
  • Processor: 1.5 GHz Octa-Core MediaTek MT6750T 64-bit processor | Mali T860 GPU
  • RAM: 4 GB
  • Internal Storage: 32 GB; expandable up to 128 GB via microSD card
  • Rear Camera: 13MP | Dual-tone LED Flash |PDAF
  • Front Camera: 8MP | LED flash
  • Battery: 5000mAh with Ultra-fast charging
  • Dimension: 155 x 76.2 x 9.8mm
  • Weight: 189g

Priced at ₹11,999 ($178), the ZTE Blade A2 Plus comes in Gold and Silver color variants and will available exclusively from Flipkart starting from February 6. On the specifications sheet, the Blade A2 Plus packs a punch considering its price. What are your thoughts on the smartphone, and the company’s reentry in the Indian market? Tell us in the comments!