Monthly Archives: February 2016

Union Budget 2016-2017:Mobile phones and Tablets prices likely to go up

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The Indian government has made some minor but key changes in duties, allowing a greater push to local manufacturing by making import of full accessories expensive.

Finance Minister Arun Jaitley today presented Union Budget 2016-2017 in Parliament today. As expected, the minister announced several measures to push local manufacturing in India. The government has proposed to make import of accessories such as wired headsets and speakers and battery expensive whilst concessions on importing inputs, parts and components, subparts for local assembling or manufacturing. End user products such as batteries, chargers, set top boxes and laptops come under the purview of the new efforts.

The budget 2016-2017 presented today announced withdrawing exemption of BCD (Basic Customs Duty) , CV duty (Countervailing duties (CVDs), popularly known as anti-subsidy duties), SAD (Special Additional Duty) from devices such as charger, battery and wired headsets/speakers for manufacturing of handsets in India. The government has proposed levying BCD, CVD at 12.5 percent and SAD at 4 percent. At the same time, the government has withdrawn these taxes from inputs, parts and components, subparts of charger/adapter, battery and wired headsets/speakers for local manufacturing.

Duty on import of parts and components, subparts for manufacturing of broadband Modems, Set-top boxes for Internet, set top boxes, digital video recorder (DVR) /network video recorder (NVR), CCTV camera / IP camera, lithium ion battery (other than those for mobile phones) has been removed. While BCD on E-Readers has been increased, BCD on parts of e-readers has been decreased to 5 percent.

The government has also withdrawn exemption of SAD on populated PCBs for manufacture of personal computers in the country. It has proposed 4 percent of duty on these devices. It’s notable the FM also announced withdrawing the duty on populated PCBs for mobile phones and tablets. It has proposed a concessional SAD on such devices for local manufacturing.

Even as smartphone makers adapt to the new duty structure, you can expect prices of your mobile phones and laptops that are not manufactures in India to go higher. It may be possible that the manufacturers may pass on new tax burden on to the end users.

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Xiaomi announced Mi 4S with 5-inch full HD display, Snapdragon 808 Hexa-core processor,3GB RAM, fingerprint sensor

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Xiaomi just announced Mi 4S, the company’s latest smartphone in the Mi 4 series at an event in China. It has a 5-inch 1080p display, is powered by an Hexa-Core Snadpragon 808 processor and runs on MIUI 7 based on Android 6.0 (Marshmallow). It has a 13-megapixel rear camera with two-tone LED flash, phase-detection auto-focus (PDAF) and a 5-megapixel front-facing camera.

It has dual SIM support, 4G LTE connectivity, also comes with a fingerprint sensor on the back and microSD expansion slot that were absent in the Mi 4c, and also has a larger 3260mAh battery. It has a metal frame and a glass back.

Xiaomi Mi 4S specifications

5-inch (1920 x 1080 pixels) Full HD IPS fully laminated 441 PPI display
Hexa-Core Qualcomm Snapdragon 808 64-bit processor with Adreno 418 GPU
3GB RAM, 64GB internal memory, expandable memory with microSD
MIUI 7 on top of Android 6.0 (Marshmallow)
Dual SIM
13MP rear camera with dual-tone LED flash, PDAF
5MP front-facing camera
Fingerprint sensor, infrared sensor
4G LTE with VoLTE, WiFi 802.11 b/g/n/ac dual-band (MIMO), Bluetooth 4.1, GPS, USB Type-C
3260mAh built-in battery with Qualcomm Quick Charge 2.0
The Xiaomi Mi 4S comes in White, Black, Gold and Pink colors and is priced at 1699 Yuan (US$ 259 / Rs. 17,832 approx.). It will be available in China starting from March 1st.

Xiaomi announced Mi5 with 5.15-inch full HD Display, Snapdragon 820 processor, 4GB RAM, fingerprint sensor price starts At Rs 24,092(approx)

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Xiaomi announced Mi 5, the company’s latest flagship smartphone at an event in China,. It has a 5.15-inch 1080p curved glass display, is powered by a Quad-Core Snapdragon 820 processor and runs on MIUI 7 based on Android 6.0 (Marshmallow). It has a 16-megapixel rear camera with two-tone LED flash, phase-detection auto-focus (PDAF), resulting in a quick focus, DTI pixel isolation technology, Spectra image processor, 4-axis optical image stabilization (OIS), 4K video recording and a 4-megapixel front-facing camera with pixel size of 2 microns.

The fingerprint sensor is present It has a 3D glass body with strong glass on the back, is 7.25mm thick and weighs just 129 grams. It has USB Type-C port and packs a 3000mAh battery with Qualcomm Quick Charge 3.0 that will offer talk time of up to 2.5 hours with just 5 minutes of charge

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Xiaomi Mi 5 specifications

5.15-inch (1920×1080 pixels) Full HD display with curved glass, 95% of the NTSC color gamut, 600 nits brightness
Snapdragon 820 64-bit Quad-Core processor with Adreno 530 GPU3GB LPDDR4 RAM / 32GB / 64GB (UFS 2.0) internal storage, 4GB LPDDR4 RAM / 128GB (UFS 2.0) internal storage
Android 6.0 Marshmallow with MIUI 7
Dual SIM
16-megapixel rear camera with dual-tone LED flash, Sony IMX298 sensor, f/2.0 aperture, PDAF, 4-axis OIS, 4K video recording4MP front-facing camera wiht 2um pixel size, f/2.0 aperture, 80-degree wide-angle lensFingerprint scanner, Infrared sensor
Dimensions: 144.55×69.2×7.25mm; Weight: 129g; Ceramic: 139 g4G LTE with VoLTE, WiFi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac dual-band (MIMO), Bluetooth 4.2, GPS, NFC, USB Type-C
3,000mAh (typical) / 2910mAh (minimum) built-in battery with Qualcomm Quick Charge 3.0

The Xiaomi Mi 5 comes in Black, White, Gold and Rose colors and is priced at 1999 Yuan (US$ 306 / Rs. 20,969 approx) for the standard 3GB RAM with 32GB storage version with 1.8GHz Snapdragon 820 SoC, 2299 Yuan (US$ 351 / Rs. 24,092 approx) for the high-end version with the same 3GB RAM, 64GB storage and 2.15GHz Snapdragon 820 SoC and 2699 Yuan (US$ 413 / Rs. 28,312 approx.) for the exclusive ceramic edition with 4GB RAM, 128GB storage and 2.15GHz Snapdragon 820 SoC. It goes on sale in China from March 1st

LG announced G5 with Quad HD always on display, 4GB RAM, hardware expandable slot Android 6.0 Smartphone

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LG has officially announced G5, the company’s latest flagship smartphone in the G series that packs a dual rear cameras and a hardware expansion slot. It has a 5.3-inch (2560 x 1440 pixels) Quad HD Quantum always-on display that lets you can check the time, battery status, and notifications without waking the phone. The display’s backlight only illuminates one small part of the overall display, so only 0.8% of the phone’s battery drains in a hour, according to LG. It is powered by a quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 820 processor and runs on Android 6.0 (Marshmallow) with LG UX.

It has a 16-megapixel rear camera with LED flash, OIS 2.0, Laser auto focus, manual mode and a secondary 8-megapixel rear camera with 135-degree wide angle lens. It has a 5-megapixel front-facing camera. LG has also introduced a hardware expansion modules called CAM Plus and Hi-Fi Plus with B&O Play.

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CAM Plus: Camera that is attached through battery slot for a comfortable grip and convenient control of a DSLR. Offers Auto focus, exposure lock, and provides physical buttons for power, shutter, record, and zoom. Packs additional battery capacity of 1,200mAh.
Hi-Fi Plus with B&O Play: Portable Hi-Fi audio player developed in collaboration with B&O Play supports 32-bit, 384KHz high-definition audio playback. Can be used with LG G5 or even as a separate Hi-Fi digital audio chip (DAC) that connects to any smartphone or PC.

LG G5 Friends

It also has companion devices called LG Friends that can be transformed into a digital camera, Hi-Fi player and more.

LG 360 VR: VR goggle that can be connected with the G5 via a dedicated cable and works exclusively with the G5 to simulate a 130-inch TV viewed from two meters away. It has a stylish design that is foldable so that users can easily carry and watch VR content anytime, anywhere.
LG 360 CAM: Compact 360-degree angle camera equipped with two 13MP 200-degree wide angle cameras, 1,200mAh battery and 4GB internal memory, which can be supplemented by a microSD card. Provides 2K video and 5.1 surround channel recording on three microphones
LG Rolling Bot: Companion device that rolls like a ball while capturing images and videos with its embedded 8MP camera. Can be used as a monitoring system for the home, pet care companion as well as a remote controller for compatible home appliances.
H3 by B&O PLAY: Set of high-end earphones that is compatible with the high-quality sound of the LG Hi-Fi Plus with B&O PLAY.
LG Smart Controller: Allows users to easily control certain drones. Lets you check the video stream from the drone through the LG G5 in real time and control the unmanned aircraft with the LG Smart Controller joystick.
LG Friends Manager: Only available in the LG G5, it is the hub application that allows the G5 to connect with LG Friends with minimal fuss and effort. It automatically detects nearby LG Friends and connects quickly and easily in three simple steps, eliminating much of the hassle of pairing devices.

LG G5 Specifications

5.3-inch (2560×1440 pixels) Quad HD always-on display, 3D Arc Glass
Quad-Core Snapdragon 820 64-bit processor with Adreno 530 GPU
4GB RAM, 32GB internal memory, expandable memory up to 2TB with microSD
Android 6.0 (Marshmallow)
16MP rear camera, laser auto focus, dual-tone flash, 4K video recording
8MP secondary rear camera with 135-degree wide-angle lens
8MP front-facing camera
Dimensions: 149.4 x 73.9 x 7.7~8.6mm; Weight: 159g
Fingerprint sensor
4G LTE, WiFi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac (dual-band), Bluetooth 4.2, GPS, NFC, USB Type-C
2800mAh (removable) battery with Qualcomm Quick Charge 3.0
The LG G5 comes in Silver, Titan, Gold and Pink colors and will be available globally in April along with the Friends companion devices. No word on the pricing yet.

Samsung Launched Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge at MWC 2016

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Finally, the moment that we have all been waiting has arrived, thanks to all the buzz that Samsung managed to create before the launch. Samsung’s much-awaited “next-galaxy” S7 series of smartphones have come out of the veil at MWC 2016, Barcelona. These new smartphones are touted to be powerhouse devices with water resistance and external storage option.Samsung Galaxy S7

The Samsung Galaxy S7 and Galaxy S7 edge feature a 5.1-inch and 5.5-inch Quad HD Super AMOLED screens respectively. Samsung has crafted both the smartphones with 3D glass and metal that give sturdiness and curves to the phones, which results in better grip and form factor. As seen on the LG G5, these two phones are also packed with “Always-On Display”. The new display mode is targeted at presenting users with an easy zero-touch experience that will ensure that notifications won’t go unnoticed.

In terms of hardware, both the smartphones are powered by either the 64-bit 2.3GHz octa-core Exynos or a 64-bit 2.15GHz quad-core Snapdragon 820 chipsets. Samsung asserts that the CPU and GPU performances on the Galaxy S7 and S7 edge are greater than their predecessors Galaxy S6 and Galaxy S6 edge. Both the smartphones support 4G LTE Cat 9 (up to 450 Mbps of download speeds) in terms of connectivity.

Commenting on the launch, DJ Koh, President of Mobile Communications Business, Samsung Electronics said,“We believe in a world that is brighter, sharper, more convenient, and more fun. We strive to deliver on that vision with the Galaxy S7 and Galaxy S7 edge by marrying elegant design with functionality and providing a seamless mobile experience. We empower consumers with technology to help them get more out of life and will continue to push the frontier of what’s possible.”

Furthermore, these two smartphones are also equipped with IP68 water and dust resistance. Samsung has integrated a one-of-its-kind Edge UX in the Galaxy S7 edge, which will provide an upper-level edge experience to the users. The Edge UX offers convenience and productivity by organizing simple shortcuts for the most-used apps or features by users, such as e-mail, third-party applications, selfie mode, panorama mode, and many more.

In the photography department, both the flagships sport a 12-megapixel Dual Pixel camera, which is promoted by the company to produce brighter and clearer images in low light conditions. The camera is outfitted with a sharper lens clubbed with a wider aperture and a larger pixel that results in fast shutter speed. Besides, the camera module has also been made slimmer and thankfully, the lens does not protrude anymore, unlike the Galaxy S6. It also features a 5-megapixel selfie camera with a f/1.7, aperture, which ensures brighter selfies.

Following the past leaks and rumors, the Galaxy S7 and Galaxy S7 edge come studded with a microSD card slot, which can be further expanded up to 200GB. It bears 32GB/64GB internal storage, which will vary as per the variant you will go for. Both the devices are paired with 4GB of RAM, and are expected to feature Hybrid SIM slot for select markets. It means that users can use the one of the slots for either a microSD card or a SIM card. On the software front, both the devices run Android 6.0 Marshmallow.

These new flagships by Samsung are equipped with 3,000 mAh (for Galaxy S7) and 3,600 mAh battery (for Galaxy S7 edge). Both the devices support fast charging on wired and wireless chargers.

Now coming on to the pricing and availability, the Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge will go on sale in the US on March 11 onwards. The pre-ordering will commence on February 23. The Galaxy S7 will be up for grabs in Gold, and Black color variants, on the other hand, the Galaxy S7 Edge will be available in Silver, Black, and Gold color options. For the initial buyers of the two flagships, Samsung is going to offer a free Gear VR, however, it is a limited period offer that will be valid from February 23 to March 18. As of now, Samsung has just stated that the pricing of the Galaxy S7 and S7 edge will be like their predecessors, the Galaxy S6, and S6 edge. So, It means these two devices will definitely cost you a substantial amount.

Samsung Galaxy S7 specifications

5.1-inch Quad HD Super always-on AMOLED display with a resolution of 2560×1440 pixels
Quad-Core Snapdragon 820 processor / Octa-Core Exynos 8 Octa 8890 chipsets paired with 4GB RAM
32GB/64GB internal storage, expandable up to 200GB via microSD card
Android 6.0 Marshmallow
IP68 ratings water and dust resistance
12MP primary camera with LED Flash, Smart OIS, and 5MP front-facing camera
IP68 ratings water and dust resistance
Measures 142.4 x 69.6 x 7.9mm and Weighs 152 grams
Hybrid dual-SIM, 4G LTE, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 4.2 LE, GPS, USB 2.0, Fingerprint sensor, NFC
3000mAh battery with fast charging

Samsung Galaxy S7 edge specifications

5.5-inch Quad HD Super always-on AMOLED display with a resolution of 2560×1440 pixels
Quad-Core Snapdragon 820 processor / Octa-Core Exynos 8 Octa 8890 chipsets paired with 4GB RAM
32GB/64GB internal storage, expandable up to 200GB via microSD card
Android 6.0 Marshmallow
IP68 ratings water and dust resistance
12MP primary camera with LED Flash, Smart OIS, and 5MP front-facing camera
IP68 ratings water and dust resistance
Measures 150.9 x 72.6 x 7.7mm and Weighs 157 grams
Hybrid dual-SIM, 4G LTE, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 4.2 LE, GPS, USB 2.0, Fingerprint sensor, NFC
3600mAh battery with fast charging
Are you impressed by these new flagships by Samsung? Let us know through the comment section.

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