With 90 HD channels, Sun Direct set to overtake Tata Sky as No.1 HD DTH player

Sun Direct,  the DTH arm of Sun TV Network, could soon emerge as the No. 1 provider of HD TV channels in India, according to a distributor privy to the company’s plans. The DTH operator has recently acquired several transponders on a new satellite owned by the ISRO, the Indian space agency, next to its primary satellite Measat 3. India launched GSAT-15 with 24 Ku band transponders in late 2015. Each transponder can be used to beam 8-10 HD channels, but many DTH operators cram in as many as 16 HD…

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Spectranet Broadband enters Bangalore, 50 Mbps unlimited at Rs 1,350

Spectranet, one of India’s oldest internet service providers, has entered Bangalore, its first market in South India, with aggressively priced broadband plans. The company, which started in Delhi more than a decade ago, is offering ‘truly unlimited’ 50 Mbps plan for Rs 1,349 per month. Including taxes, however, the monthly bill will come to around Rs 1,600. For 100 Mbps, charges are Rs 1,849 per month. In comparison, established player You Broadband offers only a 10 Mbps connection at about Rs 1,900 per month, according to its website. Moreover, You Broadband has…

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BSNL turns net gainer in MNP, to launch 4G at year-end

Bharat Sanchar Nigam Ltd, the publicly owned telecom operator, is now ‘MNP positive’, its chairman and managing director Anupam Shrivastava said, without giving details. “BSNL’s MNP ratio is positive,” Shrivastava said at a customer interaction event today. It is not clear whether the executive was talking about all-time figures or monthly or yearly numbers. In the first eight months of 2011, for example, BSNL had a net loss of 2.6 lakh customers via mobile number portability or MNP. MNP was started in 2011. Over the next five years, the total…

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Bharti Airtel likely to counter Reliance Jio’s 303 plan shortly

Bharti Airtel, India’s largest telecom company, is likely to match Reliance Jio’s one-year promotional 4G tariff of Rs 303 per month, according to industry and analyst sources. “They have been maintaining that they will match once Jio starts charging for customers,” said a stock analyst based in Mumbai. “That time has come. If they don’t match it, they’re going to be priced out.” At present, the cheapest tariff from Airtel is 6 GB for Rs 147, but that is given only to its ‘at risk’ customers. The company identifies customers…

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Redmi Note 4 Black coming to India on Mar 1

Xiaomi has announced that the sought-after black-color version of its successful Redmi Note 4 smartphone will be sold in India for the first time on March 1. The non-availability of the black variant has been a big grouse with Xiaomi fans in India. The Note 4 was started selling in India a month ago, and has sold hundreds of thousands of units under the weeekly flash sales conducted by the company. At the first flash sale for the model on Jan 24, the model set a record in India by…

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Reliance Jio to offer 30 GB, unlimited calls for Rs 303/month from April

Mukesh Ambani, chairman of Reliance Jio, confirmed what many feared — the end of free 4G data will get over on March 31, but also announced a new program called ‘Jio Prime’, under which subscribers can get 1 GB per day at Rs 303 per month. They also have to pay a one-time cost of Rs 99 to be eligible for the offer. Besides getting 1 GB per day, people who recharge with Rs 303 every month will also get unlimited data usage between 2 AM and 5 AM, as…

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WATCH LIVE: Mukesh Ambani’s speech on Reliance Jio reaching 100 mln users

Mukesh Ambani, chairman of Reliance Jio Infocomm will be giving an update on the performance of India’s largest data services provider at 1:30 PM today. You can watch the live broadcast of Mukesh Ambani’s speech below. HIGHLIGHTS OF HIS SPEECH Last month, Jio users consumed over 100 cr GB of data India is No. 1 in the world in mobile data usage Will double the data capacity ‘in coming months’ By 2017-end, 99% of the population will be covered He is widely expected to announce that his company has crossed…

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Siti to launch cable broadband in five Indian cities as Jio expands

Zee Group-owned Siti Cable will launch high-speed broadband services in five different cities by June this year, company sources revealed. Siti Cable, a brand of Siti Networks, currently operates broadband services in Delhi, Hisar, Rohtak and Karnal. The new locations are likely to be outside Haryana, according to our sources. “We will be using Docsis technology from Cisco,” said a Siti official, who did not want to be named. The company is trying to withstand competition from fellow operator Hathway as well as upcoming contender Reliance Jio. Jio has a…

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Mukesh Ambani to announce 100 mln Reliance Jio customers today?

Mukesh Ambani, chairman of Reliance Jio Infocomm, will make a statement today, 21 February, at 1:30 PM. The statement will be streamed via Youtube and other channels. The link to the live stream will be shared by around 12 PM. Though the company has no revealed what the subject of the announcement will be, it is expected that the Ambani will announce that the company has crossed the 100 mln subscriber mark. Jio, which started signing up customers in September, had crossed the 72 mln mark in December and has been…

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Chennai cruise terminal to be ready this month

India’s first terminal dedicated for cruise ships on its east coast will be ready in Chennai this month, the shipping ministry said. This will make it the fifth such cruise terminal in the country. All four existing cruise terminals are located on India’s western coastline, targeting ships that come in from the Middle East and Europe. These are located at Mumbai, Mormugao, Mangalore and Kochi. The Chennai terminal will target both ships coming from the West as well as those coming from the east. Cruise terminals provide special facilities that…

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Reliance Jio added 2 cr subscribers in Dec, Andhra Pradesh leads

Reliance Jio, the new 4G operator, has the highest number of subscribers in Andhra Pradesh, followed by Gujarat and Delhi. The company added 20 mln (2 cr) new users in December, its highest ever tally for a single month. The previous record was held by October, when it added 19.63 mln users. In December, the 4G player added 20.28 mln subscribers. The company accounted for 73% of the total subscriber additions in the month. The highest number of users for the operator was in Andhra Pradesh telecom circle, which also includes…

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LENOVO K7 NOTE, with Snapdragon 625, to take on Redmi Note 4 in India

Two months after the launch of its latest mid-range phone, the Lenovo K6 Note, the Chinese smartphone brand is ready to unveil its next mid range model and the competitor to the successful Redmi Note 4 “Something more noteworthy is coming soon,” the Chinese company said, unveiling a picture (see above) of a previously unseen model. It is almost certain that the new model will be named K7 Note. The predecessor, K6 Note, was launched as an offline model and was priced at a steep Rs 17,000 for the 4 GB…

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BSNL doubles data on 11 existing 3G plans to take on Reliance Jio

BSNL, the public-owned telecom services provider, has increased the data allowance of more of its 3G plans, days after announcing two new tariff plans. Last week, the company has increased the allocation on two of its popular recharges by double or more. The Rs 78 pack, which used to provide 1 GB of data for 5 days, was tweaked to give 2 GB and the Rs 291 plan, which used to provide 2 GB per month, would not provide 8 GB. Now, BSNL has revealed some more 3G plans with…

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Idea Cellular posts first-ever loss due to Reliance Jio impact

Idea Cellular reported a loss of Rs 479 cr for the October-December quarter, hit by Reliance Jio’s free offerings, the first loss in last 40 quarters since its IPO in 2007. “The Indian mobile industry witnessed an unprecedented disruption in the quarter of Octoberto December 2016, primarily due to free voice & mobile data promotions by the new entrant in the sector.. As a result of this current industry upheaval, the standalonelcea revenue dropped to an unforeseen level at Rs. 86,627 million, a decline of 6.9% on sequential quarterly basis…

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Facebook to start showing ads in Groups

Facebook, the biggest website in the world by amount of time spent, has started showing targeted advertising on ‘Groups’,  the social network’s equivalent of forums. The ads will be based on the interests of the user,  Facebook  said in a communication to group administrators. The move marks the coming of age of ‘Groups’, which Facebook has largely been content to ignore. Unlike Pages, which was hogged most of the attention of Facebook’s internal ‘monetization’ team, Groups do not lend themselves to easy monetization. Administrators of Pages, for example, get lots…

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Hathway Broadband to double data allowance, give 1 Gbps speed to take on Reliance Jio

Hathway Broadband, which has over six lakh subscribers for its cable and fibre-based services, said it has upgraded its network and will soon be providing its users with up to twice as much data in the same package. Hathway provides its high-speed broadband service in around 20 cities and in much of Kerala (via Asianet). Hathway currently operates on a fiber-to-home model in Delhi, Bangalore and Kolkata, and on CISCO’s Docsis technology in other places. “Post completion of technical infrastructure upgradation project, network is ready for 50% increase in speed…

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Quora imposes restrictions on anonymous users; to pre-screen anon content; stops likes, comments

Quora, the question and answer app that is very popular in certain pockets of population in India and abroad, said has made three crucial changes to its anonymity policy: installing a mandatory screening process, preventing anonymous users from liking and commenting, and removing direct linkage between anonymous content and their authors on the back-end systems. Quora, a modern version of the once-popular Google Answers and Yahoo Answers, allows people to share their experiences and knowledge anonymously, unlike Facebook, which abhors anonymous posts. It also allows people to ‘pull’ information from…

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Reliance Jio carries 80% of traffic on next-gen Internet technology

Reliance Jio, the new entrant to India’s telecom landscape, is carrying nearly 80% of its traffic in the next-generation Internet technology, a senior official of the company said. Internet Protocol or IP is one of the languages used by machines to talk to each other. All machines on the Internet use this language to ‘talk’ to each other. The most prevalent version of internet protocol in use today is version 4, also known as IP version 4 or IPv4. This was designed in 1981, when the Internet was still in…

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Sun Direct overtakes Dish TV, Videocon D2h in HD movie channels in English

Sun Direct, the DTH operator from the Sun TV group, has added several new High Definition channels over the last several days, and has now overtaken rivals Dish TV and Videocon D2h in terms of the number of English movie channels on its HD platform. The move comes more than a year after ISRO launched the GSAT 15, which promised to make more capacity available at the location at which Sun Direct is broadcasting from. GSAT-15, launched in late 2015, has 24 Ku band transponders, all of which can be used…

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Fitch withdraws ratings on Rolta India

Fitch Ratings has withdrawn its ratings on India-based Rolta India Limited, after the Indian IT company said it was no longer interested in continuing with the arrangement. “Fitch is withdrawing the ratings as Rolta has chosen to stop participating in the rating process. Therefore, Fitch will no longer have sufficient information to maintain the rating. Accordingly, Fitch will no longer provide ratings or analytical coverage for Rolta,” the ratings agency said. “The company is currently working with lenders to find a solution to its liquidity issues following default on its…

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