India’s new social media rules make it impossible for WhatsApp to function as before

The new rules for messaging apps announced as part of today’s digital/online media regulatory framework will make it impossible for WhatsApp to continue to operate in India in its present form. One of the key demands placed by the government in front of WhatsApp has always been that it should attach an origin-ID to all […]

Vodafone Idea to offer latest Hollywood movies on rent

Vodafone Idea launched one of India’s first per-per-view service on its Vi Movies & TV platform. The service, which will enable users to rent premium video content such as new movies, will be clubbed with what the company called ‘deals from Hungama Digital’ — an independent provider digital video and audio content. Initially, the service […]

Signal messenger down after heavy rush in India, US & Europe

Signal, the open source messaging platform, has become extremely slow and even unresponsive in several parts of India after a sudden rush of new users looking for a more secure alternative to WhatsApp. Global interest in Signal app has jumped by around 50 times since WhatsApp announced changes to its terms of use last week. […]

Sun NXT to abandon ad-based strategy?

The management of Chennai-based Sun TV Network seems to have abandoned the earlier ‘hybrid strategy’ for its digital platform and come to the conclusion that an advertising-led model will likely not work in the video-on-demand universe in the longer term. The company’s Sun NXT app has been by far the most aggressive player as far […]

Bharat Matrimony wants to lure customers from ‘all tiers’

Matrimony.com, one of the largest matchmaking companies in the world, said it continue to offer discounts and special pricing to attract new internet users who are coming online via the 4G wireless data revolution. The company, which operates the Bharat Matrimony website and others, has typically charged several thousand rupees for its paid membership. Only […]

Airtel becomes first DTH player to unbundle OTT from hardware

Bharti Airtel has become the first major DTH or cable company to free up its content app, Airtel XStream, from its hardware. All other major cable and DTH companies in India offer their app only on their own device — typically a stick or a set-top-box — and do not allow the software to be […]

Reliance blocks sideloading of third-party Android apps on Jio Fiber box

Reliance Jio, the country’s largest telecom operator, has started blocking the ‘sideloading’ of third-party Android apps on its Jio Fiber set top boxes. The operator had recently introduced Android Pie-based fiber set top boxes for its users over the last few weeks, and subscribers soon realized that the box came with two key assets that […]

COMING SOON: Tata Sky Binge+ Android Box; Training manual leaked

Tata Sky’s much awaited Android set-top-box, Tata Sky Binge+, is all set to become available in the coming 2-3 weeks as a dealer has leaked the technician’s reference guide for installing the service. The manual, leaked on social media, confirms what has already been reported — it will be built on top of Android TV […]

Sun NXT movies now available on JioCinema

Chennai-based Sun TV Network, which operates to the most widely watched pay channel in India, has inked a content licensing deal with Reliance Jio, India’s biggest telecom operator. Under the deal, Sun TV’s content — including those that it has purchased digital rights for — will be made available on Jio’s apps. With this, thousands […]

Can Airtel Xstream’s open approach beat Jio’s walled garden?

When cellular telephony started in India, Bharti and Reliance took two divergent approaches towards launching cellular services — Airtel decided to focus on providing the services, leaving third party players to provide the hardware, while Reliance decided went with CDMA, a technology in which everything was more tightly controlled. Despite the obvious technological shortcomings of […]

Flipkart starts rolling out free Amazon Prime-like video service

Flipkart, Amazon’s biggest competitor in India, has started rolling out a video streaming service on its mobile app similar to Amazon Prime Video and Netflix. The service is very similar to other streaming apps, and offers videos classified into different sections based on genres and languages. Both movie and non-movie content are available. Non-movie content, […]

10 cr people watch Hotstar on India-Pak match day

Hotstar, India’s largest premium streaming platform, said 15.6 million (1.6 cr) people used its video streaming app at the same time on June 16, when India played Pakistan in the ICC World Cup in England. In all, 10 cr people logged into the service some time during that day. This is a record for the […]

Vakrangee to distribute ZEE5

IT service management company Vakrangee Limited, one of the main providers of the software equipment for voter id cards and Aadhaar cards, said that it has partnered with mass media firm ZEE Entertainment Enterprises Ltd. (ZEEL), for the “distribution and subscription” of ZEEL’s video on demand platform ZEE5 for its customers in 3,504 Nextgen Vakrangee […]

TV to remain content king, despite growth in mobile apps: Survey

The number of smartphone users in India is expected to almost double by 2022 from 47 cr registered at the end of 2017, a joint study by ASSOCHAM and PwC said. Fueled by cheap data and the explosion of ‘over the top’ services, the total number of smartphones will hit 86 cr by 2022, which […]

Airtel takes aim at Youtube with ‘Wynk Tube’

Bharti Airtel has introduced a competitor to Youtube, which accounts for more than half of India’s mobile internet consumption, with the launch of Wynk Tube — a Youtube like app that will focus more on music and music videos. Unlike Youtube, which does not let its free users switch to an audio only mode, Wynk […]

Airtel TV incorporates Editor Ji for election coverage

Telecom operator Bharti Airtel updated its TV app by adding a new section for election coverage and incorporating content from the ‘Editor Ji’ platform founded by former NDTV CEO Vikram Chandra. Airtel TV app users will now have access to exclusive election news bulletins from the video news app, Editor Ji, which is funded by […]