Reliance Jio continued to be India’s fastest 4G network in the month of September in terms of download speeds according to TRAI’s MySpeed portal. With 18.433Mbps 4G download speed offered by Reliance Jio, Vodafone, Idea, and Airtel follow with 8.999Mbps, 8.746Mbps, and 8.550Mbps respectively. As for 4G uploads, Idea Cellular leads the pack followed by Vodafone, Reliance Jio, and Airtel. Idea clocked 4G upload speeds of 6.307Mbps in September, Vodafone was second at 5.776Mbps, Jio third at 4.134Mbps, and Airtel was fourth at 4.088Mbps, according to MySpeed.
In other news, there’s an update on Reliance Industries’ plan to launch Jio Payments Bank as a joint venture with SBI. Reports suggest it could launch in December and users only require an Aadhaar card to open an account with it. Mukesh Ambani, Chairman of Reliance Industries Limited, apparently wanted to launch Jio Payments Bank along with the Jio Phone but meeting RBI compliance and regulations meant a delay.
BlackBerry Motion with 5.5-Inch display, 4,000mAh battery launched
The BlackBerry Motion smartphone is now official. After rumours aplenty, this mid-range Android smartphone launched at Technology Week conference in Dubai. It will be priced at around $460 (approximately Rs. 30,00) and be available in the UAE and other Middle Eastern markets first. The BlackBerry Motion is a dual-SIM Android 7.1.1 Nougat smartphone with a 5.5-inch HD (720×1280 pixels) display. There’s DragonTrail Glass protection and a physical home button below the display. The BlackBerry Motion is powered by a Snapdragon 625 SoC processor with 4GB of RAM and has a 4000mAh battery. The handset has 32GB of inbuilt storage, expandable via microSD card (up to 2TB) should you want more space.
WhatsApp Business features revealed, APK available for download
WhatsApp Business, an app from the company designed to help businesses keep in touch with their customers, is available for download as an APK on third-party sites, a private beta for it is also up on Google Play. To use it, however, you need to be a part of a private beta. Businesses can migrate their business numbers to WhatsApp Business by installing the app on the same phone as their personal WhatsApp account but have a different number tied to it, register a landline number for WhatsApp Business (which would be used from a phone with a personal WhatsApp account), and finally users can also use two different phones and handle their personal and business accounts separately.
If you run a business and wish to sign up for WhatsApp Business, you need to fill up this survey.
Xiaomi Mi MIX 2 India launch on Tuesday, will be Flipkart exclusive
Xiaomi is set to launch its bezel-less smartphone, the Xiaomi Mix MIX 2 this Tuesday. The phone will be exclusive to Flipkart. The Xiaomi Mi MIX 2, which was launched in China earlier, comes in three variants – 6GB RAM/64GB storage for CNY 3,299 (roughly Rs. 32,300), 6GB RAM/128GB storage for CNY 3,599 (roughly Rs. 35,300), and 6GB RAM/256GB storage version for CNY 3,999 (roughly Rs. 39,200). The official price for India is yet to be revealed and there’s a full ceramic body edition at CNY 4,699 (roughly Rs. 46,000) which safe to say, won’t be making it to India as it’s yet to launch in China.
Xiaomi Redmi Note 5 leaked images show dual cameras; OnePlus 5T may launch in November
The Xiaomi Mi MIX 2 isn’t the only phone in the news, the Xiaomi Redmi Note 5 has been leaked yet again via live images shared by a Weibo user. There are minimal bezels on all sides which should give it an 18:9 aspect ratio. The home button is a glaring omission but it does sport a fingerprint scanner at the back, which also has a vertical dual camera setup.
Also leaked is the OnePlus 5T which should arrive in November. According to a report, the Chinese firm will bring a 6-inch full-HD+ (1080×2160 pixels) display with an 18:9 aspect ratio. In addition to this, expect thin bezels and curved edges, much like contemporary flagships such as the Samsung Galaxy S8. Furthermore, the 8GB OnePlus 5 is out of stock in the UK, lending credence to this.
Asus ZenFone 4 Selfie Lite with 13-megapixel front camera, front flash launched
Asus has launched another ZenFone 4 smartphone. The Asus ZenFone 4 Selfie Lite has been launched in the Philippines and it has a quad-core Snapdragon 425 processor and 2GB of RAM, there’s a 13-megapixel rear camera with LED flash and phase detection autofocus (PDAF). On the front, the smartphone bears a 13-megapixel sensor coupled with an f/2.0 aperture and a ‘softlight’ LED flash. The Asus ZenFone 4 Selfie Lite comes in two inbuilt storage options – 16GB and 32GB – expandable via microSD card (up to 2TB) with a dedicated slot.The smartphone is due to go on sale this month and will be available in Deepsea Black, Mint Green, Rose Pink, and Sunlight Gold colour variants. Asus is also touting 100GB of free space via Google Drive for 2 years.
Android phone makers looking at iPhone X-like Face ID feature; iPhone 7 top-selling smartphone
Face ID might be exclusive to the iPhone X for now, but that’s not going to stop Android manufacturers from trying to replicate similar functionality. KGI Securities’ Ming-Chi Kuo has stated that Android smartphone makers are increasingly inquiring about 3D-sensing tech, with three times as many inquiries for advanced facial recognition technology. Kuo, who has an admirable track record on all things Apple, said he believes that in the next two to three years, Android smartphones featuring a 3D sensor equipped facial recognition technology will exceed under-display fingerprint recognition by a factor of two or three or more.
In more smartphone news, the iPhone 7 has sold more than any other smartphone in the first six months of the year. A report from IHS Markit claims that the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus respectively are the world’s largest selling smartphones for the first half of the year. Though no exact shipment figures were provided, Samsung had two phones in the top five with the Galaxy Grand Prime Plus taking third place.
Joe Belfiore says Windows Phone not a focus for Microsoft
For the first time, a Microsoft executive has openly admitted that the company has no plans for Windows 10 Mobile. Over the weekend, Corporate Vice President in the Operating Systems Group at Microsoft, Joe Belfiore said that building new features for Windows Phone and launching new handsets are no longer a “focus” for the company.
Belfiore said Microsoft attempted to fix one of the biggest factors crippling the growth of Windows Phone, namely the unavailability of several popular apps, but its attempts never materialised.
“We have tried VERY HARD to incent app devs. Paid money.. wrote apps 4 them.. but volume of users is too low for most companies to invest. ☹️,” Belfiore tweeted.
Microsoft ended support for Windows Phone 8.1, the most popular version of its mobile operating system in July. Belfiore in another tweet insisted that the company will continue to support the platform by releasing bug fixes and security updates.