LG today at MWC 2016, unveiled its flagship for the year 2016, the G5 which brings in a brand new design with a metal unibody featuring a slide-out Battery and a modular type design. The G5 is also one of the first modular phones which would be available for consumers to buy. The LG CAM Plus is a versatile camera module that can be attached through the battery slot to deliver a comfortable grip and convenient control of a standalone camera. The LG CAM Plus provides physical buttons for power, shutter, record, zoom, LED indicator and comfortable grip. It also offers intuitive auto focus and exposure lock, features usually found on standalone digital cameras. When attached to the LG G5, it provides an additional battery capacity of 1,200mAh to allow for longer shooting times for more fun and enjoyment. The Slide-out Battery helps you easily swap out a depleted battery for a fully charged one in seconds.
The LG Hi-Fi Plus with B&O PLAY is an innovative portable Hi-Fi DAC audio player developed in collaboration with B&O PLAY to meet the needs of those who seek to enjoy top-notch sounds that have traditionally only been available through high-end audio devices. LG Hi-Fi Plus with B&O PLAY stands out for its simple yet elegant Scandinavian design as well as premium sound technology. In addition to the 32-bit Hi-Fi DAC upsampling technology first introduced on the LG V10, LG Hi-Fi Plus with B&O PLAY also supports 32-bit 384KHz high-definition audio playback. LG Hi-Fi Plus with B&O PLAY can be used either as a module with the LG G5 or as a separate Hi-Fi DAC by connecting to any smartphone or PC.
The LG G5 has two cameras on the rear: one with a standard 78-degree lens and another with a 135-degree wide angle lens, the widest available in any smartphone. The 135-degree lens on the LG G5 offers a viewing angle that is approximately 1.7 times wider than those of existing smartphone cameras and 15 degrees wider than the human eye’s field of view. The wide angle lens makes it easier for users to capture more landscape, taller buildings or larger groups without having to position oneself further from the subject.
The 5.3-inch Quad HD IPS Quantum display on the LG G5 offers an Always-on feature, the first on a main smartphone display. One can always see the time at a glance, even during important meetings or when your hands are full. To minimise power consumption, LG redesigned the display driver IC memory and power management function so that the display’s backlight only illuminates one small part of the overall display. The Always-on Display requires only 0.8 percent of the battery’s full capacity per hour to operate.
With consumers turning on their smartphones up to 150 times a day mostly to just check the time, the G5’s Always-on Display will make a notable difference in the life of the battery over the course of the day.
Another advanced display feature in the LG G5 is Daylight Mode, which gives the G5 exceptional outdoor visibility beyond that of current auto brightness technology. Daylight Mode detects surrounding light conditions and instantaneously increases or decreses the brightness of the display, up to 850 nits. Even before your eyes have adjusted to the different lighting conditions, the G5 will be ready.
Under the hood, the G5 is powered with a Snapdragon 820 processor, a 4GB RAM, Qualcomm Quick Charge 3.0 and aptX HD, an enhanced codec that supports 24-bit sound over Bluetooth, delivering rich and clear sound over wireless connections without any loss. Here are some key Specs:
Chipset: Qualcomm® Snapdragon™ 820 Processor
Display: 5.3-inch Quad HD IPS Quantum Display (2560 x 1440 / 554ppi)
Memory: 4GB LPDDR4 RAM / 32GB UFS ROM / microSD (up to 2TB)
Camera: Rear Standard 16MP, Wide 8MP / Front 8MP
Battery: 2,800mAh (removable)
OS: Android 6.0 Marshmallow
Size: 149.4 x 73.9 x 7.7mm
Network: LTE / 3G / 2G
Connectivity: Wi-Fi 802.11 a, b, g, n, ac / USB Type-C / NFC / Bluetooth 4.2
This device will be available in Silver, Titan, Gold and Pink colour.
In this article, let’s review the Honor 5X, a budget mid range smartphone from Honor. Though, this device is priced as a budget phone, features, design and the user experience give it a feel of a good high end smartphone.
Honor is Huawei’s Smartphone e-brand for digital natives. Honor has been expanding aggressively in global markets, and has successfully launched in 74 global markets, entering the bestselling charts in most of the European countries honor launched. This is also the first Honor phone which is available for the US market at just 199 USD. The Honor 5X was announced early this week in India at a price of 12999 and is available in three colors – gold, silver and grey. The phone will be sold on both Amazon and Flipkart and is available for pre-orders. The sale of Honor 5X will commence starting 1st February midnight.
Alright, Lets look at how this phone performs in these 4 key areas –
Hardware, Look and Feel:
The phone is made from brushed metal alloy that adds to the premium look and feel of this phone; and not many companies offer a metal body in this range as of now. The top and bottom of the phone are made up of plastic. The phone comes with a premium aircraft grade metal that also offers 5 layer heat sinks with copper shielding cover. The phone is neither heavy, nor very thin. Its a good weight in the hands; and doesn’t slip-off easily. The curved back is quite ergonomic and the rear flows very well to the front. There is a LED notification on the top of the phone as well.
The power button and volume rockers are placed on the right side which feels vey neat and also offers a good amount of tactile feedback. The buttons also have a textured feel to it making it more comfortable to use.
The rear of the phone sports the camera and the finger print sensor. The finger print sensor is an impressive feature on this phone (or in any Huawei phone in that matter). The finger print reading is fast (the company says 0.5 seconds to unlock) and also, has worked well all the times for me, 10/10. Kudos to the team. When compared with other phones in this segment, the accuracy is pretty neat.
The emotion UI provides you way more options to further make use of the finger print sensor, than to just unlock your phone. Gestures help you do that. For e.g.: Swiping up on the finger print scanner shows the recently used apps. Swiping down brings in the notifications page to quickly read through and toggle settings. A tap can be configured to take you to back screen or even click a picture while you take a selfie. You can even take a call, or use it like a home button with customisations available. Here are some of the options, you can set.
The phone is powered with a Snapdragon 616 processor, an Adreno 405 GPU and a 2GB RAM; thats a bummer. There are 3GB variants available in China. not sure, why they weren’t made available here in India and the US. The phone has a onboard 16GB ROM, expandable upto 128 GB. The performance is slightly sluggish with some screen refreshes when you toggle between the running apps. There is a bit of delay on the load when you launch apps; not a major deal breaker. Probably, it would’ve been better with a better processor and the 3GB RAM; however, must appreciate the Emotion UI for making the OS much user friendly and providing some good sneaks that help in better performance when compared to other phones which are running on a 615/616 processor.
The left side is for the SIM and SD card slots. This phone has 2 seperate slots for a nano SIM & Micro SIM and a Micro SD card. Unlike few other phones which offer Hybrid SIM models, you do not need to sacrifice on a SIM to add up a Micro SD card.
The Display is very impressive and sharp. I find it to be one of the real good features of the phone. Its a 5.5 inch, IPS Panel display powering a full HD resolution of 1080 * 1920. The quality and the details are neat. Images aren’t over-saturated or too warm/cold. the colours are vibrant and the brightness on the screen is impressive as well. Reading text on the phone is pretty good. I like the fact, it isn’t too sharp giving a realistic clear text.
The phone has a 3000 MAH battery which offers a good battery life of over a day; It gives me SOT of 6.5 hours which is pretty impressive. With Emotion UI, there are tons of more customisations which you can do, to make your phone even better in terms of battery saving. Thanks to the patents Huawei has on the same.
The Headphone Jack on the top and Micro-USB port and speaker grill towards the bottom. The sound quality on the phone isn’t great when you play music on loud speaker; it gets slightly better with a headset. However, The call quality is very impressive and the volume is good too.!
Software, User Experience:
The Honor 5X is running Android 5.1 out of the box with the customised version, the Emotion UI 3.1. The company has announced that, this phone will get the Marshmallow update with the Emotion UI 4. These days, Every company have their own android skins for their phones. Out of all, my personal favourites have been the Flyme OS, MiUI and Emotion UI. They are not just basic customisations, but give users few features which are actually worth trying. Lets talk about that some other time!
This phone offer Emotion UI 3.1. There are few software features which makes the phone pretty good. My personal favourite is the notifications window. They show a lot more detail on a timeline about the app notifications and your system. Shake to re-align icons is cool as well. Themes would also fancy some people. If something is lacking on the EMUI, its the performance. It definitely needs some improvement.
The camera is powered with a 13MP sensor, a f2.0 aperture which does allow a lot of light and a Dual LED flash to use in low-light conditions. In outdoors, the camera performs very well and is quick. The quality of pictures is pretty neat and the details are sharp with colors being good as well. Thankfully, the software doesn’t over-sharp the images and hence, images feel realistic. Emotion UI also offers a great camera software which gives you options for smart selfies, food mode etc.
Here are some samples pictures I clicked. will upload few more as I use the phone.
The phone doesn’t come with an optical image stabiliser built in. You can shoot a 1080p video on this phone. The video processing on the phone can be better, but is certainly good enough for a mid range smartphone.
The slo-mo and time-lapse features are also there. Here is a sample time-lapse video, I shot early this morning. Not the best, and certainly not the worse either. One point worth mentioning is that, when I used this camera for a longer time to shoot this time-lapse video, it didn’t warm the phone – Thats a very neat behaviour.
The follow-focus on the videos is a pretty good addition. The front camera performance is decent and does take some good pictures; and if you’re a selfie lover, there are tons of more options to play around.
Pros and Cons, Value for Money:
With a brushed metal, premium design and a gorgeous display its impressive. Talking about value for money, At USD 199 USD, its definitely worth considering the phone in the US. With devices like LeEco Le1S, CoolPad Note 3 and Mi Redmi Note 3 in India, I would’ve preferred, if Honor had priced the phone a little more aggressive. Today in the market, There are few other devices in this range which offers better specs; however, its not just about the specs at times. Its more on the user experience. I personally love how the honor phones offer a good user experience with its Emotion UI; and of course the accurate finger print scanner which doubles with great gesture controls. I believe, software updates with Honor aren’t going to be an issue either.
I would’ve loved had Honor brought in the 3GB variant model in India and the U.S. Not sure, if they have plans to bring it in as a limited edition phone at some point this year.
Summing up, This phone offers a good design, beautiful display and most importantly, finger print scanner which is accurate and does a lot more things than just unlocking your phone.
Do let me know what you think. Thanks for reading!
Today at the 2016 Consumer Electronics Show (CES), Lenovo announced the development of the first consumer mobile device with Project Tango in collaboration with Google. Google’s Project Tango is a technology platform that uses advanced computer vision, depth sensing, and motion tracking to create on-screen 3D experiences, allowing users to explore their physical environments via their device. Specialized hardware and software combine to let the device react to every movement of the user, when they step forward, backward, or lean side to side. App developers can transform your home into a game level, or create a magic window into virtual and augmented environments.
Project Tango-enabled devices can recognize places they’ve been before, like your living room, the office, or public spaces. Unlike GPS, Project Tango motion tracking works indoors, allowing users to navigate precisely through a shopping mall, or even find a specific item at the store where that information is available. Using the sensor in the device, Project Tango devices can also capture the 3D dimensions of the room, giving measurements that can be used to help you when shopping for furniture or decorations.
The Project Tango Tablet Development Kit can be purchased in the Google Store here. Google and Lenovo have also started a incubator platform where developers can submit their Project Tango app proposals for a chance to win funding and the chance to have their app featured on Lenovo’s upcoming smartphone. The submission period closes on Feb.15, 2016.
Lenovo, Google, and Qualcomm Technologies are working closely together to optimize the software and hardware to ensure consumers get the most out of the Project Tango platform.
Google India today announced the much awaited launch of its latest range of Nexus phones in partnership with leading smartphone makers LG and Huawei. These two devices were first unveiled at an Event held at SF a couple of weeks ago. Both Nexus 5X and Nexus 6P offer a pure stock experience of Android running Marshmallow 6.0.
Nexus 5X will be priced at Rs 31,900 (for 16GB variant) and Rs 35,900 (32GB), while Nexus 6P will be available at Rs 39,999 (32GB) and Rs 42,999 (64 GB) in India. Available for pre-orders starting today – Product Page on Amazon and Flipkart.
Colour options available: The Nexus 5X will be available in Charcoal Black, Quartz White and Ice Blue colours whereas the Nexus 6P is available only in silver & black colour.
Google has also partnered with E-zone, Croma, Reliance Digital, The Mobile Store, Bajaj Electronics, Vijay Sales, Jumbo and other offline retail chains to sell the new Nexus Devices across India.
Both these devices also offer an enhanced version of “Now on Tap” allowing users to get additional information, take actions or navigate between apps. Essentially “taking Google out of the search box,” users can quickly invoke Google from any screen by a simple tap-and-hold on the home button. Google then provides relevant information and answers based on the context of what you are looking, in the moment.
The Nexus 6P camera is optimized for low-light photography. It has 1.55 micron pixels; the sensors are much larger than the iPhone 6S Plus. The Google test results are pretty impressive. Well, Both these devices shoot 4K videos and also does Slow-Mo videos; The Nexus 5X does it at 120 frames per second. The Nexus 6P can do 240 fps.
The Nexus cameras also offer Smart Burst Pictures, which takes photos at 30fps to make GIFs with. – Similar to Nokia Live Images and Apple Live Pictures.
The Nexus 5X is manufactured by LG and comes with a 5.2-inch Full HD screen and 2700 mAh battery. At the back is a 12.3MP camera with laser-assisted autofocus while at the front is a 5MP camera. The phone is powered by a Qualcomm Snapdragon 808 SoC with 2GB of RAM.
The Nexus 6P is manufactured by Huawei and is a first full metal-body phone that comes with a larger 5.7-inch WQHD display and 3450 mAh battery. It is powered by a Snapdragon 810 v2.1 SoC and 3GB of RAM. The 6P also has the same 12.3MP rear camera as the 5X but comes with an 8MP front facing camera with HDR+ shooting mode.
Google had its event this morning at San Francisco where it unveiled few latest product lines and also showcased the next generation Android Operating System that would be pre-loaded on the version of Nexus devices. Here are few highlights of the event.
1. Numbers – Well, as every event, it all started with numbers. Google now has 1.4 B active Android devices; 20 million chrome-cast sales globally. Google Play is now over 1 billion active users. Sundar also highlighted the need of making new devices and how they guide the ecosystem. Well, played smart.
2. New Nexus Devices – 5X and 6P.
Like the rumours and leaks suggested, we have the new Nexus 5X and Nexus 6P announced. For more details on the device, check this page. The Nexus 6P is a full-metal bodied Nexus, Anodized aluminum. 7.3mm thick and is made by Huawei. Both these phones are equipped with USB Type C adapters (similar to OnePlus 2), laser-detect autofocus, Nexus Imprint (Rear Finger Print sensor), Stereo forward-facing speakers and it runs Android 6.0, Marshmallow.
Nexus 5X and 6P available for preorder today in US, UK, Ireland, and Japan. 5X starts at 379 USD and 6P starts at 499 USD. Will be available later in October. Both of these Nexus phones would also work with Project Fi, Google’s wireless MVNO network.
3. Camera – The Nexus 6P camera is optimized for low-light photography. It has 1.55 micron pixels; the sensors are much larger than the iPhone 6S Plus. The Google test results are pretty impressive. Well, Both these devices shoot 4K videos and also does Slow-Mo videos; The Nexus 5X does it at 120 frames per second. The Nexus 6P can do 240 fps.
4. Smart Burst Pictures: There’s a new “smart burst” feature in the camera, which takes photos at 30fps to make GIFs with. – Similar to Nokia Live Images and Apple Live Pictures.
5. MarshMallow Features – You can voice search from the lock screen, the notification bar gets simple. A simple app drawer which sorts applications based on your usage or the time of the day. ‘Now on Tap’ seems to be really cool, not sure how many people love sharing so much of their app data. Lets see that later. More features here. Marshmallow rolls out next week to existing Nexus devices.
6. Nexus Protect Program – This is the new warranty program from Google in the US. As of today, Google gives you a 1 year protection against hardware. They are now expanding it to two years, along with accidental damages. 24/7 support and device replacement in a working day. This program would cost 69 USD for the Nexus 5X and 89 USD for the Nexus 6P. No light of this program’s availability outside the U.S.
7. Google Play Music family plan is coming later this year. It would cost you $14.99 for up to 6 people; No limit on the number of devices.
8. Google Photos brings in three new features. You can now easily pool photos and videos into a single shared album. You can “label” people in Google Photos and thats private; and the third feature being Chromecast support. You can now showcase your photos on TV and its basically not mirroring your phone, but you get to choose which picture gets slide-show on TV, while you browse through your phone.
9. A new Google Chromecast. This thing looks funny; it would basically hang behind your TV. it comes in 3 colours. With a new adaptive antenna system and Wifi which supports 5GHz. The chrome cast app has been completely redesigned as well. You can now play games through your Chromecast. Its not mirroring your phone but extending the game to the TV and giving you controls on your phone. You could do a voice search through your phone as well. Available starting today at 35 USD. A new Chromecast Audio device which would plug into a speaker to stream audio over Wi-Fi from your existing apps. This device is 35 USD as well.
10. Preview of the Pixel C
A convertible computer from Google. The Pixel C runs android and the keyboard is a separate piece connected via Bluetooth; you slide the tablet and attach using the magnetic connection. It’s adjustable from 100 to 135 degrees of viewing angles. It has a 10.2-inch screen with a 308 ppi screen. 2560 x 1800 resolution. A Nvidia X1 processor. Maxwell GPU powered with a 3GB RAM. This would be priced 499 USD for the 32GB version and 599 for the 64GB one. Will be available end of this year. The Magnetic Keyboard would be priced at 149 USD. Its interesting that, you need not charge the detachable bluetooth keyboard. The tablet inductively charges the keyboard so you never have to charge it.
Google and Tata Trusts have partnered with Udacity to educate students in Android development to meet the growing demand for Android developers. Together they are offering 1,000 scholarships to students in India to take the Android Developer Nanodegree program for free. This is an education credential that is designed to help developers learn new skills and advance their careers in a few months from anywhere on any device at their own pace.
Students participating in the Nanodegree program will benefit from expert coaching and build a portfolio of their own projects to showcase their skills with potential employers. Students who graduate from the program will receive verified certification and job placement opportunities. There will be a Career Summit hosted by Google, Tata Trusts, and other top employers for top graduates of the program in the Spring.
To apply for scholarships to take the program for free, students are asked to take an online assessment to see if they have the prerequisites for the program. All students who complete the assessment successfully will receive scholarship application information directly.
The Udacity Android Nanodegree program is open for enrollment right now. The program takes an average of 6-9 months and costs Rs. 9,800 per month with Udacity refunding 50 percent of the tuition upon completion. Scholarships for the Android Nanodegree are available immediately. For more information visit www.udacity.com/India.
With India being the second largest developer population in the world with 3 million software developers, India has the potential to become the #1 developer population by 2018, with 4 million developers. By providing easy and affordable access to a world-class skill and educational program to Indian developers, Google aims to help India become a global leader in mobile app development.
The Udacity Android Nanodegree program comprises of courses developed and taught by expert Google instructors from the Google Developer Relations team and will include project reviews, mentorship and career services from Udacity. The curriculum will be updated regularly with new releases and will provide developers with a certificate that will help them to become a more marketable Android developer.
Gadgets have taken a very important place in our lives today, be it smart watches, phones, or the tablets. But it’s the applications, which makes these gadgets appealing and usable. There are around 2M apps available for your phone; some of them are very popular and many gems go unnoticed. The idea behind this series is to feature apps which are worthwhile and brings out the best from your smarphones and tablets. Here we go with 5 of them.
1. Horizon: We all hate videos when its captured vertically from a smartphone; most importantly, it may look good on your phone, but when you load the same on your TV or laptop, it looks way too weird with too much of black spaces. Horizon lets you record horizontal videos no matter how you hold your device. Hold it upright, sideways or even keep rotating it while capturing; your captured moment will always stay horizontal! Shoot with the back or front camera and share your creations. (iOS, Android)
2. Moves: This app records your movement throughout the day; if you don’t fancy wearing any bands around your wrist; this app will be helpful. It reports where you went, how many steps you took, and the calories you burned. This app also detects your cycling activity. It’s simple, but works really well. If you are looking for a Cycling or a Running specific app, Strava and Runkeeper is a very alternative too; also offering coaching programs. (iOS, Android)
3. AllRecipes Dinner Spinner: If you hate deciding what to cook, this app makes it easier. Select a dish type, choose the available ingredients, and the time you have. This application will give you the list of recipes. Allrecipes also offers you a Video Cookbook app. (iOS, Android)
4. PhotoMath: This is an useful app from Microblink that allows you to scan and solve mathematics equations with your smartphone. To use it, you just need to point your camera to a Math problem, and the app will instantly display the answer. (iOS, Android, Windows Phone)
5. Storytelling: This iOS app from Storehouse blends typography, pho- tos, video clips, and music into compelling narratives. You can access photos taken inside any app and share them straight to Storehouse, where you can easily drag and drop images, crop and resize them, and annotate them with captions. (iOS)
YU, the new online brand from Micromax Informatics, the largest Indian mobile brand, today announced the launch of its first and the much awaited device YUREKA (INR 8,999 roughly about 140 USD), through an exclusive partnership with Cyanogen Inc. YUREKA is the first device from YU to be launched with Cyanogen OS and get exclusive OTA firmware updates and support in India. Cyanogen OS, built on Android™, is known for delivering a number of rich software advancements that optimise performance, customisation, security, and privacy features on mobile devices.
With YUREKA, YU imparts power to the consumers to redefine the mobile space in the country by simply giving the control in a user’s hand; to create their own world, make their device look the way they want to; a cooler world, a world dashed in their identity.
YU will usher a new era of android development in India, as it will allow users to root their devices, without voiding the warranty. This will allow users to run endless customization on their device and offer an enhanced product experience, presently not being supported by any other brand in the country. For the android community in India, this would mean an opportunity to unleash the full potential of the device, while working closely with the brand and Cyanogen.
To create a robust developer ecosystem, YU has already started engaging and connecting with the Indian Developers Community, through its forum at ‘forums.yuplaygod.com’; an exclusive platform for the developers to ideate, discuss and nurture ideas.
Unveiling the new brand, Rahul Sharma said,
“The future is moving from an app driven experience to a services drive experience and YU in partnership with Cyanogen is a platform that is going to lead that transformation. We will work directly with developers’ community and brands to build services right on the OS layer and offer a differentiated consumer experience. We are creating a global platform for Indian app developers to rise at the world stage. For YU, services will be the core focus which would be ably supported by hardware partners like Qualcomm to offer a seamless and customised experience through our devices and services. We are together committed to challenge the limits of possibility and create a new world.”
All the software features are backed by strong hardware capabilities as well. YUREKA offers cutting edge smartphone capabilities enabled by the Snapdragon 615 processor with integrated 4G LTE Cat4 modem and 64-bit multi-core CPU is designed to provide high speed connectivity, as well as offering an optimal balance of high performance and power efficiency so you can enjoy faster download speeds and get more done in less time with battery power to spare. YUREKA offers consumers a 5.5 inch HD IPS display and 2 GB DDR3 RAM, which allows for flawless multitasking experiences and efficiency, a Qualcomm® Adreno™ 405 GPU that is designed to enable an incredible amount of visual detail in 3D imagery, enabling smooth frame rates and full HD video with H.265 HEVC support. Qualcomm Adreno is a product of Qualcomm Technologies, Inc
OnePlus and Amazon.in today announced their plans to bring the One to India. This exclusive partnership marks OnePlus’ first expansion into a new market with local presence. This also marks their first cooperation with a local partner. The One will be available for purchase on Amazon.in starting December 2nd, 2014.
Dec 7th, 2014: Cyanogen, Inc confirms their exclusive partnership in India with Micromax.
Its certainly a sad move. Hence, If you buy the OnePlusOne from Amazon.in, you will not probably get the OTAs. However, if you had imported them from the US, you would still get it regardless of being in India. So As suspected, the deal must read “Only Micromax and NO other manufacturer in India can have CM as an official build”. Geeks do not have a problem, they can just flash it. However, its a very bad sign for a product which is so awesome and priced so perfectly..!
Hear what they say – “Since we clarified our support for OTA firmware updates for OnePlus One global devices, we’ve received a number of inquiries regarding OnePlus One devices sold in India. As we had pledged to our users, OnePlus One global devices will receive our OTA firmware updates. If a user in India purchased a OnePlus One global device in channels outside of India, they will receive our OTA firmware updates. However, this excludes OnePlus One regional devices sold directly in India. We are committed to our exclusive partnership in India with Micromax, which will be launching its first Cyanogen OS device under their new YU brand.”
Dec 5th, 2014: Recently, there were reports about Cyanogen not supporting (releasing regular updates) OnePlus One in India due to their exclusive partnership with Micromax. However, after a couple of days of chaos, the team at Cyanogen confirmed that, OnePlus will continue to get OTA updates. Here is the official note: “We are proud of the work we did on the OnePlus One. Through our collaboration with OnePlus, we demonstrated the power of strong hardware and software tuned for exceptional performance. To clarify misinformation out there, the OnePlus One will get OTA firmware updates for all global devices, including global devices for our users in India. Rather than have misinformation continue to circulate out there, we felt it important to bring this matter to rest.”
OnePlus has launched One at Rs.21,999 (around $350) for the 64GB version.
OnePlus is now embarking on their next chapter as a company with an expansion into the Indian market. This expansion brings not just a new device, but an entirely new team and model. To provide the best possible user experience, OnePlus India will have a physical presence, the first outside of their headquarters, with a local team led by General Manager of OnePlus India, Vikas Agarwal. This will be the first region in which a localized service infrastructure is established, offering phone and walk-in support to users around the country.
“Our company focuses first on our users and our product,” said Pete Lau, CEO of OnePlus. “We want to provide the best possible experience for our Indian users who have been so supportive of our vision. To do that, we are investing heavily in our Indian operations and partnering with the fastest growing and most admirable e-commerce company in the market, Amazon.in”
To establish a presence that would best serve our Indian fans, OnePlus looked to one of the most venerable and customer-centric companies in the world. OnePlus will partner exclusively with Amazon.in to sell the OnePlus One and accessories. Inspired by Amazon’s deep commitment to their users and the impact they have had upon the e-commerce landscape, both globally and in India, OnePlus is excited about the exceptional level of service and superior user experience this partnership will offer to customers. Combining the product-focused nature of OnePlus with the consumer focused values of Amazon, the collaboration between these two global companies, equally committed to India, marks a new chapter in the Indian tech space.
“We are very excited to bring this much awaited phone for our customers in India. And we are having real fun with the unique marketing initiatives for the launch. It fits right into our philosophy of bringing wide and unique selections and experiences for our customers,” said Amit Agarwal, Vice President and Country Manager, Amazon India.
Keeping in line with the global invite system, users in India will receive India-specific invites through OnePlus and Amazon.in. The two platforms have been integrated so that invites claimed into a OnePlus account will be used to purchase the device on Amazon.in. Starting today, users interested in buying the One can log onto oneplus.net/in and register their interest for an invite. The One will be available for purchase only on Amazon.in with invites starting December 2, 2014.
Yesterday, Micromax launched a new smartphone brand, Yu. The devices sold under this name will be offered online only. In addition, the big news is a strategic partnership with Cyanogen Inc., the makers of CyanogenMod ROMs for Android phones. This means that, the new device brand Yu, will have devices running Android customised by CynogenMod with some local content additional software packaged.
Micromax and Cyanogen have been in dialogue for the past one year, under the Project Yureka. Project Yureka was conceptualised to engage directly with consumers and bring innovations that solve consumer problems, not just software or hardware upgrades and is taking the shape of a new brand YU. The YU brand, owned by YU Televentures is a wholly owned subsidiary of Micromax Informatics and products associated with it will be sold online only. This might be used by Micromax as a unique selling point for the new brand.
“This will be a game changer not just in India but globally too. Yu has been envisioned for building an ecosystem of connected devices and offer customised experience to users. We strongly feel that Cyanogen is the right partner to help us deliver a differentiated experience in the mobile ecosystem, we are together committed to challenge the limits of possibility and create a new world.” Micromax co founder Rahul Sharma
Micromax is also a partner with Google on the Android One project to make affordable Android phones that do not compromise on performance. For Micromax, this partnership with Cyanogen could result in mid-range phones that run a highly optimized version of Android with the promise of continuous software improvements through updates.
However, there is no clear word whether we will see a premium phone offered under the Yu umbrella. The first Yu handset is apparently going to be made official sometime next month. The brand will engage directly with end users, providing them with boot-loader access to help them come up with software upgrades that they want on their phones. Micromax also confirms that it will accept the warranty for Yu phones even if they’re rooted. Considering the fact, the OnePlus One is going to make its official release in India next month, it would be interesting to watch the CynogenMod adoptions increase in this part of the world.