Saturday, February 16, 2013

LG s dollar 10,000 OLED TV sales top 100

 LG Electronics on Thursday said that pre-orders for its 55-inch next-generation televisions costing over $10,000 have topped 100, and the firm will start selling the TVs on Monday in South Korea as it tries to steal a march on rivals. 

Aiming to outdo competitor Samsung Electronics and burnish its reputation for TV technology, the world's No. 2 TV manufacturer started taking pre-orders for organic light-emitting diode (OLED) TVs some six weeks ago. 

LG Optimus L smartphone sales touch 15 million globally

Sales of LG Electronics'  Optimus L Series  smartphones topped 15 million units globally since its introduction in February 2012, the company said.

Global sales of Optimus L Series devices breached the 10 million mark in December last year, before adding sales of 5 million units, equal to sell a device every second over the past two months, LG said in an e-mailed statement.

After its launch at Mobile World Congress(MWC) in February 2012, LG rolled out Optimus L3, L7, L5, and L9 in a serial order at around 50 countries in North America, Europe, Asia and Latin America, reported Xinhua.

How tech is helping Bharti Airtel retain top spot

At Bharti Airtel's swank Network Experience Centre (NEC) in Manesar, a few miles west of its headquarters in Gurgaon, KPI is more than an acronym. Key performance indicators crop up on those zany screens as virtual breadwinners for a company striving to make data a way of life. Here, 20-somethings crunch data to marry network KPIs, like outage rate and call drop rate with customer dynamics, in what has come to be known across the company as Customer Experience Management. "If you are a heavy user of data, I would like to see the kind of handset you use, your data usage in video, websites or games, the areas you roam, the speed you get," says Jagbir Singh, Director-Network Services Group, Bharti Airtel.

9 lessons that India can learn from China

Technology is the battleground in today's competitive world. Yet India is becoming increasingly dependent on others for its hi-tech requirements. On the other hand, China has made significant advances. Here are a few tricks we could learn from our neighbour: 

Reverse engineering
China has aggressively followed a strategy of copying technology. In fact, many advanced countries have gone through this phase. Like them, India too needs to climb this ladder. 

Google app store steals your info

Google's privacy practices are drawing heat after an Australian software developer said the company was providing him with personal information, including email addresses, of everyone who purchased his mobile app.

The information that Google shared, which included customers' full names, email and some postal code information, was not the result of a glitch with its software. Rather it appears to be in accordance with Google's existing policies for its app store and its Google Wallet payment service - though some privacy advocates believe Google has not been clear enough in informing consumers about the practice. 

Top Latin American IT company Softtek enters India

Softtek, Latin America's leading global IT services provider, has acquired Systech Integrators, a SAP channel and services partner global IT solutions provider co-founded by an Indian American, to make an entry into India. 

This acquisition will further strengthen Softtek's SAP qualifications by adding capabilities for cloud, mobility solutions as well as cross-process and industry domain expertise to its solutions portfolio, the two companies announced on Thursday. 

Capgemini to hire 28,000 in India by 2015

Paris-headquartered IT company Capgemini already has a third of its employees working in India. It's now reviving its offshore consulting play, as also strengthening its traditional offshoring capabilities here. The $13.5-billion Capgemini began its operations in India in 1998 offering consulting services, but later focused on IT services. Capgemini India CEO Aruna Jayanthi talks about that and more in an interview to TOI. 

iPhones have security flaw, Report

Hackers can easily unlock the screen of Apple iPhone due to a security flaw, a report has said.

A majority of iPhone users have added a four-digit security pin code to prevent unauthorised users from accessing their phone.

But a new loophole in the latest 6.1 iOS software now means that anyone can bypass it and access email, contacts, text messages, voice mail and even video calling, the Telegraph reports.

Indian company to train 1,500 IT engineers in Nigeria

An Indian information technology company will train 1,500 computer aided designs and drafting (CADD) engineers in Nigeria annually.

Having opened a centre in the capital city of Abuja earlier, the IT firm -- CADD Centre -- has now set up another centre in this port city of Lagos in western Africa for this objective. 

CADD Centre Training Services is the training arm of 24-year-old CADD Centre Group, headquartered in Chennai. 

Self driving car goes on test drive at Oxford

A car that is able to drive itself on familiar routes has been given a test run at an event at Oxford University.

The technology uses lasers and small cameras to memorise regular journeys like the commute or the school run.

The engineers and researchers behind the project are aiming to produce a low-cost system that "takes the strain" off drivers, the BBC reported.

Friday, February 15, 2013

Cognizant, Hope for a good budget 2013

Expressing hopes of a 'good' budget 2013, Lakshmi Narayanan, Vice Chairman of Cognizant said that stability and consistency are required so that businesses can plan on a three-five year basis. 

In an interview to ET Now, Narayanan said that he expects the coming year to be 'good' for the IT industry. Commenting on Nasscom's projection of 12-14% growth in IT exports, Narayanan said that it was a good considering the overall global economic situation. Keeping in mind the performance and improved guidance for the industry, he hopes for some positives as the year goes by. 

Infosys chairman on why 2013 will be a better year than 2012

In an interview with ET Now, S Gopalakrishnan, Co-Chairman, Infosys, shares his outlook for the IT sector. Excerpts:

ET Now: People believe that the Nasscom outlook for 2013 is marginally positive, but that is not a great improvement. Is 2013 really going to be a year of turnaround or are we only going to see incremental growth? Is that going to be new normal for the industry?

Mark Zuckerberg raises stake in Facebook to 30percent

 Mark Zuckerberg's stake in Facebook has climbed to nearly 30 percent since the leading social network made its dismal stock market debut, according to a filing Wednesday with US regulators.
Zuckerberg owns 632.65 million Facebook shares as compared with the slightly more than 500 million he held in September when the stock's sagging price prompted a promise he would not sell any for at least a year.

Zuckerberg sold about 30 million shares when the Menlo Park, California-based social network made its stock market debut in May at an opening price of $38.

Amazon beats Apple, Google as most respected US firm

Online retailer Amazon has beaten Apple and Google to become the most respected company in the US, a report has said.

Last year Apple was at the top stop and Google at the second on Harris Interactive survey.

But Amazon leapfrogged them both to come out on top this year, leaving Apple a very close second, Disney third, Google fourth and Johnson and Johnson fifth, the Telegraph reports.

TCS CEO, No big hiring this year

The slowdown in hiring by IT companies is expected to keep entry-level salaries stagnant over the next couple of years. 

Hiring is slowing down largely because IT companies have nearly 30% of their employees on the bench (those without projects to work on), and the global demand for IT is not expected to rise significantly in the near future. It is also slowing down thanks to initiatives by IT companies to automate more of their processes. 

Apple s iWatch team has over 100 designers

Apple has a team of 100 product designers working on a wristwatch-like device that may perform some of the tasks now handled by the iPhone and iPad, two people familiar with the company's plans said. 

The team, which has grown in the past year, includes managers, members of the marketing group, and software and hardware engineers who previously worked on the iPhone and iPad, said the people, who asked not to be named because the plans are private. The team's size suggests Apple is beyond the experimentation phase in its development, said the people. 

Chief executive officer Tim Cook is facing pressure from shareholders who have seen the stock slump more than 30 per cent since a September high amid slowing sales growth and competition from rivals such as Samsung Electronics. Without a revolutionary new gadget that commands a higher price, investors are concerned about falling margins and increased competition. 

Google Play leaking app users personal info

Concerns over a possible Google privacy issue have emerged as an Australian app developer discovered he had access to the personal information of users who downloaded his Android app in Google Play.

Developer Dan Nolan wrote a blog post describing how he found a treasure trove of personal information such as email and mailing addresses from users.

Nolan's concerns highlight something that has been part of Google's Terms of Service (ToS) since the beginning.

What change means for India IT companies

The Indian software services industry is talking non-stop about the revolution coming their way as large corporations adopt emerging technologies at a hectic pace, but experts question if companies are really walking the talk.

As some 1,400 executives from 35 countries gathered here under the aegis of industry group Nasscom for an annual meeting, not everybody is convinced that the industry is investing enough to succeed in the future. For the $100 billion (5.4 lakh crore ) industry, built on the foundation of cheap and abundant supply of engineering talent, changing the fundamental way they do business is hard even as they admit that change is inevitable. 

Adobe Reader, Acrobat have security flaws, Report

Adobe Systems is investigating a report by a cybersecurity firm that hackers exploited previously unknown bugs in its Reader and Acrobat software to launch sophisticated attacks on personal computers. 

FireEye, a Silicon Valley company that helps businesses fight cyber attacks, told Reuters it obtained so-called PDF files tainted with malicious software, which can take advantage of the newly discovered bugs. 

It declined to identify any victims of the attacks. 

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Yahoo, chief Marissa Mayer wants Bing to deliver

Google veteran turned Yahoo! chief Marissa Mayer wants Microsoft to deliver when it comes to wresting market share from the Internet company she was part of for more than a decade. 

During a talk at a financial analysts conference on Tuesday, Mayer spoke of "nice gains" in revenue from Bing-powered searches at Yahoo! websites but a pressing need for the Microsoft engine to win users from rivals. 

Samsung Galaxy S IV Mini in the works, Report

Eagerly awaiting the launch of Samsung S IV, but not sure if you will be able to afford it? Worry not, for Samsung reportedly has a cheaper version of S IV in the works too. A report by tech blog SamMobile, says that Samsung is developing more than one phone under S IV branding. 

Under Project J (under which Samsung is said to be making Galaxy S IV), the South Korean manufacturer is said to be building two devices, codenamed Altius and Serrano. TOI previously reported that Galaxy S IV is being developed under the moniker Altius. The other phone Serrano is believed to be S IV Mini. Going by the device's name, it is likely to be a smaller and cheaper version of the upcoming flagship Galaxy S IV. 

Why Yahoo CEO plans to trim mobile apps

Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer thinks the internet company will be able to please more people with fewer smartphone applications.

Mayer told an audience of investors during a presentation that she thinks Yahoo will be better served with just 12 to 15 mobile applications, down from a "scattered" portfolio of as many as 75 different programs in recent years. 

See why Google is paying Apple dollar 1 billion

 Google will pay Apple one billion dollars next year to keep its position as the default search engine in iOS, a report has claimed.

The financial services firm came to the figure in a report titled "The Next Google is Google" after taking a closer look at how Google makes and spends money in the mobile space.

Morgan Stanley analyst Scott Devitt based the figure on the fact that Google and have a deal in place which sees Apple reap a certain amount of money per device sold with as the default search engine, the Age reports.

Silicon Valley, immigrant groups demand more H 1B visas

What do computer programmers and illegal immigrants have to do with each other?

When it comes to the sweeping overhaul of the nation's immigration laws that Congress is considering this year, the answer is everything.

Silicon Valley executives, who have long pressed the government to provide more visas for foreign-born math and science brains, are joining forces with an array of immigration groups seeking comprehensive changes in the law. And as momentum builds in Washington for a broad revamping, the tech industry has more hope than ever that it will finally achieve its goal: the expanded access to visas that it says is critical to its own continued growth and that of the economy as a whole.

Google services may be shut down in Egypt

Egypt's telecommunication authority said that all Google services must be shut down to fully suspend YouTube in the country over an anti-Muslim film.
Head of Egypt's National Telecommunication Regulatory Authority Abdal-Rahamn al-Sawi said that in order to shut down YouTube in Egypt, as per a court verdict, all Google services must be shut down as Google provides its services over several servers.
The Egyptian administrative court had ordered that video-sharing website YouTube be blocked for a month for hosting the anti-Islam film that triggered deadly outrage across the Muslim world last year. 

Now, a lithium ion battery that charges in 10 minutes

Researchers have developed a new lithium-ion battery that can recharge within 10 minutes and hold thrice as much energy as its existing counterparts.

The new batteries could be used in anything from cell phones to hybrid cars.

The design, currently under a provisional patent, could become commercially available within two to three years.

Intel plans to launch TV set top box

Top chipmaker Intel plans to launch an internet television service this year with live and on-demand content, entering a hotly competitive race as its core PC business erodes.

Shifting into an unfamiliar and potentially costly market in which Intel lacks experience and relationships, Erik Huggers, vice president and general manager of Intel Media, said he is negotiating with content providers. 

He said hundreds of Intel employees and their families are already testing a set-top box the company will sell as part of the service. 

Cognizant, Salaries to stagnate at entry level in IT

Stating that Cognizant has registered industry leading growth of 20% in 2012, Lakshmi Narayanan, vice chairman of the IT major expressed hope that the company will continue to perform well in the next financial year as well. 

Narayanan expressed his reservations on the stagnation of wages in the IT industry, especially at the entry level. Talking about the hiring scenario, he said that there is an oversupply of talent from the education market. He reasoned that this oversupply will have to adjust in the next two to three years. Talking about a wage increase at the mid level, he said that it will either remain the same or will witness a subdued increase. 

Google, Microsoft among top B-school employers, Report

The FMCG sector, for the third year running, has been voted by B-school students as the most coveted for employment, with HUL topping the list as the most preferred recruiter, according to the Campus Track Business School survey 2012, conducted by Nielsen.

According to the survey, the FMCG sector (29%) came out on top, followed by management consulting (24%), e-commerce (20%), IT product & development (19%) and large business conglomerates (16%). 

Dropbox updates cloud storage product

The battle between two of Silicon Valley's most richly valued private internet companies ratcheted up as Dropbox unveiled the first comprehensive upgrade to its cloud-storage product aimed at corporate users. 

With the move, the $4 billion-valued Dropbox, which has been a popular sensation in the consumer market, is squarely taking on Box, a similar file-sharing service that has positioned itself in recent years as the option for security-conscious corporate IT departments. 

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Angry Birds maker Rovio plans theme parks in Russia

Rovio, the developer of Angry Birds game, plans to open theme parks named after the popular game series across Russia within the next 12 months, the company said.

Peter Vesterbacka, head of marketing of Rovio, said parks were to open in many Russian cities and would be from 2,000 to 10,000 square metre in size, similar to the roofed sites the company has been operating in Finland.

MTV, Swipe join hands to launch 6 inch phablet

MTV and Swipe Telecom today announced the launch of their first co-branded new generation 6-inch phablet - MTV Volt. This device holds the distinction of being the first phablet to feature an exclusive in-built TV-player, offering buyers on-the-go access to MTV.

Available in the market at Rs 12,999, MTV Volt runs on Android 4.1 (Jelly Bean) and has a HD display. It runs on a dual-core processor, coupled with 512MB RAM and is powered by a 3,200mAh battery. On the back, it sports an 8MP camera, while a 1.3MP unit is placed on the front. This device has internal storage of 4GB and supports microSD expansion up to 32GB. Connectivity suite of the device consists of features like Wi-Fi and Bluetooth 4.0. 

Agrawals proving their mettle in e commerce

As traders and entrepreneurs in the brick-and-mortar world, the Agrawal community has no mean reputation - it is prosperous and has proven its mercantile mettle over the centuries. Even so, the extent of domination by the community in the virtual world is astonishing, with the who's who of e-commerce entrepreneurs drawn mostly from the ranks of the Agrawals. 

Companies run by young Agrawal businessmen, among them Flipkart, Snapdeal, Yebhi, and Myntra, account for the majority of sales by e-commerce companies. And last year, for every 100 in funding for e-commerce companies, 40 went to firms founded by an Agrawal. 

Google, 30 percent YouTube traffic in India from mobiles

Almost one-third of the YouTube viewers in India access videos on their mobiles and spend over 48 hours a month on the website, a Google study said.

According to an online survey conducted by Google, almost two-thirds of the viewers on YouTube in India are under 35 years of age. The survey also revealed an emerging consumer class on YouTube, which it nicknamed 'Generation C' and represents a young, tech savvy group of youngsters.

Sibal calls for making phones, tablets cheaper, Sources

Telecom minister Kapil Sibal has written to a committee of state finance ministers asking them to declare mobile phones and tablets as goods of special importance under Central Sales Tax Act, which may lead to the gadgets becoming cheaper by 7-8 per cent, sources said. 

"Considering the huge potential that mobile phones and tablets have in transforming the overall development of the country... Sibal has requested that the Empowered Committee of the State Finance Ministers may consider the proposal to declare mobile phones and tablets as goods of special importance under the CST (Central Sales Tax) Act of 1956," a source said. 

Review, Canvas HD rival Spice Stellar Pinnacle

The phablet segment in India is getting hotter, with companies like Micromax and Karbonn announcing phones with quad-core processors. Spice has also joined the fray with its latest and most powerful offering yet - Stellar Pinnacle Mi-530, priced at Rs 13,999. 

But does Spice's latest smartphone has what it takes to take on rivals like Micromax Canvas HD, Karbonn S1 Titanium and Lava Iris 501. 

Read on to find out... 

Vertu TI, Bizarre luxury smartphone with old Android and crazy dollar 20k price

MembersClubGallery_WhiteBG_High Res copy
Desperate to get on the Android bandwagon but refuse to accept any of the tastelessly-cheap handsets on the market today? Vertu has the device for you: the new Vertu TI, finally ditching Symbian but bizarrely swapping it for an old version of Android. The ridiculously priced – from $9,600, but as much as $19,900 – TI puts Ice Cream Sandwich on a 3.7-inch handset wrapped in sapphire crystal, titanium, and leather.

Budget 2013, Nasscom seeks tax rationalisation

Software and allied services' industry body Nasscom today said Finance Minister P Chidambaram should rationalise taxes in Budget.

"We hope this is a growth-oriented Budget. We have asked for rationalisation of taxes to reduce the amount of litigation, which only vitiates the business environment. Therefore, we want the government to streamline the tax mechanism," Nasscom president Som Mittal said here. 

Apple still has magic, innovation, says CEO Tim Cook

 Apple remains ahead of its rivals in the ability to innovate and "create magic" despite tougher competition in key sectors like smartphones and tablets, chief executive Tim Cook said on Tuesday.

Cook said Apple still has strong growth opportunities because of its ability to work simultaneously on hardware, software and services, brushing aside suggestions that Apple has passed its peak. 

Google struggling with porn search bug

Google is trying fix a mysterious bug that returns pages and pages of almost exclusively pornographic and adult results when users enter certain equations or search strings.

A Google search for "-4^(1/4)" at the time of writing revealed the result on a calculator, below which were several pages of porn links with titles such as "four guys and a hooker" and others too lewd to repeat here.

IBM s supercomputer Watson to work on cancer

IBM is putting its Watson supercomputer to work fighting cancer, in what is described as the first commercial program of its kind to use "big data" to help patients with the disease.

The US computing giant last week unveiled its initiative with health insurer WellPoint and Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center in New York.

The supercomputer, which gained fame by defeating two human champions in the "Jeopardy!" quiz show, has been sifting through some 600,000 pieces of medical evidence, two million pages of text from 42 medical journals and clinical trials in oncology research.

Self destructing messages are evolution of text

More than 60 million photos or messages are sent each day through an app called Snapchat and then, after they are viewed for a few seconds, the missives vanish.

That disappearing act — and a volume that is over a tenth of the well-established Facebook's — has made the tiny start-up a technology hit, amassing millions of users and the backing of some of the most respected names in Silicon Valley, Snapchat is being embraced as an antidote to a world where nearly every feeling, celebration and life moment is captured to be shared, logged, liked, commented on, stored, searched and sold.

Micromax Canvas HD set for V Day release

The much-awaited Micromax Canvas HD is all set to be launched on Valentine's Day. The indigenous manufacturer has decided to release the phones across theIndian market on 14th February.

The phablet is a device targeted at the budget conscious audience and comes with amazingspecs. The phablet has a 5-inch IPS LCD display. Canvas HD packs a powerful quad-core 1.2 GHz processor under the hood and 1 GB RAM. The internal storage is 4GB and comes with an expandable microSD card slot.

Suggest a camera within a budget of Rs 30,000

I'm looking for a new camera for under Rs 30,000, but I'm confused between superzooms, mirrorless cameras and DSLRs. Please advise. 

- Kshitij Grover, S Mohan, Rahul Deb 

Before you select a camera you will need to factor in your usage, proficiency with photography, and perhaps your interest in the subject. 

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

What is helping Samsung in war with Apple

Apple, for the first time in years, is hearing footsteps. 

The maker of iPhones, iPads and iPods has never faced a challenger able to make a truly popular and profitable smartphone or tablet - not Dell, not Hewlett-Packard, not Nokia, not BlackBerry - until Samsung Electronics. 

The South Korean manufacturer's Galaxy S III smartphone is the first device to run neck and neck with Apple's iPhone in sales. Armed with other Galaxy phones and tablets, Samsung has emerged as a potent challenger to Apple, the top consumer electronics maker. 

Why email has become a virtual nightmare

Those days are long gone. Now, when I examine my various email accounts, my main emotion is dread.

One morning last week, I sat at my desk and stared at my Gmail inbox; 40,000 unread emails stared back. (That big number is a function of my life as a writer and of having five different accounts, work and personal.) Feeling unusually invigorated, I attacked the mountain, trashing subscription newsletters and social networking alerts en masse. I typed brief confirmations for various meetings, sent long-overdue RSVPs and replied to a few friends who had sent warm notes of hello. In an hour, I worked my way through roughly 100 emails.

McAfee, Indians spy on partners, stalk ex s online

Indians are more likely to check their partner's email accounts, stalk their ex-partners on Facebook and Twitter and even post pictures of private moments online, compared to their global counterparts, says a survey by security software maker McAfee.

The survey titled 'Love, Relationships, and Technology: When Private Data Gets Stuck in the Middle of a Breakup' found 52 per cent of Indian respondents saying they checked their partner's email and social media accounts occasionally, highest among global counterparts.

Apple may replace passcodes with image recognition

Tech giant Apple has applied for a patent on the use of images to authenticate the user of a Mac or some other 'i' product. 

The patent application, called "Image-Based Authentication," describes a method by which an image of some sort would be displayed on a Mac or iDevice screen. 

Aside from that image, options will be displayed asking users to correctly identify what it is. 

Vodafone rolls out talktime transfer service

Private telecom services provider Vodafone India today launched 'post-to-pre talk time transfer' service, that enables its post-paid customer to instantly transfer talk-time (balance) to a pre-paid Vodafone customer.

The new offering will be of special benefit for those post-paid customers who have family members, personal friends or office colleagues using a pre-paid connection and in need of talk time (balance), a company release said here.

Google may launch its own Chromebook

Internet search giant Google may release its own Chromebook, some leaked documents have said.

HP announced it would be releasing its own Chromebook last week, but the computer does not contain the features listed in the leaked documents, namely a pretty 'lightbar scheme' in Google colours that appears when you turn the computer on.

According to, Google developer Francois Beaufort posted a link to documentation which offered evidence of this so-called "lightbar scheme".

App by Airtel founder s son a big hit

Hike, the newest kid on mobile instant messaging scene, has had such a wild welcome and adoption rate that it brought the servers down causing disruption in services. 

The free mobile app, now on the top of the list on the Android marketplace Google Play Store, has been downloaded over a million times so far. "Signups will not work until 12pm tomorrow - 9th Feb - given the sudden increase in the volume," an official blog post said. "We are working at lightening speed and will get this back up asap." 

7 tips avoid Facebook hack

People who do have little or no time to maintain Facebook profiles, can do seven things to at least minimize the damage when their account gets hacked, a report has said.

Firstly, change your name. If you tweak your name just a little, or use a nickname, it will be easier for you after the inevitable hack.

Opening more than one account can also help. It violates Facebook's terms of service, but 80 million accounts already do it, says privacy expert John Sileo.