After 4 years, Orkut founder to launch ‘Hello’ social network app in India

With hello, the aim is to create positive, meaningful, authentic connections and sustained social engagement


A new social networking platform ‘hello‘, set up by the founder of the once-popular Orkut, has announced its entry into the Indian market amid the controversy surrounding user data breach at Facebook.

hello has been set up by Orkut Buyukkokten, who was the founder of Orkut that once was a leading social networking site in India and Brazil. Interestingly, Orkut shut down its services in 2014, having lost its sheen to rivals like Facebook. | Today’s Paper

“If you look at social media today, it has isolated people instead of bringing them closer. It has become more about broadcasting than sharing. We need a fresh start. Hello is built around interest-based communities where users with same interests can connect, leading to true connections,” Buyukkokten said.

He added that with hello, the aim is to create positive, meaningful, authentic connections and sustained social engagement.

“We started in Brazil in July 2016… About 35,000 users were a part of our beta testing in the Indian market. Orkut was huge in India and I’m delighted to say hello to India once again,” he said.

The hello app is available for download on App Store and Google Play.

Asked about the monetisation model, Buyukkokten said the company “does not have to sell user data to get revenues”.

“When a user signs up, they are asked about five things that they are passionate about and then get recommendations that are non-intrusive. We also ensure that every advertiser has a profile on hello (for greater accountability),” he said adding that no user information is shared with third-party apps.

After India, the company would look at rolling out its service in its home market the US as well as in countries like France and Germany.

Social networking giant Facebook, which has over 20 crore users in India, had admitted that nearly 5.62 lakh people in the country were “potentially affected” by its global data breach involving Cambridge Analytica.

The data mining firm has been accused of harvesting personal information of over millions of Facebook users illegally to influence polls in several countries.

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg has said his organisation was committed to ensuring integrity of elections across the world, including India, as he testified before the US Congress yesterday.

Facebook’s data breach scandal had also sparked a furore in India, with IT Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad last month warning the firm of “stringent” action for any attempt to influence polls through data theft. He also threatened to summon Zuckerberg, if needed.


Xiaomi Redmi 5 review: Premium-priced all-rounder with a modern 18:9 screen

The Redmi 5 costs a tad higher when compared with the earlier Redmi-series smartphones. But the Redmi 5 notches up the smartphone game with its modern 18:9 aspect ratio screen

Xiaomi Redmi 5

After a successful run in 2017 with its value-for-money smartphones, Xiaomi started 2018 with the launch of its budget-centric devices. Soon after the launch of the Redmi Note 5 and the Redmi Note 5 Pro, the Chinese mobile phone maker has launched the entry-level Redmi 5 in India at a price of Rs 7,999 for the base model.

Unlike what has been seen in previous-generation devices, the succeeding generation of Redmi-series smartphones costs a tad higher than the predecessor — be it the Redmi 5 Pro or the Redmi 5. However, the Redmi 5 notches up the smartphone game with its modern 18:9 aspect ratio screen wrapped in a metallic-plastic chassis which looks premium.

The smartphone is built on the blue print of its elder sibling, the Redmi Note 5, which gives it an edge in terms of design. However, the innards have been kept in line with previous generation, besides some minor improvements, to keep the price in check.

Business Standard reviewed the Redmi 5 to test its overall performance. Here are our observations:
Design and display
The Redmi 5 takes design cues from the Redmi Note 5 and, therefore, looks similar. However, the younger sibling has a few elements of difference. The front of the Redmi 5 is dominated by a 5.7-inch HD+ 18:9 aspect ratio screen, covered by a 2.5D glass. It does look plush; but for an 18:9 screen device, the smartphone has huge bezels on the top and bottom.

The screen is bright and vivid. However, the HD+ resolution in the 5.7-inch screen looks pixelated. For a budget smartphone, the screen works satisfactorily to render multimedia content such as photos and videos. The touch response is smooth and the phone registers the touch without lag.

Coming on to the back side, it is covered with a metallic sheet, but the chassis is made out of plastic that extends towards the back from top and bottom. The colour of the metallic sheet and plastic chassis has different shades; it comes to notice in bright light conditions. As for the build quality, it is top-notch and the edges blend well into the chassis with no gaps, either on the front or back.


OnePlus 5T leaks hint 18:9 screen, fingerprint scanner on back: Know more

It is speculated that the smartphone would sport same specifications as that of OnePlus 5 except a potentially bigger battery


China-based smartphone maker OnePlusis reportedly working on the next iteration of its current year flagship. Dubbed as ‘OnePlus 5T’, the upcoming smartphone recently appeared in the tech forums.

Going by the purported report that confirms the existence of 5T model, it is believed that the device would sport a bigger screen in 18:9 aspect ratio format with FHD+ resolution. Also, OnePlus would shift the fingerprint sensor on the back side to accommodate a bigger screen on the front with small bezels. (Today’s Paper)

An image shared by Android Authority, an online technology portal, gave a glimpse of the upcoming flagship model from OnePlus. In the picture, the phone is shown from an angle revealing the speaker at the bottom, same chassis as that of OnePlus 5 and a new wider format screen.

It is speculated that the smartphone would sport similar specifications as that of OnePlus 5 except for a potentially bigger battery…..READ MORE

Now, read while you bathe: Amazon launches water-proof Kindle at Rs 21,999

With 7-inch 300 ppi display, the device fits over 30 per cent more words per page and it has the fastest page turns of any Kindle

Kindle Oasis

Today’s Paper : Amazon on Thursday launched its most advanced e-book reader ‘Kindle Oasis’ that features company’s highest-resolution ‘Paperwhite Display’ and is the first waterproof (IPX8) device.

The all-new Kindle Oasis is available for pre-order for Rs 21,999 for the 8GB model and Rs 28,999 for the 32GB model (WiFi + free 3G). The device will start shipping from November 13.

‘Kindle Oasis’ has a battery life measured in weeks and has fast-charging capability that allows it to go from zero to fully-charged in less than two hours.

“Ten years ago, we introduced our first Kindle with the mission of delivering any book every written in 60 seconds or less,” said Dave Limp, Senior Vice President, Amazon Devices, in a statement.

“With a larger 7-inch, 300 ppi display, waterproof design, the all-new ‘Kindle Oasis’ is our most advanced Kindle ever. Its thin, light, and waterproof design allows readers to stay engaged in the author’s world in even more ways and places than ever before,” added Limp. | Readmore…


Flipkart Lenovo mobile fest: Grab the best deals on smartphones

Interested consumers will also get the exchange offer as an add-on

Today’s Paper : Flipkart, the e-commerce market leader, in collaboration with Consumer electronics major Lenovo, has launched the Lenovo Mobile Fest in India. They are offering discounts on some of the top Lenovo mobile phones, which are currently listed on Flipkart’s website. The fest will continue from June 26 to June 28. Also, further price cut is being promised under the exchange scheme.

Several smartphones by the Chinese company can be purchased at discounted prices, and interested consumers will also get the exchange offer as an add-on. Here is a look at the top offers on Lenovo Mobiles on Flipkart:

Lenovo K5 Note

16 per cent off on Lenovo K5 Note (4GB RAM + 32GB storage) MRP: Rs. 12,499; New offer: Rs. 10,499

16 per cent off on Lenovo K5 Note (3GB RAM + 32GB storage) MRP: Rs. 11,999; New offer: Rs. 9,999.

It flaunts full-metal body, with a fingerprint sensor and a 13MP ISOCELL camera with F2.2 Aperture, PDAF (Phase Detection Auto Focus), full HD recording, dual-LED flash on the back. It also comes with 5.5-inch full HD (1920x1080p) IPS screen, MediaTek P10 Octa-core CPU, a 3,500 mAh battery and an 8MP camera on the front.

Lenovo K5 Plus

16 per cent off on Lenovo K5 Plus (3GB RAM + 32GB storage) MRP: Rs. 8,499; New offer: Rs. 7,499.

It sports 5.0-inch full-HD display with a pixel density of 441 pixels per inch (ppi) on the front, premium aluminium cover with Radio Frequency (RF) radiation shield on the back, Qualcomm’s 1.7GHz Snapdragon 616 octa-core SoC (System-on-Chip), 3GB RAM, 32GB inbuilt storage and a 2,750mAh battery. Other features include a 13MP primary shooter on the back, a 5MP snapper on the front and twin stereo speakers with Dolby Atmos technology. | READMORE…

OnePlus 5 launch soon: Device to have flagship features for half the price

The OnePlus 5 smartphone might launch sometime this summer


OnePlus 5, the next flagship device from the stable of China-based smartphone manufacturer OnePlus, is making a lot of buzz over the internet. The smartphone, expected to launch in a couple of months, is making the tech community keep an eagle eye on every small information available.

While big names such as Samsung and LG have already announced their flagship smartphones, the keen wait for the OnePlus 5 is understood, given that OnePlus devices are known to throw in top-tier specifications at half the price of other flagship devices.

Recently, OnePlus CEO Pete Lau posted a picture on Weibo confirming the development of OnePlus 5. Soon, the smartphone features, specifications, camera samples and even the price of the smartphone surfaced online. And, as days passed, the OnePlus 5 specification sheet was leaked by an online technology-based portal Slashleaks.


OnePlus 5 specification sheet Courtesy: Slashleaks

Business Standard compiles the latest details of the 5 as available online:

The name

The next iteration of the flagship device from the stable of OnePlus would be named OnePlus 5. This, however, is yet to be confirmed by the company. In Chinese culture, numeric 4 is considered bad omen, so the buzz is that the smartphone manufacturer would skip number 4, and the device coming after OnePlus 3 would bear the OnePlus 5 moniker.


According to the specifications leaked through Slashleaks, the OnePlus 5 smartphone is to carry the legacy 5.5-inch screen size but with a major bump in screen resolution. The smartphone screen would be raised to quad-HD resolution from the full-HD resolution, standard across all OnePlus devices so far.


Earlier leaks suggested that the OnePlus 5 would feature a dual-camera set-up at the rear. However, the latest leaks hint that the device would feature a single camera of 23-megapixel at the rear and a 16 MP camera at the front.| read more…


Good news for Apple fans! You may soon get an iPhone 5S for Rs 15,000

Apple Inc likely to slash online price to expand loyalty base in India


Global technology major Apple Inc could be planning to lower the online price of its iPhone 5S handset in India, mainly to expand its loyalty base in the country, according to media reports. The sharp reduction in the iPhone 5S price – from Rs 18,000 at present – is said to be part of an exclusive online market strategy of Apple, which aims to dominate India’s mid-range smartphone market segment.

To wrest a larger share of the market in this segment from rival Android players like Samsung, Motorola, Lenovo, Oppo and Asus, the Apple iPhone 5S will have the latest version of iOS and many other flagship features like a good camera and robust battery backup – all for Rs 15,000. According to three senior industry executives quoted by the Economic Times in a report, the company’s distributors have already informed retail stores of this price cut and that the iPhone 5S would be sold shortly on the online platform at an aggressive price point. Simultaneously, the iPhone SE will start selling in India through the offline channel at a price of Rs 20,000. “The company will have a 10-12% pricing advantage for the iPhone SE once the company starts assembling it in India by next month,” an executive was quoted as saying in the ET report.

“Apple wanted to have one iPhone model with an aggressive pricing in India and was banking on company-certified refurbished models. But now that the proposal has been struck down by the government, it is betting on the iPhone 5s,” said one of the executives.

A price-cut and accessibility both online and offline, in addition to higher traction for the newer iPhone models, are expected to boost Apple’s India sales. At present, the online channel accounts for 50-55 per cent of iPhone sales in India, compared with about 30% for the larger industry. (READMORE…)