Yahoo Holds Its Sixth Hackathon in India

Over the weekend, Yahoo! India hosted the 6th edition of Yahoo! Hack (21st worldwide) in Hyderabad to celebrate “unrestrained innovation”. The 24 hour hackathon attracted two hundred and fifty participants including students as well as professionals, and received fifty six hack submissions. About 8% of attendants at the event were woman, which is a percentage point higher than last year’s event at Bangalore.


While Yahoo! Hack didn’t have the scale of Microsoft AppFest that was organized in Bangalore, it still managed to get quite a few decent hacks. The grand prize winner was a mobile app called PlanMan!, which enabled Workflow Management through SMS and Missed calls. It was developed by Varun Kumar Nagarajan, Arun Kumar Nagarajan, Raghu Ram, and Amit Bharti. Other prize winners included an app that could use the smartphone’s accelerometer to automatically detect car accidents and alert emergency services, a travel app that could fetch info about real-time info about a train from a PNR number, an iOS app which offers users basic information about the city they are visiting like weather forecast, public transport, city hospitals, hotels and restaurants, Facebook friends who live in the city, and a finance app that claimed to use artificial intelligence to predict stock values.


New Online Payment Solution – PayZippy by Flipkart

After having shut down Flyte for good, Flipkart has unveiled a new service, a new payment gateway — PayZippy, which is housed under a separate firm Flipkart Payment Gateway Services (FPGS) Pvt Ltd.

PayZippy will now join the party at the current competing online payment industry which includes some of the most widely used services like PayTM, CCAvenue, Citrus, and many others. Although there are a bunch of choices that we already have, what’s so different about Flipkart’s PayZippy is that is aims to partner with banks directly and provide higher efficiency unlike the current payment gateways.

PayZippy by Flipkart

PayZippy pricing for Indian Merchants


For Debit Cards
Transaction ValueStandard PricingPromotional Pricing
Rs. 2000 or less0.75%N/A
Rs. 2000 or more1.0%N/A
For Credit Cards
Transaction ValueStandard PricingPromotional Pricing
Rs. 0-5 lakhs3.5%3.5% 2.5%
Rs. 5-10 lakhs3.25%3.25% 2.25%
Rs. 10-25 lakhs3%3% 2%
Rs. 25-100 lakhs2.5%2.5% 2%
Rs. 1 Cr +Custom Quote Needed

For debit card transactions, merchants will be charged 0.75 percent of the transaction value if less than or equal to Rs. 2000, and 1 percent for transaction value Rs. 2000

What PayZippy offers seems to be industry standard rates on credit and debit cards. At present, the service is running a promotional offer cutting down the standard pricing by one percent.

According to Flipkart, they have been working on this payment gateway solution for over two years and claims to have done through research. PayZippy features real-time tracking system of bank gateways, quite similar to what CCAvenue had launched few months back.

With Flipkart’s new PayZippy service, merchants can start accepting payments from most of the major credit & debit cards including MasterCard, Visa, and Maestro. However, Net Banking transactions are not enabled yet.

Flipkart Shuts Down Flyte, Blames Piracy

Flyte-Digital-Music-StoreA little more than a year ago, Flipkart launched Flyte with more than a million tracks spread across a wide array of genres. The objective was to revolutionize the Indian market by offering high quality, DRM-free music downloads at an affordable price. The recording industry hoped that the digital music store might entice Indian music lovers to give up piracy. Fifteen months on, it’s clear that Flyte didn’t quite live up to the expectations. Flipkart has announced that it will be shuttering the service on June 17, 2013. Purchased music will continue to remain available for download until August 18, 2013.

“We have realized that the music downloads business in India will not reach scale unless several problem areas such as music piracy and easy micro-payments etc. are solved in great depth”, said Mekin Maheshwari, head of digital media and payments at Flipkart. “Which is why, we feel that at present, it makes sense to take a step back from Flyte MP3s and revisit the digital music market opportunity at a later stage.”

Maheshwari’s statement highlights just how deep rooted the problem of music piracy is in India. With dozens of websites offering the latest music releases for free, and local CD-wallahs selling pirated media with hundreds of songs for less than a dollar, most Indians consider purchasing music legally a folly. Flipkart also made its task harder with a crude delivery system. The online music library lacked even the most basic features, and the download manager was stupid enough to drive anyone up the wall. There were also rumors that Flipkart had failed to renew their licensing agreement with the music labels. Flyte had managed to amass almost 100,000 customers during its short existence. So, it’s also possible that stubborn record labels sealed their fate more than music piraacy. Apple recently stepped into the Indian market with the launch of iTunes in India. It’s unknown how well it is faring in India; however, Apple is unlikely to give up so soon.

Videocon Launches Dual-Core Jelly Bean Tablet for Rs. 11000

Google and Amazon rained on the parade of budget Android tablet manufacturers with the Nexus and Kindle Fire series respectively. However, both of those devices aren’t officially available in India, which has left the field open for Indian brands as well as Chinese manufacturers. Videocon is hoping to grab a slice of this market with its new VT10 tablet.


As you might have guessed from the naming scheme, the Videocon VT10 is a 10” tablet. It sports a capacitive touchscreen with a resolution of 1280×800, which is pretty good for a budget tablet. It’s powered by a 1.5 GHz Snapdragon processor, which is again better than what is found in most budget tablets in India, but not as powerful as the Nvidia Tegra 3. The VT10 is equipped with 1 gigabyte of RAM, and 8 gigabytes of storage. You will almost certainly fill up the limited internal storage quickly. Thankfully, the VT10 includes support for external memory up to 32 GB. Both front and rear-cams are 2 megapixels, and the battery is rated at a hefty 6800mAh. The VT10 is Wi-Fi only, but supports 3G dongles. The default packaging includes an adapter, headset, battery, HDMI cable, OTG cable, and manual.

On paper, the VT10 appears to be a competitive tablet, which makes just the right compromises. However, its biggest draw isn’t really the hardware specifications. It’s the software and the price. The Videocon VT10 ships with Android 4.1 (Jelly Bean), and is available for purchase from Snapdeal and HomeShop18 for Rs. 11200 (about $204) with free shipping.

Google Announces Great Online Shopping Festival for Indians

great-online-shopping-festivalE-commerce in India has been experiencing rapid growth over the past few years. It’s estimated to be worth $1.6 billion in 2012 (Forrester Trends Report), which is not a huge number by global standards, but is impressive considering the demographics. However, still many Indians shy away from buying stuff online. Trusting retailers who are probably located several thousand kilometres away to deliver goods that one hasn’t checked first-hand is a scary proposition for many Indians.

Google is trying to break the shackles and initiate more Indians to online shopping by leveraging its brand name and deep pockets. The online giant is organizing a “Great Online Shopping Festival” on Dec 12. It has roped in most of the biggies in the Indian e-commerce space, including Flipkart, Myntra, Snapdeal, Pepperfry, and Jabong. Google has also partnered with classifieds, matrimonial services, job portals, and real estate agencies. You can avail attractive discount on premium memberships for services like Bharat Matrimony and

In addition to leveraging its online assets and getting the buzz going on social media, Google is also campaigning on radio channels. The target is obviously the middle class that has so far stayed away from e-commerce. It has even prepared a handy collection of tips for new shoppers. Unlike in most western countries, winter shopping is not a big deal in India. It will be interesting to see if Google can help change that with its Cyber Monday-esque shopping festival.

[ Visit Grand Online Shopping Festival ]

Nexus 7 Finally Coming To India; Up For Sale On Croma’s Website

After months of speculation and rumors, it looks like ASUS and Google are finally bringing the Nexus 7 to India. Croma, a popular electronics megastore in India from Tata, listed the Nexus 7 on its website for sale just a few moments ago with a shipping time of 7 working days.

Sadly, the tablet won’t be coming with its tempting price of $199 or roughly Rs 11,000 in the Indian market. Instead, the 16GB variant of the tablet will cost around Rs. 19,999, which is a bummer. At the moment, it is unclear whether ASUS and Google plan on launching the 8GB/32GB variant or even the 3G version of the tablet in India or not.

The Nexus 7 packs in a 7-inch IPS screen with a resolution of 1280×700, along with 1GB of RAM. The tablet runs on Android 4.1.2 Jelly Bean out of the box, and is powered by a quad-core Tegra 3 processor. Other specs of the tablet include NFC, Wi-Fi, a 1.2MP front-facing camera and Bluetooth.

Via – Kunal Gangar

Indian Government Launches Online Certification Course on Right To Information

The state of political affairs in India has become chaotic recently, mostly due to findings on black money and offshore-accumulated wealth, various scams of colossal scales and blatant statements made by people high up in the food chain. Needless to say, the level of discontent among the people is at an all-time high, and in these situations, the Right to Information (RTI) Act provides for more transparency and accountability, and lets us be absolutely sure instead of being driven by whims and opinions.


The Department of Personnel and Training in India understands this fact, and has launched a program to train people to make better use of the RTI. The program has two courses, and is described as:

The Department of Personnel and Training (DoPT), Ministry of Personnel, Public Grievances and Pensions, Government of India (GoI) has launched an ‘Online Certificate Course on RTI’ for various stakeholders. With a view to make the earlier 15-day course more practical, now the course has been bifurcated into two versions, namely – 7-Day Online Course (English) and 15-Day Online Certificate Course (English).

While the 7-day course is elementary in nature, the 15-day course is more practical and includes a session on applying for an RTI. However, the 15-day course can be taken only on completion of the 7-day course.

The 15-day course is actually an interesting one, since to register for this part of the course, you have to come with proof of an RTI claim made on a public-service authority. The term of 15 days is allotted for a study of the RTI report, as received from the claim. The report will be evaluated based on some predefined criteria, and finally, an online certificate will be generated on course completion. The total estimated time from enrollment to getting a certificate is around 9 weeks, which is just above two month. However, it is worth the experience.

Indiatimes to Broadcast IPL 5 Matches Online

There are just 2 days to go for the fifth edition of IPL tournament to begin and the excitement is already building up. One of crickets’ most talked about tournament, IPL 5 2012 will start from April 4, 2012. This year’s IPL 5 Opening ceremony will have performances from Katy Perry and Prabhudeva.

IPL 5 2012 Online

IPL 5 is one of the biggest cricketing tournaments in India at have matches at convenient hours. However, the online broadcasting of IPL 5 gives users an opportunity to catch up on the live action of the cricket matches while on the go.

This years’ official partner for broadcasting the match online is Times Group’s Indiatimes. Viewers will be able to catch up on all the live action for IPL 5 2012 on the Indiatimes IPL website at Users can also catch up on the latest IPL 5 news and scores on the official website at

Indiatimes got the telecast rights for IPL after the initial online broadcasting for IPL 3 had gone to . However, the broadcasting of IPL 4 in 2011 was later jointly streamed by both Indiatimes and YouTube on Indiatimes official YouTube channel. Users can also watch the IPL broadcast on Indiatimes official channel on YouTube at Additionally, you can also find more links to watch IPL 5 2012 Online.

Government of India Will Set Up Rs. 800 Cr National Cyber Coordination Centre to Snoop On the General Populace

It seems that the Indian Government (probably specifically the vile, ignorant, devious, scheming leech of a person called Kapil Sibal) does not want the population of the country to enjoy the democratic right of free speech in any and all media. It is common knowledge that the censor board exists for cinema and the media companies themselves block non-sensationalist-yet-truthful stories, notwithstanding the ignorant religious zealots that declare war on every slight to their religion. However, the Government of India is taking things a little too far this time.

emblem-of-india reports that a national spying agency called the National Cyber Coordination Centre (NCCC) will be set up to implement ‘internet security’ by scanning tweets, Facebook updates and other units of social media. This entire arduous exercise comes at the cost of a whopping Rs. 800 crore (~$163 million). This news comes on the heels of the fact that under the pretense of e-Governance, the Indian Government wants to track mobile phone users in real time.

Funnily enough, the Government wishes to track the millions and millions of citizens of the country and what they do and will go to any lengths to make sure this happens. However, when asked to track its own polity and politicians and their malicious work the Government refuses stating that it does not have the necessary resources.

Then again, we all know how efficient the Indian Government is and just how fast this will be implemented. Stay tuned for more updates in 6 years’ time.

Flipkart Launches Digital Music Store ‘Flyte’

Indian ecommerce giant Flipkart has formally unveiled its new digital music store Flyte, which was outed last week by a hawkeyed user. Music piracy is rampant in India with an overwhelming majority of downloaded music being illegal. However, much of the blame can also put on the unavailability of affordable and reliable digital music stores. Apple disrupted digital music and entertainment arena around the world with the iTunes store. Unfortunately, Apple’s disdain for the Indian market means that the world’s second most populous country is still an untapped demographic with plenty of raw potential.

Flipkart has already established itself as a clear leader in ecommerce. With the impending arrival of Amazon, it has been getting more and more aggressive. Recently it acquired one of its biggest competitors – LetsBuy. Even before that, it had acquired Mime360 and Chapak’s digital catalogue. Mime360 specialized in hosting streaming music, while Chapak had a catalogue with 40,000 filmographies, 10,000 movies and close to 50,000 ratings.

Digital music business is always a tough nut to crack. Flipkart is entering uncharted waters as most Indians simply aren’t habituated with purchasing music online, or purchasing music at all. The greediness of record labels often complicates things further. However, Flipkart’s dominance and reach offers it a killer advantage that might prove vital in this challenging segment.


To its credit, Flipkart is kicking things off on the right note. All the music in Flipkart’s catalogue is DRM-free (high quality MP3 files) and will work on any device and any operating system. Consumers can download each track a total of four times, and a download manager is available for Windows, Mac, and Linux to facilitate simultaneous downloads. Browsing through the music catalogue is simple and intuitive, and purchasing is easy as credit cards, debit cards, and internet banking is allowed. However, none of this would have mattered if Flipkart hadn’t gotten the pricing right. Thankfully, I think they have succeeded in making music affordable enough for the extremely price-sensitive Indian market. Like iTunes, Flipkart allows purchase of individual tracks, so you only pay for what you want to listen to. New and popular tracks are priced at Rs. 15, while Rs. 6 seems to be the baseline. Flipkart has managed to get a large chunk of Indian music publishers onboard, including biggies like T-Series, Saregama, Tips, Universal India and Sony Music. International record labels that have signed up include Universal, and Sony Music International. EMI is sadly missing. Currently Flipkart’s catalogue features music in English and Hindi, as well as regional languages like Tamil, Telegu, Punjabi, and Bengali.