Category Archives: Indian Telecom and Broadband

All the latest Indian telecom and Broadband news. Telecom and Broadband news from across India, with news, views, reviews, cell phone plans and more.

RIM Offers Deferred Data; Indian Govt Wants Real Time Intercepts

RIM Blackberry IndiaWhen the Indian Govt had joined Saudi Arabia, UAE and Indonesia and pressured Research in Motion to provide access to the encrypted Blackberry email and messenger data, RIM had promised to provide a solution for the Indian government.

Now it seems that the RIM – India negotiations have reached a dead end again. As India had threatened to ban Blackberry services in India by August 31, RIM has offered to provide Blackberry information on a deferred basis. They offered to turn the information within a maximum of 10 days. However, the concerned security agencies have demanded that the data be handed to them in real time.

“Now, for example, if two terrorists are negotiating a strike, you can’t expect us to wait for 10 days,” said a senior Home Ministry official.

With only 10 days to go for the August 31 deadline, RIM is in no position to play the game of chicken; it will have to comply with India’s requests or risk terminating the services of more than a million Blackberry users in India.

Head over to Hindustan Times for more details.

Spice Launches Affordable Android Mobile Phone, Announces Two Tablets

Last month, we reported that Google is working with manufactures like Huawei to introduce cheap Android handsets in parts of Asia. Following in Huawei’s footsteps, Spice has launched its own affordable Android powered mobile phone in India.

Spice-Mi-300-Android

The Spice Mi-300 sports a 3.2 inch HVGA capacitive display with a resolution of 320×240. It runs on Android 2.1 and is powered by the Qualcomm MSM7227 chipset. Supported connectivity options include 3G (HSPA enabled), Wi-Fi, and Bluetooth. The handset features a 5 megapixel camera capable of recording 720p HD videos. Although the ROM offers just 156 MBs of space, microSD cards up to 32 are supported. The Mi-300 is now available in stores across India for Rs. 9,990.

Spice Mobile has also announced two Android powered tablets for computing on the go. The first of them is the Mi-410, which is powered by Qualcomm Snapdragon MSM8255. The Mi-410 is a micro-tablet with a 4.1 inch HVGA capacitive screen. The second tablet, which was announced by Spice, is Mi-700. This tablet will run on a Qualcomm MSM7227 chip and feature a 7 inch capacitive touchscreen. The tablets are expected to be launched in October-November.

Lava B5 – First Handset To Incorporate Indian Rupee Symbol

Lava Mobiles have definitely done a great job by introducing a dedicated key for typing in the new Indian Rupee Symbol. Earlier Lava had also launched the first ever ABCDEF style keypad phone.

Here is what the Founder & Director of Lava Mobile, Mr. S.N Rai had to say during it’s launch:

We took this as challenge to ensure that Indians can type the new rupee symbol long before than the anticipated time. Around the occasion of Independence day announcing the incorporation of  the new rupee symbol in the mobile keypad will be a tribute from Lava family to the entire nation. The currency symbol on the keypad of their mobiles will make millions of Indian proud. We are happy to be the catalysts of spreading this spirit.

Acer AspireOne 532h Netbook – With Built-in Reliance Broadband

Launched in Bangalore on Thursday, Acer’s latest netbook, Aspire One532h, comes bundled with in-built Reliance Netconnect Broadband Plus which has a capability of offering high speed connectivity of up to 3.1 Mbps across 66 Indian cities. This device is really a must-have for those who work on the move. Acer has partnered with Reliance Communications to launch this netbook which comes embedded with wireless broadband.

Acer's latest netbook, Aspire One532h

The netbook is Priced at INR 19,499   and comes with two months of complimentary usage of integrated and in-built Reliance NetConnect Broadband Plus worth INR 2,198. The netbook has good hardware and is capable of running rich media applications like video conferencing, video streaming, electronic surveillance, online multi-player games and heavy file transfers.

Image credit

HTC Desire Finally Launching in India

While most of the world is preparing for the impending launch of HTC Desire HD, India is set to finally get the original Desire. AndroidOS.in is reporting that that the Desire will soon be available across India for Rs 27,500. Although we are yet to receive any official world regarding the release date, some online retailers like Flipkart have already begun offering the Desire.

HTC-Desire

HTC Desire boasts of a 3.7 inch AMOLED display, capacitive touchscreen, 5 megapixel camera and a 1400 mAh Li-ion battery. It will be launching with Android 2.1 (Éclair) running on a Snapdragon QSD8250 (1 GHz) processor. Hopefully, it will be upgraded to Froyo soon after launch.

Desire was one of the best Android phones when it came out. In fact, it still is an impressive device. However, it will face stiff competition from the Samsung Galaxy S i9000, which has a better CPU (Hummingbird) and a 4” SAMOLED screen.

Samsung Galaxy 3 i5800 Launched in India; Priced at Rs. 12000

Samsung has become a major player in the Indian market. The Galaxy S has been a huge hit and even the Wave is doing quite well.

Samsung today launched the new Galaxy 3 i5800 in India. It is the successor to the Samsung Galaxy Spica i5700 and is priced at just Rs. 12000, which makes it one of the best budget Android phones.

Samsung Galaxy 3 i5800

Samsung Galaxy 3 i5800 Specifications

Dimensions: 113.5 x 55 x 12.9 mm
Weight: 109 gms
Display: 3.2 inch TFT touchscreen display. 240 x 400 pixels
Processor: 667 MHz processor
RAM: 256 MB
Memory: 512 MB ROM
Operating System: Android 2.1 Eclair
Connectivity: GPRS, EDGE, 3G HSDPA, Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n, Bluetooth 3.0 with A2DP, microUSB 2.0
Camera: 3.15 MP camera, 2048 x 1536 pixels, autofocus
GPS: GPS transceiver with A-GPS
Radio: FM Radio with RDS
Battery: Li-Ion battery, 1500 mAh

Except for the low display resolution, it is the perfect budget Android smartphone. It should be available soon.

RIM to Give India Access to Encrypted Blackberry Data To Avoid Ban

RIM BlackberryResearch in Motion has been under pressure from many governments including India, Indonesia, Saudi Arabia and the UAE to allow them access to the encrypted email and messenger information of the Blackberry users in the country.

Saudi Arabia had threatened RIM with a ban but RIM apparently worked out a deal allowing them access to the data.

Soon after that, India also threatened RIM with a nationwide ban by August 31 if it failed to provide them access to the encrypted Blackberry communication data. Reuters reported today that RIM has promised to provide a solution for the Indian government and will enable easy access of the encrypted data to law enforcement agencies. RIM’s Vice President, Robert Crow, seemed optimistic that the issue would be resolved soon.

RIM has more than 1 million Blackberry users in India. If the ban comes into effect, the Blackberry users won’t be able to use email and messenger services on their devices and will only be able to use them for calls, messaging and browsing.

India to Get Mobile Number Portability by October 31

MNP in IndiaMobile Number Portability is one of those things which Indian mobile users have been waiting for since eons now; the other being the launch of 3G services. The launch of Mobile Number Portability (MNP) has been delayed many times in the past year, but now it seems that MNP may finally be a reality in India.

Mr. J. S. Sharma, Chairman of TRAI (Telecom Regulatory Authority of India), announced today that all mobile operators will have to enable MNP by October 31. The DOT (Department of Telecom) also said that all operators must ensure that their networks support MNP by September 1; failing which they won’t be allowed to launch any new services.

Reportedly, BSNL and MTNL’s networks are already MNP-ready and other major operators will also have to comply with MNP requirements by September 1.

Mobile Number Portability allows you to change their operator without changing their number. With the launch of MNP, operator services are expected to improve as consumers will be free to shift to any operator offering better service. Hopefully, this time around, we will actually get it.

Fly Launches the MC170

Fly has launched the new MC170 for Rs. 4500. It is a feature packed budget handset which offers a lot of good features. A majority of the consumers don’t need a smartphone; they just need a phone with some basic features like a camera, FM radio etc and for calls and SMS. The Fly MC170 is aimed at that segment.

Fly MC170

The Fly MC170 comes with a 6.1 cm 262k color display with a resolution of 240 x 320 pixels. It has dimensions of 115 x 51 x 10.5 mm and weighs around 95 gms. The design is quite stylish and it offers features like FM radio with recording and a 3 MP camera. It also offers GPRS and EDGE connectivity along with Bluetooth with A2DP and USB. It has 87 MB internal memory and supports up to 8 GB memory cards.

It comes loaded with various apps like Fly Raashi, Nimbuzz and Snaptu. It also has an accelerometer and comes with motion sensor games. Other features include an audio player with equalizer, music editor, melody composer, contacts backup, ebook reader, mobile tracker etc.

You can check the official webpage for more details.

Tata DOCOMO Launches “Pay Per Site” GPRS Plans

Tata DOCOMOTata DOCOMO seems to have taken its slogan “Do the New” quite seriously. After “Pay Per Second” calling plans, it has now announced “Pay Per Site” GPRS data plans.

You can now buy GPRS packs which allow you to pay a fixed rate per site, every month. It is aimed at those who surf only a few sites from their mobiles and want to pay for only those. You can browse a single website for Rs 10/month with 200 MB free usage and 1 p/KB after that. You can also choose to buy a combo pack of Rs. 25/month for multiple sites with 500 MB free usage and 1p/KB after that.

You can choose bundles from various categories of sites: social networking ones like Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Orkut; email websites like Gmail, Yahoo Mail and Rediff; or chat messengers like Gtalk, Yahoo or Nimbuzz.

Pay per Site is a potent market disruptor, that aims at enabling an innovative service in the Data market; offering customers the power to decide on what they surf the most and purchase packs’ suited and tailored to that specific need. Tapping into the huge potential that is today offered by Social Networking and Emailing/Instant Messaging, Pay Per Site aims to offer customers the choice to DO’ what they like and pay for it alone,said Mr. Rishi Malhotra, Head of VAS, Tata DOCOMO.

To activate “Pay Per Site” GPRS packs, you can dial *141# or send an SMS to 141 with the keyword “MY SITE”. You can also activate it by the Tata DOCOMO Dive In Zone or by visiting the Tata DOCOMO website.

In my opinion, this is a not a very consumer-friendly idea. Service providers should be providing their users with better, cheaper, unlimited GPRS plans with no restrictions in order to encourage mobile internet usage; not roll out such restrictive plans which allow users access to only specific sites.