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The Absolute Latest In The World of Mobile

HTC One M8 Hits Stores In India On May 7, To Cost 49,900 INR

The HTC One M8 is one of the hottest devices of this year, and come May 7 it will be available in stores across India for  49,900 INR. The One M8 is HTC’s Android flagship for 2014, and builds on the beautiful aesthetics of the 2013 HTC One. This time round there’s even more metal, a faster Snapdragon 801 quad-core chip clocked at 2.5 Ghz, and this processor is paired with a Adreno 330 GPU and 2GB of RAM. 

HTC One M8 India Launch

The display now measures 5″, and retains the 1080p resolution. You get 16 GB of internal storage, a microSD slot with support for cards upto 128 GB in size and 50 GB of Google Drive storage. A 2600 mAh battery powers this brute, and HTC’s also built in an ultra power saving mode to help you squeeze that extra usage. This should come in handy as the M8 also has support for Indian LTE networks, making it one of the few devices to support the 2300 MHz band on the FDD-LTE network that both Airtel and Reliance Jio are rolling out. In comparison, the Samsung Galaxy S5 only leaves you with HSDPA support, while both the iPhone 5C and 5S also feature Indian LTE capabilities. 

Continue reading HTC One M8 Hits Stores In India On May 7, To Cost 49,900 INR

The 3rd Tizen Dev. Conference Kicks Off June 2nd, Devices Expected By End Of Q2

Tizen is the platform that comes into news ever so often, and just when everyone is sure that we shall finally see a smartphone based on the platform actually hit the market, something else does. First it was Samsung’s NX 300M camera that turned out to be Tizen based, then at the MWC Samsung announced the Tizen powered Gear 2. NTT DoCoMo was widely tipped to carry a Tizen based smartphone earlier this year, but that came to naught with the carrier pulling out. What added even more fuel to the fire was the big Samsung – Google handshake that led to a multi year patent deal that also resulted in Samsung deciding to pull back on its Android customisations in Touch Wiz. In an obvious fallout, it seemed that Samsung was going to back off from Tizen.

Tizen Dev Conf 2014

But then the Tizen powered Gear 2 came out, and now we have news of the 3rd Tizen Developers Conference that’s happening June 2-4, 2014 in San Francisco. So its not all bad news, and things are once again beginning to look up for this platform that Samsung will one day use to target Android. Another interesting bit of news comes from Samsung’s product strategy VP Yoon Han-kil who has let it slip that two Tizen powered smartphones will ship before the end of Q2, one high end and another to cater to the mass market.

Continue reading The 3rd Tizen Dev. Conference Kicks Off June 2nd, Devices Expected By End Of Q2

Samsung’s First Tizen Power Device Is Already In Stores – Its The NX300M Camera

While everyone waits for the Samsung to release their first Tizen based smartphone, it turns out that Samsung has already shipped a commercial Tizen based product – the NX 300M camera. Today at the Tizen Developer Summit in Seoul, Samsung’s Jong-Deok Choi, proudly showed off the NX300M, and confirmed that the NFC and WIFI capable camera was indeed based on Tizen.

Samsung Tizen Camera

Continue reading Samsung’s First Tizen Power Device Is Already In Stores – Its The NX300M Camera

Tizen 3.0 Features Announced: Multiple User Support, 64-bit Architecture & More

Tizen 2.2.1 was announced yesterday in the lead up to today’s Tizen Developer Summit, and the message that was sent out in the keynote is that 2.2.1 is feature complete and capable of being deployed on smartphones. However, towards the end of the keynote we were given a look at what to expect with Tizen 3.0, and here are some of the major points:

Tizen 3.0 Features Announced: Multiple User Support, 64 Bit Architecture & More

The Tizen 3.0 release will update the Core OS and toolchain. It brings support for multiple users and the big talking point, specifically after Apple’s recent announcement, was 64-bit architecture. We were told that 64-bit support has been in the works for Tizen for a year now, and the devices will support IA and ARM chips. Performance improvements and support for more RAM are also the obvious benefits.

Continue reading Tizen 3.0 Features Announced: Multiple User Support, 64-bit Architecture & More

Uber’s Affordable Luxury Rental Car Service Hits Delhi

After starting operations in Bangalore a few weeks ago, San Francisco based affordable luxury car rental service Uber is ready to add New Delhi to its growing list of cities. Uber’s fleet in Delhi will include Toyota Camry, Honda Accord, Mercedes E & S class, BMW 3 & 5  series and Audi Q3, A4 & A6 and using any of these cars as a taxi isn’t going to be as expensive as you might think. Uber charges Rs. 70 as the base fare, plus Rs. 20 per kilometer and Rs. 2 per minute from there on in. The minimum fare will be Rs. 200.

In comparison, Meru Cabs, a popular Delhi taxi company charges Rs. 23 per kilometer. The only time Uber can turn out to be considerably more expensive is when you get stuck in a jam, as irrespective of the distance travelled, you are being billed Rs. 2 per minute or Rs. 120 an hour. Uber will initially cover Central and South Delhi with parts of Gurgaon, but the company plans to cover all of NCR soon.

Uber's Affordable Luxury Rental Car Service Hits Delhi - Here's A Promo Code For Two Free Rides Uber's Affordable Luxury Rental Car Service Hits Delhi - Here's A Promo Code For Two Free Rides

Despite that Uber has tremendous potential to disrupt the rental car business, as in addition to pricing, the biggest pillar it stands on is the convenience its mobile apps offer. The app uses GPS to pin point your location and shows you the ETA of cabs around your location, and you can hail a cab with a single press of a button – no calls, no keying-in pickup addresses etc. Since the app is already tied to your credit card (something you need to do during sign up) paying for the ride at the end is also not a hassle, and everything is handled electronically.

Before you embark on a journey, you can also get a fare quote so that you have an idea of what you’ll be paying at the end of a journey. If you’re travelling with a friend, you can also choose to split the fare and get a portion billed to his/her Uber account.

Uber's Affordable Luxury Rental Car Service Hits Delhi - Here's A Promo Code For Two Free Rides Uber's Affordable Luxury Rental Car Service Hits Delhi - Here's A Promo Code For Two Free Rides

(For example, a ride from India Gate to Defence Colony will cost somewhere in the region of 200-250 Rupees depending on traffic)

Another feature that the company wishes to highlight is safety. The app features a share my ETA option that lets you share your ETA with friends and family once you’ve boarded the car. This results in your  friend/family member getting a text with a link that gives them information about the car’s precise location in real time, including the driver’s name and car details.

Uber's Affordable Luxury Rental Car Service Hits Delhi - Here's A Promo Code For Two Free Rides Uber's Affordable Luxury Rental Car Service Hits Delhi - Here's A Promo Code For Two Free Rides

I’ve used Uber while visiting the United States, and the overall experience was very pleasant. Therefore I recommend that you give Uber a go here in India as well, whether you’re in Delhi or Bangalore. To get you started, the good people at Uber are giving The Handheld Blog readers two free rides of upto Rs. 500 each. All you need to do is enter the promo code “THEHANDHELDBLOG” in the Promotions tab if you already have an Uber Account or while signing up.

Download the Uber app for iPhone or Android, or you can redeem the discount directly at uber.com/go Uber also has a BlackBerry app, but Windows Phone users will have to make do with the web version for now.

Uber is currently active in 45+ markets across 6 continents and is backed by industry heavy weights such as Google Ventures, TPG Capital, Amazon’s Jeff Bezos, Goldman Sachs, Benchmark Capital and Menlo Ventures among others.