Since Airtel’s 4G launch, a recent court ruling allows intra circle 3G roaming, and operators can offer 3G services in states where they do not own spectrum by getting into agreements with one another. So if you are an Airtel 4G customer, you would think that you will finally have access to high speed internet across the country, even while roaming, akin to what Airtel’s 3G customers now enjoy? Wrong.
Turns out if you are a 4G customer, you can only roam on Airtel’s 4G network for free – which is less than 5 cities in the entire country. So for example if I go to Delhi where Airtel has had 3G services for years, I will not be able to jump from 4G here in Chandigarh to 3G in Delhi, but will be kicked down to EDGE! This is despite paying a premium for the 4G service. The sheer absurdity of this policy is that it includes states where Airtel even has its own 3G network.
This doesn’t stand to logic, as 3G customers in one region enjoy 3G services in other circles while roaming for free, and you would think Airtel would keep the same policies for 4G users as well. So I called customer care, wondering why I wasn’t getting 3G coverage in Delhi?
Continue reading [Updated] Airtel’s 4G LTE policies are a joke on the consumer
I go hands-on with the just announced Samsung Z, the first Tizen based smartphone.
Tizen has come a long way since the last Developer Conference. In 2013 we just had the NX 300 camera in terms of real world devices running Tizen. Today we have a TV, a camera, the Gear smart watches and the just announced Samsung Z smartphone. With the exception of the TV, a demo of which you can find here, all other products are or will be in stores very soon. There is also an in-vehicle infotainment demo that is being showcased in a Land Rouver and a Chevy Corvette.
Tizen had its roots in an HTML5 based operating system, but since then has expanded to include native code. Which means that high intensity graphics are completely at home and the UI itself feels smooth and the frame rates remain high. The OS has had a tumulus journey, with people wondering if it was going to survive the Samsung-Google cross patent deal. But it does seem like Samsung is completely behind the project and is still looking to leverage its bets.
The major theme of the Tizen keynote was, Tizen – the OS of everything.
Continue reading Tizen Developer Conference 2014 Highlights
Samsung just made the Z official a few hours ago, and here at the Tizen Developer Conference I got a chance to play with the brand new UI that will ship with the first Tizen smartphone.
The UI is different from the reference Tizen UI that you might have seen before, and is also a departure from Samsung’s usual Touch Wiz interface. You have multiple homescreens, a pull down notification area, you can swipe up to get to all the other apps that don’t find a place on your homescreen, quick toggles in the notification center and so on.
Continue reading A look at the Tizen UI from the Samsung Z
At the heels of the Tizen Developer Conference that kicks off today in San Francisco, Samsung’s first Tizen smartphone simply called the Z, has just been made official.
The phone itself while not packing top of the line specifications, is no slouch by any means. It comes with a 4.8-inch Super AMOLED display (1280×720p), packs a quad-core 2.3GHz processor and will run Tizen version 2.2.1. Just like the Galaxy S5, it also supports a heart rate monitor, a fingerprint sensor and comes with functionality such as an ultra power saving mode and download booster that also first made an appearance of the Galaxy flagship. It is powered by a 2600 mAh battery, has a 8 MP camera with a 2.1 MP front facing shooter, 16 GB of internal storage and support for microSD cards. Connectivity options include support for LTE Cat. 4, NFC and an IR sensor. It will come in Black and Gold, with a faux leather finish that we have seen before from Samsung.
Continue reading The first Tizen smartphone is here – The Samsung Z
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.
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