टेक्नोलॉजी

Xiaomi is doing very well in India, even better than the company’s own expectations. For a brand that came into the market only three years ago to outrank well entrenched rivals like Samsung is no small feat. Sales of its Redmi Note 4, as well as the Redmi 4 have helped the company become a household brand.

It’s not just the affordable price of the Redmi 4A that made the phone so admirable in the market. Steady performance coupled with excellent cameras have helped the Redmi 4A to raise the bar. But the success of the Redmi 4A is such that the company thought of launching its sequel in the same year itself: the Redmi 5A. While the Redmi 5A might not be totally different from the Redmi 4A, it does offer small improvements. You will be able to pick up the Redmi 5A for a starting price of Rs 4,999 on December 7 at 12:00PM via Flipkart and Mi.com/in.  Here is our review of the Xiaomi Redmi 5A.

Xiaomi Redmi 5A specifications: 5-inch HD 1280 x 720 resolution display| Qualcomm Snapdragon 425 processor|2GB RAM +16GB storage/3GB RAM +32GB storage|microSD card slot option (up to 128GB) |13MP rear +5MP front camera|3000mAh battery|MIUI 9.1, Android 7.1 Nougat

Xiaomi Redmi 5A price in India: Rs 4,999 (2GB RAM +16GB storage), Rs 5,999 (3GB RAM + 32GB storage)

Xiaomi Redmi 5A review: Design and display

At first glance you’ll wonder what has changed, it looks pretty much the same as the Redmi 4A. If you have used the Redmi 4A, you will not see a major improvement in the design department. Its all plastic body has been jazzed up with a metal finish. My review unit came in ‘Gold’, but the phone can be purchased in several other colour options including Dark Grey and Rose Gold. Coupled with a rounded, smooth design, Redmi 5A looks and feels comfortable in your hand. To my surprise, it doesn’t feel slippery, which is a big relief. The device weighs only 137g so this device feels light compared to some of the other phones on offer in this same segment.

The Redmi 5A retains those chunky top and bottom areas of its bezel, like the Redmi 4A. And underneath the display are three capacitive buttons that are not backlit. The power button and a pair of volume rockers can be found on to the right side. The other side houses a dual sim tray and a dedicated microSD slot. There’s a standard microUSB port on the bottom of the phone and a headphone jack and an Infrared port on the top. The Infrared blaster can help users to control other devices in their home.

At the back is a single camera setup with a flash on the top-left. The mono speaker is at the bottom. The Redmi 5A doesn’t offer a fingerprint scanner for added security, unlike the Redmi 4. This is a ‘Made in India’ phone.

The Redmi 5A’s screen is the same 5-inches in size as the one on the Redmi 4A and doesn’t pack any more pixels. So essentially, it has a resolution of 1280 x 720p and a pixel density of 296 ppi. I’m totally fine with the quality of the display; images are sharp, and videos look impressive. It’s perfect for a Netflix craving. If you’re coming from a feature phone background, the Redmi 5A’s 5-inch screen will be a huge upgrade. I can’t ask for more at this price point.

Xiaomi Redmi 5A review: Hardware and software

Xiaomi Redmi 5A has a Qualcomm Snapdragon 425 processor under its hood and it performs reasonably well. For everyday tasks the Redmi 5A shows no sign of lag. Browsing the web and running apps should be of no concern on the phone. Even with dozens of Chrome tabs open at once, the Redmi 5A never stuttered. In my testing, I loaded both Shadow Fight 3 and Sonic Forces Speed Battle to check the gaming performance on the Redmi 5A. Both games ran smoothly. But this device is not meant to handle heavy graphics intensive games like Real Racing 3 and Asphalt 8.

My review unit had 2GB RAM and 16GB storage. On the AnTuTu benchmark test, Redmi 5A scored 36,626. I believe the 3GB RAM (it has a built-in 32GB storage) variant might be a slightly faster in performance, but honestly, I haven’t tested that model. Though both models come with an expandable storage (up to 128GB).

In the sound department, Xiaomi Redmi 5A has cracked the code by managing to cram a mono speaker. The Redmi 5A is loud enough, even when a bunch of people around in the room. It’s not quite as bass[y), though.

Redmi 5A’s 3000mAh battery lasted close to 27 hours on a single charge. On a typical day, I make lots of calls, browse the web, check emails on a regular basis, with WhatsApp running constantly and Facebook app running in the background, watching YouTube videos while commuting to office, and streaming music through Saavn. It’s good to see that the phone’s battery lasted more than a day. I suspect if you are an average user the Redmi 5A’s battery might last close to two days.

Xiaomi Redmi 5A runs on MIUI 9, which is based on Android 7.1 Nougat. MIUI 9 brings with it a ton of big and small features, as well as typical Google features like split-screen multitasking and even Google Assistant. What I like about Xiaomi’s native MIUI is that it’s simple to operate and easy on the eyes. The phone didn’t feel sluggish, even though it is not running a pure version of Android. Xiaomi has also preloaded a slew of third-party apps like Amazon Shopping, UC News, and the Microsoft Office and Skype apps.

Xiaomi Redmi 5A review: Camera

It’s hard to expect a great camera experience on a phone in this price segment. The Redmi 5A, however, is an exception. In fact, the camera is the most fascinating aspect of the Redmi 5A. The primary camera has a 13MP sensor with an f/2.2 aperture, along with PDAF ability. The front shooter is a 5MP one with an f/2.0 aperture with smart and beautification modes.

I tested the back camera in a number of conditions including in a bright day light. The images it produced were full of detail, sharp and the colours were just right. In very low light, it flatters though. The back camera can also record 1080p video. The recorded video looked crisp when played on my desktop.

Xiaomi Redmi 5A review: Conclusion

The Redmi 5A is not targeted at those who already bought the Redmi 4A. Instead, Xiaomi says it is targeting first-time smartphone buyers, especially those who are looking to upgrade their “dumb” feature phones. At Rs 4,999, Redmi 5A is the most affordable Xiaomi smartphone in India. And it tells a lot about the company’s expectations from the Redmi 5A. When you look at the Redmi 5A, its design, specifications, 4G LTE connectivity and cameras, all this makes the phone stand out in the competition.

While less expensive than the Redmi 4, the Redmi 5A isn’t that cheap, as you can pick up the JioPhone for free and Bharat 1 for as little as Rs 2200. The latter phone even support WhatsApp and Facebook on the device. But the Redmi 5A is a complete smartphone, boasting faster performance and a superior camera, making this a phone well above the notch.

On Friday, the iPhone X finally went on sale in India which led to long queues outside Apple retailers in major metropolitan areas. Undeterred by Rs 89,000 starting price tag, for the 64GB version, people lined up to buy the new phones.

The sale started at 6 pm and with a high demand, it’s likely many customers will still miss out as those who had pre-booked the mobile would pick the first lot on the launch day itself.

iPhone X starts at Rs 89,000 for 64GB, while the 256GB version is price at Rs 1,02,000 and will be available in Silver and Space Grey Colours. Accessories such as leather and silicone cases which can set one back by Rs 3,500 to Rs 8,600.

At Rs 86,000 it’s the most expensive smartphone sold in India with the closest rival being the Pixel 2XL which will cost Rs 73,000.

Apple Inc shares rise

Apple Inc shares rose nearly 4 per cent on Friday after the tech giant reported a blowout fourth quarter and shrugged off concerns related to the iPhone X, prompting more analysts to put a trillion-dollar valuation on the company.

The stock was on track to add nearly $34 billion to its market capitalisation. At Thursday’s close of $168.11, the company was valued at $868 billion.

The Cupertino, California-based company, also forecast a strong holiday quarter ahead, which will include the iPhone X that started selling on Nov. 3.

“We see iPhone X unlocking pent-up iPhone upgrades, especially in China, driving more than 20 per cent iPhone unit growth and a revenue and earnings beat in 2018,” analyst Katy Huberty on Morgan Stanley said.

The company will make 30 million iPhone X units during the current quarter, Nomura Instinet analysts estimated, allaying production worries related to the glass-and-steel $999 phone.

At least seven brokerages raised their price targets on the stock, with Citigroup making the most bullish move by raising its price target by $30 to $200.

With the latest brokerage actions, at least seven Wall Street analysts now have target prices for Apple that put its market value above $1 trillion. Drexel Hamilton’s Brian White is still the most bullish among Apple analysts tracked by Thomson Reuters, raising his target price further to $235.

Apple’s fourth-quarter results underscored the company’s ability to drive growth not just on iPhones, but across its range of products, analysts said.

The company’s suite now includes five different iPhone models, the iPad, the Mac and the Apple Watch as well as its fast-growing services.

Apple said it sold 46.7 million iPhones in the fourth quarter ended Sept. 30, above analysts’ estimates of 46.4 million, according to financial data and analytics firm FactSet. Mac and iPad sales too were above the estimates of most analysts.

“Apple’s first-mover advantage and “easy growth” from new smartphone adopters is over, but the company appears likely to retain its existing premium customer base,” analysts at Morningstar said.

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A hands-on video of the iPhone X on Youtube apparently got an Apple engineer fired from the job. Brooke Amelia Peterson published a video on YouTube earlier this week, which featured the iPhone X. The phone belonged to the senior Peterson, who was working on RF and wireless circuit design for the iPhone X. As the video went viral, Apple took the drastic step to dismiss Peterson from the company.

In her latest YouTube video, Peterson now claims her dad has been sacked from Apple. Peterson explained that the former Apple engineer took the full responsibility of giving her access to the iPhone X. Peterson said that her dad broke the company’s rule, as Apple has no tolerance of rule violations. According to The Verge report, Apple requested Peterson to remove the video from YouTube.

While some may think that sacking of an engineer is a little too extreme, the hands-on video evidently include some footage of an iPhone X confidential information such as codenames of unreleased Apple products in the Notes app and special employee-only QR codes. If Apple had not sacked Peterson, otherwise it would have sent a wrong message about the security in Cupertino.

This isn’t the first time Apple has sacked an engineer to showing off the device ahead of the launch. In 2010, Steve Wozniak, Apple co-founder claimed (via Gizmodo) that he was shown an iPad 3G for a couple of minutes and the test engineer of letting him access the tablet was fired. The incident happened when Wozniak was waiting in the queue outside the Apple store  to get the iPad.

Apple iPhone X has been the most hyped device of this year. The tenth anniversary iPhone will be available in more than 55 countries around the world, including India.  The iPhone X, Apple’s most expensive iPhone, sold out in less than 10 minutes upon being made available for pre-order. It will start shipping from November 3. The base model costs Rs 89,000 for the 64GB model and the top-end model with 256GB will set you back by Rs 102,000.

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WhatsApp message delete/ recall feature has been in the rumour mill for nearly a year now, with the company mentioning it in the internal code. But fans will be pleased to know that the feature, which had not made an official appearance so far, has started trickling out to some WhatsApp users. WABetainfo now reports that the new feature, named ‘Delete for Everyone’, has started rolling out to some users on Android, iPhone, and Windows Phone apps. It only works if both the recipient and sender have the latest version of WhatsApp installed, the site notes, and it also works on Web version.

How to use WhatsApp ‘Delete for Everyone’ feature

The feature is said to be one of the most requested one, and is likely to make things slightly easier for WhatsApp users. The report says that it will be called ‘Delete for Everyone’ and several users have started noticing the feature in the latest WhatsApp version when they press the trash icon. Alongside Delete for Everyone, users will also see the Delete for Me option, if they only want to delete the message from their phone.

It adds that the rollout is slow and it may take some time. As we already mentioned, the feature will only work for both the parties if the sender and recipient are using the latest WhatsApp version. The feature is said to work for all kinds of messages on the most widely used instant messaging app. The report says it will work for all texts, images, videos, GIFs, voice messages, contact, files, location, quoted message, and status replies on WhatsApp.

It also only works within 7 minutes of sending the message – after that, the message can’t be recalled. Deleted messages will be replaced by “This message was deleted for everyone.” Based on the initial report, the sent message will be deleted from the chat page as well as from the notifications pane. For those unaware, the recall feature is already available in other popular chat apps like Telegram, Viber, and others, and WhatsApp is finally looking to make it available to its billion daily active users as well.

WABetainfo notes that WhatsApp at the moment does not recall a message contained in a quoted message. Messages cannot be deleted for everyone if they are sent in a broadcast list. It also adds that messages will not be deleted on the Symbian app, so those users will continue to see the recalled message. The site adds that in its current implementation, WhatsApp will not notify the user that the message has been deleted.

Separately, for Android users, WhatsApp beta version 2.17.397 is now out and it adds new emojis. For those unaware, WhatsApp introduced its own set of emojis that were different from what we have seen so far. The new WhatsApp emojis were visible in beta version 2.17.363 for Android users, and were rolled out to more people. The all-new WhatsApp Beta 2.17.397 brings new emojis like star eyes, swearing face, vomiting face, shushing face, and more to the list. The new beta version was firstreported by Android Police which also points that the new emoji set also gets the T-Rex. Interested users can head to APK Mirror to download the new version or join the beta program to keep updated.

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रिलायंस रिटेल अपने 4जी फीचर फोन जियोफोन की बुकिंग का दूसरा चरण दीवाली के बाद शुरू करेगी. कंपनी पहले चरण में मिली लगभग 60 लाख बुकिंग की आपूर्ति फिलहाल कर रही है.

रिलायंस रिटेल के चैनल पार्टनर ने यह जानकारी दी. इसके अनुसार, ‘जियोफोन बुकिंग का दूसरा चरण दीवाली के बाद शुरू होगा. यह अक्टूबर के आखिर में यह नवंबर के पहले हफ्ते में शुरू हो सकता है.’

उल्लेखनीय है कि जियोफोन की बुकिंग 24 अगस्त को शुरू हुई थी और जानकारों के अनुसार पहले तीन दिन में ही लगभग 60 लाख लोगों ने 500 रुपये का भुगतान करते हुए प्रीबुकिंग करवाई.

कंपनी के अनुसार जियोफोन की प्रभावी कीमत शून्य होगी लेकिन इसे खरीदने के लिए 1500 रुपये की जमानती राशि देनी होगी जो कि बाद में वापस :रिफंड: कर दी जाएगी.