Jul 012014

If you reside in Mumbai and frequently travel on the newly launched Mumbai Metro, here’s your chance to taste the promotional free wifi service provided by You Broadband at few stations. All you have to do is switch on your device wifi and connect to the open WIFI @MUM METRO network.

Once connected it will follow the usual procedure of registration. Try to access a website through browser and you will land on their signup page wherein you give your phone number. Once the registration SMS is sent, you can start using the Broadband without waiting for any confirmation SMS(you will get none).

This facility is available only at Metro Stations(currently checked at Ghatkopar and Andheri Station and expanding further). It’s a promotional service and you may have to pay up in future to access it.

Jul 012014

Samsung is currently in the thick of things in Mobile world with 4 launches in June 2014, all in quick succession. May be the balance sheets are prompting such hasty maneuvers, but Samsung has this habit since long time. Anyway, all the more better for consumers.

The recent launches/announcements are Galaxy Ace 4, Galaxy Core II, Galaxy Young 2 and Galaxy Star 2. As the case was previously, all this phones replace their predecessors at the lower end of price bracket, assuming Galaxy Core II tops them all.

All the phones are expected to be available in couple of months and as such, prices are not yet available. But knowing Samsung, we can make a fair guess. Below if the spec sheets for all four with expected price.


Galaxy Core II

Galaxy Ace 4 (Announced)

Galaxy Young 2

Galaxy Star 2

  samsung-galaxy-core-2 samsung-galaxy-ace-4 samsung-galaxy-young-2-sm-g130 samsung-galaxy-star-2
Processor Quad-core 1.2 GHz Dual-core 1.0 GHz Single Core 1 GHz Single Core 1 GHz
RAM 768 MB 512 MB 512 MB 512 MB
Internal Memory 4 GB 4 GB 4 GB 4 GB
Expendable Memory Micro SD upto 64 GB Micro SD upto 64 GB microSD, up to 32 GB microSD, up to 32 GB
Android OS 4.4.2 KitKat 4.4.2 KitKat 4.4.2 KitKat 4.4.2 KitKat
Single/Dual SIM Dual SIM Single SIM Dual SIM Dual SIM
Screen Size 4.5”, TFT capacitive touchscreen, 16M colors 4”, TFT capacitive touchscreen, 16M colors 3.5”, TFT capacitive touchscreen 3.5”, TFT capacitive touchscreen
Screen Resolution 480 X 800 480 X 800 320 x 480 320 x 480
Connectivity HSDPA 21 MBPS, Wifi, Wifi Hotspot, Bluetooth 4.0, Micro USB 2.0 HSDPA 21 MBPS, Wifi, Wifi Direct, Wifi Hotspot, Bluetooth 4.0, Micro USB 2.0 HSDPA 21 MBPS, Wifi, Wifi Hotspot, Bluetooth 4.0, Micro USB 2.0 EDGE, Wifi, Wifi Hotspot, Bluetooth 4.0, Micro USB 2.0 (No 3G)
Primary Camera 5 MP, 2592 х 1944 pixels, autofocus, LED flash, 480p video 5 MP, 2592 х 1944 pixels, autofocus, LED flash, 720 pixel video 3.15 MP, 2048 x 1536 pixels, VGA Video 2 MP, 1600 x 1200 pixels, VGA Video
Secondary Camera VGA VGA No No
Battery 2000 mAh 1500 mAh 1300 mAh 1300 mAh
Expected Price Rs. 16000 Rs. 14000 Rs. 9000 Rs. 5000

With 1 GHz processors, the Young 2 and Star 2 may just about satisfy the needs. It’s a shame that Core II doesn’t get 1 GB RAM. Similary and upgrade to 768 MB for Ace 4 would have done wonders. But samsung does have other phones in that bracket and this is more of a marketing strategy. Ace 4 has just been announced and could still undergo minor changes. The noticable change in Ace 4 will be the TouchWiz Essence interface which is said to be simplified.

It remains to be seen what pricing samsung decides for these devices in India.

Specifications and news source GSMARENA

Jun 302014

Amazon’s got their Kindle. Barns and nobles’ got nook. Lots of other ecommerce websites have their own brand products. Indians won’t stay behind. The young entrepreneur startup, Flipkart, has jumped the bandwagon to launch its brand of tablet under the name Digiflip.

Introducing Digiflip Pro XT 712, the 7” tablet recently launched by Flipkart. It has been launched with a big bang, the way many other top end products are launched. Loaded with offers. A quick look at the comparison sheet impresses us. Its obvious that flipkart has handpicked other models for comparison but the selected tablets are in no way below par. Even then, Digiflip Pro shines on both fronts, punch and price.

A brief on the packed hardware is above standards and listed below

  • 1.3 Ghz Cortex-A7 Quad Core processor
  • Mali-400 MP2@500MHz graphics processing unit
  • 1 GB RAM
  • 16 GB internal memory
  • 7” IPS screen with 1280 X 800 screen resolution(216ppi)
  • DUAL SIM(that’s what Indians tend to look out for)
  • 3G support on both SIMS
  • Huge battery 3000mAH
  • Dual camera(5 MP + 2 MP)
  • Android 4.2.2
  • Storage expandable to 32 GB

What more could one ask for in 9,999 rs. You read me right. Its for that much.

But wait. It doesn’t end here. As an introductory offer, buyers are also gifted the following:

  • Free shopping worth Rs 5300 through mobile app
  • Free one month subscription to Flipkart First(Customer service program related to aftersales)
  • Flat 50% off on bookcase for Digiflip tablet
  • Free Plantronics ML2 Bluetooth Headset worth Rs. 1199
  • Free eBooks worth Rs.2300

You just feel like requesting them to stop the joke. But its for real.

Also if you spread the Love on social network, you stand to chance to win a JBL J03 Tempo Headphone worth 2490/-

The tablet comes with 30 days relacement guarantee and standard 1 year warranty for Tablet and 6 months warranty for accessories

Flipkart really knows how to please its customers. This tablet is sure to be seen in lots of hands in coming days.

Click banner below to know more or buy before they go off stock.

May 292014

That’s my new possession. A brand new Canon EOS 1200D DSLR camera with 18-55 mm and 55-250 mm combo lens kit. After years of aspiring to buy one, I finally bought it right on time for my family trip last week. Am not much of a pro in camera technical so I wouldn’t attempt to call this post as a review. This one is kind of an informative post.


That was my brothers reaction upon seeing the camera, captured as the first photograph of my camera.


And this is me trying to do what an Amateur photographer with new camera does; click himself clicking himself through a mirror.

The Canon EOS 1200D is an entry level DSLR which was recently launched. An upgrade to their 1100D, the 1200 packs the punch which was lacking in the 1100D. Lets see what…

First of all the inclusions. I bought the model under offer which bundled an extra lens, a 55-250 mm, IS II lens along with the 18-55 mm IS II lens. The combined lens kit with the body cost me a little over 30,000 rs. which was the best deal available on Amazon India. The box contained the Camera Body, combo lens kit, a battery pack with charger, data connection cable, a neck strap, a camera bag and a 8 GB memory card, along with a quick guide, a flash photography guide, a macro photography guide and a software cd Rom. The guides were good enough to assemble the camera in no time and I was ready to shoot.

The camera is easy to handle for a person upgrading from point and shoot since all the controls are on the right hand and the LCD screen is on the left hand, much like any point and shoot available in the market. It doesn’t feel heavy in hands with any of the lens attached.

The camera controls include a jog dial for various modes(Manual, Shutter priority Tv, Aperture Priority Av, Program, Scene Intelligent Auto ie. auto mode, macro, video etc….). The manual mode gives total control over the photo taken and it is good for learning the tricks of setting up the photo for an amateur.

The battery pack lasted me for an entire day without any signs of reduction in battery storage. That might be because of the relatively less number of photos I clicked. But the camera is said to click more than 500 shots before requiring recharge which is good enough for me as of now.

What I like about the camera:

  • The dual lens kit
  • Ease of handling and manageable light weight
  • Lots of different modes from auto mode for quick photography to total manual control
  • Ability to store raw images
  • Good ergonomics in placement of controls
  • The professional feel

Dislike(Far outweighed by the pros):

  • Fixed lcd screen
  • No facility to connect external mic
  • No HDMI cable bundled

The camera has by now been used on three separate important occassions, two picnics and a family functions. Though I wouldn’t rate the photography at high level, I protect myself by revealing that I am a learner. Any advice from professionals (or otherwise) out there is welcome.

Hoping to improve photography and keep on posing what I learn.

Sample photos clicked by me


My kid Ivy in one of her rare moods allows me a click.


My niece on the merry go round. Photo clicked with the focus on moving subject.


Narrow Mahabaleshwar Road at the height of tourist season


A settlement viewed from height along the road to Koyna river




Nature being partial……


My kids Ian and Ivy having fun at the hotel.


Ian and Lynelle riding a pony…also called as “orshe” by Ian…


A potrait of Ian…… Moments before his failed attack on the camera lens

Full Specifications at Canon Website

Buy this camera at Amazon India|Amazon.com|Flipkart

Apr 252014

There is no end to craziness in this world. But this one goes very near to the top… Smash your phone if you want to get another.
Yes; that’s what oneplus will ask of hundreds people if they want their new top end phone, a “One”. The specifications are out of the world and so is the design. But this truly crazy.
Don’t go smashing before you read more here.

Mar 282014

Rejoice Android and iOS users. Microsoft had reduced the price of their Office Mobile package to “zero”.  Yes, you read it right. Its for free. The package contains MS Word and MS Excel, working within their limitations  when on tablet/mobile.

The package is free for home use whereas business users are expected to pay. I hardly see that happening but it seems lost fortunes have forces the great MS towards such steps. Whatever the case be, the fortunes of common man using Android or iOS have shone.

The app supports cloud integration along with host of other features listed on the respective store page

Download the app at Microsoft Office Mobile or via your google playstore/apple app store

Jul 082013

It has its own microsite, I think a first for and Indian brand phone. Enough hype was created for everyone, including me, to talk about it. The publicity got it close to the likes of Xperia and Galaxy series. More than 10,000 people prebooked it. Is it really worth at all? At last, the day dawned when we could find out. Micromax finally launched the much awaited Canvas-4. “CAN” life really begin now? Lets find out.

The Canvas-4 Microsite itself is no less a crowd puller. One look and you know they really mean business this time around.

(Picture courtsey GSMARENA.COM)


Metal Rules

And that seems to be the USP they are banking on. The super slim anodized steel body which also “doubles up as an antenna” might keep the iPhone death grip issue at bay. While Samsung still relies on plastic for its flagships to reduce the weight, the likes of iPhone and HTC have adopted metal with impressive results. The canvas-4 isn’t far behind with barely 8.99 mm thickness.

Ready to Blow your Mind

Something neither Samsung nor any other manufacturer concentrating on feature rich phones must of thought about. Blow(a kiss) to unlock!! Bit weird considering one will need to unlock the phone time and again in public. Feels like a feature you would find in a cheap Chinese phone and when I say Chinese phone, I mean what the term meant about 4 years back. A big no no.

Shoot to Thrills

A 13 MP rear camera and 5 MP front camera!! Now that’s something to brag about. And above that a Sony sensor for the rear. But it might be a case of once bitten twice shy in terms of camera for people who currently are using Micromax phones. Proceed with caution. Plain figures can be deceptive.

Going Up

Panaroma from bottom to top is another new. Or may be I don’t know if it already exists.

For your Roving Eyes

Samsung might take a closer look at this one. Is this the SMART Stay?

Peek a Boo!

Wanna preview a video while another is already playing. Canvas-4 is here for you.

Half in Half

Multiple applications running on one screen. Work while you play.

Smile from Ear to Ear

Seems like another Samsung rip off, Direct Dial.

Play Safe

Security for your phone including ability to wipe data remotely. Free for 1 year.

Beauty Lies in the Screen of the Beholder

5” IPS LCD HD display(1280 X 720) with Corning gorilla glass. Also a first for Micromax. But the world is on Corning Gorilla glass 2. The screen resolution is good though.

Deliciously Fast

Android 4.2.1 out of the box with a assurance of updates via firmware over the air(FOTA). Again a first for Micromax.

Live the ‘Endless’ Life

Available in Pristine White and Smokey Gray with free aluminum flip cover with surface touch technology. Whatever it is, needs to be found out.

Other Imp Specs:

Processor                        : 1.2 GHz Quad Core A7 Cortex

RAM                                : 1 GB

Battery                            : 2000mAH

Connector                        : USB 3.0

Memory                            : 16 GB internal (10 GB user available) + 32 GB Expandable

Weight                              : 158 gms


What doesn’t impress me :

MT658 Chipset while the world is moving on to Exynos and likes

2000 mAH battery which I guess will be lacking the juice

Screen resolution is only 1280 X 720 while others are at full HD

Final Say:

Comparing Canvas HD which goes for around 12000 rs now, they give you a metal body, few gimmicks which people rarely use and a 13 MP camera which could be a game changer or a mere number. So are you ready to shell out those 6000 bucks for Canvas-4? Or will you wait for its price to come down(surely). One things for sure, this device is not the one which tech freaks will look out for but it will create a segment of tech freaks for this price range.

They have got us listening. But will this be a single short story in the boring sunday sermons thus people going back to snoring again? Or is Micromax ready to flood us with quality handsets at affordable prices? Is Micromax coming up with a 4G device as reports suggest? Its in their court now and for them to play.

(P.S. all the paragraph titles are straight out from micromax microsite and are fully owned by Micromax.)

Jun 282013

LIFE CAN BEGIN NOW. The punchline for Micromax Canvas 4. No specs revealed yet. And yet, or hence, it has managed to create the much needed hype prior to a product launch. The advertising style matches that of Samsung, that’s inarguable. And quite interesting too. The advertisements running on media creates an aura of king for an yet to delivered child.

And then there is this scheme of pre-order which they have adopted. Pay 5000 rs. now, wait for the price and the specs to be revealed within couple of days. Pay remaining within a predetermined period or they will pay you back your 5000 rs without any interest. Interesting. No one looses here. Quick maths. In a population of more than a billion people with a good percentage of them hungry for smart technology at affordable prices, its very easy to get atleast 10,000 pre orders. Multiply by 5000 rs. and you arrive at a figure of 50,000,000 rs. Enough to get the logistics rolling for the first lot. And they seem to be very confident about this device, so consider atleast 50% orders are through.There you go. 5000 phones sold at launch.

Now time to run some calculations considering 1,00,000 pre orders!!

This will also help them gauge the demand. The demand exceeded supply in case of Canvas HD previously, which resulted in them increasing the price by about 1000 rs. This time, they will have a pre-warning of the tsunami of orders, if ever there is, thus pricing this phone competitively.

If it is priced at around 16000-17000, as is widely being guessed, I hope Micromax is ready to handle the logistics for an avalanche of orders.

Samsung killed Nokia and Sony Ericsson in India as explained in my previous post. I also said that Micromax is up for big things. This company seem to be smart with enough understanding of Indian needs, along with the required acumen to satisfy those needs. I won’t say time will tell about Micromax. I will rather say, time is already speaking.

Though not really buying this phone, am eagerly waiting to see the big bang, hoping its not an anti-climex, on the launch date.

Jun 262013

Well you all might have knowledge of that bit of information. Seriously, I was not “really” excited when I read that Amazon had started selling ebooks in India on Amazon.in. But Couple of days back my hopes went up when I read that they have started selling Kindle devices too.

But today I received a jolt of excitement when while casually accessing Amazon.in I found that they have started selling mobiles/cameras and few other electronics on their website. The catalogue is not as exhaustive as on the U.S. version, but this could be the beginning of things. More amazing was the fact that they have introductory discounts of 10% on selected mobiles and 15% on selected cameras. I made a dry run shopping on their site and was excited that, though the prices are not as drastically low as the U.S. website, they were still far lower than any other ecommerce website after discounts.


Case to the point; Micromax Canvas HD sells for around 13500rs. on other websites where as after applying discount on Amazon, you can buy it for less than 12000 rs. Similarly Canon EOS 600D with standard lens kit sells for about 31000 rs. on most websites where as after discount Amazon sells it for less than 29000 rs.

Grab the opportunity while this launch offers last.

May 262013

The very first mobile I owned was Nokia N-Gage QD, a handheld gaming device and a phone combined. I had just returned from my first sail with a bank balance and mobile phone had been my object of desire for a long time. With enough cash in hand, me and my brother went to the gray market and bought the N-Gage QD costing 9500 rs. and a Sony Ericsson K700i costing 15000 rs. for my brother. The year was 2004 and the cost, if extrapolated to todays currency value, will be considered outrageous for the technology we had bought then, as compared to todays technology. But then, we had no choice. Nokia had established itself as a long term player by creating a psudo-image of being a reliable and cheap phone maker and Sony Ericsson was the only other player well worth the name. I called it a psudo image because the phone that I bought couldn’t be used in many countries and became my regret during my next sailing period.

Meanwhile, Nokia kept on flooding their phones in Indian market under lots of different brand names like E-series, N-Series etc. while Sony Ericsson had their very own walkman series to show off. There was not much technology up gradation except the camera quality, which effectively marked the beginning of the end for the digital camera market in India. So Nokia and SE, the only two major players in India, flooded the market while they could afford to, with older generation phone which had already seen few years in international market. Whenever the time to change my phone neared, it was a period of dilemma for me since I was sure what I wanted to buy but I couldn’t get it in the market. The clever ploy by Nokia was to tweek the series numbers in small ways and strip down one feature from the phone while introducing another feature. Indians were just learning about the levels of technology advances in cell phone arena and were not yet able to translate it into the phones they were buying. Marketing gimmick like “Music Edition” was liberally used while they just meant a change in series number and inclusion of high capacity storage card for storage of additional music. They called their phones “Internet enabled” which meant that they were marketing the GPRS feature already being sold in their other handsets, while I was yearning for introduction of 3G broadband launch in India. All in all, these companies were fooling people, just because the people let themselves being fooled.

So for quite a few years, when you looked around in public, if anyone was talking on a mobile phone, it had to be Nokia about 80% of the time and Sony Ericsson was seen with the kids of the rich. It was around 2008-2009 when Samsung, a small player in Indian market with few ordinary handsets, came up with  a clear plan in Korea to capture the Indian market. And it worked right from the launch of the Corby Series. They were by no means smartphone. Just simple colorful touchscreen phones with lots of features in a single handset. Samsung tried not to strip down the feature with any upgraded handset they introduced unlike Nokia. It was always an addition of features in the upgraded handset. After the launch of Corby, everyone wanted to “Touch”. Touch screen, that to capacitive, became the talk of the day. Corby series had dual effect on Indian strongmen of the Cellphone arena. They defeated the Nokia which had the knack to strip down the features and they countered the high cost of fully equipped Sony Ericsson phones. Samsung didn’t stop there. They had launched Galaxy series phones in international market with Android OS at its core, and didn’t waste much time in launching them in India at competitive price. Meanwhile Nokia shunned away from Android, which had google as its godfather and continued with Symbian with its dwindling developer base, thanks to the lucrative Android and iOS. Sony Ericsson had its hiccups in embracing android and fell behind in the race.

Meanwhile, Samsung dished out galaxy after galaxy  in International and Indian market and pampered us with choice. Now if I had to buy a phone, it was just the dilemma about which galaxy series phone to buy. The manufacturer was no longer a contention since Samsung had proven itself with the overall quality of their phones. (That I bought a Wave series phone in place of Galaxy series is another story which was due to some constrains and faith in the BADA OS. Eventually I bought a Galaxy phone recently.) LG, Motorola, and other minor players with self branded chinese phones were out of question due to their quality and service related issues.

While Samsung was evolving in India, another Indian player Micromax has few aces up its sleeve. They had launched their first dual sim phone around the year 2009, and these phones, with QWERTY keypads became objects of desire for financially constrained blackberry fans. Starting at 1500 rs, these dual sim phones literally captured the Indian pockets. There were few quality issues, but while spending 1500 rs for a dual sim QWERTY keypad phone, people had  it in their mind that they just couldn’t always have their cake and eat it too. Still the sales of these phones didn’t go down. Micromax too burned their hands with feature phones but they didn’t just sell in the market.The real turning point for Micromax was when they embraced Android for their phones and introduced the game changer Canvas A110 as their flagship with good specifications and a 5” screen. This phone came with Ice Cream Sandwich out of the box and was a real eye candy. Infact, when I said earlier that for me the dilemma was choosing between different galaxy phones, I think I can safely say that there were as many galaxy phones in the market because Micromax bridged the gap between the low end feature phones and high end smart phone by actually introducing a smartphone for the cost of low end phones. Samsung was actually forced to bridge the gap themselves by introduction of smart phones with bigger screen for lesser cost and eventually by introducing a dual sim smart phone in India.

Micromax has in its kitty a large profile of smart phones from their current flagship, Canvas HD with quadcore chipset and RAM comparable to the Samsung’s previous flagship SIII at half the price, Canvas 3D, Ninja(am sure this will connect with Ninja fans), Canvas Doodle(to fight against the Galaxy Note series), Canvas Music etc.. With the exception of Canvas HD, the other phones are sold between 8000-11000 rs. I have had a hands on experience on Canvas 110 and CanvasA88 Music and I was amazed that they performed well. Infact Canvas Music comes with Android Jelly Bean out of the box, so 512 MB ram does not hold it back.

Look around you in India at this moment and you will see about 70% people talking on a Samsung handset. But are things about to change? Has the David of yesteryears turned into a Goliath, ready to be defeated by the new David(Micromax)? Or will the Goliath rule for few more years? My intuition says that Samsung is about to reach peak very soon and make way for Micromax in India. Time will tell.

Till then enjoy my blog.

(Disclaimer: This post is my personal take on the Cell phone market in India and not intended to promote/create negative publicity for any phone maker. A person buying a cell phone should act on his own fair judgment while making the purchase. After all, you are spending your own money)

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