Weekly News Roundup #8 – India
In a weekly segment, I’ll be doing a roundup of the mobile technology news in India, including new device announcements and releases from Indian manufacturers, network carrier news, and anything else that captures the pulse of the Android scene in India.
With Computex 2013 dominating the news last week, this has been yet another slow news week for Android news in India. Of course, we still have seven new Android smartphones to talk about, an official upgrade to Android 4.2 Jelly Bean for the Micromax A116 Canvas HD, and great deal from Samsung for the Samsung Galaxy Note 2. Let’s get started!
iBall Andi 4.7G Cobalt officially launched
Joining the ever-increasing number of budget-friendly quad-core smartphones being launched in the country in the latest offering from iBall, the Andi 4.7G. As the name suggests, the iBall Andi 4.7G boasts a 4.7-inch IPS display with 1280×720 resolution, and is powered by a 1.2 Ghz quad-core processor, similar to the processors used by every other low-cost quad-core device available in India.
Other specifications of the iBall Andi 4.7G include 1GB RAM, 16GB internal memory which is further expandable via microSD up to 32GB, 12MP rear camera and 5MP front camera, a 2,200 mAh battery, and Android 4.2 Jelly Bean out of the box.
The specifications of the device would have allowed the company to compete effectively against other local manufacturers, but unfortunately, is priced comparatively higher, which is definitely surprising. The iBall Andi 4.7G is priced officially at Rs 19,995 (~$370), even though it is available from various online retailers at a cheaper Rs 17,499 (~$324). At either price point, the smartphone is still more expensive than most other similarly speced devices.
That being said, none of the other devices offer as much internal storage as the iBall Andi 4.7G, and iBall also promises timely OTA updates for its smartphone, compared to other companies which require you to go to their service centers to receive any software updates. At a slightly higher price, these two features could definitely be worth it for some.
If you’re interested, you can pick up the device at the cheaper price point from online retailers Tradus here.
Source – Tech Tree
Lenovo launches six new Android smartphones in India
Lenovo unveiled six new Android smartphones in India last week, covering the entire price spectrum, from a low-cost entry level smartphone, to a high-end device powered by an Intel processor. You can check out the complete list of the latest smartphones on offer from Lenovo below –
Lenovo IdeaPhone K900
The Lenovo IdeaPhone K900, first showcased back in January during CES 2013, is powered by a 2Ghz dual-core Intel Atom Z2580 processor. Other specifications of the smartphone include a 5.5-inch IPS display with 1080p resolution, 2GB RAM, 16GB internal storage further expandable via microSD up to 32GB, 13MP rear camera and 2MP front camera, a 2,500 mAh battery, and Android 4.2 Jelly Bean on-board.
Considering the specifications, the Lenovo IdeaPhone K900 is priced very competitively at just Rs 32,999 (~$611), and will be available in stores from July.
Lenovo IdeaPhone S920, IdeaPhone P780, and IdeaPhone S820
Following the high-end IdeaPhone K900 is a series of quad-core smartphones that target the budget-friendly quad-core devices by local manufacturers that are currently flooding the market. The S920, P780, and S820 feature a lot of common specifications that include displays with 720p resolution, a 1.2Ghz quad-core MediaTek processor, 1GB RAM, 4GB internal storage expandable via microSD up to 32GB, and Android 4.2 Jelly Bean on-board.
The 5.3-inch IdeaPhone S920 features an 8MP rear camera and 2MP front camera, and a 2,250 mAh battery. The S920 is priced at Rs 26,399 (~$488).
The 5-inch IdeaPhone P780 features an 8MP rear camera and 0.3MP front camera, and a massive 4,000 mAh battery. The P780 is priced at Rs 22,529 (~$417), and is great choice for anyone looking for amazing battery life.
The 4.6-inch IdeaPhone S820 features a 12MP rear camera and 2MP front camera, and a 2,000 mAh battery. The S820 is priced at Rs 19,500 (~$361).
Lenovo IdeaPhone A706
The IdeaPhone A706 is another mid-range smartphone from the company, with specifications such as a 4.5-inch display with 854×480 resolution, 1.2Ghz Qualcomm Snapdragon MSM8225Q quad-core processor, 1GB RAM, 4GB internal storage expandable via microSD up to 32GB, 5MP rear camera and 0.3MP front camera, 2,000 mAh battery, and Android 4.1 Jelly Bean on-board.
The Lenovo IdeaPhone A706 is priced at just Rs 15,949 (~$295).
Lenovo IdeaPhone A390
Finally, we have the entry-level IdeaPhone A390. The specifications of the A390 include a 4-inch display with 800×480 resolution, 1Ghz dual-core MediaTek processor, 512MB RAM, 4GB internal storage expandable via microSD up to 32GB, 5MP rear camera, 1,500 mAh battery, and Android 4.0 ICS on-board.
The Lenovo IdeaPhone A706 is priced at Rs 8,689 (~$160).
Source – Think Digit
Micromax A116 Canvas HD receives update to Android 4.2 Jelly Bean
The Micromax A116 Canvas HD was the first budget-friendly quad-core smartphone launched in India, and since then, we’ve seen a slew of similarly-specced devices launched from various local manufacturers, some of which boast Android 4.2 Jelly Bean on-board. Not to be left behind, Micromax announced the official upgrade to Android 4.2 for the A116 Canvas HD last week.
Unfortunately, the update isn’t available over the air, or even by connecting or device to your PC. Instead, you will need to head down to one of many Micromax Service Centers around the country, to update your device to the latest Android OS version. The good news is that the latest update includes a OTA feature, so any future software upgrades will be available over the air.
Other features included in the latest update are a fix for the delay in GPS location locking, a new semi-transparent notification panel, a panorama shot feature for the camera app, offline voice typing, and other bug fixes and performance improvements.
Source – Fone Arena
Samsung offers Rs 10,000 off on the Samsung Galaxy Note 2 in exchange of your old smartphone
Samsung has introduced a Rs 10,000 cash back offer on purchase of the Samsung Galaxy Note 2, by simply exchanging your old smartphone.
The devices that are eligible for the maximum benefit include the Nokia Lumia and PureView phones, most Samsung smartphones except the Galaxy S4, all BlackBerry, HTC, and Apple smartphones, along with some smartphones by local manufacturers such as Micromax and Karbonn as well. The above cashback offer can also be clubbed with a 6 month zero percent EMI scheme, wherein a user will have to pay Rs 4,564 each month for that the EMI period.
This deal will effectively reduce the price of the Samsung Galaxy Note 2 to Rs 27,500 (~$509), which makes the smartphone a steal! If you’re in the market for a high-end device with a large display, now will be the best time to pick one up.
Source – Know Your Mobile
What are your thoughts? What do you think of the new smartphones from iBall and Lenovo? Have you updated your Micromax A116 Canvas HD to Android 4.2 Jelly Bean yet? What do you think of the latest cashback offer from Samsung for the Galaxy Note 2? Will you be picking one up? Let us know in the comments section below.
See you next week!