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Facebook is for all: Zuckerberg takes a jab at Snapchat

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San Francisco, April 19: In an apparent reaction to Snapchat CEO Evan Spiegel’s purported disinterest in expanding business to “poor countries” like India, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg said Facebook is for everyone and not just for “the high end”.
In a subtle jab at Spiegel, Zuckerberg told TechCrunch on the sidelines of the annual Facebook F8 developer conference in San Jose on Tuesday: “I think one thing that people probably don’t think about as much as we do is innovation to serve everyone in the community, not just the high end, right? So we focus on a lot of things like Facebook Lite. It’s up to 200 million people in like a year”.

Last week, US-based news website Variety quoted Snapchat’s ex-employee Anthony Pompliano as saying that Spiegel in September 2015 told him that “the app is only for rich people. I don’t want to expand into poor countries like India and Spain”.

Indians did not take the comment lightly and took to social media to lash out at the statement from the CEO. As the ratings of the app dropped, the criticism of the CEO and the app increased.

The controversy also resulted in the rating of the popular app dropping to a “single star” from an apparent “five star” on the App Store.

Snapchat’s parent company Snap Inc later denied the allegation, saying no such remark was made by CEO Spiegel.

“The simple fact is that he (Pompliano) knows exactly nothing about Snap’s current metrics. He and his lawyers are — not to put too fine a point on matters — just making things up,” Variety reported Snap’s attorneys as saying in another report.

Denying the claims of Snapchat being termed as a “rich people’s app”, the attorneys termed Pompliano a “disgruntled employee fired for poor performance”.

Some users wrote, “Poor India & Spain need better than Snapchat”, “Good bye, My Snapchat Account and Snap Inc. You’ll be product of gone by era and derision”, and “Poor Evan Spiegel”.

The app was also trolled on Twitter. #boycottsnapchat became the most trending hashtag on Twitter overnight.

“I haven’t seen any Hindus, Muslims, Sikhs, Christians etc Tweets yet. Thanks @Snapchat for uniting us,” a user tweeted.

Some users even flagged the app for hateful content and left a message, “Dear @snapchatsupport, flagged you for hateful content. #boycottsnapchat”.

Snapchat has more than four million users in India.

IANS

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Mobile manufacturing to touch Rs 132,000 cr: Prasad

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New Delhi, April 26 (IANS) Indian mobile manufacturing industry is expected to touch Rs 132,000 crore by the end of 2018, Electronics and IT Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad said on Thursday.

India manufactured about 110 million mobile phones in 2015-16 as compared to 60 million in 2014-15, a growth of over 90 per cent. In value terms, India’s mobile manufacturing industry produced mobile phones worth Rs 54,000 crore in FY15-16, compared to Rs 18,900 crore in FY14-15. This touched Rs 94,000 crore by the end of 2017, the minister said.

He was speaking at an event organised by MeitY, ASSOCHAM and Ericsson.

In terms of volume, in 2014 India produced 5 crore mobile phone made locally in India, which reached 15 crore in 2015-16.

In 2017 the Indian mobile manufacturing industry produced 22 million mobile phones. “The industry would produce 50 million mobile phones by 2020,” said the minister.

In terms of electronics manufacturing units, the minister said that within three years, the industry added 120 such units. Two-third of these were mobile manufacturing units and there were 54 such units in Noida alone. These industries employ 5 lakh people, he added.

IANS

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‘Galaxy J2 2018’ to come pre-loaded with ‘Samsung Mall’

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New Delhi, April 26: Samsung on Thursday said its smartphone “Galaxy J2 2018” will be available from April 27 pre-loaded with a new feature called “Samsung Mall.”

“Samsung Mall” is part of the “Make for India” initiative that uses Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning (ML) to deliver search results on the basis of a product picture clicked on or uploaded from the user’s gallery, the company said in a statement.

“Samsung Mall uses AI to revolutionise the way customers shop online with visual search,” said Sumit Walia, Director, Mobile business, Samsung India.

Priced at Rs 8,190, “Galaxy J2 2018” features a 5.0-inch “super AMOLED display, an 8MP rear camera and 5MP front camera — both with LED flash.

The device is powered by Quad-Core 1.4 GHz Cortex A53 processor paired with 1.5GB of RAM and 2600mAh battery.

Additionally, Jio users who purchase “Samsung Galaxy J2 2018” can avail a cashback of Rs 2,750 in their “MyJio account” on recharging with a Rs 198 or Rs 299 plan.

The cashback for Jio users comes bundled with an extra 10GB of 4G data on every recharge for the next 10 recharges.

IANS

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More people prefer iPhone 8 over iPhone X in the US: Report

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San Francisco, April 25: More and more people are buying iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus than the “super premium” iPhone X in the US, a new survey has revealed.

According to the research group Consumer Intelligence Research Partners (CIRP), iPhone 8 made up 23 per cent of iPhone sales in the first quarter of 2018 and iPhone 8 Plus registered 21 per cent.

“The iPhone X trailed at 16 per cent, down from 20 per cent the previous quarter,” CNET reported on Tuesday, citing the survey’s findings.

The survey also showed a trend among respondents toward buying past years’ iPhones.

“During the same months of 2017, the brand new iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus accounted for nearly 70 per cent of iPhone sales. This year, a lot more people are buying iPhones from one, two and even three years ago,” the report noted.

Apple will announce its next quarterly earnings report on May 1.

In March, a top analyst with asset management firm Piper Jaffray said that unlike what Apple had expected, the response to iPhone X has been lukewarm as many existing users believe that the device is too expensive.

“According to Apple news site PED3.0, Michael Olson, a senior researcher with Piper Jaffray found that 44 per cent people who didn’t upgrade said that they baulked at the idea because their current ‘iPhone works fine’,” Fortune reported.

More than a third of the respondents said that the iPhone X, which starts at $999, is too expensive.

“And eight per cent said they would have upgraded if the new phone had a larger screen,” the report added.

Ming-Chi Kuo, an analyst with KGI Securities, said in March that the Cupertino-headquartered company would cease production of iPhone X mid-year.

Apple is reportedly gearing up to introduce three new iPhones in 2018 and one of them will be more popular than the others, according to Kuo.

IANS

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