The telecom sector in India is still at war, even after almost a year since the launch of disruptor, Reliance Jio. Airtel, being the biggest incumbent player in the industry is probably the only company that is equipped to tackle the onslaught of offers from Jio. The data-wars were not limited to the telecom industry; months after the launch of Reliance Jio, the company launched JioFiber. JioFiber specifically targeted the broadband market of India. Though it hasn't been launched commercially, it still introduced disruption in the broadband sector. In response, Airtel launched broadband plans that sound too good to be true. The company is offering 1000GB of data with most of their high-end broadband plans. The plans were launched in May but are still keeping Airtel consumers from straying towards JioFiber. According to Airtel, these are the best selling broadband plans. There are four plans (Rs 1099, Rs 1299, Rs 1499, Rs 1799) which can get you 1000 GB of bonus data, which will be valid till March 31, 2018. The lowest plan of Rs 899 will fetch the user 500 GB till March 31, 2018. The offer cannot be combined with any other offer by Airtel and can only be availed by an online purchase. The offer is being provided by Airtel broadband to any customer who wishes to avail Airtel's DSL services after 12th June 2017. In order for a new customer to avail the Offer, the eligible customer must visit the page www.airtel.in/broadband and select base plan, enter mobile number and address to raise request for new broadband connection or contact customer care to apply for subscription to Airtel Broadband services. Upon subscription to one of the select plans under the present offers, and upon expiry of a period of 7 days following the date of activation of their new connection, a customer shall, subject to feasibility at the point of connection, be able to enjoy additional data, in addition to the base plan chosen by them, which comes with the same speed as per chosen base plan.
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Reliance Jio 's JioPhone will soon hit the market. Reliance Industries, at its annual general meet on July 21, unveiled the cheapest phone in the country that will be capable of running 4G internet and perform voice over LTE (VoLTE) calls. Mukesh Ambani garnered a lot of attraction when he announced that the JioPhone is effectively priced Rs 0. Though the idea of getting a refund might be a stretch after three years, the device is still priced reasonably well at Rs 1,500. This price point has excited individual buyers who can get the device once it's available for pre-booking from August 24. However, Jio doesn't want to stop at that. The company has launched a new 'Keep me posted' page for businesses as well. On this page, businesses interested in purchasing the device can order in bulk. The buyer will also have to select the number of devices they'll need.To avoid fake registrations, the buyer is also required to input the GSTN or PAN number, name of the company as well as e-mail addresses for further correspondence. There is no mention of any special price or offers for businesses. However, there is a possibility that these devices will be sold with a cooperate package. JioPhone is being touted as 'India ka Smartphone' as it is aimed at the feature phone market, which is still a majority in the phone market. The company also launched exclusive data plans for the device. If you are wondering whether or not to pre-book the JioPhone, here are the main factors to consider before you make the purchase: Secondary phone Owning a secondary feature phone that is also capable of accessing 4G internet is not a bad idea altogether. When Reliance Jio launched its 4G network in India, the company registered a sharp growth in customer base. However, there was no visible decline in the market share of top players in the telecom industry. Considering that most smartphones these days, come with a dualSIM slot, most users made Reliance Jio as their second SIM. Similarly, the phone offered by Reliance Jio might not be able to replace smartphones altogether but they can definitely become an efficient secondary device. Voice calls Voice calls are one of the key reasons why one would want to buy a feature phone. JioPhone might be one of the best investments for one who makes long voice calls. During the AGM event on July 21, Chairman Mukesh Ambani clearly stated that voice calls will always be free on a JioPhone. However, we are still unsure if these calls will require a working internet connection at all times. Battery life One of the biggest downfalls of smartphones is battery life. Despite aggressive growth in terms of processing power, features and even design, the smartphone industry has failed to remedy a permanent and effective solution for short battery lives. The best in the industry can hardly survive two days without a charge. Feature phones on the other hand, don't use heavy processors or anything power intensive. With JioPhone, the company did not mention the talktime the device can offer but considering that there's no touch screen panel to suck the battery dry, the device should offer a decent power back up. Ergonomics The JioPhone sports a small 2.4 inch QVGA display on the front and has a small physical keypad instead of a touch screen. In the age of smartphones and phablets, a small compact design factor has become rather rare. JioPhone, similar to other feature phones is compact and still has the capability of accessing 4G internet. Internet The biggest advantage and the USP that the JioPhone boasts is its capability of operating on 4G network, despite being a feature phone. The company claims that JioPhone users will also get a cheaper data plan at almost half the price of the Rs 309 plan. However, consumers using this plan will have an FUP of 500MB per day in comparison to 1GB per day that can be availed with Rs 309 plan. JioTV The feature phone can double up as streaming device for your television. JioPhone doesn't need a smartTV either and can connect via a simple cable. NFC During the AGM, there was a fleeting mention of NFC in the JioPhone. According to the company, the NFC feature will show up on the JioPhone later this year. NFC as a payment method is still at a nascent stage in India. JioPhone can connect to credit, debit cards and UPI accounts for payments and can be used by just tapping on point of sale devices.
President His Highness Shaikh Khalifa Bin Zayed Al Nahyan has issued the landmark Federal Law No. 7 of 2017 for Tax Procedures, which sets the foundations for the planned UAE tax system, regulating the administration and collection of taxes and clearly defining the role of the Federal Tax Authority (FTA).
The Federal National Council (FNC) approved the draft law in March this year and with the presidential approval to the tax law, the country now has a legal framework for taxation, implementation and administration. “The Tax Procedures Law is a significant milestone towards establishing the UAE’s tax system and diversifying the economy,” said Shaikh Hamdan Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Deputy Ruler of Dubai, UAE Minister of Finance and FTA Chairman.
“The Law, issued by Shaikh Khalifa is an all-encompassing legislative framework that lays the groundwork for the UAE’s plan to implement taxes as a means to ensure sustainability and diversify the government’s revenue streams. The increased resources will enable the Government to maintain the momentum of its development and infrastructure for a better future.”
The Law defines a clear set of common procedures and rules to be applied to all tax laws in the UAE, namely, value added tax (VAT) and excise tax laws, and clearly states the respective rights and obligations of the FTA and the taxpayer.
The law covers tax procedures, audits, objections, refunds, collection, and obligations, which include tax registration, tax-return preparation, submissions, payment and voluntary disclosure rules – in addition to tax evasion and general provisions. When the Tax Procedures Law goes into effect, all UAE-based businesses will be required to keep accurate records for five years.
The law also sets penalties for non-compliance, as well as clear processes for appeals which align with international best practices, and establishes a fair and transparent environment for the FTA to carry out its mandate. “The UAE is committed to meeting the most stringent international standards,” Shaikh Hamdan said. “We are working to establish an optimal legislative and executive environment to ease the nation into the VAT and excise tax systems. Implementing these taxes gives the UAE further leverage when it comes to international competitiveness and brings us one step closer towards building the future envisioned by our wise leaders, who have called on all those in charge to innovate and strive to spread happiness among citizens and residents.”
Muslim CRPF jawan snapped offering Namaz while a Hindu Jawan stands guard. What an inspiration to Humanity! Salute !
This beautiful incidence happened on Saturday. A Muslim CRPF cop offered Zuhr prayers (afternoon Namaz) during duty while the other CRPF jawan, presumably Hindu stood guard for him till he finished his Namaz. This heart- touching moments of our CRPF jawans guarding each other was captured by Lateef Ali, a station house officer of Lar Police station. He says, “I was sitting in my office having lunch when I saw, from my window, someone offering prayers on the roadside and a CRPF soldier stand guard for him. It was a unique sight, and it also symbolizes our secularism. So I decided to capture it. Rest is history.” The internet has erupted in joy after the image went viral. “What a heartwarming moment. CRPF jawan standing guard while a Jammu and Kashmir cop offers prayers in Kashmir. Diversity is our strength!” tweeted Javaid Trali, media analyst of J&K government.
The State Bank of India stock on Monday rose after the lender announced slashing of interest on savings account deposits by 50 basis points to 3.5 per cent on balances of up to Rs 1 crore, ahead of Reserve Bank's policy review this week. Other banking stocks followed suit since a cut in interest rate on savings account would leave more cash in the hands of the state lender. The BSE banking index surged 1.23 percent or 345 points at 28,367 level. Of the 10 stocks on the BSE bankex, YES Bank was the sole loser, down 2.14 percent. State Bank of India was the top gainer (4.33 percent), followed by Bank of Baroda (2.38 percent) , ICICI Bank (2.06 percent), Punjab National Bank (1.86 percent), Kotak Mahindra Bank (1.77 percent, Federal Bank (1.19 percent), IndusInd Bank (0.85 per cent), Axis Bank (0.79 percent) and HDFC Bank (0.36 percent). Bank Nifty rose 1.16 percent or 287.60 points at 25,098 level. For savings account balance of Rs 1 crore or more, the bank will continue to offer 4 per cent interest. At 1444 hours, the SBI stock was trading 4 percent or 12 points higher at 311.10 points on the BSE. The stock is up 24.51 percent or 61.25 points on an year-to-date basis. It has gained 35.28 percent or 81.15 points on an yearly basis. The stock hit a 52-week high of 315 level on May 19, 2017. On August 4, 2016, the stock hit an yearly low of 223.20 on the BSE. The lender further said: "The decline in rate of inflation and high real interest rates are primary considerations warranting a revision in rates of interest on savings bank deposits." SBI said revision of saving bank rate will enable the bank to maintain marginal cost of fund-based lending rate (MCLR) at existing rates.
Boeing Co said on Monday it expects Indian airlines to order up to 2,100 new aircraft worth $290 billion over the next 20 years, calling it the highest-ever forecast for Asia's third-largest economy. India is one of the world's fastest-growing aviation markets with domestic passenger traffic growing at more than 20 percent a year over the last few years.
"The increasing number of passengers combined with a strong exchange rate, low fuel prices and high load factor bodes well for India's aviation market, especially for the low-cost carriers," said Dinesh Keskar, senior vice president, Asia Pacific and India sales at Boeing Commercial Airplanes. The world's biggest maker of jetliners said it expected passenger growth of about 8 percent in South Asia, dominated by India, over the next 20 years, compared with the world average of about 4.7 percent. Boeing could increase the projection next year depending on how India's regional connectivity scheme pans out, Dinesh Keskar added.
Last year, India overhauled rules governing its aviation industry, liberalising norms for domestic carriers to fly overseas and spreading the country's air travel boom to smaller cities by capping air fares and opening airports. Boeing said it expected single-aisle planes, such as the next generation 737 and 737 Max, to account for the bulk of the new deliveries, with India likely to take 1,780 such aircraft.
The U.S. planemaker dominates the wide-body aeroplane market in India, while competitor Airbus SE sells the bulk of small planes preferred by low-cost carriers (LCCs) such as InterGlobe Aviation Ltd's IndiGo. Low-cost carriers dominate Indian skies and account for more than 60 percent of flights in the country.
Boeing plans to plug this gap in its portfolio with the 737 MAX 10 single-aisle jet which it launched at an air show in Paris in June, following runaway sales of Airbus' A321neo. Boeing expects worldwide demand for 41,030 aircraft over the next 20 years, putting India's share of the total at about 5 percent.
Samsung may soon not be the only supplier of OLED displays for Apple as the Cupertino-based tech company has reportedly invested $2.70 billion in LG for the production of OLED panels for its iPhones.
According to a report in The Investor on Sunday, Apple will reportedly make the investment as advance payment for the planned panel supplies from the Korean display maker. "With the latest funding, LG Display's OLED production will reach 45,000 units of the sixth-generation OLED panel monthly. Of the total, Apple orders are likely to make up at least 30,000 units," the report quoted unnamed sources as saying.
There is no official word about the deal yet from either Apple or LG. The iPhone maker still relies on Samsung for the OLED panels for the upcoming iPhone 8. According to the report, LG would supply 45,000 OLED panels per month to Apple for iPhones in 2019.
It was presumed that Samsung would be an exclusive supplier of OLED displays for Apple's iPhones but this deal has served as a blow to the Galaxy S8 maker. "With the renewed partnership with LG, its long-time LCD partner, Apple has secured a secondary supplier for the crucial OLED panel, while the Korean partner can reduce risks from the huge initial spending on beefing up its OLED production," the report said.
It is believed that Apple will switch to OLED displays for all of its iPhone releases in 2019. This is the reason Apple roped in LG to be its OLED display supplier when it already had Samsung -- that owns 95 per cent market share of mobile OLED panels -- in its league.
It is not just Apple that is investing in LG OLED display but Google has also realised LG's potential and invested.
The Indian Railways is going full steam to achieve the target of covering the 245-km long Delhi-Chandigarh distance in flat two hours despite many curves on the proposed semi-high speed route. The Delhi-Chandigarh corridor, one of the busiest routes in north India, is slated to be first semi-high speed project being taken up by the state-owned transporter to run trains at maximum speeds of 200 kmph with French help. There are about 10 major curves spanning over 32 km on the existing Delhi-Chandigarh rail route. The public transporter will not go for land acquisition required for straightening up several curves on the Delhi- Chandigarh semi-high speed corridor and instead opt for slowing down while negotiating the track, according to the railways. The earlier plan was to straighten up these curves to facilitate uninterrupted speed on the semi-high speed route, said a senior Railway ministry official involved with the semi-high speed project. However, since it requires acquiring land for the purpose which is a time-consuming process, railways decided not to go for land acquisition to avoid delay. In a recent review meeting with the French team, it was decided to avoid land acquisition and instead make some adjustment on curves as much as possible on the existing railway land, he said. However, the official said, despite curves, the target of reaching Chandigarh in two hours will be achieved. SNCF, the French railways, has been assigned the task of submitting the execution strategy and implementation model with detailed cost of the semi-high speed project involving upgradation of the Chandigarh route. The French team will submit the final report with details of cost analysis and technical parameter by October. According to a rough estimate, it is likely to cost over Rs 10,000 crore with about Rs 46 crore per kilometre for running trains at 200 kmh, which includes rolling stock and signal and track upgradation on the Chandigarh corridor. Currently, the Shatabdi Express covers the 245 km distance in about three hours and 30 minutes travelling at a maximum speed of 110 kmh.
The crew of Indian carriers — Air India and Jet Airways — that operate to Saudi Arabia are a scared lot. The country keeps the original passport of crew members on arrival and the personnel then have only photocopies of their travel documents during their stay in Saudi. While this practice has always worried pilots and flight attendants, their fears recently turned true when the crew of an AI flight was reportedly detained in Jeddah last Wednesday for this reason. "We operated AI 931 on July 26, 2017. After landing in Jeddah ... (three crew members) went for dinner... Our taxi was stopped by Saudi police to check our permits. On showing them our xerox from immigration and our valid AI ID, we were put in police vans and were told not to use cell phones. Luckily we made a call to (the) hotel and explained the situation and gave our location," said a message by one of the three AI crew members who were allegedly detained in Jeddah last week. When asked why they were being detained, the crew says they were told that photocopies of passports won't do and that original documents should be shown for checking. They were allowed to leave three hours later. The crew members' message said the local AI official told them that Saudi was organising a drive to send back illegal immigrants due to which checks have been intensified. "Technically our xerox permits (passport copies) are invalid and going out is a big risk," the message says. An Air India spokesperson said the airline was "trying to confirm this from Jeddah administration." A senior pilot of Jet Airways had on June 1 raised the issue of Saudi Arabia keeping passports of airline crew on arrival at immigration with the aviation and external affairs ministry. "A passport is a citizen's personal proof of identity and nationality when in foreign land, without which a persons status instantaneously declines to that of a refugee. (Saudi) cannot be allowed to treat its visitors with such disdain. We enter their airspace and country only at their request and permission," the letter, titled "Passport retention -- Saudi Arabia" and sent to the aviation and foreign ministries, says.
"We urge your office to take cognisance of this issue which is faced by the airline fraternity and find an amicable solution the earliest by coordinating with the appropriate department of Saudi Arabia.. The Passports Act, 1967, of India requires that a passport is the property of the government of India and should be in the custody either of the holder or a person authorised by the holder," says the letter, seeking urgent redressal. The senior Jet pilot had sent a reminder too, but has so far not received a reply from the government and may move court on the issue.
With retail inflation receding to record low levels, the Reserve Bank is likely to cut the benchmark lending rate by at least 0.25 per cent in its third bi-monthly monetary policy review on Wednesday, say experts and bankers. Encouraged by significant price improvement, bankers expect RBI, which has kept rates on hold at 6.25 per cent for the fourth straight time citing risk to inflation, to change its monetary stance and may even go for an aggressive rate cut. "The expectation is of rate cut of a minimum 25 basis points as inflation has eased and also as industrial growth continues to remain weak. A rate cut will give a push to credit growth which has been sluggish from last many quarters," Bank of Maharashtra managing director R P Marathe said. Echoing similar views, Indian Bank Managing Director Kishor Kharat said there is an expectation that there could be 0.25 per cent rate cut by RBI this time. The RBI may not touch Cash Reserve Ratio or Statutory Liquidity Ratio as there is adequate liquidity in the market, Kharat added. The six-member monetary policy committee (MPC) of the RBI headed by RBI Governor Urjit Patel will announce the outcome of the meeting on August 2 afternoon. According to HDFC Bank Managing Director Aditya Puri, there is always a case, but there are a number of members on the committee who will examine it.