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After Jio, Airtel may launch affordable Android smartphones in India

With over 500 million smartphone users in the country, India is one of the biggest consumers of smartphones globally. However, there are still over 350 million users in India who still use a feature phone. To cater to them and grab a piece of the shrinking pie, Airtel is reportedly planning to launch affordable 4G smartphones in India for the masses. According to a new report, Airtel is in talks with local phone manufacturers to launch its own 4G smartphone at an affordable price. It also looks like Airtel is exploring a plan to come up with both locked and unlocked versions of smartphones, which would be a first in India. If that ends up being true, users will be able to buy smartphones in the form of monthly rental instead of upfront. (Image credit: Future) The telecom operator is said to be eyeing a piece of cake from what Jio and Google have planned.  For those who are unaware, at the Reliance AGM 2020 a couple of months ago, Jio announced that it will bring affordable 4G/5G smartphones to the Indian market which will cater to the local needs. And, the affordable phones will run on Android-based OS. This will be an entry-level smartphone with optimizations to the OS and the Play Store so that they will be accessible even for the lower-powered devices. The phone will also include a local ecosystem that ensures that devices with the apps and services in the Play Store are within reach of…Continue readingAfter Jio, Airtel may launch affordable Android smartphones in India

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Tech Radar

Reliance JioFiber, Airtel Xstream: plans, data packages and the fine print

With brands like Reliance Jio and Airtel announcing new broadband plans, they ushered a new era of home fiber connectivity in India. This will not only ensure the availability of affordable high-speed internet connectivity to more households but will also help people working or students attending their schools remotely. Apart from removing the upper caps of data usage, both Jio and Airtel are offering access to unlimited voice calls and subscription to various OTT services bundled. Here’s a look at the latest Airtel and Jio fiber plans. (Image credit: Jio) Latest JioFiber Plans Jio’s new unlimited plans are designed in a way that data usage is free, however, you need to pay extra for higher speed and additional benefits. Jio starts with the Bronze plan that is priced at Rs. 399 per month offering unlimited high-speed internet at 30 Mbps with free unlimited voice calls as the additional benefit. Next up is the Silver plan that is priced Rs. 699 per month offering 100 Mbps speed and fee unlimited voice calls. Both Bronze and Silver plans do not offer any bundled OTT subscription. JioFiber plans Plan Name Bronze Silver Gold Diamond Diamond+ Platinum Titanium Rental Rs. 399 Rs. 699 Rs. 999 Rs. 1,499 Rs. 2,499 Rs. 3,999 Rs. 8,499 Speed 30 Mbps 100 Mbps 150 Mbps 300 Mbps 500 Mbps 1 Gbps 1 Gbps Domestic voice calls Unlimited Unlimited Unlimited Unlimited Unlimited Unlimited Unlimited OTT bundle NA NA 11 apps 12 apps 12 apps 12 apps 12 apps It is…Continue readingReliance JioFiber, Airtel Xstream: plans, data packages and the fine print

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TechCrunch

Amazon inks cloud deal with Airtel in India – TechCrunch

Amazon has found a new partner to expand the reach of its cloud services business — AWS — in India, the world’s second largest internet market. On Wednesday, the e-commerce giant announced it has partnered with Bharti Airtel, the third-largest telecom operator in India with more than 300 million subscribers, to sell a wide-range of AWS offerings under Airtel Cloud brand to small, medium, and large-sized businesses in the country. The deal could help AWS, which leads the cloud market in India, further expand its dominance in the country. The move follows a similar deal Reliance Jio — India’s largest telecom operator and which has raised more than $20 billion in recent months from Google, Facebook and a roster of other high-profile investors — struck with Microsoft last year to sell cloud services to small businesses. The two announced a 10-year partnership to “serve millions of customers.” Airtel, which serves over 2,500 large enterprises and more than a million emerging businesses, itself signed a similar cloud deal with Google in January this year. That partnership is still in place, Airtel said. “AWS brings over 175 services to the table. We pretty much support any workload on the cloud. We have the largest and the most vibrant community of customers,” said Puneet Chandok, President of AWS in India and South Asia, on a call with reporters Wednesday noon. The two companies, which signed a similar agreement in 2015, will also collaborate on building new services and help existing customers migrate to Airtel Cloud, they said. Today’s…Continue readingAmazon inks cloud deal with Airtel in India – TechCrunch

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Tech Radar

Another Zoom alternative approaches as Airtel readies app launch

The video conferencing market is set to get another major competitor after another Indian heavyweight revealed plans to launch its own offering. Telecoms giant Bharti Airtel is set to launch its own rival to the likes of Zoom and Microsoft Teams as it looks to grab a slice of the market. The news comes days after the announcement of JioMeet as Indian providers look to take advantage of the remote working boom following the global pandemic. Airtel launch The Economic Times, quoting a person ‘close’ to the company, reports Airtel is set to launch several enterprise-grade products – one of which is a unified video conferencing tool.  The service is initially going to be launched for start-ups and small businesses, however Airtel may look at a wider roll-out depending on the kind of reception it gets, the source added. Airtel’s putative video conferencing tool will work on both smartphones and desktops both and will use the latest AES 256 encryption along with multiple authentication layers for security. Airtel already provides a slew of video conferencing solutions along with 4G, MPLS and FTTH connectivity, boasting tie-ups with Zoom, Cisco WebEx and Google Meet under its ‘Work@Home’ solutions for enterprises. JioMeet rival Airtel’s videoconferencing app will look to promote its localization and security as key selling points – areas which have been weak spots in Zoom. As mentioned, Indian telecom giant Jio rolled out its conferencing platform JioMeet last week, with reports of over a million downloads on the Google Play Store…Continue readingAnother Zoom alternative approaches as Airtel readies app launch

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Tech Radar

Rivals for Zoom sprout, now Airtel readying an app

Just the other day, JioMeet was launched. And already we have Bharti Airtel, which as a telecom service provider has a tieup with Zoom, on the verge of launching a video conferencing tool of its own. The Economic Times, quoting a person ‘close’ to Airtel’s plan, said that they are going to launch several enterprise-grade products one of which is a unified video conferencing tool.  While it is going to be launched for start-ups and enterprises, Airtel might roll it out more broadly depending on the kind of reception it gets, the source was quoted as saying. Airtel’s putative video conferencing tool will work on smartphones and desktops both and will use the latest AES 256 encryption along with multiple authentication layers for security. Airtel, incidentally, already provides a slew of video conferencing solutions along with 4G, MPLS and FTTH connectivity. It has tie-ups with Zoom, Cisco WebEx and Google Meet under its ‘Work@Home’ solutions for enterprises. JioMeet shows its intent Airtel’s videoconferencing app will highlight as its USP localization and security — the two purported weak spots in Zoom, the market leader whose videoconferencing app has topped the charts in the lockdown phase when work from home culture became the norm. Sensing an opportunity, a variety of players are keen to get into the space. and as it happens, Indian telecom giant Jio has already rolled out its free conferencing platform JioMeet last week. Though panned for its uncanny similarity to Zoom’s offering, JioMeet is already seen as a…Continue readingRivals for Zoom sprout, now Airtel readying an app