Weekly Wrap-Up: Paytm Food Wallet, SnapChat Fiasco, Jio Offers & More…

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It’s Monday morning and time to do a quick wrap-up of the posts published on trak last week. If you were offline for any reason, this is a great way to catch up with all the tech buzz from the last week

Weekly Wrap-up: Ola Corporate, BookMyShow Financials, Paytm Sound Pay & More…

Internet/Tech/E-Commerce

Paytm has introduced Paytm Food Wallet, within their main Paytm app, that can act as digital food vouchers. This spells tough competition for the current market leader in this space, Sodexho!

Hike Messenger, into which Tencent has invested a considerable amount of VC funds, may launch India’s first messenger based mobile payment platform. Tencent and Foxconn had invested $175 million into Hike last year, thereby taking it valuation to $1.4 billion.

After Bharti Airtel launched its payments bank in January, Idea cellular has set itself a June threshold to launch payments bank operations. Interestingly, Vodafone was rumoured to go live with their payments bank in March 2017, however, that does not seem to have happened.

India’s leading association of traders and merchants, Associated Chambers of Commerce and Industry (Assocham) has complained that current definition and scope of e-commerce under Goods and Services Tax (GST) regime is ambiguous and unclear.

Let’s accept it – Everyone wants to have content that goes viral! But not all of us are able to do that. We sit and watch those pictures and links from a certain brand or blogger being shared all across the internet and go red with envy.

Google’s newest and most talked about the project right now is Google Hire, which has been hailed as the ‘Holy Grail’ of all job portals. And, in a smart move, Google has converted their own internal ‘Applicant Tracking System’ (ATS) into a public platform for all.

The Internet of Things refers to devices connected in the same network. Data transmission is faster, which makes sharing of important documents quicker and more convenient. Here are Top 5 IoT trends that SME’s can take advantage of!

When it comes to Internet readiness, then there is no other place like New Delhi in India. As per IAMAI’s latest Internet Readiness Report, National Capital Delhi has beaten all states. Karnataka is ranked #2 in this report, whereas Maharashtra and Kerala are at #3 and #4 position.

E-commerce Roundup from last week: While Flipkart is patting their own back, Amazon is working to make Prime more prominent in India.

Facebook has revealed conceptions and actual demos which makes science fiction as a reality and pushes us straight into the future. Soon, you can type directly into a computer and listen to your skin. Thanks to Facebook’s new technology

Flipkart, the e-commerce company based out of Bangalore is set to tighten its return policy for many popular products that are sold over its platform. The move is said to help the company and vendors on board cut operational costs; however, as a repercussion, the website might also isolate many of its customers.

Business/Startups

Infosys is suddenly finding itself in lots of controversies. And it seems, the trend will continue for a while. After a huge debate erupted over the variable pay of Infosys CEO Vishal Sikka, which ended only after his pay was reduced by 40%, another storm appears to have engulfed India’s 2nd largest IT company.

Traditional payment processing and payment card companies, Visa and Mastercard, are feeling threatened now, and the reason is the exponential rise of Govt. backed digital payment platforms: Aadhaar Pay and UPI, which combined with BHIM App is giving these companies sleepless nights.

After the US, it is the turn of Australia to adopt protectionism for their citizens. In a move to encourage local hiring, and to stop foreign workers from coming into their country, Australia has abolished 457 work visa.

Japanese business conglomerate & investor Softbank is planning a couple of big moves in India. As e-commerce portals are gasping for investments and grocery apps are struggling to survive, Softbank is making some concrete moves to seize the opportunity, and make deep inroads into the Indian Internet and mobile ecosystem.

US Govt.’s biggest protectionism move: ‘Buy American, Hire American’ order has been finally approved by President Trump. In a highly symbolic gesture, President Trump visited a tool factory at Kenosha, Wisconsin, in the Chicago-Milwaukee industrial corridor, and signed the order.

ASCI has upheld 143 complaints about advertisements, and have declared them as misleading. These 143 misleading advertisements have been created by some of the biggest brands, which includes Apples, Airtel, Thums Up, MobiKwik and more.

China’s state-sponsored media outlet: Global Times has issued a warning to India over its Make In India mission. In fact, the article published actually threatens India with ‘trade war’, if Indian Govt. continues its ‘protectionism’ policy towards local mobile manufacturers.

With 70+ million downloads, Gaana is India’s #1 online music app, even as other established players such as Saavn, Wynk, Hungama, Apple Music, Raaga are ramping up efforts to capture the market. However, the entry of subscription-based Google Play Music early this month created a buzz in the industry.

Central Board of Excise and Customs (CBEC) has made some sweeping changes in the customs duty framework, for imported items. If you are a shopper who uses foreign online shopping portals such as AliExpress, ThinkGeek and others, then be prepared to shell out more customs duty.

In a direct confrontation, Supreme Court has asked Centre, on how did they make Aadhaar compulsory, when they have ordered it to be optional?

Telecom/Mobile/Gadgets

After a report emerged that Snapchat CEO Evan Spiegel has called India as a poor country, intense anger erupted all over India.

Jio has launched one of the cheapest international calling plan for all their customers: Now, with a special plan, users can call international destinations for as Rs 3/ minute. Priced at Rs 501, this special plan is called ‘ISD Cutter’, and for most of the countries, the tariff drops to Rs 3/minute under this plan

The Vivo Jio Cricket Mania offer provides users with free data depending upon the performance of their selected cricket team in the IPL 2017. The interesting part about this offer is that you will get the complimentary 4G data whether your team loses or wins the matches. The amount of free data will vary with the success of your team, of course. You will be awarded 3 GB 4G data if your team wins, 2 GB if its draws a match, and 1 GB if it loses a match. So you will get free data in any case.

Reliance Jio is getting hungrier for gaining market share and attracting high-end customers as time passes by. In a bid to gain more high-paying customers, the company has launched a special offer for Samsung Galaxy S8 and Galaxy S8+ users under which the subscribers will get 448 GB 4G data over a period of 8 months.

As per reports coming in, BSNL has successfully activated 2.95 million new pre-paid connections in the month of March 2017, which is quite a feat in itself.

As the parley between Apple and central government is almost settled with no concession grants, the smartphone company has stepped forward for manufacturing iPhones in India by soon starting “trial assembly” of iPhones within the political borders of the country.

BSNL Has now triggered even bigger Data War. They have started to offer 3GB per day for Rs 339 per month. Have also added 3 new Sizzling Combo Plans of Rs 349, Rs 333, and Rs 395.

In an interesting turn of event, Varanasi’s District Magistrate Yogeshwar Ram Mishra and Senior Superintendent of Police Nitin Tiwari have issued a joint order, according to which Admins of any WhatsApp or Facebook group can be arrested, if any offensive or fake news is being spread via their respective groups.

The primary competitor of Amazon Fire TV Stick is Google Chromecast 2. Talking about the price tag, the Fire TV Stick carries a label of Rs. 3,999 whereas the Google Chromecast 2 can be yours for just Rs. 3,399.

And, while you are at it, don’t forget to check out our up-to-date Indian Startup Funding & Investment Chart!

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