Weekly Wrap-Up: Airtel Zero, Net Neutrality, Snapdeal Acquires FreeCharge & More…


Here is a quick wrap-up of all the posts published on trak.in last week. If you were offline for any reason, worry not, the wrap-up will give you all the buzz!

Weekly Wrap-up of Tech, Mobile & Startups

Myntra has now decided to shut down their website completely and the day for the same is May 1st, 2015. So, going forward Myntra customers can make their purchases only on the Mobile app and no where else.

Flipkart and Airtel (and some other unnamed ecommerce portals and online services) have taken steps which can ruin the basic principles based on which Internet was formed – the net neutrality – and an Open World of Ideas and Tools which were dreamt by the founders of the World Wide Web.

Office Lens by Microsoft is arguably one of their best mobile applications ever created, because it blurs the difference between graphics and words. Only Windows Mobile users were able to use this app but now, Microsoft has decided to roll out the same for Android and iOS users as well.

Here are simple step by step procedure on how a foreign company or startup open up a Wholly owned subsidiary in India.

While most of the online Indian junta has been focusing on Xiaomi, Micromax and others in India, there is another company that is silently taking giant strides in smartphone market in India. With a growth rate of 550%, Gionee is probably the fastest growing smartphone company in India today.

One day, a group of students from Kalindi College in Delhi were waiting for their next metro train in an underground station. As soon as the train comes in or leave, a heavy gust of wind blows out, which made these students think hard: Can this wind be used to generate energy?

In a startling revelation by ASSOCHAM, it was found that 42.5% of all corporate employees in India are suffering from depression or general anxiety disorder.

The Government of India instructed Internet Service Providers (ISPs) to block 2341 URLs in 2014, which is an increase of 73% compared to 2013 when 1374 URLs were instructed to be blocked.

Now this is quite a surprising move – Xiaomi has ended the exclusive availability of their Mi smartphones on Flipkart. Going forward, Xiaomi phones will be available on Snapdeal and Amazon as well.

In a lay man’s words, CSR or Corporate Social Responsibility is about making bread and then breaking it with those who can’t afford it. Are Indian companies doing enough..we find out

India needs it, and needs it desperately – A single emergency number that works Pan-India and can be dialed in case of any emergency, exactly like 911 in the US. And, it seems that it may soon be a reality!

PM Modi and the council of Union Ministers in the cabinet has finally given their green signal to the pending Real Estate (Regulation and Development) Bill, 2013. Real estate buyers in India can now be relieved as they will get much needed protection against frauds and fake promises doled out by developers and builders.

Uber has shrugged their responsibility in the rape case incident has said that they are in no way responsible for any actions carried out by an Indian citizen against another Indian citizen.

Finally, it’s confirmed. Snapdeal has acquired Freecharge. The rumours that have been around for couple of weeks now can be put to rest. Although, the financials of the deal have not been disclosed WSJ has quoted one person familiar with the deal stating that Freecharge acquisition cost Snapdeal in the region of $450 million through a mix of cash and equity.

Flipkart, India’s biggest ecommerce portal has decided to jump into the groceries market as they will sell vegetables and groceries on their platform.

Rumours of Olacabs raising $500 Million have been around for couple of months now. However, it is now confirmed according to company filings with Registrar of Companies that ANI Technologies Pvt Ltd., the company behind Olacabs has raised $315 million Series E round of funding led by Yuri Milner’s DST Global.

Ola aims to create at least 50,000 woman driver-entrepreneurs in 3 years! We can’t exactly decipher the effect of Deepika’s “My Choice” video with the masses especially women, but this initiative by Ola is applaudable for actually empowering women.

Snapdeal has acquired Freecharge for roughly $400 0 $450 million – Here are 3 compelling reasons why this acquisition made sense to both the companies and how they have altered Indian mCommerce story forever.

Reliance Jio has launched it’s messenger app Jio Chat and is now available on Google Play store. It is currently available on Android and iOS devices.

In a note sent across to us, Airtel has said that their Airtel Zero program is an innovative and open marketing platform that will allow customers to access mobile applications “free of cost”.

This new move by the Government can be described as the biggest push to encourage sales of electric and hybrid vehicles in India. Under a unique and innovative scheme named as FAME, Government will provide incentives upto Rs 1.38 lakh for every electric car sold.

After the cab market, it looks like auto hailing is up for grabs. Ola Cabs has been running their Ola Auto successfully, and now their main competitor Uber has got into the fray as well. Uber Auto is here!

Flipkart co-founder Sachin Bansal announced yesterday that they have joined forces with Mumbai dabbawallas for last mile delivery of their products. He shared a video wherein a dabbawalla from Mumbai is sharing the news of their association with Flipkart.

Capital of Uttar Pradesh and India’s 8th most populous city: Lucknow has become the first city in India to use to drones for crowd control. Police chief of Lucknow, Yashasvi Yadav has announced that they have purchased 5 high powered drones, costing Rs 6,00,000 each, which will be used for monitoring and controlling unruly mob.

Earlier today, Amazon put out a cheeky little message making fun of Zomato’s incessant logo design changes. Here is the tweet put out by Amazon on their Twitter Timeline!

In which should come as a great news for close to 900 million mobile subscribers in India, The Telecom Regulatory Authority of India has reduced the ceiling tariffs for national roaming service and has also mandated telecom operators to come out with special roaming tariff plan for pre-paid as well as post-paid subscribers in India.

Finance Minister Arun Jaitley inaugurated India’s first finance SEZ: International financial Service Centre (IFSC) at the Gujarat International Financial Tec (GIFT) City, 18 kms from Ahmedabad. A rule book was also released, which contains the terms and conditions along with guidelines for every company which wishes to operate in this SEZ.

Despite billion dollar valuations and multi-million dollar investments in Indian ecommerce portals, we are way, way behind other ecommerce markets globally.

Indian Mobile subscriber base has reached 960.58 million by end of February 2015, out of which 852 million are active. Also, total MNP requests till date have crossed 150 million

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