Every day in Tokyo, 360 million traffic data records are analysed in a matter of seconds, then relayed back to taxi drivers in real time. Drivers rely on up-to-date information to determine whether or not they should make a left turn at the next junction. This is but one of the ways in which Big Data is serving the needs of citizens on a practical, daily basis. Governments in Malaysia, Singapore, Australia, Indonesia, Hong Kong, Korea and New Zealand also have their own struggles – and their successes have been captured in our latest eBook.
NBN Co today announced the commercial launch of its fibre-to-the-basement technology, with 2000 premises across Sydney, Canberra and Melbourne set to receive the first connections. More than one million premises are slated to receive FTTB technology, with 44 retail service providers now able to sell services on FTTB, the company said. Around 2000 premises in apartment blocks across NSW, Victoria and the ACT are ready for service today.
Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co, the world’s largest contract chip maker, will likely not be affected by Intel’s rumored acquisition of chipmaking partner Altera, industry analysts said Sunday. Analysts familiar with Taiwan’s semiconductor sector said that because Altera has already shifted most of its orders to Intel from TSMC, the deal would not affect the bellwether Taiwanese company significantly.
NEW DELHI: It has been long rumoured that Chinese device giant Xiaomi is working on an entry-level smartphone. The phone has even appeared online via a leaked picture, closely resembling the Redmi 2. Now, a new report sheds more light on the phone’s price and availability. The affordable mystery device from Xiaomi will be available at CNY 499(about Rs 5,000) and is expected to debut on April 8, as per a new report by Chinese blog Mydrivers.com.
BEIJING: Germany’s BMG music rights company said on Monday it had signed a music digital distribution deal with China’s Alibaba Group Holding Ltd, as the world’s largest e-commerce firm firms up its bid to become a digital media empire. The deal, one of the first in China made by a major music publisher rather than a label, will bring more than 2.5 million copyrights to Alibaba, whose music platforms already had many of the songs from artists including Kylie Minogue, the Rolling Stones and Jean-Michael Jarre, an Alibaba spokeswoman said.
NEW DELHI: Asus has announced that it is going to launch its new flagship phone, Zenfone 2, by last week of April 2015. Earlier, the company had said that the phone will be sold without flash sales or invitations, taking a dig at companies like Xiaomi, OnePlus and YU which sell their phones via special sales. Asus had launched the second iteration of its ZenFone series, ZenFone 2 (ZE551ML), at CES 2015 in Las Vegas.
Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba has recently launched a competition that challenges young contestants’ capability to apply big data to some of the company’s current business areas. The winning team will be awarded 1 million yuan (US$160,000) and career opportunities. Behind the initiative, dubbed “Tianchi” or Heaven Lake, is the Institute of Data Science and Technologies (IDST), led by the company’s vice president Jack Tu, a former Silicon Valley IT expert and the author of The Big Data Revolution.
NEW DELHI: It seems Indian handset maker Micromax is soon going to launch an all new budget smartphone — Micromax Bolt S300. The smartphone is available online at an e-commerce website for Rs 3,300. The smartphone comes with a 4-inch WVGA (480x800p) display. Powered by 1GHz single-core processor, Micromax Bolt S300 has 512MB RAM, and comes with 4GB of internal storage. Users can also install microSD cards of up to 32GB for more storage.
Cainiao Network, Alibaba’s subsidiary providing logistics services, announced its logistics data on Cuntao, Alibaba’s e-commerce site for villages in rural regions, saying that 13% of Cuntao orders can be delivered on the day they were ordered or the next day, reports Shanghai’s National Business Daily. Since being established in May 2013, Cainiao Network has built up a network that covers 7,600 county-level internet areas, 26,000 town-level internet areas and 190,000 village-level areas, according to Wan Lin, vice CEO of Cainiao Network.
While the Indian IT firms are getting aggressive in buying smaller ticket size companies in the US, sources with direct knowledge share that one such candidate, Sierra-Cedar with HQ in Georgia, US is close to launching a sale process soon. Valuation expectation for a complete sale of Sierra-Cedar is pegged at around $350 million, a source said.
NEW YORK: Spotify is coming to the PlayStation, replacing Sony’s own Music Unlimited service, as the company continues to expand the game console into an entertainment hub beyond video games. Spotify hits the PlayStation 3 and 4 on Monday, with a new app adapted for large television screens. Sony says partnering with Spotify expands its music service to 41 countries, rather than the 19 available with Music Unlimited, and offers better tools for playlists and music discovery.
NewSat has been forced to halt trading on the Australian Stock Exchange as it continues to battle to have funding for its Jabiru-1 satellite project reinstated. The company revealed mid-last year that financing for the satellite project had been put on hold over “alleged technical or documentary breaches of financial facilities” related to the drawdown of its loan from Ever Tycoon.
Tencent Interactive Entertainment Group will establish a new animation business unit and a film and copyright business unit to enable the independent operations of those businesses. The new animation business unit will be responsible for development and operation of animation-related content, including planning, development and operation of animation products; creating and operation of animation content; front-end and back-end development and design of animation products, copyright expansion; and commercial operation.
The United States and Russia announced a joint effort to construct a new space station to replace the International Space Station (ISS), but festering geopolitical tensions might yet undo this plan. The announcement made March 28 in Moscow by the Russian Federal Space Agency or Roscosmos is being hailed as a welcome move despite stubborn tensions between Russia and the U.S., especially over the war in Ukraine.
Tasmanian government agencies have rejected the advice of the state’s Auditor-General to shore up their systems in line with standards developed by the Australian Signals Directorate. The state’s Auditor-General Mike Blake on Friday released a report into the adequacy of information security inside four of the state’s largest bodies: Treasury, Primary Industries, Police and Health.
The Australian Government has signed off on $180 million to pay for a fleet of new satellite receiver terminals for the nation’s Defence Force, with Raytheon and subcontractor L-3 Communications set to take the lion’s share of earnings. The Raytheon/L-3 partnership will deliver ground-based transportable satellite receiver terminals throughout Defence’s Australian sites. The large terminals will have the transmission capacity to support deployed ADF headquarters.
NEW DELHI: Starting today, several Delhi Metro commuters would be able to download new free apps from an application, which would also offer them redeemable points for recharging their smart cards. Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) has entered into a tie-up with ‘Offer World’, an application for Android users, that in turn will reward users, who will download apps available in its kitty.
Taiwan’s National Communications Commission will offer 2,600MHz frequency band units with total bandwidth of 190MHz for 4G mobile communication operation through open-bid competition in September 2015. Competition in the upcoming bidding process is expected to be less intense than that of last time for 700MHz, 900MHz and 1,800MHz band units in October 2013, according to Taiwan Mobile (TWM) president James Jeng.
NEW DELHI: “It was really frustrating. We could see this guy was driving up the prices, without being serious about buying 900MHz. But we couldn’t do a thing. We just had to go higher and higher…we paid him back in the same coin in 800MHz. That was some pleasure.” “I learnt more about the business in a few days than I could have learnt in two years”. “My wife was really angry…we had to work on even Holi…it was stressful…family life went out of the window.”
Ericsson, the Swedish communication technology and services provider, expects its business in Indonesia will grow as the country is working on a US$22 billion-broadband project over the next four to five years.Ericsson president and CEO Hans Vestberg said during his recent visit to Jakarta that the company would take advantage of the country’s move to provide a broadband network for its 250 million population.
Vietnam has capitalised on increasing labour costs in China to take first place in the ranking while India remains the world’s largest business process outsourcing market. Vietnam established its presence in the sector thanks to numerous government reform policies to promote the country as a key outsourcing destination. C&W predicts the service segment will expand rapidly given the average age of the country’s workforce is under 30 and 1-1.5 million people enter the labour market every year.
Late last week, an interesting piece ran in Bloomberg about China’s plans to eliminate foreign technology from government agencies and key industries by 2020, mostly for security reasons. China has already begun pushing in this direction – Windows 8 is banned from government computers, Qualcomm got slammed with a massive anti-trust fine, and Apple products like iPads have been removed from approved government procurement lists.
Sinoze is most well known for mobile music game Thapster, which features Thai and international artists and has, it claims, about a million monthly active users. Today the company announced it has raised a US$750,000 round from InVent, the venture capitalist arm of Thailand’s largest telco Intouch. The funding will go towards international expansion through its second title Electhap, a music game aimed at the international market.
NEW DELHI: Toshiba Corporation and United Technologies Corporation have announced plans to establish engineering centres in India, North America and Europe to support global innovation for heating, ventilating and air-conditioning (HVAC) products. “This cooperation is the first to result from the companies’ recent agreement to further strengthen their strategic collaboration through their joint venture Toshiba Carrier Corporation (TCC),” Toshiba said in a statement.
Huawei has expanded partnership with SAP and signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with research institute Fraunhofer ESK. Both the agreements were recently made during CeBIT 2015. Huawei and SAP will deepen cooperation in Industry 4.0 and the Internet of Things. An expanded partnership with SAP aims towards establishing joint innovation efforts in Shenzhen, China and Walldorf, Germany.
MUMBAI: A group of investors led by Japanese mobile telecom firm SoftBank Corp is in talks to buy a 20 per cent stake in Indian handset maker Micromax Informatics for up to $1 billion, two people aware of the discussions said. The investment would value Micromax, an unlisted provider of affordable smartphones that competes with South Korea’s Samsung Electronics Co, at around $5 billion, the people said. They did not want to be named because the talks aren’t public.
TAIPEI, Taiwan — Taipei City’s Department of Labor (DOL, 勞動局) said yesterday that they will look into Yahoo Kimo (Yahoo奇摩) and China Television Company Ltd.’s (CTV, 中國電視事業股份) mass layoffs, which are estimated to lead to the loss of at least 100 positions. DOL chief Ye Chien-neng (葉建能) said they have yet to receive notice about CTV’s dismissal proposal, however, they plan to send officials to better understand the matter.
MUMBAI: Idea Cellular is not overly concerned about being saddled with a bill of more than Rs 30,000 crore that it bid for airwaves in the just-ended auction, unlike investors who dragged the stock down on Friday. India’s third-largest phone company sees things differently — it now has clarity about the next 20 years, which includes tapping the country’s surging data growth. “We only have to look ahead,” Idea CEO Himanshu Kapania told ET in an interview. He said that the airwaves that have been acquired mean Idea can launch improved 3G services on the cost-efficient 900Mhz band.
Gemalto has announced that China Telecom has selected its UpTeq Multi-tenant NFC SIMs to deploy secure NFC transport services in China’s two largest cities – Shanghai and Beijing. China Telecom is a leading operator in the country with more than 183 million subscribers. According to the digital security services provider, this deployment will enable up to 45 million daily commuters to ride their metros and pay for their everyday purchases with a simple tap of their smartphones.
MUMBAI: Mobile commerce is likely to overtake e-commerce in the next few years, spurred by the continued uptrend in online shopping and increasing use of mobile apps, says an industry report. “It is estimated that the mobile app download would grow six-fold by the end of this year to 9 billion apps,” said a KPMG report, adding the country has been the fastest growing mobile app market in both 2014 and 2013.