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XOLO's HIVE UI Launched

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The proprieatary user interface will allow the users to join in and become a part of development team by sharing their ideas

XOLO on Wednesday (06 August) announced the launch of HIVE, its proprietary user interface platform. It will be available starting on Wednesday on its new octa-core smartphone - XOLO 8X-1000. This flagship smartphone, with HIVE inside, will offer a host of exclusive features and enhancements to change the way users interact with their device. HIVE has been engineered keeping users in mind and will give them the power to turn their ideas into life.

Vishal Sehgal, Co-founder & Director, LAVA International, said "We are excited to announce HIVE to our XOLO customers. Built on an Android core, HIVE is a “Made in India, Made for India” platform designed by our Software Design Centre at Bangalore. With user empowerment at its core, HIVE enables users to contribute creatively to the platform, taking smartphone personalization to The Next Level”

Hive gives users the power to CONNECT online with the software development team, share new ideas, and collaborate with like-minded technology enthusiasts, and that's only the beginning. The best ideas that are voted up by the community are chosen by the development team, which then are rolled out as OTA updates.

Microsoft Announces Retail Partnership With Amazon India
Microsoft announced that the entire range of its Interactive Entertainment Business (IEB) portfolio would be available in India exclusively on beginning 1 September 2014. This will include Xbox One, Xbox 360, Kinect, Xbox Live, Xbox Accessories and all Microsoft-published Xbox game titles. also announced exclusive pre-orders for Xbox One beginning.

With this announcement, has also launched the pre-orders for Xbox One from 6 August that includes an exciting bundle. Consumers pre-ordering the Xbox One will get the blockbuster game FIFA 15 for free. The Kinect bundle will include an additional free game of Dance Central Spotlight.  In addition, the first 1000 customers will also get special offers worth Rs. 10,000 which include Rs 3000 off on purchase of a second Xbox One controller, Gift Cards worth Rs. 1500, 2 free Blu-ray movies worth Rs 2500 (The Amazing Spiderman 2 and Captain America: The Winter Soldier), Rs 2000 off on a selected range of speakers and Rs 1000 off on a selected range of backpacks.

As announced previously the Xbox One will be available in India beginning 23 September, 2014 priced at Rs 39,990 and Xbox One with Kinect will be available at Rs 45,990. The Kinect version will offer a number of games and entertainment experiences exclusive to Xbox including gesture controls, biometric sign-in, Skype video calls and more.

ICS Raises Capital From IAN
An Indian Angel Network’s (IAN) incubatee company, IndiaCollegeSearch has graduated from the IAN Incubator and has raised investment from IAN, Asia’s largest network of angel investors. This round of investment was led by IAN investor members, Vikram Kant Upadhyaya, Anupam Mittal and Varun Khurana. Vikram Kant Upadhyaya and Varun Khurana also join the IndiaCollegeSearch’s board.

IndiaCollegeSearch is focused on a growing and recession resistant sector in India – education. Over 1 crore students in India enter college every year and a large percentage of these students need to make a choice of college based on a variety of parameters. ICS takes these students online providing them a wider variety and deeper understanding of colleges.

IndiaCollegeSearch joined the IAN Incubator in 2011 with Vikram Kant Upadhyaya as their IAN mentor who guided ICS to scale up the business. This mentoring and the IAN incubator efforts resulted in ICS morphing into an investible venture – catering to a sharp niche in the value chain, high growth market driven by passionate and execution focused founder team.

IndiaCollegeSearch will use the funds raised to expand its existing user base of 10 lakh students and 1200 colleges while continuing to improve the quality and depth of the information it provides.

Honeywell Opens 7th Manufacturing Facility In India
Honeywell announced the launch of its seventh manufacturing facility in India. This 75,000 sq. ft. state-of-the-art facility has been built for Honeywell Automation India Limited (HAIL) and will significantly expand Honeywell’s manufacturing capabilities in the country. Honeywell now has seven state-of-the-art manufacturing facilities and five technology development and engineering centers in India with ~2 Mn sq. ft. of combined built-up area.

It will integrate manufacturing, factory testing, quality control and advanced manufacturing engineering for Honeywell’s automation business in India.

It will provide a full suite of process solutions, which comprehensively deployed, can improve efficiencies for industries by up to 30 percent. It will serve all major process industries such as refining, oil and gas, pulp and paper, power generation, chemicals, life sciences, and metals, minerals and mining. Honeywell’s flagship solution – the Experion Process Knowledge System, a range of pressure and temperature transmitters, and process safety systems, are some key products from the process solutions portfolio that will be manufactured here.

Sensing and control products manufactured here will offer precision, repeatability and durability for OEM and industrial applications spanning aerospace and defense, medical, transportation, and test and measurement markets. Key products include shifters, pressure switches, limit switches, position sensors, speed sensors, and hour meters.

Antfarm Raises Series-A Funding From Bay Capital & Hausela Capital Partners
AntFarm (, a digital innovation company, has raised Series-A funding from Bay Capital and Hausela Capital Partners. The funds that have been raised will be channelled to reinforce the current portfolio, grow upcoming businesses in the travel space and to build new early stage ventures in the fitness, hyper-local and mobile categories.

AntFarm has a track-record of building profitable business units in a year’s time with, a collaborative fashion label, and Fork Media, a native advertising platform.

Stylista has grown significantly since its launch, carving a niche in the e-commerce domain. Stylista recently collaborated with fashion e-tailer along with to facilitate better access to affordable designer wear for new-age shoppers.

Fork media has become one of the largest native advertising platforms in India. With its recent acquisition of ClickZoot, a performance ad network, Fork Media has emerged as a one-stop destination for advertisers with a reach of over 80 million users.

AntFarm’s most recent venture,, is a travel discovery platform that is close to rolling out a mobile app for the East Asian market.

Truecaller Ties-up With Expendables 3 To Launch All-New Online Contest
This August, Truecaller brings a unique experience for its users in India to live the Expendables’ life with the #TrueExpendable contest. Conceptualized around the trilogy of Expendables, Truecaller is set to launch this social media contest on 8th August till 21st August over its Facebook and Twitter channels. This contest would be further amplified over the Truecaller app giving users an opportunity to compete with their friends. Through this contest the participants will get a chance to experience the world of Truecaller and win free couple movie tickets for Expendables 3.

The participant has to help team leader Barney Ross (Sylvester Stallone) to find a code in five mobile numbers that will be given to the participants through Facebook and Twitter and then decode it to be a part of Team Expendables. Each of these five mobile numbers will have a couple of digital numbers in it. The participants will have to collect all the series of digital numbers to create a mobile number and search Conrad’s (Mel Gibson) number over Truecaller. The participants will be getting clues all along the way to decode Conrad’s number over Facebook and Twitter. Screenshot of the Conrad’s verified mobile number on Truecaller should be tweeted by participants on the official Truecaller handle using the hashtag #TrueExpendable, to claim rewards.

Starting August 8th, Truecaller would also be running a Twitter contest on Expendables trivia. The contest will run till August 22nd. The in-app contest will start August 15th and will continue till August 22nd, 2014.

All three contests by Truecaller would go live during: 8 August to 11 August and 15 August.

Tata Power’s Total Customer Base Crosses 1.9 million Landmark
Tata Power, India’s largest integrated power company, announced increase in total number of consumers by around 6 per cent in FY14 as compared to FY13. In FY14, the Company’s national customer base crossed the 1.9 million landmark, with an increased base of 5 lakh in Mumbai and 14 lakh consumers in Delhi as on April 2014.

In FY14, Tata Power Mumbai sales stood at 6,500 MUs catering to the increased Mumbai customer base which included the addition of 111,152 changeover and 9,139 direct consumers during FY14. Tata Power’s Delhi customer base grew by 4 per cent in FY14 to reach 1.4 million, with sales of over 8,000 MUs and development of approximately 10,980 Ckm of distribution lines.

Anil Sardana, Managing Director, Tata Power, stated, “Tata Power pioneered the generation of electricity in India nine decades ago. Living by the vision of its founders, Tata Power aims to consistently meet the ever-growing power needs of its consumer with efficient transmission and distribution of energy, superior class of services and constant upgradation of technology. The Company is extremely excited to redefine the contours of Indian 'Power' Sector and is committed to 'lighting up lives' for generations to come.”

The Company aims to enhance the consumer experience in Mumbai through the launch of several value added services such as wiremen training, walk through energy audit, coordinated training for industrial and commercial consumers, safety audits, e-bills and emergency mobile generator vans which will ensure adequate readiness to address any challenges emerging in the future. The Demand Side Management program continuously manages the rising electricity demand by creating an environment for efficient use of power.

Logitech Unveils New Bluetooth Audio Adaptor
Logitech, the global provider of personal peripherals for computers and other digital platforms, unveiled its new Bluetooth Audio Adaptor (priced Rs 1,995) that lets you turn your wired speakers into a wireless sound system for your smartphones and tablets. It features a multipoint Bluetooth connectivity that enables one touch pairing for up to two devices. So now you can enjoy superb entertainment hassle free wirelessly.

Connecting to two devices simultaneously, this multipoint Bluetooth adaptor lets you stream audio with just a push of a button. If the speakers are out of range, the adaptor automatically re- pairs to other nearby devices so that your music experience doesn’t get hindered at all.

Ashok Jangra, Cluster Category Manager, India & South West Asia, Logitech said, “As technology keeps getting more ubiquitous, compact and portable, there’s a need for solutions that enable anytime, anywhere connectivity. Understanding this shift, Logitech has created the new Bluetooth Adapter that gives you the flexibility to turn your favourite speakers into a wireless sound system with uncompromised quality.”

The adaptor is attached to your speakers using a standard analog RCA or 3.5 mm cable helping you to control your speakers with a reliable direct line-of-sight connection from up to 50 feet. Delivering uncompromised entertainment with the highest quality acoustics, the Logitech Bluetooth Adaptor is tuned at Logitech’s state-of-the art audio labs, so no matter where the audio streams from, you’ll never have to compromise on sound.

Tata Chemicals consolidated income up 17%
Tata Chemicals Limited (TCL), a global company with LIFE as its business — Living, Industry and Farm Essentials reported an impressive 17 per cent jump in its income from operation to Rs 3847 crore.

The quarter under review has been encouraging and we have started to see the positive impact of the painful yet inevitable restructuring exercise that had to be carried out to ensure viability and sustainability of our operations at UK and Magadi. Our Stand-alone revenue jumped by 28% to Rs 2116 crore and net profit jumped by 69 per cent to Rs 170 crore due to Better realisation and Better volumes in India across all the businesses. Better realization at Tata Chemicals North America took the consolidated revenue to Rs 3847 crore, a jump of 17% YoY basis. Net profit at consolidated level registered an impressive growth of 133 per cent at Rs 176 crore.

Consumer products business continues to grow consistently at the market place and currently Tata salt is market leader with 57 per cent share in national branded edible salt market. I-shakti pulses and Tata swach reported healthy volumes and continues to grow steadily.

In the Fertisilier business, subsidy outstanding at Rs. 1687 crs continues to drag performance. This coupled with delay in fertiliser policy implementation continues to impact the cash flow and urea profitability above cut off. We are hopeful of solution to the fertiliser policy issue by next quarter end. In our farm essential portfolio, we expect DAP to be under pressure continuously due to higher raw material prices and lower realization. However, other non-bulk fertiliser products in the portfolio are expected to do well.

Rip Curl Rides The Big Data Wave with Rackspace
Iconic Aussie surf brand, Rip Curl and digital marketing agency, VML Australia, have launched Rip Curl Search GPS, powered by ObjectRocket from Rackspace Hosting. This world-first surfing wearable technology enables Rip Curl to capture and analyse surf data, as well as refine its offering to customers through greater services and products.

The revolutionary Rip Curl Search GPS Watch captures data from a surfer’s session, including wave count, speeds reached, ride distance and session distances. Surfers then sync their watch to an iPhone, iPad, or desktop computer, re-living and sharing their surf experience on an interactive map. Surf data can be analysed in real-time and presented as summarised statistics for every wave, enabling surfers to gain insights into their performance and find areas of improvement.

Rip Curl Search GPS is backed and enabled by ObjectRocket, Rackspace Database-as-a-Service (DBaaS) for NoSQL MongoDB. ObjectRocket is a sharded and fully managed service for MongoDB, built with a set of tools and APIs designed to maximise uptime and reduce administration time for developers. Highly scalable, it allows customers to grow with their needs over time and scale up or dependent upon the demand they experience from their own customers.

Rackspace customer, VML Australia, designed, architected and developed the Rip Curl Search GPS ecosystem. Jeff Donios, technical director and architect comments, “ObjectRocket is the foundation for the ecosystem’s world-wide data storage and analysis. ObjectRocket and Rackspace enabled us to quickly figure out how to scale the application, allowing us to focus our resources on developing the core product and algorithms of the ecosystem. All the scaling, sharding and performance of MongoDB is managed by the experts at ObjectRocket and Rackspace.”

Arijit Basu Takes Over As MD & CEO Of SBI Life Insurance
Arijit Basu has taken over as Managing Director & CEO of SBI Life Insurance, the largest private life insurer in the country, from Atanu Sen, who retired on 31st July, 2014.

A graduate in Economics and a Master of Arts in History, Basu started his career with State Bank of India in 1983 as a Probationary Officer. He has to his credit over three decades of experience in the banking sector.  A Certified Associate of the Indian Institute of Bankers, Mr. Basu has held several key positions in various circles of State Bank of India including the Bank’s office at Tokyo. He has also served as General Manager at the Bank’s Mumbai Circle and the Mid Corporate Group at Ahmedabad as well as the Financial Institutions Group, International Banking at Corporate Centre, Mumbai.  His last assignment was Chief General Manager of the Delhi Circle.

His experience will add immense value to SBI Life’s business and will help the company achieve higher benchmarks in the life insurance space.

Smartlink Networking Systems Apoints Arati Naik As COO
Smartlink announced the appointment of Arati Naik as the company’s Chief Operating Officer. Arati started her career at Smartlink as a Project Consultant wherein she imbibed key elements of product development, people management, developing key strategies for product launches and innovation. The expertise gathered catapulted her to the role of the Chief Marketing Officer. This role was her breakthrough opportunity where she demonstrated her potential and achievements in converting businesses and making new alliances at a much younger age.

The company believes that this is a key appointment at an important time for Smartlink and that Arati’s leadership qualities combined with her strategic thinking and relevant experience make her the right person to drive the company to success over the coming years. Arati’s approach and her track record of delivering results in innovation-driven businesses will be valued by shareholders and employees alike.

MongoDB Appoints Dev Ittycheria as President and CEO
MongoDB announced the appointment of Dev Ittycheria as President and Chief Executive Officer, effective September 3, 2014. Max Schireson, the company’s current CEO, will become Vice Chairman and remain with the company full time after transitioning the CEO role.

Dev is an accomplished enterprise software leader. He was the co-founder and CEO of BladeLogic, one of the fastest growing enterprise software companies of the last decade. After co-founding the business in 2001, he went on to take the company public in 2007, and then sold it to BMC Software in 2008 for approximately $900 million. After the acquisition, Dev became President of the Enterprise Service Management business at BMC Software, a business with $1.4 billion in annual revenue and over 4,000 employees.

Spectranet, iYogi Announce Strategic Partnership
Spectranet and iYogi have joined hands under which iYogi will deliver a comprehensive solution for customer network management and technical support for Spectranet home and business customers in India.

Spectranet has introduced Tech Assist, a premium technical support service for its Broadband customers powered by FOX (Fiber Optic Xperience). The service is based on iYogi’s award winning SaaS platform – Digital Service Cloud which supports over 500 technology products. Tech Assist will be bundled with Spectranet Broadband powered by FOX products for existing and new customers at no additional cost.

With Spectranet Tech Assist which is managed by iYogi, Spectranet’s broadband home customers will now get instant, 24x7 support for all connected devices including computers, peripherals, smartphones and other digital devices through a unified platform and customer contact center.

According to Spectranet, 48 per cent of technical support calls are usually ‘out of scope’ since they are related to the home network and the device in use by the consumers. Spectranet Tech Assist will improve customer satisfaction and create new revenue opportunities by providing trouble-shooting support for such calls. The company estimates that the partnership will drive 12 per cent increase in revenue, and 15% reduction in support costs in next 12 to 24 months.

Hong Kong Travel Mission To Four Indian Cities In August
Hong Kong Tourism Board (HKTB) will be organising a trade mission to four Indian cities - Bengaluru, Mumbai, Kolkata and New Delhi - between 18 and 22 August 2014.

A senior delegation of more than 30 Hong Kong trade members, comprising Hong Kong land operators, hoteliers, cruise companies and popular family attractions, including Ocean Park, Hong Kong Disneyland, Madame Tussauds Hong Kong, Ngong Ping 360 and The Peak, are expected to attend the business sessions in each city.

Leveraging the 14-day visa-free travel facility for Indian passport holders and flight capacity expansion from Indian cities, Indian visitor arrivals to Hong Kong reached 203,989 in the first five months of 2014, representing a significant increase of 14 per cent over the same period in 2013.

The trade mission will also focus on the growing MICE segment, highlighting the diverse venues in Hong Kong for Indian meetings and incentives groups.