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Xiaomi OLED Vision (55-inch) Ultra-HD Android TV Review: The ‘Affordable’ OLED Television


LED-LCD technology in TVs is still the most common and affordable type, and Xiaomi smartly chose to focus its products around it during its early years of selling televisions in India. The company still pushes large volumes of its affordable LED televisions, but has also experimented with premium TVs such as the Mi QLED TV 4K range which is available in a massive 75-inch screen size, priced at Rs. 1,39,999. This adventurous approach to the premium price segments has now led to the launch of Xiaomi’s first OLED TV in India.

Priced at Rs. 89,999, the Xiaomi OLED Vision TV is available in a single 55-inch size and is the company’s most expensive TV of its size in India. Even so, this television strongly undercuts the competition, and will be a tempting proposition for buyers who want the benefits of OLED screen technology, but without having to pay the exorbitant premium. Xiaomi’s OLED TV has launched at a price where you typically find high-end quantum-dot LED TV from brands such as Sony, Samsung, and OnePlus.

With key specifications such as support for Dolby Vision IQ and Dolby Atmos, 30W of sound output, and the Ultra-HD OLED screen that gives this TV its name, is the Xiaomi OLED Vision TV the best television you can buy under Rs. 1,00,000? Find out in this review.

xiaomi oled vision tv review logo Xiaomi

The Xiaomi OLED Vision TV has far-field microphones, which can be set to always-listen for the Google Assistant wake commands

 

Xiaomi OLED Vision (55-inch) Ultra-HD Android TV design and specifications

Most 55-inch OLED televisions are priced well over Rs. 1,00,000, so the Xiaomi OLED Vision TV’s price gives it a significant leg-up over the competition. At Rs. 89,999, this is by far the most affordable 55-inch OLED TV you can buy in India (that I am aware of) right now. The benefits of the OLED display at this price makes this an enticing proposition, particularly since the much higher pricing of competing OLED TVs has been a barrier for buyers thus far.

Despite the price, Xiaomi hasn’t really held back with this TV when it comes to design and specifications. At just 4.6mm thick, the OLED Vision TV is very slim at the edges, although the centre portion of the back of the TV gets a fair bit thicker where the electrical components and ports are. The bezel around the screen is similarly slim on all sides, and a module at the bottom has the Xiaomi logo, indicator light, power switch, and a switch for the far-field microphones.

The television can be wall-mounted or stand-mounted, and standard VESA-compatible wall mounts work with the TV. Professional installation is provided for free by Xiaomi and the stands are included in the sales package, but the wall-mount kit isn’t. You can, however, request Xiaomi for wall-mounting the TV at the time of installation, and the technician will provide a wall-mount kit if you don’t have one of your own.

The ports and sockets on the Xiaomi OLED Vision TV are quite conveniently positioned for a large television and are easily accessible even when the TV is wall mounted. The RJ45 Ethernet port, Optical Audio-out (Toslink) port, RCA sockets, and Antenna socket face downwards, while the three HDMI 2.1 ports, two USB Type-A ports, and 3.5mm audio jack face the left of the screen. HDMI ARC is supported on one of the ports. The power cord is permanently attached to the TV to the right of the screen, and was disappointingly short for my liking.

xiaomi oled vision tv review our great national parks Xiaomi

The Xiaomi OLED Vision TV is only available in a single 55-inch size, for now

 

The Xiaomi OLED Vision TV has a 55-inch Ultra-HD (3840×2160-pixel) OLED display, with each individual pixel capable of self-illumination without the need for backlighting. There is also support for high dynamic range content up to the Dolby Vision IQ and HDR10+ formats, a standard refresh rate of 60Hz, and a DCI-P3 colour gamut of 98.5 percent. The contrast ratio is expectedly high at 15,00,000:1, and there is also the Reality Flow MEMC engine for motion interpolation.

For sound, the television has a 30W speaker system with eight drivers, and support for the Dolby Atmos and DTS:X formats. Connectivity is handled via Wi-Fi 6 with dual-band support, Ethernet, and Bluetooth 5 for wireless audio and for connecting to the TV remote. The TV has 3GB of RAM, 32GB of internal storage for apps and app data, and is powered by a quad-core ARM Cortex-A73 processor.

Xiaomi OLED Vision (55-inch) Ultra-HD Android TV remote and features

Some things barely change, and Xiaomi’s TV remote is one of them. The company’s basic, minimalistic plastic Bluetooth remote is bundled in the box with the Xiaomi OLED Vision TV, albeit with some small changes. Disappointingly, despite the price of the TV, batteries for the remote aren’t included in the box, which is a complaint I’ve had for a while.

The remote itself functions well enough and some relatively recent feature additions such as quick mute (press volume-down button twice quickly), quick wake (turns the TV on in 3-4 seconds from standby), and quick settings (long-press the PatchWall button) cover for the obvious lack of dedicated buttons for those functions. Usefully, you can quickly switch between Xiaomi’s PatchWall user interface and the stock Android TV UI by pressing the dedicated buttons.

There are hotkeys for quick access to Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, Disney+ Hotstar, and the complete list of apps installed on the Xiaomi OLED Vision TV. A microphone for voice commands and a button to invoke Google Assistant are also present on the remote, although the TV also has far-field microphones that can be set to always listen for the wake command, to serve the same function.

This worked well, with a simple ‘OK Google’ or ‘Hey Google’ command to invoke Google Assistant even from across the room, followed by proper understanding of even complex voice commands. The microphones are naturally always listening when this mode is on, so if this feels like a privacy issue to you, the Xiaomi OLED Vision TV does let you flip a switch (just under the logo, at the bottom of the TV) to turn this off.

xiaomi oled vision tv review remote Xiaomi

The remote of the Xiaomi OLED Vision TV is a familiar one, but there are small changes in the button layout

 

The Xiaomi OLED Vision TV also has built-in Chromecast for casting from supported devices and services, and Auto Low-Latency Mode (ALLM) which is said to optimise the TV’s settings for improved latency and performance when gaming with a connected gaming console. There are no other specific features for gaming, and the peak refresh rate of 60Hz means that this TV isn’t ideally meant for use with current-generation gaming consoles.

Xiaomi OLED Vision (55-inch) Ultra-HD Android TV software and interface

The Xiaomi OLED Vision TV runs on Android TV 11, with the PatchWall 4 and stock Android TV user interfaces on top, similar to how it is on much of the company’s other television range. Apps and games can be installed through the Google Play store for Android TV, which has a catalogue of over 5,000 apps right now, including popular content streaming apps, social media apps, and other services.

PatchWall hasn’t received any major additions since the Mi TV 5X, but it remains a content-focused UI with excellent content curation, lists, and a pleasant appearance. IMDb integration, the availability of the Mi Home app for easy access to IoT devices in your home, and plenty of supported apps and services for the curation make PatchWall a good interface to use.

The stock Android TV UI has gotten some new additions from the last Xiaomi TV I reviewed. The interface is now the Google TV-like UI that rolled out in late 2021, with a bit more focus on content recommendations and curation, although the lack of support for Netflix in the recommendation engine is still disappointing. You can still use Google Assistant or regular search to find content on Netflix and many other sources, or access the specific apps directly.

The overall software experience with the Xiaomi OLED Vision TV was as good as I expected it to be, and I experienced no serious issues or bugs during my time with the television. While I personally preferred the app-focused approach of the stock Android TV interface, PatchWall’s content-friendly interface should also appeal to many users.

Xiaomi OLED Vision (55-inch) Ultra-HD Android TV performance

Customers looking for a 55-inch TV with a budget of around Rs. 1,00,000 would typically consider a good quantum-dot LED television, such as Sony’s Triluminos range, Samsung’s QLED range, and the OnePlus TV Q1 Pro. However, the Xiaomi OLED Vision TV offers buyers the option to get something with arguably better screen technology at the same price, given that OLED TVs are typically priced well over Rs. 1,00,000.

That’s not to say that the Xiaomi OLED Vision TV is necessarily on par with premium OLED TVs such as the LG CX range, but the benefits of OLED technology itself – particularly the black levels – are clear and present on this television. I watched a variety of content on the TV across resolutions and dynamic ranges, going from Ultra-HD Dolby Vision to simple standard definition, and the TV undeniably delivered the kind of performance that can be expected at this price.

xiaomi oled vision tv review android tv Xiaomi

The Xiaomi OLED Vision TV has the new Google TV-like user interface, as well as PatchWall UI

 

Watching Love, Death & Robots Season 3 on Netflix in Ultra-HD with Dolby Vision, the Xiaomi OLED Vision TV performed at its absolute best. The black levels were expectedly excellent, offering true pitch blacks that also helped in getting the contrast levels right. While this naturally made an impact across scenes, night-time scenes across content looked particularly good on the TV.

This also helped to make the colours feel much more impactful and punchy, particularly with the beautiful, bright animation of the ‘Three Robots: Exit Strategies’ episode of Love, Death & Robots. The effect of Dolby Vision was also noticeable, not only due to the visible bump in brightness but also in the colours, as they felt a hint more vibrant. This was the case even with The World’s Most Amazing Vacation Rentals, where the scenic landscapes and beautiful holiday homes looked impressive on the Xiaomi OLED Vision TV.

Taking high dynamic range content out of the equation did considerably change the way the TV performed, but the differences didn’t take too much away from the overall viewing experience. Better Call Saul in Ultra-HD resolution (but with standard dynamic range) looked sharp and detailed on the big screen, and the excellent black levels of the TV suited the gloomy, sombre scenes of the show very well.

The brightness levels, even in daylight scenes, didn’t feel as strong as with Dolby Vision content, but the sharpness and reasonable colour accuracy made up for this to a large extent. However, I did notice some motion interpolation issues and stutter during scenes with quick movements while watching Better Call Saul, particularly in dimly-lit night time scenes. This got particularly distracting at times, and is a fairly large drawback of this TV.

xiaomi oled vision tv review love death robots Xiaomi

Black levels and contrast are excellent on the Xiaomi OLED Vision TV

 

Full-HD and lower-resolution content looked decent enough, with a natural sense of softness in the picture that seemed to suitably cover for the lack of sharpness that comes with lower resolutions. Movies such as The Matrix Resurrections and sitcoms such as Kim’s Convenience, as well as live-streamed Formula 1 races, all looked decent, with good colours and black levels. Issues with motion were still present and seemed to crop up more often in the Formula 1 races, but seemed less obvious in lower resolution content.

Sound on the Xiaomi OLED Vision TV is acceptable for most purposes, with the tuning focused on making voices sound clear. This worked across all types of content, but helped particularly when it came to sitcoms and sports content where dialogue and commentary needed to be heard clearly. There isn’t quite as much grunt in the sound, but the speakers get reasonably loud and does deliver clean, uniform sound, without any significant volume spikes.

Dolby Atmos support on the TV did seem to help with giving the sound a bit more spaciousness and a better soundstage with supported content, including Our Great National Parks. Although the sound was decent, it might be worth stepping up to a proper soundbar such as the Sony HT-A7000 or an equivalent speaker system to match up to the considerably better visual experience the TV has to offer.

Verdict

The expense involved in buying an OLED TV has typically made this category an ultra-premium one. However, Xiaomi’s competitive approach to pricing has made its first OLED television relatively more accessible. It goes up against quantum-dot LED TVs from brands such as Sony and Samsung but with a very visible and solid differentiator. If you have a budget of up to Rs. 1,00,000 for a 55-inch TV, this is among my top picks to consider, simply because it’s an OLED television with the typical benefits that come with the technology.

The Xiaomi OLED Vision TV offers excellent black levels, colours, and sharpness, combined with good software, reliable performance, and value for money that is hard to argue with at this price. Although I did face some issues with motion handling, this wasn’t enough to take away from the otherwise great overall experience. That said, this TV is best suited for viewers who often consume high-resolution HDR content or for anyone looking for a 4K TV with the best black levels without having to spend a fortune.




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Brazil Launches Blockchain Network for Its Public Institutions: Here’s Why


The Brazilian government has unveiled a new blockchain network in a bid to combat corruption in public expenses by tracking them efficiently. The network was launched at an event, which was streamed on YouTube took place after a cooperation agreement was signed by the Court of Accounts of Uniam (TCU) and the Brazilian Development Bank (BNDES). The move is part of Brazil’s interest in being at the forefront of integrating blockchain technology into its public administrative system and helping improve both efficiency and traceability in the process.

As per a press release issued by TCU ahead of Monday’s launch event, the Brazilian Blockchain Network is still in development but will be used by a number of governmental institutions in an attempt to improve services provided to citizens and offer better transparency on public expenditures.

“The network, public and not-for-profit, will be national in scope and will connect participating institutions in a governance structure and technological infrastructure with the aim of facilitating the adoption of blockchain technology in solutions aimed at the public interest,” reads the release when translated from Portuguese, verbatim.

The launch of the Brazilian Blockchain Network also comes at a time when Brazil’s taxation body, the Federal Revenue of Brazil (RFB), has passed a law that will require investors to pay personal income tax when they exchange one digital currency for another.

As per a separate report by CoinGeek, the law specifies that even when digital currency transactions do not involve the Brazilian Real or any other fiat currency, any profit made from the transaction is taxable.

“The capital gain calculated on the sale of cryptocurrencies, when one is directly used in the acquisition of another, even if the acquisition cryptocurrency is not previously converted into reais or other fiat currency, is taxed by the Individual Income Tax, subject to progressive rates, in accordance with the provisions of art. 21 of Law No. 8,981, of January 20, 1995,” it reads.

However, the law will not apply to all traders. The RFB caps the reporting requirement at transactions that exceed 35,000 real (roughly Rs. 5.6 lakh). The RFB states that the declaration was made following consultations that began last year.




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Shiba Inu’s Anonymous Founder ‘Riyoshi’ May Have Quit Crypto World, All Tweets Erased


Riyoshi, the anonymous founder of Shiba Inu may have decided to quit the world of cryptocurrency. In a rather encouraging farewell note, the SHIB creator who went by the pseudonym ‘Riyoshi’ announced his decision on a Medium post. While Riyoshi has previously hinted at moving on from the crypto world, speculations about this farewell note claim a scammer could be behind Riyoshi’s Medium post. For now, Riyoshi’s account @RiyoshiResearch with over 200,000 followers is visible on Twitter, but all of the posts from its page have been deleted, showing correspondence with the exit post.

“I am not important, and one day I will be gone without notice. Take the SHIBA and journey upwards frens,” Riyoshi’s Medium post published on May 30 reads.

The screenshots of this post have found their way on social media, with people warning members of the crypto community, that this could all be a fake scam.

Despite Riyoshi’s assumed exit from the crypto sphere, the working of the Shiba Inu will remain unaffected.

This was confirmed by Shytoshi Kusama, a lead developer of Shiba Inu who also claimed that even he is unaware of Riyoshi’s real identity.

“Ryoshi was, and is, one of the most successful anonymous founders of any project, ever. Though I don’t know his identity, his legacy lives on in the Shib token, Shib Ecosystem and all the projects we foresee to decentralise the world,” Kusama noted.

Despite all the noise around the future of SHIB at this point, the cryptocurrency is currently trading at $0.000012 (roughly Rs. 0.000958) as per Gadgets 360’s crypto price tracker.

On CoinMarketCap, SHIB’s ranking is 16th, with a live market cap of $6.45 billion (roughly Rs. 50,140 crore). A total of over 549 trillion SHIB coins are currently in circulation with its maximum supply undecided.

Well, if Riyoshi has really moved on from the crypto world, the decision comes at a time when Shiba Inu is working on its own metaverse.

Earlier in March, the Shiba Inu developers announced that a total of 100,595 virtual land plots will be put up for sale on its metaverse, out of which some will be remain private.

Shiba Inu is also being listed on crypto exchanges like Robinhood and Bank of America crypto ATMs, which may boost its adoption.


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FAU-G to Soon Get a New Map Named Dugong Rock Island, Teaser Trailer Released


FAU-G is set to receive a new map called Dugong Rock Island. Developer nCore Games has released a teaser trailer for this upcoming map. It appears to be an abandoned naval base. There are buildings that offer elevated vantage points to the players. This new map is shown to have an underground area as well. The developer has not revealed the exact release date for this update. However, it is expected to be soon available for players on Android and iOS devices.

nCore Games shared the teaser trailer for the new FAU-G map on Twitter. As we mentioned earlier, the developer has not revealed the release date for the Dugong Rock Island map yet. The game had initially released in January 2021 and only featured a single-player campaign at launch. The developers have since added multiplayer modes like team deathmatch and free-for-all to the game.

FAU-G Review

Since its release, this free-to-play game has garnered over 5 million downloads on Google Play. However, FAU-G sits at an average user score of just 2.2 stars. It should be noted that due to the hype surrounding this game, FAU-G had reached the 5 million downloads mark at its release. The fact that the downloads count still sits at 5 million suggests that the game has become stagnant. A new map is expected to bring some players back to the game.

nCore Games appears to have an uphill battle to bring this game back to relevancy. The mobile shooter segment is currently being dominated by some very popular titles like Call of Duty: Mobile, Battlegrounds Mobile India, and more. EA has also decided to enter the fray with its recently launched Apex Legends Mobile, which currently has a rating of 4 stars on Google Play and has reached over 10 million downloads in less than a month of its launch.


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Oppo Reno 3, Reno 3 Pro Stable ColorOS 12 Rollout Announced for India

Shiba Inu’s Anonymous Founder ‘Riyoshi’ May Have Quit Crypto World, All Tweets Erased





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Oppo Reno 3, Reno 3 Pro Stable ColorOS 12 Rollout Announced for India


Oppo has announced in a post on its official community forum that the Oppo Reno 3 and Reno 3 Pro smartphones have started receiving the Android 12-based ColorOS 12 stable update. The update will be soon available for India and Indonesia. To try the official version, users have to submit an application with the company. The stable update is already available for users in China with Oppo Reno 3 Pro. Users running firmware version C.23 or above, are eligible for the update.

In a community forum post, the Chinese company Oppo has announced that it will soon start rolling the Android 12-based ColorOS 12 stable update for Reno 3 and Reno 3 Pro handsets in the Indian and Indonesian markets.

In a separate community forum post, the company said that Reno 3 users in China will also start receiving the update soon. Oppo Reno 3 Pro users in China have already received the said stable update. For India and Indonesia, if users wish to update their smartphones they must be running firmware version C.23 or above. For China, Reno 3 users must be running version C.14 or above to receive the ColorOS 12 update.

The Oppo smartphones should update automatically, but if they haven’t, eligible users can apply to update to stable ColorOS 12 by heading over to Settings > Software update to detect the ColorOS 12 version and update.

According to a report from ITHome, Oppo has also announced that it will be holding its OTalk developer forum session in China on June 8. The company is expected to announce its game plan for the adoption of Android 13 for its smartphones and other devices in China. This also includes the smartphones from Oppo’s sister company OnePlus. It is expected that the Chinese company will discuss the general roll out of Android 13, third-party compatibility of the Android version, and its first-party compatibility with ColorOS.




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OnePlus Bullets Wireless Z Were the Best-Selling Neckband Earphones in India in Q1 2022: Counterpoint Research


The neckband earphone market in India saw a decline of 13 percent year-on-year (YoY) in the first quarter of 2022, the latest report from Counterpoint research shows. However, the market had witnessed a 34 percent YoY growth in 2021. OnePlus and Realme took the second and third spots respectively, while boAt took the top spot with a 25.7 percent market share, as per the report. Meanwhile, the report also suggests that the OnePlus’ Bullets Wireless Z Bass Edition was the best-selling neckband earphone in Q1 2022.

As per Counterpoint’s latest research India’s neckband earphones market has declined by 13 percent YoY in Q1 2022. The research states that “the decline in Q1 2022 is primarily due to the high inventory which was pushed into the channel in Q4 2021 ahead of the festive season.”

As per the research, Boat has captured a 25.7 percent share of the overall neckband earphone market in India. Boat’s success is linked to its significant presence in the lower price segment. The Boat Rockerz 255 Pro Plus has been the best seller model for the brand.

OnePlus followed Boat and maintained its second position with a 14.9 percent market share thank to the success of the Bullets Wireless Z– Bass Edition neckband earphones. As per counterpoint, it was the best-selling neckband earphone in Q1 2022.

OnePlus is then followed by Realme with a 9.6 percent market share in Q1 2022. Zebronics took the fourth spot while entering the top 5 list of neckband brands in India for the first time ever. The brand managed to grab the spot, thanks to its multiple budget-friendly segments launched in the market.

The fifth spot was taken by Boult Audio with 6x YoY growth in Q1 2022. The Curve is stated as the best-selling device for the brand, as per the research.

indian neckband report counterpoint neckband

Photo Credit: Counterpoint

Talking about the overall market, Anshika Jain, Senior Research Analyst, said, “The popularity of neckband devices is increasing as users are upgrading from a wired ecosystem and also want an alternative hearable device. Like TWS, the India neckband market is dominated by local players, which captured around 58% share in Q1 2022. These players have focused on providing the emerging features at affordable prices, like voice assistance, gaming mode for low latency, gesture music controls and insta-charge technology. Besides, next-gen neckbands from top brands are coming up with increased total playback time, primarily focusing on the budget segment (Rs.1,000-Rs.2,000).”

Counterpoint also noted some notable brands that have also had a significant impact on India’s neckband earphones market. They include Xiaomi, Noise, Oppo, Ptron, Hitage, Ubon, and Dizo.




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Apple Continues to Lead as Global Smartwatch Market Grows 13 Percent YoY in Q1 2022: Report


Apple retained its top spot buoyed by the late launch of Apple Watch 7 as the global smartwatch shipments recorded a 13 percent growth on year-over-year (YoY) basis in Q1 2022 despite concerns over economic slowdown and inflation, as per a report. Samsung solidified its second position with the popularity of Galaxy Watch 4 series. Huawei, Xiaomi, and Garmin completed the top 5 list with Xiaomi performing well with its record-highest quarterly shipments registering a 69 percent YoY growth in the quarter.

As per the Global Smartwatch Model Tracker by Counterpoint Research, Apple maintained a solid lead and registered a 14 percent YoY increase in Q1 2022. Due to delayed launch of Apple Watch 7, some shipments carried over to Q1 2022 helping the iPhone-maker to retain its top spot globally with 36.1 percent market share.

“Although the global smartwatch market saw little growth in 2020 due to the impact of Covid-19, it has continued to perform well since its rebound last year. In particular, Apple accounted for more than a third of the total shipments last year, and it is further increasing its influence with a market share of 36 percent in the first quarter of this year,” said Associate Director Sujeong Lim.

The second place went to Samsung, which registered a 46 percent YoY increase in shipments due to its growth in the APAC region steered by the popularity of Galaxy Watch 4 series. The South Korean giant grabbed 10.1 percent of the global market share. In third place Huawei’s growth remained flat YoY (7.2 percent share) in terms of shipments due to its weak position in the international market.

Another Chinese brand, Xiaomi, registered the maximum (69 percent) YoY growth with its increased penetration in the international markets. The report says that Xiaomi’s sales rode on the sales of low-end segment wearables (under $100, or roughly Rs. 7,800), and grabbed 5 percent market share.

The Counterpoint report also says that Garmin (4.3 percent share) ranked fifth in terms of shipments, but was third in terms of revenues due to its higher ASP. “It occupies the majority portion in the premium segment over $500 (roughly Rs. 38,850),” the report noted. It is followed by Amazfit (4 percent) which rode the success of the GTR 3 and GTS 3 series launched in the fourth quarter of 2021.

Another player is FitBit which saw its sales decrease. It merged with Google, and appears to be undergoing an internal reorganisation. There were no models released last year, and the transition to Wear OS was also delayed. It captured 2.7 percent of market share.

The Counterpoint report says that most major regions grew YoY, but Europe recorded a flat growth.. “We initially expected the war between Russia and Ukraine to have minimal impact on the market in Q1, but the prolongation of the conflict and the resulting logistical constraints have begun to affect the European region. The impact of the war will become more serious in Q2,” Lim added.




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Google Pauses RCS Ads Coming on Messages App in India to Address User Complaints


Google has paused the feature offered to businesses using Rich Communication Services (RCS) to deliver ads in India through its Messages app — as a result of an uproar among users for getting spam. Although RCS is meant as an upgrade over the existing short messaging service (SMS) by offering rich media and interactivity, a list of businesses in the country were found to be abusing the new messaging experience by starting to give a large number of ads to users.

In a statement to Gadgets 360, a Google spokesperson said that the company decided to disable the feature allowing businesses to show ads through RCS on Google Messages as a result of violating its policies.

“We are aware that some businesses are abusing our anti-spam policies to send promotional messages to users in India,” the spokesperson said, adding, “We are disabling this feature in India while we work with the industry to improve the experience for users.”

Google has stopped ads from being circulated through RCS messaging since the past week as a result of the update. However, there is no clarity on how long the ongoing restriction will be in place for businesses as it seems to be a temporary measure responding to user complaints and to make systems more robust to limit instances of ad abuses in the future.

The issue with growing ads on Google Messages in India came into limelight earlier this month.

Affected users had taken to Twitter and other social media platforms to report issues with the increasing number of ads on Google Messages over the past few months. As brought into notice by Ishan Agarwal, the promotional content was annoying users especially due to the fact that it was coming on the app that comes pre-installed and is default on most Android phones nowadays.

Some users even completely disabled the RCS experience on Google Messages to get rid of pesky ads.

A large part of the promotional content included personal loan ads that were pushed by banks and financial institutions including Kotak Mahindra Bank and Bajaj Finserv. Some of the ads were, however, shown by small loan apps.

The ads appearing on the Google Messages app were coming from ‘Verified Business’ accounts. The content could, therefore, be considered as a regular communication by some users.

It is important to note that while businesses are no longer able to show ads on Google Messages, business customers can still use RCS to communicate with their customers on the app.






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Greece, Saudi Arabia Said to Partner for Laying Fibre Optic Data Cable to Link Europe With Asia


Greece and Saudi Arabia agreed on Tuesday on the main terms to set up a joint venture to lay a fibre optic data cable that will link Europe with Asia, Greek sources said on Tuesday.

The “East to Med data Corridor”, an undersea and land data cable, will be developed by MENA HUB, owned by Saudi Arabia’s STC and Greek telecoms and satellite applications company TTSA.

Greece’s power utility Public Power Company (PPC) and Cyprus’ telecoms operator CYTA, will also hold a stake in the project, pending final corporate approvals, a Greek diplomat said, speaking on condition of anonymity.

The final closing of the deal is expected by July, for the project to launch in autumn and be completed by the end of 2025, the diplomat said.

Another person close to the deal said the cable, which will connect users from Italy to Singapore, will cost about 800 million euros (roughly Rs. 6,663 crore).

Greece’s conservative government has made digital transformation a priority since taking office in 2019, a year after Greece exited the biggest financial bailout in history.

A big part of about 30 billion euros in grants and cheap loans allocated to Greece from European Union’s post-pandemic Recovery Fund will be spent on 5G and fibre optic infrastructure.

© Thomson Reuters 2022


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Samsung Takes Top Spot in Indian Tablet Market in Q1 2022, Beats Apple’s Premium Tablets: Report





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Samsung Takes Top Spot in Indian Tablet Market in Q1 2022, Beats Apple’s Premium Tablets: Report


Samsung gained the top spot in the Indian tablet market even as the whole segment in the first quarter of 2022, as per a new report. The South Korean tech giant is said to have secured a 40 percent market share. The new report suggests that Samsung has not just dominated the other Android tablet companies, but it has even crossed Apple iPads in terms of market performance in India. Moreover, the Samsung Galaxy Tab A8 series was considered as one of the best-selling tablet models in India in the first quarter of 2022.

According to a Deccan Herald report citing market research firm IDC, Samsung became the leader in the Indian tablet market by securing over 40 percent market share with up to 10 percent quarter-on-quarter (QoQ) growth in the first quarter of 2022, as compared to the previous quarter.

The report says that the Samsung Galaxy Tab A8 witnessed the greatest number of shipments in the tablet market in India, along with the premium Samsung Galaxy Tab S8, in the first quarter of 2022.

“The popularity of the recently-launched Galaxy Tab S8 series and Galaxy Tab A8 series enabled us to further strengthen our leadership in the tablet market. The success of the Galaxy Tab S8 series, especially the Galaxy Tab S8 Ultra, is a testimony to the fact that consumers value meaningful innovations that add value and solve everyday tasks effectively. Our wide channel presence, availability of devices across price segments and attractive programs for consumers helped us consolidate our leadership,” said Sandeep Poswal, Business Head, New Computing Business, Samsung India.

Usually, it can be seen that the premium tablet market in India often gets dominated by Apple tablets, which include the standard iPad, iPad mini, iPad Air, and iPad Pro series. But this time, Samsung has managed to emerge as the leader in the premium tablet market shipment in India, according to the report.




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