Launch Archives – My Blog

The Jeep brand finally launched in India this year and we couldn’t be happier. It’s taken a long time to enter the market and when it did the prices at which the cars were launched were, to put it in simple terms, unexpected.

But it was at the launch itself that the company promised that it would be bringing a made-in-India SUV by mid-2017. From the looks of it though, the company has already started testing the car and we can’t wait to hear the launch announcement soon.

The all-new Jeep Compass will be locally manufactured at FCA’s Ranjangaon facility near Pune and this is big news for India. For those who were a bit disappointed with the price tag the other Jeep SUVs came with, the Compass might just renew their hopes.

Jeep Compass Front

The all-new model replaces the outgoing Compass and Patriot SUVs completely and is an extremely important product for India. We say this time and again, because this will be the first car that FCA will make for export markets as well in India.

The 2017 Jeep Compass is positioned between the entry-level Renegade and Cherokee SUV in the automaker’s line-up, and is based on the stretched version of the Small Wide 4×4 architecture. In terms of design, the new Compass replicates the design language of the Grand Cherokee. The square wheel arches, the muscular looks and the tail lamps, all bring the design element together and we love how it looks.

The cabin too takes inspiration from the Grand Cherokee instead of the Renegade and gets a neat looking cabin finished in black and grey. Talking about the mechanicals, the all-new Compass will get front-wheel drive as standard, while All-Wheel Drive will be available as optional right from the start.

Power is expected to come from 2.0-litre petrol and diesel engine options, while a 2.4-litre naturally aspirated motor will also be available in developed markets like the US. Transmission options will include a 9-speed automatic, while a manual is also likely to be offered. Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) have said that globally there will be 17 powertrain options available on the new Jeep Compass, so definitely there won’t be a dearth for choices.

Just like every other year, Asus has announced that it will be organising an event at CES 2017. The company’s ‘Zennovation’ event has been scheduled for January 4 and the latest teaser video by the company suggests that it has at least two new smartphones lined up for unveil. The CES 2017 trade show is set to begin on January 4, with several companies due to make announcements at pre-CES events on January 3 and January 4.

Even though the video teaser doesn’t share much information regarding the two smartphones or even their names, towards the end of the video, you can see one phone’s display showing an inverted ‘V’ while the other one’s shows an infinity symbol. There is a very good chance that these symbols might have something to do with the phones’ names.

Last month, a report suggested that Asus is planning to launch a Google Tango-ready smartphone named ‘ZenFone AR’ at its CES 2017 event. The report cited company’s CEO Jerry Shen as saying that the phone will be launched at CES 2017. “ZenFone AR will come with advanced functionality and performance at a competitive price,” Shen was quoted as saying. Even though the report claimed that ZenFone 4 range of smartphones will be launched in second quarter of 2017, there is a thin chance that the company might reveal them at its CES 2017 event as well. Another smartphone anticipated to launch is a recently certified device thought to be the ZenFone 3 Zoom, said to sport a Snapdragon 625 SoC, a dual-rear camera setup, a 13-megapixel front camera, and a large 4850mAh battery. If like previous generations, the smartphone would offer an optical zoom feature, perhaps tying into the infinity symbol the company has teased for CES.

Asus recently announced the availability of its ZenFone 3 Max (ZC553KL) model in India. The phone has been priced at Rs. 17,999 and will be available via the company’s preferred partner’s retail outlets as well as e-tailer websites. It will be available in colour options of Titanium Gary, Glacier Silver, and Sand Gold.

 
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HTC is in works to unveil a new mid-range smartphone in January next year, which is said to replace the HTC One X9. Bearing the HTC X10 name, HTC’s new device will ape a lot of specifications from its predecessor One X9. A report suggests that the HTC X10 will purportedly cost around CNY 2,000 (nearly $288) and will initially be launched in China. In the meanwhile, rumours about HTC’s next flagship smartphone – thought to be called the HTC 11 – has also hit the Internet.

According to a report by MyDrivers, the HTC X10 will bear specifications very similar to a mid-range smartphone. It is said to sport a 5.5-inch full-HD (1080×1920) display, a 2GHz octa-core MediaTek Helio P10 processor (Cortex-A53 cores), and 3GB of RAM. For graphics, the smartphone is said to pack a Mali-T860 GPU clocked at 700MHz. The smartphone is also said to sport a 13-megapixel rear camera with OIS. The rumoured specifications go in line with HTC One X9 that was launched on the New Year’s Day this year.

In other news, there’s another rumour floating around on the Internet about HTC’s upcoming flagship device, said to be dubbed the HTC 11. A report by TimesNews cites a Weibo user’s post that pretty much reveals the specifications of HTC’s upcoming flagship smartphone HTC 11. According to the tipster, the HTC 11 will sport a 5.5-inch QHD (1440×2560) display and run on Android 7.0 Nougat customised with HTC’s Sense 8 UI. The device is also said to have a dual-camera setup of 12-megapixel each on the rear side, whereas the front-facing camera is expected to be an 8-megapixel shooter.

The HTC 11 is expected to be powered by an octa-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 CPU, along with Adreno 540 GPU for graphic performance. It is said to pack a whopping 8GB of RAM under the hood, with an inbuilt storage of 256GB. A 3700mAh battery is expected inside the handset. According to the report, the HTC 11 is expected to launch sometime in 2017, priced in the UK at the equivalent of $691. We cannot authenticate the HTC 11 rumour as of now and would recommend that the readers should take this report with a grain of salt.

 
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There’s no doubt that Samsung’s next focus will be its upcoming flagship smartphone after untimely demise of the Galaxy Note 7. Now, new details have emerged around Samsung’s rumoured next flagship believed to be called the Galaxy S8. Samsung is said to have postponed the launch of the Galaxy S8 to gain confidence from consumers before making it available in markets worldwide. Previously, it was reported that Samsung Galaxy S8 flagship smartphone will be unveiled at the side-lines of MWC 2017 in Barcelona on February 26. Other reports tip pricing and feature details.

A report claims that Samsung will hold a dedicated event in April and before the event, the South Korean company will work with several external agencies to re-gain confidence from consumers. The report mentions that the external agencies have been asked to come up with comprehensive plans ahead of the release of the Galaxy S8.

A separate report has claimed that the Samsung Galaxy S8 may be priced higher than the current Galaxy S7 series. The Korean report cites financial firm, Goldman Sachs, which predicts that the Galaxy S8 will see a rise in prices by up to 15 to 20 percent compared to its predecessor. According to the financial firm, the price rise will be due to rise in cost of raw material and this will eventually trickle down to consumers.

Another report has claimed that Samsung may place the fingerprint scanner at the back. There have been recent reports suggesting that Samsung may integrate an optical fingerprint scanner on the Galaxy S8 which will boast off high-res scanning through 1mm of glass with button-free design. The report however contradicts earlier rumours that Samsung may ditch the home button and claims that the home button will be present but not feature a fingerprint scanner.

There have been reports that suggest Samsung may be the next company that will ditch 3.5mm audio jack on smartphones. An earlier report claimed that the Samsung Galaxy S8 will only come with a USB Type-C port, and come with a 3.5mm-headphone-to-USB Type-C adapter.

 
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LeEco in collaboration with Coolpad are swiftly coming out with affordable high-end smartphones. After launching their first joint handset, the Cool1 Dual in August and their second device, the Cool Changer 1C, in late November, the two companies have jointly launched their third smartphone, the Cool S1, in China. The Cool S1 priced at CNY 2,499 (roughly Rs. 24,360) for the 4GB/32GB variant, CNY 2,699 for the 6GB/64GB option, and CNY 3,199 for the 6GB/128GB option.

The Cool S1 features a metal body with a design language that looks very similar to the LeEco Le Pro 3. The device features two front-facing speakers with Harman’s Clari-Fi audio enhancing technology. The handset ditches the 3.5mm headphone jack and instead comes with a USB Type-C headset. The fingerprint sensor falls just below the rear camera module.

The specifications of the Cool S1 are on par with the leaked TENAA listing that was spotted in November. It features a a 5.5-inch 1080p display powered by a 2.35GHz Snapdragon 821 coupled with 4GB/ 6GB RAM options. As mentioned earlier, the smartphone is being offered in 32GB, 64GB, and 128GB storage options.The Cool S1 runs LeEco’s EUI 5.8 based on Android 6.0 Marshmallow with dual-SIM support. The handset sports a 16-megapixel rear camera with PDAF, 4K recording and Dual-LED flash, and an 8-megapixel front-facing camera.

The Cool S1 measures 151.4×74.7×7.5mm and weighs 168 grams. Connectivity options include 4G, Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac, Bluetooth 4.1, OTG, and USB Type-C support. The device is fitted with a 4070mAh battery pack that supports Quick Charge 3.0.

As of now, the Cool S1 is only available in China and there is no word yet on whether the ‘Cool’ series will hit the Indian market.

Maruti Suzuki is all set to tread a very new path with its new Ignis. The Japanese car maker calls it a Premium Urban Compact car and despite a small footprint the car still has a generous wheelbase which means there’s more space on the inside of the car. Now, we’ve already told you about the launch date of the car and yes, it’s 13th January, 2017 and that’s not far away. It’ll be the first launch of the new year and we surely look forward to it especially since we saw at the 2016 Paris Motor Show

The LED DRLs add a bit of character to the Ignis

The Ignis comes with 15″ high gloss black alloy wheels, cladding on wheel arches, and a clamshell with air vent garnish. The headlamps are integrated into the grille and we’ll see LED Projector headlamps too make its way into the car, which will be a first for Maruti Suzuki.  It also sees a dual tone roof – white and black roof for the blue car and red with black. What is also prominent is the wheels of the car that fall outside the design and this accounts for very short overhangs and as we said earlier translates into a generous amount of space inside. So, there are a lot of SUV elements added to the car, just like the Renault Kwid.

The Maruti Suzuki Ignis is described as a Premium Urban Compact Car

Now, we’ve already told you all there is to know about the Ignis, but the India-spec car does get some unique elements. The cabin gets a floating layered design and the big screen with a dominant speedometer looks good. There are toggle switches like what we find on the MINI for AC controls and it’s new coming from Maruti. The interior also sees a dual tone styling – black and grey, but the console and door handle carries the exterior colour, though only on the red, blue and titanium. We will finally see both Apple CarPlay and Android Auto make its way into the Maruti car and we know it’s been long pending, but Maruti Suzuki wants to cater to a wider audience and with these features, the Ignis will surely help in achieving that.  However, the base variants of the Ignis might not come with the high-end features and we’ll know more once the specifications are released.

The Ignis comes with toggle switches for operating the AC

While we are still to lay our hands on the specifications of the car, Maruti Suzuki announced that the Ignis will come with both petrol and diesel engine and both the engines will come with the Auto Gear Shift option. In fact C.V Raman, Executive Director, R&D, Maruti Suzuki said that the AGS was done for India, and the reason for not going with the CVT is that people prefer to have a good automatic car at a reasonable cost and customers prefer to spend on embellishing their cars with customization options. As we’ve seen with the Brezza, the Ignis too  will come with a whole bunch of customisation options – roof wraps, fog lamp bezel and grille colour strips, interior dash colour trims to name a few.

Maruti Suzuki will come with a bunch of customisation options

On the safety front, the Ignis will be equipped with seatbelt pretensioners and ABS and dual airbags will be part of standard equipment. The new generation platform is lighter yet has higher torsional rigidity which means there’s more stability.

The Maruti Suzuki Ignis will come with 15 inch wheels

Maruti Suzuki will open bookings for the Ignis in the first week of January and the car can be booked through an online app.

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Lenovo’s Moto brand launched the Moto M smartphone at an event in Mumbai on Wednesday, and the company has made it available on Flipkart from Thursday. The Moto M comes in two RAM/storage variants – 3GB RAM/32GB storage and 4GB RAM/64GB storage – and is priced at Rs. 15,999 and Rs. 17,999 respectively. Flipkart has additionally listed some launch offers to make the purchase of the new smartphone very lucrative.

Flipkart has enabled an exchange offer on the Moto M allowing buyers to swap their old phones for the Moto M, with the discount going up to a maximum of Rs. 15,000. This Moto M exchange discount depends upon the type of phone exchanged. The e-commerce giant is offering an additional Rs. 2,000 off over and above the regular exchange discount as well.

If you purchase the Moto M using an Axis Bank Buzz credit card, you are entitled to an extra 5 percent off, and a Rs 1,000 cashback if you purchase the smartphone using a Citi credit card. Flipkart is also offering EMIs starting from as low as Rs. 776 per month. For the 64GB variant, EMIs start at Rs. 873 per month and supports almost all major banks. Flipkart is also offering the Motorola Pulse 2 wired headset and a chevron shock proof case for the Moto M with a discount of up to 32 percent if purchased along with the Moto M smartphone.

The Moto M is Motorola’s first all-metal smartphone, and the key features include a fingerprint sensor and Dolby Atmos support. The Moto M smartphone features a 5.5-inch IPS display with 2.5D curved glass and full-HD (1080×1920 pixels) resolution. It is powered by the 2.2GHz quad-core MediaTek Helio P15 processor, supports Dual-SIM (Nano-SIM), and runs on Android 6.0.1 Marshmallow. For storage expansion, Moto M users can slip microSD cards of up to 128GB capacity in the secondary SIM card slot.

On the optics front, Moto M has a 16-megapixel rear camera with phase detection autofocus (PDAF), and an 8-megapixel front camera for selfies. The Moto M connectivity suite includes Wi-Fi 802.11ac, Bluetooth v4.1, GPS/ A-GPS, 4G VoLTE (with support for Indian LTE bands), USB Type-C (USB 3.1), NFC, and a 3.5mm audio jack.

The Moto M’s battery is rated at 3050mAh and supports fast-charging; the smartphone measures 151.35×75.35×7.85mm and weighs 163 grams.

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The much-anticipated Zuk Edge smartphone – which was expected to be unveiled last week – will be launching on Tuesday, December 20, the company has said. Zuk shared a teaser on Weibo showing the upcoming Edge smartphone partially with an interface layout that seemed focused for the Chinese market.

Zuk Edge’s teaser image suggests that the smartphone will sport an edge-to-edge display and it may be placed like the Xiaomi’s Mi MIX smartphone. The image was shared by Android Pure.

Based on preliminary leaks, the Zuk Edge may feature a 5.5-inch full-HD (1080×1920 pixels) display, and will be powered by a 2.35GHz quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 821 processor coupled with 4GB of RAM (or 6GB of RAM). The Zuk Edge smartphone is likely to pack 32GB and 64GB inbuilt storage options, and have the fingerprint scanner as well (presumably under the Home Button at the bottom of the display).

On the camera front, the Zuk Edge smartphone is rumoured to sport a 13-megapixel rear camera and an 8-megapixel camera at the front. Zuk Edge is said to run Android 6.0 Marshmallow with ZUI 2.0 skin, and is expected to pack a 3000mAh battery. An earlier report tipped that the Zuk Edge may be priced at CNY 2,699 (roughly Rs. 26,800).

The Zuk Edge will be Lenovo’s fourth Zuk-branded smartphone. To recall, Lenovo has so far launched the Zuk Z1 (launched in August last year), Zuk Z2 Pro (launched in April this year), and Zuk Z2 (launched in May this year).

In separate news, a White-coloured smartphone believed to be the Zuk Edge has been spotted in live images. The smartphone packs slim bezels around the display and also sport a home button placed right below the display.

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On Wednesday, ZTE will launch its Nubia Z11 and Nubia N1 smartphones in India. The Chinese company is set to launch the two smartphones in the country at an event in New Delhi.

To recall, the Nubia Z11 was first launched in China in June, and was then released in other markets eventually. We can expect India pricing to be similar to China, where the variant with 4GB of RAM and 64GB storage was priced at CNY 2,499 (roughly Rs. 25,000), and the variant with 6GB of RAM and 128GB storage was priced at CNY 3,499 (roughly Rs. 35,000). The Nubia N1 sported a CNY 1,699 (roughly Rs. 17,200) price tag in China.

The Nubia Z11 handset features a 5.5-inch full-HD (1080×1920 pixels) 2.5D display and is powered by a 2.15GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 820 quad-core processor. Both the storage variants support expandable storage via microSD card (up to 200GB). As for optics, it sports a 16-megapixel rear camera with dual-tone LED flash, PDAF, and OIS. There is also an 8-megapixel selfie camera with f/2.4 aperture. The handset packs a 3000mAh battery and supports Quick Charge 3.0. It houses a fingerprint scanner on the rear panel, and offers connectivity options like Bluetooth, GPS, Glonass, Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac, 4G, GPS/ A-GPS, 3G, and USB Type-C. It measures 151.8×72.3×7.5mm, and weighs 162 grams. zte nubia n1 pink ZTE Nubia N1

The Nubia N1 features a 5.5-inch (1920×1080 pixels) full HD display with 401ppi pixel density, and is powered by a 64-bit 1.8GHz Mediatek Helio P10 octa-core SoC paired with 3GB of RAM. The smartphone offers 64GB of inbuilt storage, alongside the option to expand it via microSD slot (up to 128GB).

Optics include a 13-megapixel rear camera with PDAF, f/2.2 aperture, and LED flash. The selfie camera is also at 13-megapixel with beauty filters, and smart fill light for better night photography. The ZTE Nubia N1 packs a 5000mAh battery and a fingerprint sensor at the back that claims to unlock the smartphone in just 0.2 seconds. Connectivity options include 4G LTE with VoLTE, Wi-Fi 802.11ac, Bluetooth 4.1, GPS + GLONASS, and USB Type-C support.

Both the smartphones run on Nubia UI 4.0 based on Android 6.0 Marshmallow and comes with hybrid dual-SIM which means it supports one Nano-SIM card in one slot, and a nano-SIM or microSD card in the other slot.

 
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Lenovo is all set to launch Moto M in India on Tuesday. The company’s first all-metal Moto smartphone, the Moto M will be launched at an event in Mumbai that kicks off at 12:30pm IST. You can watch the live stream of the event below.

To recall, the Moto M was launched in China at CNY 1,999 (roughly Rs. 20,000), and apart from the metal body, the smartphone’s other highlights are its 16-megapixel rear camera with PDAF, and a large 3050mAh battery with fast charging support. We can expect the smartphone to sport a similar price tag in India, and both Gold and Silver colour variants to be launched in the country.

The dual-SIM (Nano-SIM) Moto M runs on Android 6.0.1 Marshmallow, and sports a 5.5-inch full-HD (1080×1920 pixels) 2.5D curved glass IPS display with a pixel density of 401ppi. It is powered by a 2.2GHz octa-core MediaTek Helio P15 processor that’s coupled with 4GB of LPDDR3 RAM. On the front, it bears an 8-megapixel camera. Notably, the smartphone has a hybrid dual-SIM card slot, meaning the second SIM card slot can either be used for a microSD card or a Nano-SIM card.

The Moto M features 32GB of inbuilt storage that’s expandable via microSD card (up to 128GB). Connectivity options include Wi-Fi 802.11ac, Bluetooth v4.1, GPS/ A-GPS, 4G VoLTE (with support for Indian LTE bands), USB Type-C (USB 3.1), NFC, and a 3.5mm audio jack. Sensors on the phone include an accelerometer, ambient light sensor, gyroscope, magnetometer, and a proximity sensor. It measures 151.35×75.35×7.85mm, and weighs in at 163 grams.

 
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