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The upcoming iPhone is undoubtedly the most anticipated smartphone of the year, and rumours surrounding the smartphone have been too many. What’s more interesting this year, is that many conflicting reports are surfacing online making it impossible for us to speculate with ease. One thing seems almost certain though – the next iPhone is set to break Apple’s tick tock cycle and be unveiled with minimal design changes. Because of these few changes, contradicting reports of the iPhone being called the iPhone 6SE are coming in. Today, we have two leaks in the form of retail box images and Geekbench scores that indicate the coming of the iPhone 6SE. Additionally, there is also a leak that reiterates the end of the 16GB storage variant.

The first one comes in the form of photographed pictures of the iPhone 6SE retail box. The images don’t seem to be photoshopped and show the retail box clearly with the iPhone 6SE branding. There is a separate leak of a Geekbench score of 5,210 in multi-core testing, and 3,042 in single-core testing. The image also shows the model number as iPhone 6SE. The man who leaked it also did the same test on iPhone 6s and scored 4,427 and 2,542 points respectively.

Furthermore, tipster Malignant has again instilled faith that the next iPhone will say goodbye to the 16GB base variant. Apple will instead slide in 32GB as the base storage variant, and apparently the 64GB will also be scrapped to make way for the 128GB mid-variant. The top variant will offer a new 256GB storage option.

Whatever the name be, the upcoming iPhone is said to have no 3.5mm audio jack, and the larger variant is tipped to sport a dual camera setup. Another feature that is on the see-saw is the Smart Connector, with too many conflicting reports to put a pin on one decision. Apple should have sent invites by now, but it clearly hasn’t so the rumoured September 23 availability could just be true.


LG V20 is a smartphone that has received most of its attention because of the simple fact that it is being touted as the first smartphone to come with Android 7.0 Nougat right out-of-the-box. Even though this claim by LG was never in doubt, the recent buzz about the upcoming phones in Google’s Nexus lineup took the attention away from the smartphone.

Now, Google has confirmed on its official page for Android 7.0 Nougat that V20 will indeed be the “first new smartphone” to run ship with Android Nougat out-of-the-box. Even though it is not a very surprising announcement from the search giant, it does clear any doubt for a surprise launch of the Nexus smartphones before September 6 – the date the LG V20 will be launched.

On its website on Monday, LG announced that the company will be launching the smartphone in South Korea on September 7, after the initial launch event in San Francisco a day before that. Interestingly, in its announcement teaser, the company has claimed that the smartphone will offer the “best video and audio experience.” This might indicate that the company has something special to offer in terms of audio and video with the LG V20.

As for audio, earlier this month LG had revealed that the successor to the popular LG V10 smartphone will be packing a 32-bit Hi-Fi Quad DAC (digital to analogue converter) for enhanced audio playback.

In the meanwhile, the company’s US Instagram account has also posted a picture and a GIF that suggest that V20 will have a similar dual-camera setup as seen on LG G5 and will also allow you to select particular parts of images that show motion. Another image on Instagram points to the presence of a secondary wide angle lens, once again pointing to a dual-camera setup similar to the one on the LG G5. To recall, leaked renders from earlier this month also tipped that the phone will be packing a dual camera setup, and feature a removable chin for modular accessories, just the like the G5.

With all these pieces of information, it seems like LG V20 launch on September 6 might become one of the most anticipated events of the year.

Four months after launch, HTC has announced two new colour options for the HTC 10, and has also introduced a $100 (roughly Rs. 6,700) temporary discount. The HTC 10 will now be available in Camellia Red and Topaz Gold colour variants in addition to the launch colours in the US. The price of the smartphone has also gone down to $599 (roughly Rs. 40,300), instead of the launch price of $699 (roughly Rs. 47,000).

This discounted price is only available till the end of this month, after which the price will go back to $699 (roughly Rs. 47,000). The HTC 10 is only available at the discounted price only on the company website for now. The Camellia Red and Topaz Gold colour variants are available for pre-order, and HTC notes that they have been manufactured only in limited quantities. The shipping of these new colour variants will begin in early October.

Buyers can even opt to not take the discount, and instead go for the JBL noise cancelling headphones. This isn’t the first time HTC has introduced the $100 (roughly Rs. 6,700) discount on the HTC 10 since its launch, and these price slashes reflect on possible low sales figures of the flagship. The company launched the smartphone in April in Glacier Silver and Carbon Grey colour variants. It arrived in India a month later with a price tag of Rs. 52,990.

As for the specifications, the HTC 10 sports a 5.2-inch Quad HD (1440×2560 pixels) Super LCD 5 display with a pixel density of 564ppi and curved edge Gorilla Glass. It is powered by a Snapdragon 820 SoC paired with 4GB RAM and 32GB of inbuilt storage. There is also a 4GB of RAM/ 64GB of storage variant that has not been brought to India. Optics include a 12-UltraPixel laser autofocus camera with an f/1.8 aperture, dual tone LED flash, BSI sensor and optical image stabilisation (OIS); a 5-megapixel front-facing camera with autofocus and optical image stabilisation (OIS). It offers Bluetooth 4.2, NFC, DLNA, GPRS/ EDGE, 3G, and 4G connectivity options, and a 3000mAh battery.


The rollout of the final build of Android 7.0 Nougat has now officially started with select Nexus devices getting the latest version of Google’s smartphone operating system. The new update brings several additional features to Android, from tweaks to the interface that will change how you use your phone, to changes under the hood that will improve battery life and performance.

According to the official Android blog, there are over 250 major new features in Android 7.0 Nougat, and here are some of the highlights.

1. Multi-window
Multi-window support will allow you to run two apps side by side, and the windows are resizable too, by dragging the divider. We’ve seen this feature before from a number of phone makers, and your mileage may vary on how useful multi-windows are, but with phones now crossing the 6-inch mark, it makes sense to think of ways to use all that screen real estate.

2. Direct reply to notifications
Android’s notifications also get an overhaul, with a new template that makes the notifications stand out more, and offer custom views along with direct reply. This will allow you to answer a text or chat message directly from the notification pane.

3. Quick settings
Easy access to Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, and the flashlight with a single swipe. Not only are all the important shortcuts now all in the notification shade, but it’s something you can edit to change the order of the icons.

This is something that the different OEMs have had to implement in the past, with mixed results – as default Android behaviour, it’ll help ensure that users of all devices get the same kind of experience.

4. Multi-locale support
You can now select multiple locales in your settings, and this can be used by apps to tailor their content. This will be useful for multilingual users – for example, your search engine results could be tailored to show results in all the languages you selected.

5. Better battery life
Last year, Android got a new feature called Doze that preserves the battery while the phone is lying at rest and idle. This feature has been updated, and and now can kick in even when you’re on the move.

6. Faster, more secure
The new Direct Boot mode allows the phone to run in a secured mode when powered up but not unlocked. Apps do not run during direct boot mode, though they can be set up to run components, such as scheduled alerts (alarm clocks) or important notifications (messages), which are run in an encrypted mode. This means that your device can startup faster, while remaining secure even as the phone reboots.

Other security updates include file based encryption, and seamless updates, which will lead to faster software updates in the background.

7. Better performance
Android 7.0 Nougat comes with a new feature called Vulkan, a cross-platform API for 3D graphics. This makes better use of multi-core processors for gaming and other similar applications, so expect a performance boost over time. There are also optimisations to the way apps run in the background, which will also improve system performance by preventing needless access to the RAM.

8. Virtual reality
Android 7.0 Nougat also brings VR mode in Android through Daydream. Current phones are not expected to be compatible with Daydream so this will matter only to people buying new devices – but Daydream-ready phones, headsets and controllers, are all coming later this year.

These were the main updates that we’ve seen to Android 7.0 Nougat. Which features do you think are most interesting? Let us know via the comments.


Life insurance companies had collected Rs 13,319.97 crore in new business premiums in July 2015. New Delhi: New business premiums of life insurance companies saw a four per cent rise to Rs 13,854.44 crore in July 2016 as against Rs 13,319.97 crore premium collected in the corresponding period last year.

State-run Life Insurance Corporation’s (LIC) new business premium was the highest at Rs 10,737.92 crore, up 3 per cent from Rs 10,421 crore in July 2015, data collected by the Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority showed.

Sector regulator IRDAI’s data comprises a total of 24 firms including LIC – the country’s largest life insurance company.

New business generated by the remaining 23 companies rose 7.5 per cent year-on-year to Rs 3,116.52 crore in July this year, against Rs 2,898.97 crore a year ago, the data showed.

Among private players, SBI Life registered the highest premium from new business at Rs 676.54 crore, a jump of 36 per cent from Rs 497.08 crore last year.

HDFC Standard Life new business was up 17 per cent at Rs 521.43 crore as against Rs 445.54 crore a year ago, ICICI Prudential Life’s new business was up 16.5 per cent at Rs 565.59 crore from Rs 485.50 crore last year.

Further, new business premiums of Max Life stood at Rs 217.39 crore from Rs 185.78 crore last year and Kotak Mahindra Old Mutual Life reported (new business premiums of) of Rs 157.25 crore as against Rs 128.34 crore July 2015.

During April-July period of current fiscal year, new business premium by all the 24 life insurers rose by 22.7 per cent at Rs 45,247 crore as against Rs 36,888.11 crore in the corresponding period of the preceding fiscal year, the data added.


Mahindra TUV300, the popular subcompact SUV from the home-grown utility vehicle manufacturer will now be available in a new Bronze Green colour option. Launched to celebrate our 70th Independence Day, the new colour scheme will be available across variants in a made-to-order basis.If you remember, when Mahindra launched the sub-4 metre SUV last year in September, the carmaker largely emphasised on the TUV300’s battle tank inspired design concept. It was a key selling point for Mahindra and this new colour option goes really well with that theme. In fact, the new Bronze Green colour scheme to an extent even matches the military green colour used by the Indian Army. 7.84 Lakh * On Road Price (New Delhi)

During the time of its launch, Mahindra TV300 was available in a similar green colour option, christened Combat Green, which was also available on the made-to-order basis. These special colours are available as an optional extra from Mahindra’s in-house customisation division. Now the carmaker hasn’t mentioned anything about the additional premium this special colour option will command but it might vary depending on dealerships.

Mahindra TUV300 – Verve Blue

Apart from this new special colour, the Mahindra TUV300 continues to come in the standard colour scheme as well, which includes – Dynamo Red, Bold Black, Molten Orange, Majestic Silver, Verve Blue, and Glacier White. In terms of features, nothing has changed as the car continues to come with offerings like – driver infotainment system, piano black console, volume and telephony controls on the steering wheel and more. The cabin also remains unchanged and gets the same standard Beige-Brown dual tone colour scheme.

Under the hood, Mahindra offers the TUV300 with two engine option – mHawk80 and mHawk100. Both the versions use the same 1.5-litre motor but in different states of tune. The mHawk80 churns out 84bhp in the manual variants and 81bhp in the AMT variant with the peak torque remaining the same at 230Nm. As for the more powerful mHawk100, it churns out a satisfying 100bhp and develops a peak torque of 240Nm, while mated to either a 5-speed manual or a 5-speed AMT gearbox.


After Sony’s announcement, Lenovo has also confirmed its presence at IFA in Berlin this year. The tech firm is hosting a pre-IFA 2016 event on August 30, and has in a video teased the launch of new products from both the Lenovo and Motorola stables – from new Moto Mods, to an innovative new keyboard, and new Yoga laptops and tablets. A new Moto 360 smartwatch was also hinted at, but not mentioned specifically.

In its teaser, Lenovo confirms that new Moto Mods are going to be announced at the event. Lenovo-owned Motorola announced these snap-on back panels alongside the Moto Z and Moto Z Force in June this year. The modular accessories connect to the smartphones via a 16-pin connector on the back. On launch date, Motorola announced the JBL SoundBoost speaker Moto Mod which introduced stereo quality sound from the smartphone, an Insta-Share pico projector Moto Mod (meant to deliver 70-inch projector experience), and the Incipio offGRID Power Pack Moto Mod that claims to provide up to 22 hours of additional battery life.

Lenovo has now released a sneak peek video of what to expect at the event, and new Moto Mods have been confirmed. Perhaps the rumoured camera module will see the light of the day? Soon after unveiling the Moto Mods, Lenovo announced that it will sell the Module Development Kit (MDK) to third party developers. The kit is now sold on, and contains all the tools that folks at Motorola use to build the Moto Mods. Motorola will showcase these different Moto Mods created by new third party partnerships at the event.

Apart from the Moto Mods, the company also looks to announce “a new chapter in tablets” and launch “a whole new kind of intuitive keyboard”. Motorola is also expected to unveil the new Moto 360 smartwatch at the event, if only because of a brief glimpse in the first segment recounting previous innovations from the company. IFA is set to begin on September 2 and go on till September 7 this year.


A new Sony X series smartphone, the Xperia XR, has been spotted in leaked press renders. The alleged Sony Xperia XR can be seen in a host of leaked renders shot from different angles, showing the phone in all its glory.

Shared by phone tipster @Onleaks on Twitter, the leaked renders show Royal Blue colour of the alleged handset.

The front can be seen dominated by the display and maintains the design language of the recently unveiled Xperia X smartphones. The right panel is seen housing the power as well as volume rocker buttons. There is another physical button which is believed to be dedicated camera button or a side fingerprint scanner module.

The rear panel apart from housing the primary camera also sport a dual-LED flash module. The bottom panel packs the USB Type-C port for charging. The tipster also claimed dimensions of the Xperia XR to be roughly 146.4×71.9×8.1mm. Unfortunately, there is no word when the Sony Xperia XR is likely to launch, but rumours suggest that the smartphone may be revealed at IFA next month.Even if the leaked images come out to be true, the Xperia XR may or may not be unveiled in India. The Japanese company recently was claimed to defocus on markets including India. The move was followed by below satisfactory performance in markets such as China, India, and the US. Sony was reported to be expecting its smartphone business in these countries to grow only 0.3 percent in these markets, which explains its decision to “defocus” on these regions.

Last month, Sony launched the Xperia XA Ultra in India priced at Rs. 29,990. The highlight of the selfie-focused smartphone was the 16-megapixel front facing camera with OIS and flash.


A previously unknown group called “Strider” has been conducting cyber-espionage attacks against selected targets in Russia, China, Sweden, and Belgium, US-based computer security firm Symantec said on Monday.

The group, which has been active since at least October 2011 and could have links to a national intelligence agency, has been using an advanced piece of hidden malware identified by Symantec as Remsec (Backdoor.Remsec), the company said in a blog post.

Remsec spyware lives within an organisation’s network rather than being installed on individual computers, giving attackers complete control over infected machines, researchers said. It enables keystroke logging and the theft of files and other data.

Its code also contains a reference to Sauron, the all-seeing title character in The Lord of the Rings trilogy, Symantec said. Strider is the name of another leading character in the fantasy novels.

Despite headlines that suggest an endless stream of new types of cyber-spying attacks, Orla Fox, Symantec’s Dublin-based director of security response told Reuters the discovery of a new class of spyware like Remsec is a relatively rare event, with the industry uncovering no more than one or two such campaigns per year.

Strider’s targets include four organizations and individuals located in Russia, an airline in China, an organization in Sweden and an embassy in Belgium, the security company said.

“Based on the espionage capabilities of its malware and the nature of its known targets, it is possible that the group is a nation state-level attacker,” Symantec said, but it declined to speculate about which government or governments might be behind the software.

Meanwhile Moscow-based cyber-security research firm Kaspersky Lab confirmed that it has also detected the same spyware and will publish further details of its findings later on Monday. It has dubbed the group behind it “ProjectSauron”.

Remsec shares certain unusual coding similarities with another older piece of “nation state-grade” malware known as Flamer, or Flame, according to Symantec.

Flamer malware has been linked to Stuxnet, a military-grade computer virus alleged by security experts to have been used by the United States and Israel to attack Iran’s nuclear programme late in the last decade.


The latest version of Apple’s mobile and tablet operating system – iOS 10 – is arriving this fall alongside the new iPhone 7, and it’s bringing along many new features and improvements. Apart from the iMessage overhaul and third-party Siri integration, the company has now announced that more than 100 new emojis are also coming with the software update. These are in-line with the new emojis introduced as the Unicode 9.0 standard in June this year.

The new redesigned Apple emojis for iOS 10 include more representation of professional women, a rainbow flag, and a water gun. Apple has highlighted 12 specific emojis in its announcement, giving a generic outline of the emojis that can be expected in iOS 10. These 12 emojis include women in different professions like a detective and even an engineer. Women representing different sports like Basketball, Swimming, Running, Skateboarding, Weightlifting, and Cycling have also been highlighting.

“This exciting update brings more gender options to existing characters, including new female athletes and professionals, adds beautiful redesigns of popular emoji, a new rainbow flag and more family options,” Apple says in a statement.

Significant family emoji additions that include a mother with her son, and a father with his son and daughter, have also been highlighted. Apple has also emphasised on the new rainbow flag and water gun emojis. Unicode had deliberated to put a rifle in its set of new emoji standard, but then decided against it. Pressure from companies like Apple, and Microsoft, and their decision to not support the emoji made Unicorn not include the rifle emoji altogether. Apple’s stress on the water gun is only to further its stance against the rifle emoji.

These new emojis are already available in the latest developer preview of iOS 10. The skin tones of these new emojis can also be changed. Unicode 9.0 introduced 72 new emojis that include a shrug, facepalm, fingers crossed, drooling, selfie, and even an emoji depicting rolling on the floor laughing (ROFL). The full list of new emojis introduced in Unicode 9 can be viewed here.