31772a6dd13fa30012a6de614c7ac0fc9734955e5797a33812 Money And Knowledge: 2013

Why more teens are quitting Facebook

Teenagers are turning their back on Facebook 'in their droves' and switching to simpler social networks and messaging apps, new research has found. Not only are 16-18 year olds moving on to rivals such as Snapchat, Whatsapp and evenTwitter, teens are embarrassed to be so much as associated with Facebook, as their parents adopt the network, researchers said.

"Where once parents worried about their children joining Facebook, the children now say it is their family that insists they stay there to post about their lives," said Daniel Miller, a professor of Anthropology at University College London, who works on the Global Social Media Impact Study.

"Parents have worked out how to use the site and see it as a way for the family to remain connected. In response, the young are moving on tocooler things," he said. "What we've learned from working with 16-18 year olds in the UK is that Facebook is not just on the slide, it is basically dead and buried," he added. Miller, writing on academic news website the Conversation, added that the research found that "slick isn't always best" as even the teenagers that took part in the study admitted that Facebook is technically better than its rivals.

"It is more integrated, better for photo albums, organizing parties and more effective for observing people's relationships," he said, yet other factors are much more important to teens —namely the fact they are likely to get a friend request from their mum on Facebook. "You just can't be young and free if you know your parents can access your every indiscretion," he said.

"It is nothing new that young people care about style and status in relation to their peers, and Facebook is simply not cool anymore." Instead, rather than using the network to communicate with each other, teens use Facebook as a link to older family and older siblings who have gone to university.

Indian cos ditching IBM, SAP software for open source

Indian enterprises are increasingly moving to open-source software, recognising the cost benefits and flexibility it offers over proprietary software. A falling rupee, which increases licensing costs, is likely to hasten the shift from softwares made by companies like SAP, IBM and Oracle.

The government has already embraced open-source in a big way — the Aadhaar project is a case in point. Now, companies like Hungama Digital Entertainment, Uttam Energy, Bilcare, payment processor Euronet, insurer Star Union Dai-chi and IT outsourcer iGate — have also started using open-source software. And the list is growing.

"There is a definite trend towards open source from Indian companies," CN Raghupathi, the head of Infosys' India business, told ET. "Lower cost is a factor but so is innovation."

Amit Vora, chief technology officer of Hungama Digital, said though open-source is up to 70 per cent cheaper, the large developer pool for it was equally important. "The open source ecosystem and the ability to boost inter-operability is big selling factor. Plus, you don't have to be at the mercy of the vendors to provide customised features and innovation," he said.

For the past two years, enterprises have moved their servers to open source, but now the trend includes critical software. Business intelligence software and even customer-relationship management software is shifting to open source, said Rahul De, the Hewlett-Packard chair professor in information and communication technology at the Indian Institute of Management, Bangalore.

Anand Sankaran, senior vicepresident at Wipro Infotech, said telecom firms were evaluating the benefits of shifting to open-source software. "Why can't CRM (customer relationship management) be done on open source? Why do you need a licensed platform to run it — some of the companies have started thinking about it," said Sankaran.

The Indian enterprise software market, which is expected to reach $3.92 billion (about Rs 25,600 crore) this year, is expected to touch about $6.7 billion (about Rs 43,700 crore) by 2017, according to research firm Gartner. Spending on business intelligence platforms — including open-source versions — is expected to rise more than 13 per cent to $74.1 million (about Rs 483 crore) in India this year. This is expected to expand further to $107.4 million (about Rs 701 crore) by 2016.

Sony's PS4 to go on sale next year in Japan

Sony's next-generation video game machine PlayStation 4 won't go on sale in Japan until next year, meaning that it won't be on time for the key year-end holiday or New Year's shopping season. 

Hiroshi Kawano, Sony's chief of the game business in Japan and Asia, said at a Tokyo event that the PlayStation 4 will go on sale February 22, 2014, in Japan. 

The console is going on sale November 15 in the US and Canada, and November 29 in Europe. 

Kawano said the late date was to be fully prepared with game software at its launch, and orders will be taken starting next month. But the product will miss the critical Christmas and New Year's period when Japanese children can count on gifts. 

"We plan to have powerful titles at the launch date," he told a hall packed with guests and reporters. 

"We are asking for some time before we can offer it but please look forward to it." 

Sony will instead sell in Japan, before other nations, the 9,480 yen ($90) PSVita TV, a small device that attaches to a TV set to enjoy music, TV shows, movies and karaoke. The PS 4 will cost 39,980 yen ($400) in Japan. It will cost $399 in the US. 

Nintendo, which makes the Pokemon and Super Mario games, started selling the Wii U console last November. 

But Wii U sales have suffered, selling just 3.61 million of the machines through the end of June. Nintendo is still targeting sales of 9 million Wii U units over the fiscal year through March 2014. 

Microsoft is planning the Xbox One, debuting November 22. 

Hopes have been high in the game industry that the arrival of the three consoles will revitalize the sector, which has lagged from competition from smartphones and other mobile devices, wooing users with their own games, as well as social networking and other pastimes. 

Andrew House, president of Sony Computer Entertainment, the Tokyo-based company's game division, said demand was strong so far for the PlayStation 4, with a million pre-orders. 

Sony has not given a PS4 unit sales target for the fiscal year. 

The Japan sale date was held off until next year because Japanese game developers have required more time to develop games for the PlayStation 4, he told reporters at headquarters. 

"We wanted to make sure that there was a game experience that resonated with the Japanese consumer," said House.

Daimler aims to launch self-driving car by 2020

Germany's Daimler AG   plans to start selling a self-driving car by 2020 as part of its campaign to regain the top spot among premium carmakers, its development chief said. 

Carmakers and suppliers across the world are working on ways to make driving safer and more comfortable through automation, and the race is on to bring the technology to the mass market. 

"We want to be the first to launch autonomous functions in production vehicles. You can be sure: we will accomplish that in this decade," Daimler head of development Thomas Weber said. 

Daimler, battling to regain the top stop in the luxury car market from German rival BMW, is focusing on so-called highly automated driving, in which cars master situations such as cruising the motorway or manoeuvring through traffic jams while the driver relaxes. 

The car would recognise difficult situations such as dealing with traffic lights or urban driving among pedestrians and cyclists, and hand control back to the human behind the wheel. 

Daimler, the maker of Mercedes-Benz and Smart cars, is not alone in its ambitions. Japan's Nissan, for example, has also announced plans to launch a car completely guided by computers this decade. 

Testing is already under way in many countries. US internet search and advertising group Google has fitted out several cars with radar-like equipment that lets them navigate roads in California and Nevada. 

The technology will feature at this week's Frankfurt car show, the world's biggest, although experts say the move from dream to reality will likely take 10 to 15 years. 

German auto supplier Continental aims to enable cars to drive themselves at speeds of up to 30 km per hour (18 miles per hour) by 2016, and at up to 60 km/h by 2020. 

Google is reportedly discussing an alliance with Continental on self-driving cars that could be announced as soon as this week. 


Daimler's Weber said it was hard to forecast exactly when drivers would turn into passengers in their own cars. "Autonomous driving will not come overnight, but will be realised in stages," he said. 

One obstacle to overcome is making it legal for cars to steer themselves. European Union laws currently call for drivers to be in control of cars at all times, so test vehicles at Daimler and BMW need special approval in Germany. 

There's also the challenge of convincing drivers of the technology, although Georgeric Legros, a Paris-based management consultant with AlixPartners, believes attitudes are changing. 

"The slightly macho aspect of cars is gradually disappearing in favour of a more functional, safety-minded image," he said. 

"People prefer to be comfortably installed in a leather seat, reading the paper or catching up on email, rather than stuck behind the wheel in a traffic jam or on a monotonous motorway." 

Technology already on the market allows partly automated driving in which motorists stay in control but get a hand from the vehicle. 

Daimler for instance offers traffic jam assistance, which can maintain distance to other cars in stop-go situations, in its top-line S-Class Mercedes, and BMW will roll this out in its new i3 electric car before the end of the year. 

Rivals including Audi and Volvo Cars are moving in the same direction. 

Daimler sees itself ahead in the race to develop robot cars because it says its technology can handle city driving as well as motorways. It uses readily available sensors rather than specially designed technologies for research vehicles. 

A Mercedes test vehicle recently travelled the same 100-km stretch between the German cities of Mannheim and Pforzheim that Bertha Benz drove 125 years ago to demonstrate the practicality of the automobile.

Scientist controls another man's brain via internet

Scientists, including one of Indian-origin, have conducted the world's first non-invasive human-to-human brain interface in which one person was able to control the motions of another person via internet.

Using electrical brain recordings and a form of magnetic stimulation, Rajesh Rao, a University of Washington professor, sent a brain signal to his colleague Andrea Stocco, causing Stocco's finger to move on a keyboard.

While researchers at Duke University have demonstrated brain-to-brain communication between two rats, and Harvard researchers have demonstrated it between a human and a rat, Rao and Stocco believe this is the first demonstration of human-to-human brain interfacing.

"The Internet was a way to connect computers, and now it can be a way to connect brains. We want to take the knowledge of a brain and transmit it directly from brain to brain," Stocco, a research assistant professor in psychology at the UW's Institute for Learning & Brain Sciences, said.

Rao sat in his lab wearing a cap with electrodes hooked up to an electroencephalography machine, which reads electrical activity in the brain.

Stocco was in his lab across campus wearing a purple swim cap marked with the stimulation site for the transcranial magnetic stimulation coil that was placed directly over his left motor cortex, which controls hand movement.

The team had a Skype connection set up so the two labs could coordinate, though neither Rao nor Stocco could see the Skype screens.

Rao looked at a computer screen and played a simple video game with his mind. When he was supposed to fire a cannon at a target, he imagined moving his right hand (being careful not to actually move his hand), causing a cursor to hit the "fire" button, researchers said.

Almost instantaneously, Stocco, who wore noise-cancelling earbuds and wasn't looking at a computer screen, involuntarily moved his right index finger to push the space bar on the keyboard in front of him, as if firing the cannon.

Stocco compared the feeling of his hand moving involuntarily to that of a nervous tic.

"It was both exciting and eerie to watch an imagined action from my brain get translated into actual action by another brain," Rao said.

"This was basically a one-way flow of information from my brain to his. The next step is having a more equitable two-way conversation directly between the two brains," said Rao.

Rao cautioned this technology only reads certain kinds of simple brain signals, not a person's thoughts. And it doesn't give anyone the ability to control your actions against your will.


Japan to launch ‘internet fasting‘ camps

Japan is planning to propose 'internet fasting camps' in a bid to deal with more than half a million of the nation's children who are addicted to the web, it has been revealed.

The country's government spokesman told The Daily Telegraph that they have estimated that the addiction affects around 518,000 children at middle and high schools across Japan, but the figure is rising.

A survey of more than 98,000 youngsters found that nearly 8.1% of the respondents were "pathologically" addicted to the internet, and reported trouble sleeping and poor nutrition.

In the camps, kids will have no access to the internet, smartphones or video games and they will be encouraged to play sports and other outdoor activities at the days-long events.

Counsellors will be on hand to help them get a handle on their digital habits.

Achieving green computing in cloud

The cloud lifecycle can be divided into four stages, viz., designing, setup, using and disposal. Green computing in the cloud context can be achieved by ensuring minimum or no impact on environment during each of these cloud lifecycle stages. The objective is to reduce energy consumption and improve resource performance and efficiency.
Green computing in a Cloud can be achieved by initiating a series of transformative actions such as improving Cloud data center design, increasing resource longevity, consolidating resources, and optimizing algorithms. Let us look at each of these in detail.
Data center design plays a very important role and is essential for creating an energy efficient data center with energy saving configuration.
Creating a good data center design requires attention to be paid to the following:
• Data center location:  Decide data center location factoring the data center purpose as well as availability of resources for running the data center such as cheaper electricity and skilled resources.
• Construction of the data center building: While designing the data center, electrical systems must consider the data center landscape and wherever possible leverage the natural lighting. Other factors to be considered are local availability of renewable energy, using outside air for cooling or locating the systems where the heat they produce may be used for other purposes.

LG announces G Pad 8.3 tablet to tackle Galaxy Note and iPad mini

Ahead of next week's IFA tech show, LG has officially unveiled its rumoured G Pad 8.3 tablet, which it hopes will rival similarly-sized options from Apple and Samsung.
As the name suggests, the new G Pad has an 8.3-inch screen, which packs a Full HD resolution of 1920 x 1200. LG claims it as the first full HD tablet in its size category.
The device bares an extremely strong resemblance to the company's recent G2 smartphone, with a slimline, minimalist design.
Internally, the G Pad 8.3 comes loaded with Android 4.2.2 Jelly Bean (no 4.3 out of the box), there's 16GB of storage and a 1.7GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 600 processor and 2GB RAM.
The company is also promising a new app called QPair which will enable users to manage calls and messages by pairing up with a smartphone.

Stiff competition

LG has said it will launch the device in the US and Europe in the fourth quarter of the year, but is yet to confirm pricing. Perhaps we'll find out more from the show floor at IFA in Berlin.
Just as it is in the smartphone world, LG is up against stiff competition to break the Apple and Samsung stranglehold in the 8-inch category.
Apple is rumoured to be launching a second-gen iPad mini before the year is out, while Samsung's Galaxy Note 8.0 is a highly-rated option.

Slowdown hits online hiring activity

Online hiring activity registered a decline of nearly 4% in July over the same month a year ago amid weak economic conditions, according to a research by job portal Monster.com. 

On a month-to-month basis, the index witnessed even a sharper decline as it was down by 6.10% to 123 in July from 131 it registered in June. 

"The decline in annual growth is reflective of the prevailing challenging economic conditions. Keeping in mind the uncertain economic/ political scenario, companies are adopting a cautious approach while hiring which is reflected in the index," Monster.com (India/ Middle-East/South-East Asia) Managing Director Sanjay Modi said. 

A sectoral analysis shows that 12 of the 27 industry sectors monitored by the Monster Employment Index registered expansion in online recruitment activity between July 2012 and July 2013. 

While hiring in telecom/ISP sector improved by 20% followed by BPO/ITeS sector (up 18%), chemicals/ plastic/ rubber, paints, fertiliser/ pesticides (down 13%) showed steepest annual decline. 

Online demand improved in six of 13 occupational groups monitored by the Monster Employment Index between July 2012 and July 2013. 

The most substantial annual gains amongst occupational groups was registered in customer service (up 18 per cent) followed by hospitality and travel (up 10%). 

Among occupation groups, senior management exhibited the steepest annual decline (down 56%).

Online recruitment activity was up on the year in six of 13 locations monitored by the index. 

Kolkata (up 21%) followed by Chandigarh (up 15%) led all cities in annual growth, while, among major metro-areas, Kolkata (up 21%) followed by Hyderabad (up 2%) registered the highest annual growth. 

The Monster Employment Index India is a monthly gauge of online job posting activity based on a real-time review of millions of employer job opportunities culled from a large representative selection of career Web sites and online job listings across India.

IT sector to hire 1.20 lakh this year: Experts

The country's IT & ITeS industry would generate as many as 1.20 lakh jobs this year even as campus hiring is likely to remain subdued, experts say.

While there has been a drop in campus hiring in IT sector as the industry reels under a economic downturn in the West, jobs added this year will see large hiring from the market.

"Last year, the campus hiring numbers had dipped from the normal and this year, it is not going to be any different. We estimate that there will be around 1,20,000 jobs created this year," talent assessment company Merit Trac Head of Innovation and Corporate Business Rajeev Menon said.

The IT sector is set to grow by 12 to 14 per cent this year, as per Nasscom estimates.

Over the years, large IT companies have relied on campus hiring for large scale recruitment. However, since 2008, these companies have been trying hard to adjust to changing economic and business landscape and campus hiring has been impacted.

Last year, around 1.8 lakh graduates were placed in the IT sector. The number, however, is expected to be 30 per cent less this year.

The changing economic scenario is the most compelling reason why hiring from campuses are reducing and these are causing inconsistencies in the business demand which is reflecting in hiring - particularly at the entry level.

Commenting on the trends, executive search firm GlobalHunt MD Sunil Goel said: "Expectations from the campuses also have gone down as experienced resources are easily available at the similar price. So, the companies are preferring to hire from the market than going to campuses with larger reasons to drop in campus hiring."

Campus hiring has been under stress amid rising number of candidates seeking employment. For example, in 2005 there were 365,000 graduates in IT sector but the same stands at around 1.3 million graduates in 2012.

Some of the service domains within IT like e-commerce, social media, mobile banking are showing consistent growth.

The India IT-ITES sector faced strong headwinds in 2012-13 due to global economic slowdown and muted spending in North America and Europe, which accounts for as much as 80 per cent of Indian IT companies' revenues.

First look: Google‘s new tablet Nexus 7 2

When it comes to technology, we've been trained to expect more for less. Devices get more powerful each year, as prices stay the same or drop. With the new Nexus 7tablet, Google hopes we're willing to pay more for more.

The new tablet comes with a $30 price increase over last year's model. At $229 for the base model, it is still a bargain - and 30 per cent cheaper than Apple's $329 iPad Mini. The display is sharper and the sound is richer than the old model. There's now a rear camera for taking snapshots. The new Nexus 7 is the first device to ship with Android 4.3, which lets you create profiles to limit what your curious and nosy kids can do on your tablet when you're not around.

Amazon.com's $199 Kindle Fire HD is cheaper, but it doesn't give you full access to the growing library of Android apps for playing games, checking the weather, tracking flights, reading the news, getting coupons from your favorite stores and more. The Nexus 7 does.

It's a fine complement to your smartphone if it's running Google's Android, the dominant operating system on phones these days - even as Apple commands the market for tablet computers with its full-size iPad and iPad Mini. Unless you tell it not to, apps you use on the phone will automatically appear on the Nexus 7, so you can switch from device to device seamlessly. When you are signed in, bookmarks will also transfer over Google's Chrome Web browser, as will favorite places on Google Maps.

If you were already eyeing last year's Nexus 7 model, then go ahead and pay $30 more for the latest.

Although screen dimensions are identical, the new Nexus 7 has a higher pixel density, at 323 pixels per inch compared with 216 on the old model. Trees and other objects in the movie "Life of Pi" look sharper, as do the movie title and credits on the screen.

Sound is much better with speakers on the left and the right side of the tablet, held horizontally. Although they are technically back facing, the speakers are placed along a curved edge in such a way that sound seems to project outward and not away from you. On the old Nexus 7, I can't even tell where the speakers are.

The new Nexus 7 also feels more comfortable in my hands. It's 17 per cent thinner and 5 per cent narrower when held like a portrait. The old model was a tad too wide to grip comfortably in the palm of my hands. The new device is also 15 per cent lighter, at 10.2 ounces. And the rubbery back feels smoother on the new tablet.

The new Nexus ships with a camera app, something last year's model didn't really need because it had only a front-facing camera, for videoconferencing. With the new rear, 5-megapixel camera, you can take photos and video of what's in front of you. Expect to be ridiculed, though, if I see you doing that. Still, it's not as bad as blocking someone's view with a full-size tablet.

As for the restricted profiles that come with Android 4.3, it's a good idea, though it still has kinks. When you set up a profile for your kid, you pick which apps to enable. Don't want your kid to be surfing the Web unrestricted? Then keep the Chrome browser disabled. Don't want him or her on Facebook? Keep that app disabled, too. The app store is also disabled, so Junior can't go on a download spree. If you do allow access to a particular app, though, then it's full access. There's no filtering to block porn and other questionable material, for instance.

I found that some apps won't work with restricted profiles at all, including those for Gmail and other email accounts. If you want your kids to have access to email, then you have to give them full access or enable the browser to check email over the Web. You can't turn on just the email app.

And although the new tablet is the first to ship with Android 4.3, it's available to download on other devices, including last year's Nexus 7.

What the new tablet does offer is the promise of a longer battery life - up to 10 hours for Web surfing and nine hours for video streaming. Last year's model was rated at eight hours.

There's no question the new model is better and worth the price increase.

Choosing between the new Nexus 7 and the iPad Mini is tougher.

If you already have an iPhone, the iPad Mini will be a nice complement. You won't have to buy music, video and apps twice, for instance. You might want to wait until this fall, though, to see whether Apple comes out with a new model.

It's a tougher call if you have an Android phone.

By volume, the two systems have a comparable number of apps. But I've found that many larger app developers have made versions only for the iPhone and the iPad. The American Museum of Natural History in New York has six that work on iPads but only one on Android devices. An app to watch full episodes of CBS television shows is for Apple and Windows devices only, not Android. Meanwhile, the iDonatedIt app for tracking tax deductions has more features for Apple devices, while features that are supposed to work on Android often don't.

Android is good in that many apps designed for a phone's smaller screen are automatically adapted to take advantage of a tablet's larger screen. On the iPad, apps that aren't optimized for it are squeezed into a smaller window the size of an iPhone. Blow it up to full screen, and it looks distorted. But that's not as glaring on the Mini as it is on the full-size iPad. And having apps automatically change their layout isn't the same as designing them for the tablet from scratch, as is the case with the hundreds of thousands of apps optimized for the iPad.

The Nexus 7's screen is much sharper than that on the iPad Mini, which has the non-HD display technology of the iPad 2 from 2011 - ancient in the world of mobile gadgets. The Nexus 7 is also a tad lighter, by 6 per cent.

That said, the iPad Mini has a larger screen, measuring 7.9 inches diagonally compared with 7 inches on the Nexus. And the iPad Mini has had a rear camera from the start. The iPad Mini also has Siri, a voice assistant that is feistier than Google Now on the Nexus. If you prefer Google Now for its ability to give you information you need to know without even asking, you can download it on the Mini. You can't get Siri on the Nexus.

If you do get the Nexus 7, it supports wireless charging, so you can get rid of the messy wiring. The device comes only with a standard microUSB charger to plug in, so you'll have to buy a Qi-compatible wireless charger yourself.

The $229 base model comes with 16 gigabytes of storage. For $40 more, or $269, you get twice the storage. Both will go on sale in the US next Tuesday. A 32-gigabyte model with 4G cellular capability will cost $349. By contrast, the iPad Mini starts at $329. A 32-gigabyte version with 4G costs $559.

Even with the price increase, Google has Apple beaten on price. The Nexus 7 may lack the cachet and many of the apps that the iPad Mini has, but you'll be able to do a lot with it. I hope technology companies won't make price hikes a habit, but this one is made palatable by the device's richer display, sound and camera.

TCS beats Infosys to become India‘s most admired company

TCS has emerged as India's most admired company ahead of Hindustan Unilever, ITC, and Infosys, says global management consultancy Hay Group.

According to the findings of the second edition of India's Most Admired Companies (IMAC) compiled by Hay Group in association with Fortune India, TCS replaced last year's winner group company Tata Steel by scoring highest on parameters such as corporate governance, financial soundness, and talent management. 

Second-ranked FMCG HUL has been rated highest on its endurance and product quality, while ITC and Infosys share the joint third spot. SBI, L&T, Tata Steel, ONGC, Maruti Suzuki, and ICICI Bank also feature in the top 10. 

Commenting on the findings, Hay Group India MD Gaurav Lahiri said "this year, two criteria in particular, Leadership, and Creating Shareholder Value, separated the Top 10 from the rest of the winners, with Talent Management coming in a close third." 

Interestingly, last year's top 10 did not include any PSEs - accounted for by SBI and ONGC this year. ICICI makes its debut in the top ten this year, while Colgate Palmolive, Tata Motors, and Dell India all have slipped down the order compared to their ranking last year. 

The top 10 of India's most admired companies also include SBI (5th), L&T (6th), Tata Steel (7th), ONGC (8th), Maruti Suzuki (9th) and ICICI Bank (10th). 

Lahiri further added that "as demonstrated by the IMACs, in today's uncertain business environment, it is more important than ever for organisations to create shareholder value through good leadership and talent management practices." 

The study was based on a unique peer ranking methodology, that covered 493 companies across 16 key sectors. Findings represent a report card on corporate reputations that involves more than just profits and performance for India Inc.

20 Windows 7 free apps to download today

20 Windows 7 free apps to download today

The very best free applications and downloads for your new Windows 7 PC

Here are 20 free Windows 7 applications that stand out in terms of quality of results you get from them. Ninite is a quick and easy way to download most of these applications into a single customised installer.

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Reliance 4G launch put off to next year

Reliance Industries' Jio Infocomm is still around a year away from launch of telecom service on 4G technology, said promoter Mukesh Ambani on Thursday. "We have charted an ambitious plan for the next 12 months and we foresee making rapid progress over this period towards launching our services across India." 

The company bought airwaves in 2010 for roughly 13,000 crore, but has not launched services till date, in anticipation of a more evolved technology ecosystem. Ambani told shareholders at Reliance Industries' 39th annual general meeting that plans to do initial launches were on course. "Let me assure that my continued optimism is based on the significant strides that we at Reliance have taken in the past year -- towards engineering and testing a world-class broadband network, and in developing a suite of compelling and synergistic digital services," he said. He did not share a timeframe for the official launch.

Jio's entry in the Indian telecom market is expected to drastically bring down prices for broadband services, even though a similar launch from Airtel in Kolkata and Bangalore has not shown much immediate promise.

LinkedIn aiming to stay ‘taller‘ than Facebook

LinkedIn unveiled its website 10 years ago this week, from a tiny Silicon Valley office next door to an emerging social-networking service called Friendster. A decade later, Friendster is kaput and LinkedIn is going strong, boasting 225 million users and a stock price that's almost quadrupled since the company's public debut in 2011.

The challenge for chief executive officer Jeff Weiner and co-founder and chairman Reid Hoffman is to avoid becoming another internet also-ran by continuing to add products as membership growth slows. With a stock that trades at more than 120 times projected earnings for next year, more than twice Facebook's ratio, investor expectations are unrealistic, said Michael Pachter, an analyst at Wedbush Securities in Los Angeles. "I have trouble with hundred multiples," said Pachter, who recommends holding the stock. Facebook, the largest social-networking site, trades at 48 times the earnings, while ratios for Google and Yahoo are less than 20.

In 2007, LinkedIn recorded sales of $32.5 million. Five years later, the figure expanded to $972.3 million. Analysts expect revenue of $1.5 billion in 2013, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. Still, the number of new members LinkedIn is adding each year is slowing. Membership increased 36% in the first quarter from a year earlier, down from 39% in prior period and 43% in the third quarter.

Facebook Home app gets 'worst' rating from users

A majority of users have given Facebook's Home mobile a one star rating on the Google Play store. 

Out of 14,100 reviews of the free Android app, 52% rated it just one out of five stars. 

Nearly 16% of reviewers, however, gave it top marks, leaving the app with an overall 'below average' rating of 2.2 stars, reports news.com.au.

Facebook Home's main feature is a constantly changed display of photos and updates from Facebook friends that consumes phone's battery life and mobile data allowance. 

Critics have complained the app's main feature -- a constantly changing display of photos and updates posted by your Facebook friends -- consumes a lot of battery and mobile data allowance. 

Many have also complained that the app 'hijacks' a phone's home screen, making it harder to access other phone functions like number dialing, texting and email. 

The two-and-a-half weeks old app has however been appreciated it for its 'stylish' and 'simple' design. 

A spokesperson for Facebook Australia said that the app was 'a first step' and they were working to 'improve the experience'.

Google India announces top travel trends for this summer

Google India, today, announced the top travel trends for this summer - a unique perspective on the hottest travel trends, based on searches conducted in India. These trends highlight the adventurous spirit of young Indians who are increasing searching for activities like scuba diving and snorkelling and want to explore beyond the conventional destinations. With more and more young Indian's coming online, they are increasing searching for new things to do while travellingand explore newer destinations which are rich in cultural heritage as well as give them a chance to discover their adventurous streak.
From tropical destinations like Andaman and Nicobar Islands and Goa to the wildlife sanctuaries of Uttarakhand, the search trends capture the top summer travel destinations this year. Showcasing young India's love for exploring their own country, these trends also highlight that Indians love to travel closer to home, as the top searched-for travel destinations remain domestic ones. Not only do these trends showcase the top destinations, but they also highlight the most searched-for activities and sights at these destinations like scuba diving in Andaman, Jim Corbett Park in Uttarakhand and not to forget the beaches in Goa.
For all those who love exploring heritage sites and wildlife sanctuaries or are simply looking for quick weekend getaways, the trends also unveil top attractions in India and topping the chart is of course, the stunning Taj Mahal followed by Jim Corbett Park.
Commenting on these trends Lalitesh Katragadda, Country Head - Products, Google, said "Indians love to travel and Google search trends highlight that an increasing number of Indians are looking to travel closer home, with the top searched-for travel destinations being some of the domestic locations. This can also be linked to the growing trend of budget travel where people are continuously looking for an great experience in a limited budget. Adventure tourism is on the rise with Indians searching for activities like snorkelling and scuba diving while travelling to places like Andaman and Nicobar Islands and Goa."
When it comes to travelling international, Indians love to chase the sun in tropical Maldives, and to go shopping in effervescent Singapore. Paris, New York, Seychelles, and Bahamas are the other popular destinations.

Top attractions in India:
Taj Mahal

Jim Corbett National Park

Qutub Minar

India Gate

Top destinations in India people are searching for:
Andaman & Nicobar Islands
Jim Corbett National Park, Uttarakhand

Coorg, Karnataka
Top destinations outside India people are searching for:


New York

Airtel, Microsoft announce combo offer

Bharti Airtel and Microsoft announced a partnership, wherein consumers in the country can get discounts on purchase of Xbox games and Airtel high speed broadband connection. 

As part of this combo offer, consumers buying an 'Xbox 360 4GB Kinect' console or taking a new Airtel high speed broadband connection can save up to Rs 15,500, a joint statement by the two comapnies said. 

This combo includes 10 Xbox 360 games, 12-month free Xbox LIVE gold membership and up to Rs 4,888 offer on the existing or new Airtel broadband connection, it said. 

The Xbox is a video game console manufactured by Microsoft. 

The promotional offer is valid till June 30, 2013 and is available across Delhi NCR, Bangalore, Chennai and Mumbai, it added. 

"Consumers can now enjoy a smooth Xbox LIVE entertainment experience which includes the best multi-player action that Xbox is so well known for on an Airtel broadband," Microsoft Corporation India Business Group Lead (Interactive Entertainment Business) Anshu Mor said. 

"We are confident that our-tie up with Microsoft... deliver a much-awaited and enhanced experience for gaming lovers," Bharti Airtel CEO (Homes and Office) Najib Khan said.

Amazon to launch Apple TV rival: Report

Amazon.com will release a set-top TV box later this year that will stream video over the internet, challenging Apple Inc's Apple TV device and a similar gadget sold by start-up Roku, Bloomberg Businessweek reported. 

The box will plug into TVs and give viewers access to Amazon's digital video content, which the company has been expanding, BloombergBusinessweek said, citing three unidentified people familiar with the project. 

An Amazon spokesman did not immediately respond to a request for comment. 

Amazon's video content is already available on other set-top devices, including Roku. Building its own gadget will help Amazon put the content more directly in front of consumers and give developers another reason to create apps for Amazon's digital platform, Bloomberg Businessweek said. 

The set-top box is being developed by Amazon's Lab126 division, based in Cupertino, California, near Apple's headquarters. It's being run by Malachy Moynihan, a former vice president of emerging video products at Cisco Systems, Bloomberg Businessweek added.

IBM In Talks To Sell x86 Server Business To Lenovo

IBM is in active negotiations to sell its x86 server hardware business, and Lenovo has emerged as the top candidate to buy it, multiple sources with knowledge of the situation told CRN this week.

Lenovo is currently the only company in negotiations to purchase IBM's x86 server business, according to one high-ranking industry executive tracking the deal, who spoke on condition of anonymity.

The deal would encompass IBM's System x line, which includes Intel- and AMD-based tower, rack and blade servers. IBM is reportedly seeking $5 billion to $6 billion for its x86 server business, the executive said.

Lenovo emerged as a desirable candidate because IBM is only interested in selling its x86 server business to companies it doesn't view as a threat to other parts of its business, the executive said. Lenovo fits that bill since it doesn't have storage, networking or converged infrastructure in-house, nor does it have much of a footprint in the data center, the source said.

IBM also has informed employees in its 20,000-square-foot server product engineering (PE) lab, located in its massive Building 201 facility in Research Triangle Park, NC, that they will become Lenovo employees effective June 1, a separate source with knowledge of the matter told CRN.

Lenovo's North America headquarters is located in Morrisville, NC, about five miles from Research Triangle Park.

IBM, which will report first-quarter earnings for fiscal 2013 Thursday afternoon, didn't respond to a request for comment. A Lenovo spokesperson declined comment, citing the company's policy of not responding to rumors or speculation.

IBM's PE lab, which supports all of the vendor's server lines, including the System x, System i, System p and System z, is where hardware and software engineers re-create customer problems in order to solve issues that can't be handled by IBM's tier-1 to tier-3 IBM support teams, the source told CRN.

IBM plans to continue providing high-margin server services, and once it sells the System x line it will focus on configuring, testing, installing and managing solutions, but not manufacturing the hardware product components, the source said.

System x sales declined 3.7 percent overall in IBM's fiscal 2012—2.7 percent when adjusted for currency fluctuations. Overall, IBM's Systems and Technology sales were down 7 percent to $17.7 billion in fiscal 2012.

IBM is looking to decrease its focus on hardware as part of its Roadmap 2015 (a plan some employees have branded "Roadkill 2015"), first announced in 2010 by then-CEO Sam Palmisano. The plan calls for boosting earnings per share to $20 and growing revenue in cloud, analytics and Smarter Planet solutions.

IBM has cut staff and is expected to shed some business lines as part of the overhaul that Roadmap 2015 represents, one source close to IBM told CRN. "People have been expecting some kind of sell-off," said the source. 

Lenovo is looking to grow its server portfolio to take on x86-based server vendors and in May launched its RD530 and RD630 ThinkServers, which it called its first "enterprise-ready" servers. Lenovo also said its server revenue through the channel grew 76 percent from fiscal 2012 to fiscal 2013.

An executive from an international solution provider that works with both companies expects the deal to benefit server-focused partners. "I think this could be a positive for the channel, since Lenovo does a larger percentage of its business through the channel than IBM," said the source.

According to IDC figures released in March, the x86 server market saw a notable uptick in revenue during the fourth quarter of 2012 due to growing demand for Intel's Sandy Bridge processor. IBM was the top global server vendor by revenue during the fourth quarter with 36 percent share of the market, followed by Hewlett-Packard with 25 percent and Dell with 15 percent, according to IDC's figures.

The IBM-Lenovo server deal could impact the Lenovo-EMC partnership formed last August, due to the frosty relationship between IBM and EMC, sources told CRN. EMC is embedding Lenovo's enterprise server offerings into some of its storage systems, and Lenovo is reselling EMC's networked storage solutions to customers in China. Lenovo also paid an unspecified amount to acquire partial ownership of EMC's Iomega division.

Rumors of IBM selling its x86 server business to Lenovo have been simmering for years. In early 2008, the vendors inked an agreement that allowed Lenovo to build one-processor and two-processor servers based on IBM System x server technology. Lenovo had been selling its own x86 servers in China prior to the IBM partnership.

In early 2009, amid mounting rumors of IBM exiting the server business, one of the company's executives tried to quell the speculation. "Let me be clear ... IBM is not exiting or selling its x86 server business," Adalio Sanchez, General Manager, System x, Systems and Technology group, IBM, said in a memo to IBM partners.

IBM sold its PC business to Lenovo in 2004 for $1.25 billion and took an 18.9 percent stake in the China-based vendor. In that deal, IBM became Lenovo's primary services and customer financing provider, and Lenovo became the preferred supplier of PCs to IBM.

At the time, IBM agreed to let Lenovo continue using the IBM brand on ThinkPads for several years, but Lenovo switched to its own branding in 2007.

IBM is holding its Edge 2013 conference in Las Vegas from June 10-14, and one of the sessions will feature information about the "latest IBM Storage, System x and PureSystems product enhancements," according to a session description on the event website.

IBM Invests $1B In Flash Storage With Channel-First Strategy

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IBM is investing $1 billion through 2015 on developing flash technology optimized to meet modern workloads such as social media, mobility and big data.

That investment includes the unspecified investment IBM made in its August acquisition of Texas Memory Systems (TMS).

While the IBM investment in flash will help in development of flash storage products for a wide range of applications, the focus will be on those applications in which performance is paramount, said Ambuj Goyal, General Manager, Systems Storage, Systems & Technology Group, IBM.

"The best ways to solve issues around social, mobile and big data all involve real-time analytics, which is where flash has a big play," Goyal said. "In a data warehouse, where there is less need for real-time analytics, the requirements for flash storage are not as strong."

IBM's $1 billion flash technology investment is not just about performance, Goyal said. "It's about how systems transform as technology moves from mechanical storage to semiconductor storage," he said. "The performance of processors, memory, networking and bus performance have grown by eight to 10 times over the past 10 years, while mechanical storage performance has grown by only 20 percent. So everything is waiting for storage."

Part of that investment is going to set up 12 competency centers around the world to help customers build proofs of concepts to understand how the use of flash storage can decreased the costs of software licenses, processor core requirements, footprint and labor involved in tuning mechanical storage, Goyal said.

IBM also wants customers to know that flash storage can fit into their existing infrastructures without changing those infrastructures, he said.

"I want to not only show the technology, but show customers how to use it to simplify their data centers and reduce costs," he said.

IBM is also developing, both on its own as well as with partners, databases and analytics that are optimized to take advantage of flash technology, he said.
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IBM's flash investment is centered on its acquisition of Texas Memory Systems, a company founded 30 years ago to develop semiconductor-based storage that has been building flash storage for the past six or seven years, Goyal said.

To that end, IBM also unveiled the IBM FlashSystem 820, a new flash storage array based on TMS technology. The IBM FlashSystem 820 can store 24 TB of data in 1U of rack space, or about 1 petabyte of data in rack using less than 14 kilowatts of power, IBM's Goyal said.

IBM's flash storage strategy is also very much channel-centered, Goyal said. "We are going across the board with our flash technology from solution providers to distributors to systems integrators to MSPs," he said. "Everybody. Our initiative is channel-first."

With the news of its $1-billion investment in flash storage, IBM joins a number of its top competitors that have committed to making flash a keystone of their future offerings.

EMC in March unveiled its XtremSF family of flash storage products, including a PCIe storage accelerator and its first all-flash array.

The same month, NetApp unveiled its FlashRay strategy for building future all-flash storage arrays on a new application-optimized architecture.
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BlackBerry Balance Coming to iPhone and Android

BlackBerry Balance Coming to iPhone and Android is a post by Shawn Ingram from Gotta Be Mobile.
Today BlackBerry announced that it will soon bring BlackBerry Balance to both iPhone and Android in an effort to bring its secure services to both competitor platforms.
BlackBerry calls the apps BlackBerry Secure Work Space for iOS and Android. The service includes secure apps for email, calendar, contacts, tasks, memos, secure browsing and document editing. BlackBerry links the apps to BlackBerry Enterprise Service 10, companies will have to use the latest BlackBerry services to deploy the apps.
BlackBerry claims the apps use BlackBerry Balance technology, which just means they are separate from the user’s personal apps and files. The BlackBerry apps won’t interfere with personal email or calendars. The technology eliminates the need for two phones, one for work and one for personal use.
The BlackBerry Secure Work Space apps will help BlackBerry compete in the era of “Bring Your Own Device,” where users increasingly want to choose their own smartphone instead of relying on work to give them one. It means that companies can still get the security of BlackBerry services without giving employees phones they probably don’t want.
This is good news for just about everyone, but it also begs the question of why BlackBerry insists on pushing BlackBerry 10 with these new apps. Since iOS and Android took over the mobile industry, it seemed strange that BlackBerry continued to push its own devices, now it seems even stranger.
The new service will give BlackBerry leverage against Samsung which recently started taking shots at the company with its Unicorn Apocalypse ads. Those ads say Samsung phones are secure and great for personal use. Now BlackBerry can make almost any phone, including the iPhone, secure.
BlackBerry Secure Work Space is already in closed beta, and widespread availability will begin in the second quarter of 2013. BlackBerry will talk more about the program at BlackBerry Live in May 2013, so the rollout will likely come shortly after that event.
BlackBerry Balance Coming to iPhone and Android is a post by Shawn Ingram from Gotta Be Mobile.

Facebook begins rolling out updated Timeline

Facebook on Wednesday began rolling out new profile pages redesigned to clear away clutter from Timelines that chronicle member postings at the leading social network. 

"We heard from you that the current timeline layout is sometimes hard to read," Facebook's Rose Yao said in a blog post. 

"Starting today, all posts are on the right side of your timeline, with photos, music and other recent activity on the left." 

Sections at social network pages have been revamped to let people display music, books, films and television shows they are interested in alongside uploaded pictures, according to Yao. 

Pictures from Facebook-owned smartphone photo-sharing service Instagram can be streamed to timelines, and social network users can share their tastes in films by synching with apps from Flixster or Netflix. 

Netflix on Wednesday took the long awaited step of letting US users share with Facebook friends what they have been watching at the film and television show streaming service. 

A change made to the decades-old Video Privacy Protection Act late last year by Congress cleared the way for California-based Netflix to join the slew of music sharing services that have synched with the leading social network. 

Netflix has previously integrated its service with Facebook outside the United States. 

A week ago Facebook began transforming the stream of updates from friends at homepages into a "personalised newspaper," with news ranging from the personal to the global. 

The News Feed on homepages at the leading social network was revamped to get rid of clutter and present "bright, beautiful" stories, such as insights from friends or trending news of the day. 

"I think there is a special place in the world for this sort of personalised newspaper," Facebook co-founder Mark Zuckerberg said in introducing the overhauled News Feed. 

"It should have a front page and top news section or let you drill down into any topic you want." 

Facebook is rolling out the new News Feed "very slowly" at its website reached by desktop or laptop, and will begin adding it to smartphone and tablet applications in the coming weeks.