Kia Motors first entered the Indian market with the Kia Seltos SUV in 2019. It was followed by the Kia Carnival MPV at the 2020 Auto Expo in February. It was there that the all-new Kia Sonet was showcased and now the South Korean carmaker has announced that the world debut of the car will take place in India via a virtual conference on 7 August. It will be launched in India the following month and will be later introduced to other global markets. The Korean car, which is believed to give competition Maruti Suzuki Vitara Brezza, Tata Nexon, Ford EcoSport, Mahindra XUV300 and Hyundai Venue, is expected to be priced between Rs 8 lakh and Rs 13 lakh (exshowroom).
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FACEBOOK LAUNCHES IN-APP VACCINE FINDER TOOL IN INDIA
American technology conglomerate Facebook has partnered with the Indian government to roll out a vaccine finder tool on its mobile app in India, which will help people identify places nearby to get vaccinated.
According to Mashable, earlier this week, Facebook announced a USD 10 million grant for emergency response efforts for the COVID-19 situation in the country. The vaccine tracker tool will allow users to find the nearest vaccine centre locations and their hours of operation as shared by the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare (MoHFW). The tracker tool will also aggregate and display walk-in options (for 45 years and above) along with a link to register on the Cowin portal and schedule vaccination appointments.
Facebook said in a post on its platform, “Partnering with the Government of India, Facebook will begin rolling out its Vaccine Finder tool on the Facebook mobile app in India available in 17 languages to help people identify places nearby to get the vaccine.”
The company said that it is also will be joining hands with NGOs and agencies — namely, United Way, Swasth, Hemkunt Foundation, I Am Gurgaon, Project Mumbai and US-India Strategic Partnership Forum (USISPF) — to deploy the funds announced to help build up a stock of critical medical supplies with over 5,000 oxygen concentrators and other life-saving equipment like ventilators, BiPAP machines.
As per Mashable, Facebook also said that the COVID-19 Information Center and in Feed will also have information on how to seek emergency care and how to manage mild COVID-19 symptoms at home, and this will be provided by UNICEF India.
THE A32 COMES WITH A ONE UI 3.1 VERSION & ANDROID 11
Time for another Samsung device and this time it is an addition in the A series. I received the Black 6gb model. Inside the box you get it all. Type C charging cable and a 240-Watt power adaptor.
The device comes with in an attractive black color with a tinge of grey to it. The new look to the model gives it the edge it needs. On the side you get a shiny premium plastic finish. The phone gets a nice glass back giving it a premium feel and appeal. On the right side we have the power button &the volume rockers. On the top of the phone there is a Mic sitting in the middle. You get a newly designed camera module which for sure is an attention grabber. On the bottom you get a headphone jack with another Mic. Next to the Mic you have the C port for 15 Watt fast charging and a single bottom firing speaker. Left top you get a sim tray which consists of slots for a micro-SD card and two sim cards. Great for internal storage. The device gets minimal bezel and even gets face recognition now which is easy to log in.
This phone comes with a 1080p Super AMOLED FHD Display with a 6.4 inches screen size with 90 hertz refresh rate & 20×9 aspect ratio (ratio between the width and height of the screen).
A32 is Samsung’s first non-flagship phone to get a higher refresh rate screen. The Display is good with a good contrast levels and sufficient brightness to give you a smoother experience and keeps the battery life in check as well.
The touch response has left me impressed. Talking about the fingerprint sensor which has been built into the bottom of the display has a quick & accurate response.
PERFORMANCE / SOFTWARE
Samsung A32 comes with a Mediatek Helio G80 4G chip set. This chip is good for day-to-day use. I did a decent amount of gaming on this device played “Call of Duty mobile” with graphics settings set to medium with high frame rate setting. To be honest the experience was quite amazing keeping in mind the underpowered chip set that comes with this device. There were no major lag spikes while gaming on this device.
The A32 comes with a One UI 3.1 version & Android 11. One UI lets you customize your phone to suit your tastes and fully enjoy your comfortable Galaxy experience.
According to Samsung its new devices including the A32 will get software support for good time period with 3 major OS updates & 4 years of Security patches.
The A32 comes with 4 cameras on the back a 64 mega pixel quad bay or main with face detection autofocus plus a 8 mega pixel ultra wide angle camera , 5 mega pixel macro camera with and a depth sensor.
(16 mega pixel day light photos from the main camera are good overall there’s plenty of detail though. Fine details aren’t the sharpest.) There’s also little to no noise respectable dynamic range and colors that are more restrained than what we’re used to from Samsung.
The Portrait shots look okay for the most part though the subject detection can sometimes get tripped up. The more problematic part is the lack of HDR in portrait mode so you may end up with a blown out background.
The ultra-wide cam delivers decent 8megapixel images with an okay level of detail and not half bad dynamic range. The colors are less saturated than the main cameras and you don’t get distortion correction here so straight lines will appear curved towards the edges of the frame.
Close-up shots from the macro camera are pretty good for this class at 5mega pixel they have a resolution advantage over their competition which are using 2 megapixel sensors. But without autofocus it will be a trial and error to get sharp results.
Low-light photos from the main camera are unimpressive they are generally soft and noisy while the dynamic range is relatively narrow, and you’ll end up with dark shadow missing detail.
The A32 supports night mode on the main camera but for some reason for me it was quite buggy, quite often the camera app would freeze after taking a night mode shot and the images that would get captured in this mode would come out with some clearly messed up processing.
Nighttime shot from the ultra-wide camera are barely usable they’re quite noisy and dark. The dynamic range is narrow with clipped highlights. Luckily the night mode works on this camera without problem. The results are likeable with lifted shadows and recovered highlights and extra details in the dark.
Selfies taken with a 20 mega pixel front facing camera come out at 12 megapixels, but these are okay with good enough detail and natural looking colors
There is no support for 4K video on the A32 and I wasn’t too impressed with the quality of the 1080p video. Footage from the main camera has below average detail; the dynamic range on the other hand is reasonably wide.
Video from the ultra-wide has a heavily processed look that isn’t very appealing.
With the A32 you get a 5000mAh battery which is a good capacity keeping in mind the phones ergonomics. You also get a 15 Watt fast charging which lacks the 25 watt charging which we see on the other models of Samsung. With the fast-charging facility the phone would take about hour and half to reach a full charge. For me the 5000mAh battery in the A32 after a full charge lasted for week according to my usage. Even though Samsung claims that the battery would last for 2 days after a full charge.
Samsung A32 priced at INR21,000 is a great pick for its display, design, and battery for sure. What is lacks a good camera set up which is average and not the best I would say. We would have enjoyed a better processor for sure. More powerful processor would have made the device more desirable.
KIA LAUNCHES THE REFRESHED SELTOS, SONET IN INDIA
Kia’s successful SUVs now more tech and feature rich, get additional value.
NEW DELHI: Korean carmaker Kia has been in the Indian car market for just under 2 years and in that short time has hit many important milestones while being in some of the most competitive car segments. 2 of its 3 cars, the Seltos and Sonet have raked in huge numbers since they were launched in 2019 and 2020, respectively. That has ensured that Kia has become the fastest auto manufacturer in India to hit the sales milestone of 2.5 lakh cars. Recently a new identity of the brand was revealed to the world and just a few days ago the 2021 models of the Seltos and Sonet were launched which apart from the new company logo have come with many new features.
The refreshed model of Seltos gets 17 new features. The most notable ones being paddle shifters for automatic variants and the introduction of Intelligent manual transmission or iMT which has been seen for the first time in the segment. This tech will be available on the 1.5 Petrol HTK+ variant of the car while thepaddle shifters will be offered in the GTX+ 1.5D 6AT and 1.4T-GDI 7DCT variants in the refreshed Seltos. Another segment first feature on the SUV is the smart pure air purifier with ‘virus and bacteria’ protectionwhich effectively cleans the air and kills bacteria and viruses to address the need of the hour.
The vehicle also hosts many class leading features including remote engine start in manual transmission which enables the customers to remotely start the engine with their smart keys, wireless phone projection to help the customers to project their phone screens on the car’s touchscreen andover the air (OTA) map updates. There is also an introduction of additional voice commands on the brand’s UVO connected car system including sunroof open & close and driver window control which adds to the overall convenience.
The new-age iMT technology seen earlier on the Sonet and Hyundai Venue offers fatigue-free driving thanks to the absence of a clutch pedal and still gives the same driver control as a manual transmission. The iMT variant of the refreshed Seltos comes with a sunroof, beige and black interiors and fully automatic air conditioner with silver garnish. Kia has also extended safety features like electronic stability control, vehicle stability management, brake assist and hill assist control features to lower variants of the Seltos.
The company has also introduced a new affordable turbo variant on the car – the 1.4T-GDI Petrol GTX (O).The car also gets are multiple new seat material and colour options to choose from. The company has introduced the refreshed Seltos at a starting price of Rs. 9.95 lakh which goes up to Rs. 17.65 lakh (ex-showroom, pan-India) for the top-of-the-line diesel automatic. The new iMT version is priced at Rs. 12.19 lakh.
The refreshed edition of Sonet has been updated with 10 new enhancements incuding first-in-segment features like rear door sunshade curtains and voice command for sunroof open & close. Here too the paddle shifters have been introduced but unlike the Seltos, all the automatic variants of the car get the feature. So, you can now expect a sportier and more responsive driving experience on the SUV. For that the car also gets Multi drive and traction modes. Along with that an electric sunroof, smart key with push button start, remote engine start, chrome door handles and crystal cut alloys with silver wheel caps have now been extended to the lower variants of the car.
On refreshed Sonet, the most popular HTX trim will now be available with automatic options both with turbo petroland diesel. And just like the Seltos even the lower variants of the Sonet get safety features like Electronic Stability Contro, Vehicle Stability Management, Brake Assist and Hill Assist Control. The starting price of the Sonet remains the same atRs. 6.79 lakh while the most expensive Diesel automatic is priced at Rs. 13.25 lakh (all prices ex-showroom, pan-India).
ZOOM’S NEW FEATURE ‘IMMERSIVE VIEW’ MAKES MEETINGS FUN
Zoom has started rolling out a new feature called Immersive View that would make meetings a lot more engaging and collaborative.
As per Mashable, the feature was announced by Zoom at Zoomtopia 2020 and has been rolled out for Windows and macOS desktop clients. The company shared that the Immersive View feature allows hosts to arrange video participants and webinar panelists into a single virtual background. It brings all the people in a meeting (up to 25 participants) together in a fun virtual meeting space.
If there are more than 25 participants, the additional ones will be displayed in a thumbnail strip on the top of the scene.
To make interactions more fun, the scenes for the meeting can be selected by the host. Zoom has already provided a few scenes to help you get started but one can also choose to upload their own scene. These scenes can be anything from a classroom, a boardroom to a conference auditorium, or even a cafe.
Though any image could be used as an Immersive View background, the company has said that matching the file type, aspect ratio, and resolution recommendations it has for virtual backgrounds will deliver the best results. It is important to note that users must have an updated version of Zoom to be able to see the virtual background.
HOW DOES THE IMMERSIVE VIEW FEATURE WORK?’
Hosts can enable the feature in a similar way they select ‘Speaker’ or ‘Gallery’ View. Hosts will be able to automatically or manually place participants into a virtual scene of their choosing. What’s even more fun is that hosts can also easily move participants around that scene and also resize a participant’s image for a more natural experience.Here’s how you can use it:1. Start the Zoom meeting application on your desktop.2. You will find the option to enable Immersive View in the top right corner of the screen, where you find Speaker or Gallery View. Click on the Immersive View feature.3. Choose from one of Zoom’s provided virtual backgrounds to place your meeting participants in. There is also an option to upload your own image.4. Your meeting participants or webinar hosts will now be in the same virtual background and will appear that way on every participant’s screen. Just make sure to use the updated version of the application.
The ‘Immersive View’ is enabled by default for all Free and single Pro accounts using Zoom 5.6.3 or higher, and can also be enabled via the web portal for all other account types. With the ‘Immersive View’ enabled, users on Zoom desktop and mobile apps that do not support the feature will continue to see other meeting participants in either ‘Gallery View’ or ‘Speaker View’.
SUZUKI BRINGS BACK THE ICONIC HAYABUSA SUPERBIKE TO INDIA
The bike has evolved the unique styling design with outstanding aerodynamic performance and superior riding performance.
There hasn’t been a more iconic superbike in India than the Suzuki Hayabusa. It has got its fair share of followers and lovers, and riders swear by it. But the implementation of BS6 emission norms in India early last year meant the Japanese bike maker had to stop the sales of its flagship product in India. From then on there was intense speculation if the Hayabusa would even be launched again in India and now it has happened. That is because its engine now meets the more stringent emission norms. Suzuki says the bike has further evolved the unique styling design with outstanding aerodynamic performance and superior riding performance.
This is the third-generation model of the Hayabusa, and a full model change has been seen on the bike for the first time in 13 years. It has been made under the product concept “Ultimate Sport” which is inherited from the very first generation of the bike. Considering the riders are quite familiar with the original silhouette and layout of instrument console of previous generations’ Hayabusa sport bikes, Suzuki has retained both in the new generation model. However, the instrumental console containing large analogue meter and tachometer is now equipped with number of new touches that make it simpler to use and view. The bike also gets new mirrors which improve the view for the rider. The new headlight, position lights and turn indicators get LEDs.
The all new Hayabusa is powered with 1340cc four stroke fuel injected liquid-cooled DOHC, in-line four engine. It is the same engine as before but because of stricter emission norms now makes a little less power and torque. So, Suzuki claims you get a maximum power of 190PS at 9,700rpm and a peak torque figure of 150Nm is delivered at 7,000rpm. At 264 kgs the new Hayabusa is slightly lighter than before. The bike also accelerates more quickly than earlier while its top speed is 299 kmph. It also gets riding modes electronic control system to better fit varying riding scenes from city riding to touring, racetracks, and better serve for riders’ preferences and skill levels.
The newly installed Suzuki Intelligent Ride System (S.I.R.S.) on the Hayabusa features SDMS-α, which offers a choice between three factory presets, (A: Active, B: Basic, and C: Comfort), as well as three user-defined settings (U1, U2, U3). Each one of these selects the mode settings as a group for the Power mode selector, motion track traction control, anti-lift control, engine brake control and bi-directional quick shift systems. The rider uses switches on the left handlebar to change modes and settings, and the current settings are displayed on the TFT LCD panel located in the centre of the instrument cluster, between the large analog speedometer and tachometer.
The system also comes with active speed limiter, a first in the motorcycle industry that allows the rider to set a speed limit the bike should not exceed, eliminating worries about speeding or driving faster than intended. The system can be temporarily overridden with one quick twist of the throttle, making it easy to accelerate beyond the set limit to pass other vehicles. It can be deactivated completely at the press of a button after releasing the throttle. You also get features like low RPM Assist, Cruise Control, combined brake control and Hill hold control with the superbike.
The all-new third generation Hayabusa will retail at Rs. 16.4 lakh (ex-showroom Delhi) and according to Suzuki, the deliveries of the bike will start in May. There are 3 colour options to choose from – glass sparkle black with candy burnt gold, metallic mat sword silver with candy daring red and pearl brilliant white with metallic mat stellar blue. Apart from the company dealerships the bike can also be booked on the company’s website by paying Rs. 1 lakh.
FIRST LOOK: NEW DEVICES ANNOUNCED AT APPLE’S SPRING EVENT
Apple’s big spring announcement saw four new devices, the AirTag device tracker, Apple TV 4K, and the new iMac and iPad Pro both powered by the M1 chipset. The company also launched the iPhone 12 and iPhone 12 Mini in purple colour. It also announced a revamped Apple Podcasts app which will now offer podcast hosts to charge a subscription fee as an option.
It’s time for another add on in the iPad collection, the all-new 12.9-inch iPad Pro was launched which the company claims is its most powerful and advanced iPad to date. It runs on an Apple-designed M1 chip that makes it the fastest device of its kind. The iPad Pro features a new Liquid Retina XDR display. It now includes support for Thunderbolt. iPad Pro also gets an all-new ultra-wide front camera. The company has also launched an 11-inch iPad Pro. The 11-inch and 12.9-inch iPad Pro will be available in silver and space grey finishes. The iPad Pro is available in 128GB, 256GB, 512GB, 1TB, and 2TB configurations. The 11-inch iPad Pro starts at Rs 71,900 for the Wi-Fi model and Rs 85,900 for the Wi-Fi + Cellular model, and the 12.9-inch iPad Pro starts at Rs 99,900 for the Wi-Fi model and Rs 11,3900 for the Wi-Fi + Cellular model. Apple iPhone 12 & Mini get a purple splash option now. The iPhone 12 and iPhone 12 Mini in purple colour are priced at Rs 79,900 and Rs 69,900 respectively.
Apple also introduced an all-new iMac featuring a thin design, enabled by the M1 chip. It features a 24-inch 4.5K retina display with 11.3 million pixels and 500 nits of brightness. The iMac includes a 1080p FaceTime HD camera, mics, and a six-speaker sound system. Also, Touch ID comes to iMac for the first time. It joins the incredible family of Mac models powered by M1 including MacBook Air, 13-inch MacBook Pro, and Mac mini. It is available in an array of colours: green, yellow, orange, pink, purple, blue, and silver.
The specifications of the iMac:
1. Apple M1 chip, 8-core CPU, 7-core GPU, 256GB storage, 8GB memory, Magic keyboard: Rs 1,19,900
2. Apple M1 chip, 8-core CPU, 8-core GPU, 256GB storage, 8GB memory, additional 2x USB 3.0 ports, Gigabit Ethernet, Magic Keyboard with Touch ID: Rs 1,39,900
3. Apple M1 chip, 8-core CPU, 8-core GPU, 512GB storage, 8GB memory, additional 2x USB 3.0 ports, Gigabit Ethernet, Magic Keyboard with Touch ID: Rs1,59,900
A set of fun accessories have also been introduced by Apple. AirTag helps keep track of and find the items that matter most with Apple’s Find My app. Whether attached to a handbag, keys, backpack, or other items, it taps into the vast, global Find My network1 and can help locate a lost item. AirTags have precision-etched polished stainless steel and are IP67 water- and dust-resistant. A built-in speaker plays sounds to help locate AirTag while a removable cover makes it easy for users to replace the battery. AirTag features the same setup experience as AirPods—just bring AirTag close to the iPhone and it will connect. AirTag can be purchased in one and four packs for Rs 3,190 and Rs 10,900, respectively, and will be available beginning from 30 April.
The second-generation Apple Pencil was also introduced and is priced at Rs 10,900. The Magic Keyboard for the new iPad Pro will be available in black and white at Rs 27,900 for the 11-inch iPad Pro and Rs 31,900 for the 12.9-inch iPad Pro, with layouts for over 30 languages.
The Smart Keyboard Folio for the new iPad Pro is available at Rs 15,900 for the 11-inch iPad Pro, and Rs 17,900 for the 12.9-inch iPad Pro. The Smart Folio for the new iPad Pro is available in five colours at Rs 7,500 for the 11-inch iPad Pro, and Rs 9,900 for the 12.9-inch iPad Pro.
Apple announced the next generation of Apple TV 4K, delivering high frame rate HDR with Dolby Vision. Apple TV 4K gets the A12 Bionic chip. There’s an all-new design Siri Remote on Apple TV with intuitive navigation controls. The new Apple TV 4K will be available starting at Rs 18,900.
The all-new Siri Remote features a clickpad control that offers five-way navigation for better accuracy and is touch-enabled for directional swipes. It comes in a one-piece aluminium design. The Siri Remote will be available separately for Rs 5,800 and is compatible with the previous-generation Apple TV 4K and Apple TV HD.
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