The much-awaited Apple India online store is now open for business. As expected, the complete range of Apple’s products and services are available in the online shop, and that includes the iPhone line-up, the Mac computing device line-up, the iPad series, Apple Watch, Apple AirPods family, HomePod smart speaker, and more.
There are category-specific offers lined-up as well, including trade-in and exchange offers for the iPhones, localizations, the Education Store, Configure to Order your Mac computing devices, extended range of payments, and EMI options, shopping assistance in English and Hindi, and Apple Care+ services. At this time, you can buy the Apple iPhone 11 Pro, Apple iPhone 11 Pro Max, Apple iPhone 11, Apple iPhone SE, and the Apple iPhone XR. You can also take your pick from the Apple iPad line-up that includes the Apple iPad Pro 12.9, Apple iPad Pro 11, the new Apple iPad, and the Apple iPad Mini, while the new Apple iPad Air is set to go on sale sometime in October. The complete Mac line-up and all other devices are also on sale.
The timing of the launch of the Apple India online store just ahead of the Dussehra and Diwali festivals means the company will be able to cater to customers who may be looking to spend on this festive season. This is also the latest chapter in the India push for Apple, which over the past few weeks has given the government’s Make in India initiative a big boost by starting production of the latest generation iPhone SE as well as the flagship phones, the Apple iPhone 11, iPhone 11 Pro and the iPhone 11 Pro Max in India. Apple also produces the iPhone XR in India. Apple’s partners in India, Foxconn and Wistron are now manufacturing and assembling the iPhones at their facilities in the country.
“We’re proud to be expanding in India and want to do all we can to support our customers and their communities. We know our users are relying on technology to stay connected, engage in learning, and tap into their creativity, and by bringing the Apple Store online to India, we are offering our customers the very best of Apple at this important time,” says Deirdre O’Brien, Apple’s senior vice president of Retail + People, while announcing the Apple online store for India. Apple will also be implementing the contactless delivery option for all orders that are placed and shipped across India. Orders will not require a signature to confirm receipt of delivery. Apple is partnering with Blue Dart for product shipment and expects all deliveries for orders to be completed between 24 hours and 72 hours from the time of payment.
The push for localized manufacturing and assembling, as well as the online retail presence, should combine to give Apple a big boost ahead of the festive season sales. The Apple online store for India will now join Apple’s e-commerce platforms in 37 other countries, including the US and UK. Till now, Apple relied on authorized distributors and retailers in India for offline sales as well as on online shopping platforms such as Amazon.in and Flipkart, which meant the company didn’t have complete control over the shopping, delivery, and support experience for anyone buying Apple products.
Paypal to shut down services within India: All you need to know
Digital payment solutions provider Paypal will shut down its domestic payments business within India from April 1. The company will instead focus more on the international payments business. which means global customers will still be able to pay Indian merchants using Paypal.
“We will continue to invest in product development that enables Indian businesses to reach nearly 350 million PayPal consumers worldwide, increase their sales internationally, and help the Indian economy return to growth,” a PayPal spokesperson said in a statement.
“From April 1, 2021, we will focus all our attention on enabling more international sales for Indian businesses, and shift focus away from our domestic products in India,” the spokesperson added.
“This means we will no longer offer domestic payment services within India from 1 April.”
PayPal was one of the payment options on many Indian online platforms like Swiggy, MakeMyTrip, BookMyShow, etc.
Qualcomm Snapdragon 888 5G Flagship Processor: All you need to know
The Snapdragon 888 5G by Qualcomm for the mobile platform is official, and it’s the fastest processor ever made by the company. This is the processor that will power most of the flagship devices next year, including the Xiaomi M11 and the Realme Race. The chipmaker Qualcomm said that the Snapdragon 888 offers improved performance for the next generation of high end 5G smartphones.
The launch of the Snapdragon 888 processor comes at a time when consumers are thinking twice about buying premium smartphones due to job losses and uncertainty due to the ongoing pandemic. The company, however, does not believe that the demand for top-level flagship smartphones has dropped. In fact, Qualcomm said that there is a huge demand for high-end smartphones in many parts of the world, including India.
Now that the processor has been officially announced, here are the top five highlights of the latest chipset:
1. Integrated 5G
The Snapdragon 888 comes with a built-in 5G modem, which is a good thing. Previously, smartphone makers had to use two different chips, which complicated the overall phone design process. Since the mobile chip is integrated with a third-generation X60 5G modem, it is easy to make smartphones. Phone manufacturers had been demanding a single flagship chip that acts as the brain of a smartphone and also connects to 5G, all through a single solution. The integration of the modem within the chip itself results in longer battery life and lowers the cost of smartphones. The 3rd gen onboard X60 5G modem will support both the mmWave and sub-6 GHz spectrum, plus 5G carrier aggregation, multi-SIM, standalone, and non-standalone global connectivity.
2. Powerful and Improved GPU for Gaming
According to Qualcomm, the Snapdragon 888 makes it their chip to use a 5 nm semiconductor manufacturing process. This results in a more powerful chip performance with lesser power consumption. The Snapdragon 888 also has a built-in graphics processor (GPU), the Adreno 660, which the company claims renders graphics 35 percent faster. Also, Qualcomm is betting heavily on gaming on high -end phones that will be powered by the Snapdragon 8 8 8 processor. Qualcomm said the new chip introduces the 3rd generation of its Elite Gaming platform that brings Variable Speed Shading (VRS) to smartphones for the first time. VRS is a technique that brings photographic realism to games. The Snapdragon 888 will also support 4K displays with a refresh rate of up to 144 Hz.
3. Advanced AI Engine
A mobile chip is not enough for performing complicated tasks like image processing or facial recognition. So chipmakers like Qualcomm rely excessively on artificial intelligence (AI) to run photo and video editing applications. The new Snapdragon 888 has a new Hexagon 780 AI processor built into the chip itself, which according to Qualcomm runs 50 percent faster than last year’s AI processors. Thanks to the chip’s reliance on machine learning, the Snapdragon 888 handles 26 trillion operations per second, or TOPS, promising a huge leap in the energy efficiency of AI tasks.
4. Improved Camera Support
Qualcomm is also betting on computational photography to transform mobile phones into a kind of professional cameras. All thanks to the latest ISP, the Snapdragon 888 processor will be able to capture photos at up to 2.7 gigapixels per second, which translates to having an ability to shoot 120 photos per second at 12-megapixel resolution. The camera system actually captures shots at a resolution of up to 200 megapixels, as well as video recording in 8K and 4K. The chip can also record video with HDR, a feature that Apple greatly highlighted with the launch of the iPhone 12 series .
Several OEMs have already announced their commitment to making flagship-level smartphones using the latest Qualcomm Snapdragon 888 chip and are expected to be announced in the first quarter of 2021. Unsurprisingly, the Chinese smartphone brands dominate the list of smartphone manufacturers that will use the Snapdragon 888, including OnePlus, Realme, and Xiaomi.
Free screen replacement for Apple iPhone 11 users: All you need to know
There is some good news for Apple users who are experiencing touchscreen issues in their iPhone 11. The company has said that users having such problems can now get a free screen replacement from Apple.
Apple has acknowledged that a number of iPhone 11 sets, manufactured between November 2019 to May 2020 may face touchscreen issues. The company stated that a number of iPhone 11 displays, “may stop responding to touch due to an issue with the display module.” And because of this, the company is offering free service to eligible customers.
The company has put up a support page on its website to help affected customers find out if they are eligible for a replacement. It has been given the name, ‘iPhone 11 Display Module Replacement Program for Touch Issues’.
Apple states that the issue is being caused by a problem with the display module. However, it did not reveal the exact problem with the display module that is causing the issue.
Are you eligible for the free screen replacement?
– To check if your iPhone 11 is eligible for a display replacement, you simply have to enter your phone’s serial number on the dedicated support page. The website will then check its database and see if your iPhone’s serial number matches its replacement list or not.
– To check for your iPhone 11’s serial number head into the Settings panel, then open the General tab and tap About.
– If you are eligible for a free service, you will be required to take your device to an Apple Authorized Service Provider and submit your device for repair.
– The company states that it will limit the repair program to the original region of purchase and that it will not extend the standard warranty coverage of the device.
– Apple recommends its users to take a backup of their data before going to get the issue fixed.
– It also states that if the display is cracked, users will first have to get it repaired before submitting the phone to get the touchscreen issue fixed.
Like most Apple service programs, the iPhone 11 plan does not extend standard warranty coverage and covers affected devices for two years after the first retail purchase. If any users had been experiencing touchscreen issues and had their displays fixed before the company rolled out the program, are eligible to get a refund. For the refund, the users can get in touch with Apple directly from its support page.