Samsung Galaxy S8
Samsung Galaxy S8+
Asus ZenFone AR (ZS571KL)
Huawei P10 Plus
Apple iPhone 7 Plus
HTC U Ultra
Google Pixel XL
Asus ZenFone 3 Deluxe (ZS570KL)
Sony Xperia XZs
Xiaomi Mi 5
Samsung Galaxy C9 Pro
Moto G5 Plus
Oppo F3 Plus
Samsung Galaxy J7 Pro
With their Galaxy S8, Samsung now stands in the line up of those brands that produced something not just new, but also something revolutionary.
Dragging the company from the dregs of existential crisis that it suffered at the hand of the Note7 fiasco, the Galaxy S8 has thrown down a challenge to its competitors.
The Internet is sagging with the device’s reviews – and reviewers are living the epiphanic moment that a device has arrived that can challenge the iPhone aesthetic.
The beauty of the phone is currently unparalleled thanks to it’s bezel-less display and the curvy, sexy front, that meets an identically svelte back.
The Galaxy S8 is the smartphone equivalent of a shiny new supercar. And there’s no denying that every new product has its shortcomings and advantages.
Thus, the consumer must be wise enough to measure the shortcomings and check if they really do affect her experience or not.
In the case of the Galaxy S8, the advantages and features far outstrip the shortcomings (even the camera), putting it in a smartphone-sweet-spot.
This is undeniably the best that Samsung has ever delivered and it is the best manifestation of physical minimalism that exists in the smartphone market… at this time.
After the mournful saga of Note 7, whose bursting into flames, and subsequent recall cost the company billions of dollars, Samsung placed a dramatic narrative for the release of Galaxy S8, and S8+. The two devices are not just another device for the company, it was a make or break device in what can be called a moment of existential crisis for the company. With the stakes being that high, the company has managed to deliver a device that does stand the market.
The galaxy S8+ is a good phone, that is likely to ensure that the Note 7 drama is left behind. The device, surprisingly, does not stand ground on what was meant to be a game changer: Bixby, the voice-enabled AI assistant that Samsung was planning to bring to the market through the phone. Bixby has been delayed, due to technical reasons, and that might actually be a good sign, a sign that Samsung is no longer taking rash decisions, but actually pausing to think.
The device, however, wins with an industry-leading hardware design that challenges the iPhone’s aesthetic supremacy. And to top off the cake with the cherry, the phone is one of the most beautiful ones out there.
The device has come to the market recently, and we believe we do not have enough for a verdict yet. What we do have enough for is a solid first impression.
The Samsung Galaxy S8+ is a gorgeous looking phone, which redefines what a good phone should look like. The phone ticks all the right boxes, when it comes to the hardware. In addition, the device also comes with a gorgeous display, refined water-resistant design, expandable storage and a great camera
The average battery life, and the oddly placed fingerprint scanner might be moments of ‘umm’ but they are not enough to make the phone a bad phone. As far as the delay of Bixby is concerned, we believe that is just a technical glitch, which will be solved only in a matter of time. The size might be a put off for some, but then again, you are buying a phablet; for a smaller one, you can always go for the S8 sibling.
All in all, the Samsung Galaxy S8+ is quite good a phone- nothing more, and nothing less.
Asus has always been that brand that does not make a lot of noise in the market, yet somehow manages to raise a lot of market excitement nonetheless.
That’s because when it’s products hit the market, they usually don’t disappoint.
Asus Zenfone AR is a unique phone in its own right. It is the first phone to that can boast of both Google’s Tango AR platform and its Daydream VR operating system, and an unbelievable 8 GB of RAM.
AR and Daydream are still very new and still rarely properly supported, so the Zenfone AR needs to do a good job for all other things that a smartphone must, while it’s USPs catch on.
While the USP of the phone lies in the fact that it is the first-ever to support both Tango and Daydream, the questions of whether that is all, of course is an important one.
Fortunately, that is not all.
The phone comes with the best of the specifications out there in the market, from the processor to an enhanced display, to an incredibly good camera set up.
It is quite an exciting phone, even without the emphasis on the virtual reality smarts.
It looks very nice, especially in comparison to the previous Tango phone, the far chunkier Phab 2 Pro.
It has been fun to watch the journey of OnePlus, a four year old Chinese smartphone company that has been taking the smartphone market for a swirl with every new device. The company, on the way, has managed to do what some bigger companies often struggle with – they’ve always outdone themselves.
This year’s OnePlus 5 is another case in point.
The phone might not bring every single whiz-bang feature that you’ll find in other flagship smartphones, but it is a phone that has managed to find the right balance, between features, style, price, and more. The highlight of the phone is the interesting dual-camera setup on the back, and the option of the 8 GB RAM, which is the highest a smartphone on the market currently offers, and frankly sounds a little absurd.
Other specs the device has to offer are solid. The only cons you could possibly find on the device might be opinions of the design, the resolution of the display not being out of this world, and the lack of an expandable memory. But, let’s face it, Apple too, has always survived that. OnePlus is hitting on the same market, and should sail through, too.
The bottom line is that OnePlus 5 is an amazing phone, which has a lot to offer, and which does not rely on any punch lines to gain attention. If you are looking to buy a new device, this is a phone more than worth spending some time on.
The phone has very few cons to offer.
With OnePlus 5, OnePlus has not tried to reinvent the wheel, or to spin it a different way. All they have done is bring to you a near-perfect wheel which is impossible to dislike. The phone is fast.
Offers a decent camera, and battery life, along with the best of firepower under the hood. The phone offers a surprisingly clean version of Android, and is available at a price tag that feels more than light in comparison to the competition.
The phone is not perfect, we agree. But it is near-perfect. The balance it has achieved with the specs, and the price tag, is incredible. It is unclear if the phone will indeed be the push that OnePlus now needs to become a household name, but it is indeed a very powerful phone, that is very hard to not recommend.
HTC’s new flagship phone for the year of 2017 is HTC U11. From the looks of it, the device is a mix of the well known One range, and the newer U range. The phone is the successor to the same series that had the M9 and M8 previously.
The phone comes with a unique element, which is the squeezable Edge Sence, but will that be enough for it to complete with the Samsung Galaxy S8 and LG G6 and the likes at this point in the market? What Edge Sense basically does is that it enables you to squeeze the phone to perform certain tasks, like opening the camera, or enabling the Google Assistant; you can also customize it to do other things. HTC hopes that this will differentiate their device in what is an obviously overcrowded market.
With this device, HTC is taking their phones into a new realm. Where first they had a very angular metal body, this one has 3D form glass, with a pleasant and glistening kind of look. The phone comes with Snapdragon 835 processor and 4GB RAM (6GB in some countries). It comes with a 12MP rear camera, and a 16MP front camera. It runs on Android Nougat. The phone is powered by a 3,000 mAh battery, which, other than the expected high price, is the only thing we are suspect of, at the moment.
Our verdict on this one is that there is a lot to like about HTC U11. While the phone does have flagship level specs, what might go against it is the crowded market, where it becomes hard to distinguish between the flashy Samsungs and Apples of the world.
The phone has a glossy and fresh design, which is good, but it might not be for everyone. The unique thing about the phone is the squeezable Edge Sense, and we can’t yet be too sure of if its actual innovation or just a gimmick. That’s something we’ll only find out once we’ve lived with it for long enough. The price that is being touted for the phone at the moment might prove to be a little too high.
So, in a market where people are either waiting for the Samsung’s and the Apple’s of the world to bring groundbreaking devices, or the Xiaomi’s and Huawei’s of the world to bring affordable flagship level devices, a device of this kind might find it hard to find a place for itself, despite being an extremely good device in all spheres.
Who said good things come in small packages? They come in large packages too. This is sentiment behind the Huawei P10 plus, the top of the line of their P- series phone. They amped up not only is size with this model, but also with a increase in display resolution, improved power and most importantly, a better battery. This is a true flagship phone, which shells out a ton of power, a great screen and one of the best cameras available in the market. The camera is so perfect that it is almost flawless.
There is nothing at all which is slow on this phone. The fingerprint sensor is on point, and the gaming gets as realistic as ever. No need to wait for anything to load. Just tap and get going.
One look at the P10 Plus gives the look of a flashy and vibrant device. It appears slightly similar to the iPhone 7 Plus. That is the user base Huawei is targeting in order to really move up the rankings but then does it have the right “plus” points for achieving that feat? Let’s find out.
The launch of the P10 Plus is an indication that Huawei wishes to challenge Apple in this field. With an attempt to get a new design, the phone has ended up heavily borrowing looks from the iPhone 7 Plus.
The superfast processor and the extra memory makes sure everything that is thrown at it runs smoothly. This phone is a must have for any photography freak out there.
With these current specifications, it still has a long way to go to actually challenge Apple, but is nevertheless a good start, it could’ve been better but it’s okay. So we’d say that there’s a lot of room for improvement here.
Apple’s trend since 2014 to bring out a bigger and (in some respects) better variant of their flagship device continues with the iPhone 7 Plus.
The phone does not really need an introduction, having ruled the airwaves and print ink with speculations preceding its arrival.
Yet, there are misconceptions that this is more “old wine” from Apple. The truth belies that premise.
Compared to its predecessor, iPhone 7 Plus comes with a brand new and much more powerful (yet energy-economical) processor, the A10 Fusion chip, better cameras and a few design changes.
The iPhone 7 Plus is also now, Apple’s flagship. The iPhone 7 seems like a poorer cousin (though really is not).
iPhone 7 Plus should be experienced and not looked at, to understand the improvements and novelties it brings to the table. While the design does seem like an uninspired lift-off from the earlier models, the hardware does make up for this and more.
The iPhone 7 Plus clearly is Apple’s blue-eyed device and is charting new directions for the company, the iPhone line, and could well lead the industry into new directions.
The HTC U Ultra is HTC’s latest phablet that aims to entice buyers away from the Huawei P10 Plus, and to fill the gap left by the Galaxy Note 7.
The noteworthy features on the device are the secondary screen and HTC’s novel Sense AI Companion capability.
The device basically brings decent specifications, more HTC-camera razzmatazz and an innovative dual display to the high-end smartphone market. But the truth of the matter is that given the price tag of INR 60,000 it is a league above HTC’s usual hunting ground.
It feels like HTC has basically bundled together everything they thought was working on their previous devices; now we are not sure how the bundle actually works together. One thing is true though, that it lacks any truly compelling features and the price tag becomes more difficult to justify with the removal of the headphone jack, small battery, and lack of ingress protection.
The fact is, the HTC U Ultra is not a bad device. It’s just not a very good device either, and given today’s market that is something that tends to become more unacceptable by the day.
The HTC U Ultra has a fine performance setup, but that doesn’t make up for its unfinished feel and some odd design decisions. The fact that it is also missing features that are becoming increasingly standard, like wireless charging and dust/water resistance does not do it any good either.
The HTC U Ultra is a phone that doesn’t really know where it sits in the market, and it’s hard to fathom who it was built for. The phone, honestly, seems quite like a confused device that has been released simply because it’d been a while since HTC brought out a new device in the category.
There is not one single major thing one can point out that debilitates the device, but its a lot of contributing factors bundled together. All of that put together does make the device a hard one to recommend.
We would certainly recommend a good look at what you want in your device before you decide to spend on this one.
The Moto Z is one of a pioneer batch of three devices launched by Lenovo after it’s acquisition of Motorola’s handset division from Google.
While the Moto Z retains the ‘Motorola’ moniker, and continues to bear Motorola’s brilliant design and material philosophy, it does carry a distinction – of being a modular-capable phone. It comes with the option of modular back plates, that can be snapped on magnetically to upgrade certain features on the phone. Something similar is present on the LG G5 as well but Moto has it beat with its quality and range of modular options.
But this (what some may call) ‘gimmicky’ add-on set is not all that is great about the device. The Moto Z is a very capable phablet that is thin (about 30% thinner than an iPhone!), has a good, well-defined display with an excellent processor.
Let’s see how it stacks up:
Overall the phablet is quite a catch!
Excellent set of hardware, with Motorola quality and promise, built with great material and precision. Motorola can’t be accused of compromising in anyway with this phone.
The expandable memory and the add-on modules not only add to the allure, they also prop up this device to add more functionality and features over time (and as add-on manufacturers jump on the opportunity).
While the Moto Z is one of the thinnest phablets out there and the first one to ditch a headphone jack for a type C USB, the Moto Z does not sacrifice performance or usability at the altar of being thin.
Overall, the Moto Z is one of those devices that could help Motorola redefine it’s brand positioning.
Google’s release of the Google Pixel XL, one of two self-branded devices that pioneer the launch of a new line of devices, indicates Google’s ambition to take on the likes of Samsung and Apple at the top of the field.
The Google Pixel XL is a high priced device that offers you good things but there certainly are noticeable things that the device does not offer.
For the price that Google’s asking for the Pixel XL, we believe Google’s been rather ambitious and hasn’t done enough to justify the ticket price.
That said, the device is in no way a slouch! It has a great processor and good cameras, it rides a near-Stock-Android OS, and has enough horsepower to do all you ask of it.
Just that it’s boring, and doesn’t have any standout feature whatsoever, except for Google’s name. And that may not be enough!
All that aside, the Pixel XL has all the specs of this year’s flagship devices, hence it does reach Chip-Monks’ Top Rated List. Read our detailed review to know more.
A well made device that offers a lot of good things – you get very good build quality and internal hardware. But considering the things the Pixel XL offers at the price it asks for, there’s a mismatch.
Many other manufacturers are doing much more for much lesser money. The only thing that may help the Pixel XL is the Google logo around the back, and the fact that the marque-slot for Android devices is currently open thanks to the Note7 debacle.
Part of Asus’ new ZenFone 3 sub-series, the ZenFone 3 Deluxe is the middle of the pack, but it does come with quite an arsenal of talking points.
An all-metal design that somehow includes completely invisible antennae, with a good, full-sized display, 6 GB of RAM and expandable memory.
It’s got a higher resolution rear camera than even the vaunted Moto Z Force – the ZenFone 3 Deluxe comes with a 23 megapixel rear camera. If that’s not all, its got a more-than-respectable 8 megapixel front camera too.
And a decent battery. So, it’s got it all, almost. Hence it makes it’s way to Chip-Monks’ shortlist.
So, all in all, the phablet has a decent display. But it makes up for it with other better-than-market-average specs.
The cameras are high powered and one can expect it to produce good photos – front and back; and the focus on Image Stabilisation should produce good results irrespective of the shooting conditions. That said, the photos might look better on your computer or tablet, than they do on the parent device itself!
The OS is standard as per the devices this year, and so is the battery. The microSD card is definitely a benefit that adds to the 64 GB onboard memory.
We think, with it’s full metal design, fingerprint sensor and hybrid dual-SIM slots, along with all the other good stuff (above), the ZenFone 3 Deluxe is definitely a good choice at a moderately-budget price.
OnePlus has been one of those few phone makers that has been able to ensure zen-like customer satisfaction in terms of both, product quality and efficiency.
The company has now shattered the tradition of introducing only one flagship per year. After the introduction of OnePlus 3 in June this year, the upstart brand just introduced a new flagship.
OnePlus 3T is its new big toy but this has created a confusion in the market whether the OnePlus 3 is obsolete or is the 3T just a minor upgrade.
Let’s help you with that.
OnePlus 3 was good. Yeah, it had its shortcomings, but it managed to cover all the bases in a price range which was more than adequate. The new phone is a worthy successor to it.
Despite all the new enhancements, six months is a really short time to change a normal phone, let alone a flagship.
So unless, you are really insistent, we would say – relax.
For those wanting to switch from an older or other device, the OnePlus 3T is definitely one of the better phablets in the market – one that would provides great quality and hardware at a price that will still leave you with enough money in the bank for a quick vacation.
The Sony Xperia XZs may be a bit old under the hood but is still capable of doling out decent performance under most conditions.
It has an ergonomic design, a bright display and a decent camera that form it’s triumvirate of additional calling cards.
The battery life is one of the only primary weak links on the Xperia XZs, on paper, but lasts a decent work day under light- to moderate-usage.
In general, this is one of those devices which opts to get its’ basics right. However, the presence of a larger number of flagships in the same range offering even better deals, is a threat the Xperia XZs can’t counter.
On the other hand the Xperia provides a good audio with a wonderful game play and movie streaming. You could go for this phone or wait for some new flagship devices which could give you a longer life span of usage than this device which actually runs on an year-old processor.
The Xperia struggles with light when clicking photos in slow motion mode, producing noticeable stutters as it adjusts the shutter speed (albeit a little too slowly). Also, limitations like no touch-to-focus, touch-to-shoot and heavy pixel noise, all limit the capacity of the camera to a point where we at Chip-Monks began to disregard the camera in low-lit conditions.
However, despite these cons, the sensor used in the camera shows that it is capable of handling a great deal of photographic or videographic stress with great ease.
The phone is highly symmetrical when it comes to the design with the power button to the middle of the right edge which also integrates the fingerprint sensor. The volume button is aptly placed even for those with small hands. The display is fairly good with Sony using its TRILUMINOUS display.
Everything about this phone is more inclined towards a photographic performance. Now with such an expensive price tag and with more flagship devices in the market, with better specs and a cheaper price tag, this seems like a tad bit of a compromise to us. But for those who want a phone with a branded camera with a noteworthy performance, this device could easily be your cup of tea.
The LG G6 might be the best phone that LG has made in a few years, but one can’t help but feel overwhelmed by all the comparisons.
The device has many notable improvements over its predecessor, from the water-resistant body to the beautiful, extra-long screen. It also has a dual camera setup which is quick becoming par for the course.
The device packs last year’s Snapdragon 821 chipset, with this year’s flagships carrying the Snapdragon 835; despite that paper-anomaly, it is quite fast and should suffice for most users.
The device has some shortcomings, of course, but they might not be the deal breakers for an average user.
The LG G6 seems to have been competing with a surprising foe – it’s own elder sibling, than trying to beef itself up for the external competition.
In that sibling-match, the G6 wins, but when compared to other Android phones, it has been let down by a few of its peculiarities. LG made the correct design decisions, put in mostly the correct specs, but could’ve easily done better on a few things – the processor, onboard memory, audio quality etc.
There’s no doubt – the G6 is LG’s best phone in years, but with the competition also having had time to catch a few breaks, it might be a tough call. We are not quite sure if the phone will stand up to the higher-end flagships in the marketplace – there are many equally good, and better devices already available, and more coming. But if it does enjoy a price drop, LG might actually have a solid chance this year.
Even though Blackberry phones are no longer as popular in the market as they used to be, ever since Blackberry decided to let go of the BB10, and move on to Android, they have indeed made some pretty decent phones. Blackberry KeyOne, with the hint of nostalgia in the form of a physical keypad, is a case in point.
The device is clearly a milestone device for the company, as it charts out a clear return to what were the core BlackBerry roots and market principles. Even though the keypad is the highlight of the device, there is a lot more to it than just that. The phone has a nice build quality, in addition to what can be called quite decent a set of specs.
With KeyOne, one does get a sense that Blackberry might be back on track in the smartphone market. The phone has the best features of the previous Android phones from the company, and in addition, the phone can also boost of the security premium that BlackBerry devices have always had.
But, the truth one has to state is that while there is nothing wrong with the phone, there particularly also isn’t anything that can really be endorsed. The only thing that does pop out about the phone is the physical keypad, and that is more a nostalgia feature than a technical one; we are not saying that people might not buy the phone for it, people quite certainly might, and it might be worth it, but its not a technological feat, is all.
Our verdict on this one is simple: while it is not a bad device, its price tag makes it hard to recommend, for us. It is and probably will remain the most pricey Snapdragon 625 device out there. The device is a clear sign that the brand Blackberry will keep at its clear market niche and corporate pedigree, and not so much make devices for everyone.
It’s been eighteen months since the launch of the last Mi device, the Mi4i. And that was quite a performer.
So, the question that begs to be asked is where has Xiaomi been, and what has it been up to?
Well, Xiaomi has been working on its new device, the Mi5. That be the case, you’d expect the Mi5 to be quite a leap, and it is – in terms of design and hardware, definitely.
The Mi5 looks different, in a good way – it ditches plastic in favour of a glass on the rear panel for the plain model and a ceramic panel for the Pro model, both of which curve round to join a metal rim.
The Mi 5 leaves you impressed, with it’s solid design, material and processor output. The UI though, is still a little unimpressive and seems to be unfinished.
The Mi 5 is a wonderful phone and probably the best that Xiaomi has offered yet.
One has to take into account the fact that the Mi 5 sits in a segment where the benchmark for everything is that much higher. And yet, the Mi 5 does not balk in that arena either. It may not best the stalwarts. But it’s no slouch either. And it does things that devices twice it’s price do.
This is the best Xiaomi device yet, and one of the best devices in the market. Not the best though.
Samsung Galaxy C9 Pro is big phone, lets say its a phablet. Big screen. 6GB of RAM. Snapdragon 653. 4000mAh battery. All these are powerful specs of this mighty warrior phone. 6GB is something you would rarely need and use fully.
Picking or not picking this phone is simple decision. Do you like great looking phone with very big screen and powerful hardware and equally supporting fast charging battery but if it lacks little in camera and UI is just giving normal experience.
so you can buy this phone as a primary phone just for the sake of hardware specs of this phone. Don’t buy this phone if you need a phone which gives you great user experience.
The thing about the Moto G5 Plus is that, for the most part, it does not feel like a budget phone at all. The phone looks, feels, and works, like a higher end device, a “pricier” one, but it is mostly just Moto continuing its recent trend of providing more and more at an incredible price.
Last year it was the G4 and the G4 Plus that made quite a big dent in the market. This year’s G5 Plus is an improvement on that, with a modern, metal body, more storage; Android 7.0 Nougat; Google Assistant; new Moto gestures, a better camera, and 4k video.
However, even though the device is quite an improvement on the previous ones, this year Moto seems to have concentrated on improving what it has already done, and not so much on bringing new to a device. That might prove to be a disappoint for those who were waiting for something groundbreaking with this device.
That said, it does not mean that the device is not incredibly good; it is just nothing new, as such.
The verdict on this one is simple:
The device has a long list of features that you want, and a considerably tiny one of features that you might not like; and all of that at an incredible price. The device is definitely one of our top rated buys.
The Oppo F3 Plus is an upgrade to the previous year’s Oppo F1 Plus, the biggest indicator of which is the two front cameras that it sports. The dual front camera gives a wide angled shot with a 120 degree wide angled view.
Clearly, Oppo is still wooing the selfie generation and isn’t planning to stop anytime soon.
The fingerprint sensor is quick and the backlit capacitive buttons work well for navigation and stay out of the way.
Striking looks apart, the massive size of the phone makes single handed use almost impossible. There is an option to shrink the display in single handed mode if using one hand is almost impossible.
But is the camera the only good thing this new device has or are there any more surprises waiting for us under the hood? Let’s find out.
The software situation is disheartening as this device still runs on Android Marshmallow 6.0.1. Other than the camera, there’s nothing that’s changed remarkably. The icons are still the same and settings for the gallery and camera are located under the main settings app and not within their respective apps, creating some unnecessary steps when it comes to tweaking these settings. The icons borrow heavily from iOS but aren’t blatant copies, unlike most Chinese manufacturers. You get motion and screen off gestures along with a Lockscreen magazine which scrolls through random wallpapers stored in the phone.
Overall there are no complaints about the design and finish of the phone. Although it isn’t the easiest of phones to deal with thanks to its massive physical size, it makes up these flaws with a mind blowing camera and a decent performance.
Will this be able to appease the Indian market? Only time will tell.
The Samsung Galaxy J7 Pro is slated to be released in July 2017 after its announcement a few days back along with its sibling, the Galaxy J7 Max.
The J series is trying to include design features like the “U” designed antenna bands and functionalities of the UX based on Android Nougat from their elder siblings aimed to woo the mid segment smartphone market in the ball-park of INR 20,000.
The Samsung Galaxy J7 Pro comes with the NFC-enabled mobile payment solution Samsung Pay and not the miniaturized version, the Samsung Pay Mini. The Mini is similar to Pay, albeit the ability to make offline payments at PoS terminals. The device includes both NFC (Near Field Communication) and MST (Magnetic Secure Transmission) that allows payment through smartphone via terminal’s card reader.
The dual SIM phone comes with a decent screen-to-body ratio and a processing setup that should improve the multi-tasking capability it offers, along with the functionalities of Android 7.0 (Nougat).
Samsung Galaxy J7 Pro will launch in Full Metal Unibody with Gold and Black color options and will be sold through the company’s online store, amongst other popular offline channels.
If you’re comparing it with the J7 Max, it’s a no-brainer, really. Galaxy J7 Pro is without question the better of the two. Yes, J7 Max has a bigger screen and costs less, but it doesn’t come with the hardware needed to navigate today’s digital world.
That said, the Samsung Galaxy J7 Pro will enter a crowded market. The Oppo F3, Vivo V5s, Honor 8 Lite and Gionee A1 – will all work against its rise. When you see the J7 Pro in relation to these, it doesn’t offer quite the functionality for your buck as you would have greatly desired. Having said that, it’s not a waste of money either. So if you’re a hard-core Samsung fan, you can go for the J7 Pro.
Do Not Worry About Aadhaar – Worry About Your Footprint On Facebook!
Aadhaar has become a crucial part of the lives of us Indians today. We are dependent upon it for government services, death certificates, PAN cards, bank accounts, health care, welfare benefits, etc. As a result, it has been targeted as an easy entryway for identity theft, fraud, and other cyber crimes. The extent of personal information your Aadhaar card stores, and its linkage to PAN cards and your bank accounts, has made it centre of a lot of privacy debates. But the question is: are these concerns really valid?
Thomas Friedman, an American prize winning journalist, comments that “I am a huge enthusiast of the UID platform. I feel that is going to be a platform for innovation. Societies require these platforms where people are integrated with a trusted ID. I think concerns about privacy are bogus. The platform doesn’t store anything about you except your biometrics. It’s not tracking you. “Facebook is tracking you much more today. If you are worried about privacy, then you shouldn’t be using Google, Facebook, Twitter, any of these things. They are tracking you so much more than the Indian government is tracking you. What’s worse is that they are selling it [information about you] for profit. So, I think the privacy concern [around Aadhaar] is bogus.”
It’s true. A vast majority of the world’s population has embraced social media, and the ones who are active on it leave behind a digital footprint that’s very easy to track. Think about it this way – the Facebook profile of the person you like is a treasure trove of information about them. You can know their likes, dislikes, favourite hangout places, emotional status, and so much more, just from their social media profile. And we all post this information about ourselves voluntarily. Privacy is non-existent in this scenario.
Google tracks you on virtually everything you do, places you travel to physically, purchases you make, stuff you look at online to say the least. Goggle has been tracking your Android devices in great detail. Want to limit what Google can find and share about you beyond the links provided above? Be sure to use its Privacy Checkup tool, also visit the Activity page and toggle everything off, so that Google stops checking in on your location, device information, web & app activity, voice & audio activity, YouTube Search and Watch history and more.
On the flip side – having an account on social media is voluntary and if you do have an account, what information you share publicly is completely up to you. No one forces you to share your residential address, parents’ names, bank details, phone number, and biometrics on social media. Giving personal details is mandatory with your Aadhaar card, you have no choice there. It is mandatory to link it to our PAN card and most of us, in addition, have linked it to our bank accounts. You are completely compromised if there is a breach in the Aadhaar database and it has been proven multiple times that that database isn’t very secure. An Aadhaar number, along with social media accounts, is more than enough to draw up a detailed profile of any person. You don’t have to look far to see where we’re going with this – the breach of your privacy will be absolute in such a situation.
Keeping all this in mind, while we don’t think that the security concern around Aadhaar is bogus in any way however our social media accounts do endanger our privacy to an equal extent. And since Aadhaar doesn’t seem to be going anywhere anytime soon, the best we can do is to not share information such as residential address, parents’ names, bank details, and phone number on our Facebook and Twitter accounts.
Now, A Mobile Service For Defense Personnel
AT&T and Verizon are the leading mobile network carriers in the United States of America. They are followed by Sprint and T-Mobile.
Defense Mobile Corporation is a yet-to-be-launched mobile service in the US, but it’s one with a huge difference.
Defense Mobile Corporation is a aimed to be a mobile service dedicated to provide 4G LTE service exclusively to US Military personnel and their families. This includes active duty U.S Military, Veterans and their families.
Their motive: Personnel working for the US Defense, exercise privileges in almost all walks of life but sadly not in Mobile telephony – and that’s the void that DMC wants to fill.
That’s not all. It shouldn’t come as a surprise though, that Defense Mobile boasts of having one of the most successful and most hard-working management teams in the industry. While, DMC is not affiliated to the US Department of Defense – it actually is a private initiative!
DMC is founded and run by telecom, defence industry and government veterans. It’s a wonder team, led by a co-founder of Virgin Mobile USA, a Senior Vice President of American Express; a co-founder of Simple Mobile, a co-founder of the EMIDA Prepaid Network; the founder of HireAHero.org and the Helmets-to-Hardhats foundation; the former Secretary of the Air Force, a former White House Fellow to the President of the United States; the former U.S Search CEO and senior executive from Bridgewater Associates; the former Special Assistant to the Secretary of Veterans Affairs; as well as executives from Siemans AG, EMC Corporation and AT&T. [Source the defence mobile corp site]
DMC has been innovative in its approach (and surely, frugal with their expenses). Instead of spending millions of dollars setting up captive infrastructure and independent network elements, they used a partnership approach to minimise costs, and speed up “roll-out” time. They partnered with Sprint Mobile to use their CDMA and LTE networks so as to provide inexpensive data plans to these select people. Their Data Plans range from as little as USD 20 to USD 60 for the military personnel and family respectively.
This initiative goes deeper than just a mobile service. Defence Mobile Corp has a larger vision too. It recognises the sacrifices that military personnel and their families make during the course of military tenure.
It has thus committed to donate 10% of corporate profits to non-profit organizations focused on improving the lives of military, veterans and their families.
This will also be a platform to employ the veterans.
On their site, they mention “At DMC we hire veterans first, in fact 100% of our customer service agents are veterans committed to ensuring they take care of their own. In addition to hiring veterans, DMC has set a goal of having 30% of its customer care agents as service disabled veterans (SDV)”.
That’s not all. The DMC is trying to make the life of a veteran better on several fronts. Members of the military community will be eligible for loyalty and rewards from purchases in their daily life.
DMC, through its partnerships and direct negotiations, will be able to deliver meaningful “military only” cash-back rewards that are earned directly at the check-out counter, the gas pump, and when paying utility bills.
The specialities of DMC include Pre installed apps which are used and related to the U.S. Defence like TriCare (the military’s health services). Also this carrier is not cheap-without-features. They have promised to offer high end phones like the Apple iPhone 5, Samsung Galaxy S4 and the HTC One.
With low prices on plans and high end phones available, DMC may be able to cater to a very large part of 51.6 million people they are trying to target.
For Sprint, this may be a breath of new life. They lag behind Verizon and AT&T by quite a bit. With such low prices and great offers and a large demography, this may resurrect Sprints hopes of becoming a bigger name.
DMC hasn’t been officially launched even though their website and domains are up and running. The mobile service company is planned to be launched on Veteran’s day that is on 11th November 2013.
We wish them all success, and hope this model is replicated across the world for all the personel who protect us.