Amazon Great Indian Festival and Flipkart Big Billion Days sales generated a lot of buzz in a week dominated by new smartphone launches. Both Amazon and Flipkart kicked off their sales this week and these will continue through first half of the next week. OnePlus finally introduced its new OnePlus 7T smartphone alongside its first smart TVs in the form of OnePlus TV Q1 and OnePlus TV Q1 Pro. iPhone 11 was also the talk of the town as the new Apple phones reached the stores in India after a week of pre-orders. Read about all this and more in our weekly tech news recap.
Amazon and Flipkart festival sales opened on Saturday Amazon Prime and the Flipkart Plus subscribers respectively, and expanded to all users on Sunday. These sales aims to grab a pie of the massive festival shopping season in the country as it gets underway with Durga Puja next week, followed by Dussehra, and ending with Diwali, and lots of other festivals in between. Amazon is running the latest iteration of its Great Indian Festival sale, whereas Flipkart has organised the Big Billion Days sale.
Both Amazon and Flipkart sales promise offers on a variety of products, including mobile phones and other consumer electronics. While Amazon's mobile phone deals are already available, Flipkart will kick off the smartphone deals on Monday with the first-time sales for a number of smartphones, including Redmi 8A and Asus ROG Phone 2.
There are a number of great deals that are available as a part of both Amazon Great Indian Festival and Flipkart Big Billion Days sales. Amazon is offering the iPhone XR starting at just Rs. 42,999. For a brief period on Saturday the e-retailer sold the phone for as low as just Rs. 39,999, which was the phone's lowest price yet in the country. If you use a State Bank credit or debit card to pay for the purchase, you can get a further 10 percent discount up to a maximum of Rs. 2,000, taking the effective price of the 64GB iPhone XR to just Rs. 40,999 during the Amazon sale.
Google's Pixel 3a and Pixel 3a XL are also set to get some massive discounts as a part of the Flipkart Big Billion Days sale. The e-retailer will be offering the Google Pixel 3a starting at a price of Rs. 29,999, down from its launch starting price of Rs. 39,999. The Pixel 3a XL, which was launched at Rs. 44,999, will be available at Rs. 34,999 during the Big Billion Days Sale.
Other big offers available during Amazon Great Indian Festival sale include discounts on OnePlus 7, OnePlus 7 Pro, Samsung Galaxy Note 9, Bose Quiet Comfort 35 II headphones, Sony WH-1000XM3 headphones, and TCL 50-inch 4K smart Android TV. Additionally, Amazon Fire TV stick, second-generation Echo smart speaker, and Samsung 50-inch Super 6 series 4K smart TV are also getting a price drop for the sale duration.
Similarly, the Flipkart sale is offering discounts on Vu Pixelight 50-inch 4K smart TV, Mi LED Smart TV 4A Pro 43-inch, Apple Watch Series 3 42mm, and Google Home Mini. Offers on mobile phones will go live on Monday and the e-retailer has already teased some of them. During the same period, Flipkart will sell iPhone X starting at Rs. 44,999, Redmi Note 7 Pro starting at Rs. 11,999, and Vivo Z1 Pro starting at Rs. 12,990. The likes of Redmi Note 7S, Poco F1, Samsung Galaxy S9, and Asus 6Z will be discounted as well.
After weeks of rumours and leaks, OnePlus finally took the wraps off its new OnePlus 7T smartphone this week. The phone is already on sale in the country via Amazon and the company's own e-store. Although OnePlus 7T upgrades on the company's OnePlus 7 that was launched in the country earlier this year, it doesn't replace its predecessor and will sit in between OnePlus 7 and OnePlus 7 Pro in the company's smartphone portfolio.
OnePlus 7T price in India is set at Rs. 37,999 for the 8GB + 128GB option, whereas its 8GB + 256GB variant retails at Rs. 39,999. The smartphone is being offered in Frosted Silver and Glacier Blue colour options in a new matte frosted glass look. Meanwhile, the company has decided to discount the OnePlus 7 and OnePlus 7 Pro during the ongoing Amazon Great Indian Festival sale. The price drop is significant, with the OnePlus 7 and OnePlus 7 Pro getting discounts of Rs. 3,000 and Rs. 4,000 respectively, down from Rs. 32,999 and Rs. 48,999, respectively.
OnePlus 7T runs on Android 10 with OxygenOS 10 and comes with specifications like Qualcomm Snapdragon 855+ SoC, 6.55-inch full-HD+ Fluid AMOLED screen, and a triple rear camera setup. The phone also packs a 3,800mAh battery with Wrap Charge 30T support, 128 or 256GB of onboard storage, and dual stereo speakers, and 8GB of RAM. Additionally, there is a 16-megapixel selfie shooter on the front and an in-display fingerprint sensor.
In addition to the new OnePlus 7T, OnePlus unveiled its first smart TVs in the form of OnePlus TV Q1 and OnePlus TV Q1 Pro earlier this week. Based on the Android TV platform with some customisations, Oneplus TV models include a 55-inch QLED 4K display. OnePlus says the TVs are capable of 50W sound output. The only difference between OnePlus TV Q1 and OnePlus TV Q1 Pro is the presence of a retractable soundbar in the latter. Among other specifications, you will get Dolby Vision, Dolby Atmos, quad-core processor, three USB ports, three HDMIs ports, and more in the OnePlus TV models.
OnePlus TV Q1 carries a price tag of Rs. 69,900, whereas the OnePlus TV Q1 Pro is retailing at Rs. 99,900. The two TV models are being offered exclusively via Amazon in the country. It is unclear if their availability will expand to other platforms in the future. The TVs are also only available in India right now. OnePlus CEO Pete Lau told media at a roundtable after the launch event that the company is not working on smaller smart TVs right now.
Apple has started selling its new iPhone 11, iPhone 11 Pro, and iPhone 11 Pro Max smartphones in India. The phones were put on pre-orders last week and they went on sale via a host of e-retailers, like Flipkart, Amazon, and Paytm Mall, as well as Apple authorised offline resellers in the country on late-Friday. Within hours, most of the models were sold out at most e-retailers. It is unclear when more stock is expected.
The iPhone 11 price in India is set at Rs. 64,900 for the base 64GB storage variant, whereas its 128GB and 256GB storage variants are priced at Rs. 69,900 and Rs. 79,900, respectively. The iPhone 11 Pro price starts at Rs. 99,900 for the base 64GB storage variant. The 256GB storage model of the iPhone 11 Pro, on the other hand, is priced at Rs. 1,13,900, while its 512GB storage option carries a price tag of Rs. 1,31,900. The last model in the range is the iPhone 11 Pro Max that is priced at Rs. 1,09,900 for the 64GB storage option, whereas its 256GB and 512GB storage variants are priced at Rs. 1,23,900 and Rs. 1,41,900, respectively.
iPhone 11 series was introduced earlier this month. The three new iPhone models are powered by Apple's A13 Bionic chip and run on iOS 13. The iPhone 11 packs a dual camera setup on the back with a 6.1-inch Liquid Retina HD LCD panel, whereas the iPhone 11 Pro and iPhone 11 Pro Max come with a triple rear camera setup. The iPhone 11 Pro and iPhone 11 Pro Max sport 5.8-inch Super Retina XDA OLED screen and 6.5-inch Super Retina XDR OLED screen, respectively.
Apple Watch Series 5 is also now on sale in the Indian market. This new smartwatch from Apple comes with an always-on display and is being offered in 40mm and 44mm display sizes. It comes with a resolution of 324x394 pixels (40mm) and 386x448 pixels (44mm), and 1,000 nits of peak brightness. Apple Watch Series 5 is powered by the 64-bit dual-core Apple S5 SoC, paired with W3 wireless chip, and 32GB of onboard storage. Sensors on board include electrical heart rate sensor, second generation optical sensor, compass, barometric altimeter, accelerometer, and an ambient light sensor.
Apple Watch Series 5 price in India starts at Rs. 40,900 for the GPS only 40mm variant. The Apple Watch Series 5 GPS 44mm variant, on the other hand, is priced at Rs. 43,900. Apple Watch Series 5 GPS + Cellular 40mm variant retails at Rs. 49,900 and the Apple Watch Series 5 GPS + Cellular 44mm model is being offered at a price tag of Rs. 52,900. The Apple Watch Series 5 GPS + Cellular 40mm Stainless Steel variant is priced at Rs. 65,900, whereas the Apple Watch Series 5 GPS + Cellular 44mm Stainless Steel option is priced at Rs. 69,900.
Samsung added a new smartphone – Galaxy A70s – to its Galaxy A-series in India this week. The smartphone is an upgraded version of the Galaxy A70 that was launched in the country earlier year. The highlight of the new phone is the 64-megapixel primary camera that is present as a part of a triple rear camera setup. Samsung Galaxy A70s was set to go on sale via major e-retailers, Samsung online store, Samsung Opera House, and offline retailers on Saturday, however it is yet to be listed on any retailers or go on sale via Samsung online store. It carries a price tag of Rs. 28,999 for the 6GB + 128GB model and Rs. 30,999 for the 8GB + 128GB model.
The South Korean tech giant also released a new storage variant of the Galaxy A10s in the country this week. The new 3GB RAM variant joins the 2GB RAM variant of the Galaxy A10s that was launched in late-August in the country. Samsung Galaxy A10s is a successor to the Galaxy A10. The smartphone features a dual rear camera setup and sports a waterdrop-style display notch design. Unlike the Galaxy A10 that had a 3,400mAh battery, the Galaxy A10s packs a larger, 4,000mAh battery. Samsung Galaxy A10s price is set at Rs. 10,499 for the 3GB + 32GB model and at Rs. 9,499 for the 2GB RAM model.
Further, Samsung began the sales of its Galaxy M30s, Galaxy M10s, and Galaxy M30 3GB RAM variant in the country. The two new smartphones as well as the new Galaxy M30 variants are now available via Samsung online store and Amazon in the country. The 3GB RAM variant of the Galaxy M30 is priced at Rs. 9,999. Samsung Galaxy M30s price starts at 13,999 for the base 4GB + 64GB version, whereas the phone's 6GB + 128GB variant is being sold at Rs. 16,999. Samsung Galaxy M10s, on the other hand, has been priced at Rs. 8,999 for its sole 3GB + 32GB model.
Additionally, the company sent out invites this week to reveal that it will launch the Galaxy Fold in India on October 1. Samsung Galaxy Fold is the company's first foldable smartphone and it has already go on sale in South Korea, select European countries, Singapore, and the US this month. Samsung Galaxy Fold was originally introduced in February this year and it was supposed to go on sale in April, however the sale date was postponed after the initial reviewers started facing issues with the screen of the phone.
Samsung Galaxy A20s also made its debut this week. The new Galaxy A-series smartphone comes with features like 6.5-inch HD+ (720x1560 pixels) Infinity-V display, octa-core SoC, triple rear camera setup, and a 4,000mAh battery. The phone also packs a rear fingerprint sensor, 3GB of RAM, an 8-megapixel selfie shooter, and 15W fast charging support. There is no word on the India launch or the pricing of the phone.
Vivo introduced its second online-only lineup in the country this week in the form of U-series. Vivo U10 is the first smartphone in the lineup and it comes with features like an HD+ Halo FullView Display, octa-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 665 SoC, and a rear fingerprint sensor. Vivo U10 price in India starts at Rs. 8,990 for the 3GB RAM + 32GB storage variant. There is also the 3GB RAM + 64GB storage option at Rs. 9,990, while the top-of-the-line 4GB RAM + 64GB storage configuration is priced at Rs. 10,990. It is now available via Amazon and Vivo e-store.
The second-generation gaming smartphone from Asus – the ROG Phone 2 – was launched in India this week as well. Asus ROG Phone 2 brings a host of upgrades over its predecessor and is powered by the Snapdragon 855+ SoC, paired with up to 12GB of LPDDR4X RAM and 512GB UFS 3.0 of internal storage. The phone also comes with upgraded ultrasonic Air Triggers 2 for gaming, stereo speakers with DTS: X Ultra support, and an in-display fingerprint sensor. Another notable improvement is the phone's display that boasts of a 120Hz refresh rate. It is priced at Rs. 37,999 for the 8GB + 128GB model will go on sale via Flipkart starting tomorrow.
Oppo Reno 2F sale date
Oppo announced on Friday that its Reno 2F phone will go on sale in India beginning October 4. The smartphone was launched alongside Reno 2 and Reno 2Z last month. It was supposed to go on sale in November, however the company has advanced its release. The smartphone flaunts quad rear cameras and a 19.5:9 AMOLED display. It also comes with MediaTek Helio P70 (MT6771V) SoC, 4,000mAh battery, and a 16-megapixel pop-up selfie camera. Also, the Oppo Reno 2F comes in a lone 8GB RAM variant with 128GB of onboard storage. The Oppo Reno 2F price in India is set at Rs. 25,990 for 8GB + 128GB model.
Mi Mix Alpha concept smartphone, Redmi 8A India launch
Xiaomi unveiled its new concept smartphone – Mi Mix Alpha – this week in China. The new smartphone seeks to push the boundaries of what can be done with a smartphone's display. The Mi Mix Alpha uses a flexible screen to offer Surround Display experience that lacks any bezels on the sides and there are bare minimum bezels on the top and bottom. According to Xiaomi, the Mi Mix Alpha display wraps around the phone and pretty much covers the entire body barring a stripe on the back that houses the cameras. It will be produced in limited quantity in December this year.
Xiaomi also launched its new Redmi 8A phone in India this week, making it the first market to get the smartphone. Redmi 8A is a successor to Redmi 7A and comes with features like a 6.22-inch HD+ display, Qualcomm Snapdragon 439 SoC, up to 3GB of RAM, and 5,000mAh battery with support for 15W fast charging. The phone also packs a 12-megapixel camera at the back and an 8-megapixel shooter on the front. Redmi 8A price is set at Rs. 6,499 for the 2GB + 32GB variant, while its 3GB + 32GB option is priced at Rs. 6,999.
Lenovo K10 Plus India launch
Lastly in smartphones, Lenovo added a new phone to its K-series in the country. Dubbed as Lenovo K10 Plus, the new phone comes with triple rear cameras and sports a waterdrop-style display notch. The Lenovo K10 Plus also includes artificial intelligence (AI) powered camera features and supports quick charging. Lenovo K10 Plus price in India is set at Rs. 10,999 for the lone 4GB + 64GB variant. It will be offered via Flipkart starting tomorrow.
BSNL Super Star 500 broadband plan, other telecom news
BSNL has reportedly launched a new Super Star 500 broadband plan that offers 500GB data at up to 50Mbps speed per month. This plan also offers complimentary subscription of Hotstar Premium. It is available in two options – DSL plan and Fibre plan. The latter comes with 50Mbps speed, whereas the DSL plan gives subscribers up to 10Mbps data speed. After the consumers cross the 500GB data FUP, the Internet speed will be reduced to just 2Mbps.
Airtel revised its Rs. 97 prepaid plan this week. The Rs. 97 prepaid plan will now offer data benefits of just 500MB for the 14-day validity period as well as unlimited voice calling without any ceiling, and 300 SMS messages. The Rs. 97 prepaid plan was first introduced in 2018 for a limited period, and earlier this year, Airtel re-introduced it with tweaked benefits to offer unlimited voice calling and 2GB data with a validity of 14 days.
The telecom operator also introduced a new prepaid recharge plan for Rs. 599. The plan offers 2GB data per day, unlimited calls to any network and 100 SMS per day, and Rs. 4 lakh life insurance cover from Bharti AXA Life Insurance. The recharge comes with a validity of 84 days and the insurance cover continues automatically for three months with every recharge.
Dish TV and D2h have started offering free extra days of service on their six-month and 10-month plans. The 10-month subscribers will get 60 days of free extra service, whereas 6-month subscribers will get 30 days of free extra service on both DTH providers. Additionally, D2h also offers 14 days of free service on 3-month recharge. It is also offering a free set-top box swap as part of the benefits on long-term plans.
Google unveiled a new version of its Android (Go edition) operating system for entry-level phones, based on Android 10, this week. Dubbed as Android 10 (Go edition), the new version claims to offer a more fluid multitasking experience, improved security, and a lot more. Google claims that app launch speed has gone up by 10 percent with Android 10 (Go edition). Additionally, Android 10 (Go edition) uses Adiantum, a new encryption format that has been tailor-made for entry-level devices to secure their data without affecting device performance. The first phones with Android 10 (Go edition) will be out this fall, however, the specifics of these upcoming phones are unclear at this point.
Amazon announced a number of new Echo devices with Alexa voice assistant this week and the e-retailer is bringing three of them to India. While the new Echo (3rd generation) and Echo Dot with clock will go on sale beginning October 16 in the country, the new Echo Studio will go on sale starting November 7. All three Echo smart speakers are listed for pre-orders on Amazon.in right now. In terms of the pricing, Echo Studio carries a price tag of Rs. 22,999, whereas Amazon Echo (3rd generation) and Echo Dot with clock have been priced at Rs. 9,999 and Rs. 5,499, respectively.
Mi AirDots Pro 2 unveiled
Lastly, Xiaomi introduced its Mi AirDots Pro 2 truly wireless earbuds in China this week. The Mi AirDots Pro 2 earbuds support Bluetooth 5 and pack 14.2mm drivers as well as dual microphones for noise cancellation. The earbuds claims to offer 4 hours of standalone playback time on a single charge and 14 hours with the case. Mi AirDots Pro 2 are priced at CNY 399 (roughly Rs. 4,000), and are now available for purchase in the company's home market.