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Redmi Note 9 Pro Max to Go on Sale for the First Time in India Today via Mi.com, Amazon: Price, Specifications

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Xiaomi Redmi Note 9 Pro and Redmi Note 9 Pro Max will go on sale today in India. Both the smartphones will be available for purchase at 12:00PM IST via Mi.com and Amazon India.

The Redmi Note 9 Pro Max brings a 6.67-inch display which is the largest screen ever put on a Redmi phone, and a 32-megapixel in-display selfie shooter. It gets a 33W fast charging support, touted to deliver up to 20 days of standby time, 200 hours of music playback and an impressive 11 hours of PUBG Mobile gameplay.

The Redmi Note 9 Pro Max will be available for purchase for the first time in the country. The smartphone was set to go on sale for the first time in March but the launch got delayed due to COVID-19 lockdown announced by the government.

Redmi Note 9 Pro Max price in India

The Redmi Note 9 Pro Max is available in India in three variants namely 6GB + 64GB and 6GB + 128GB, and 8GB + 128GB. The first variant is priced at Rs. 16,499, the second is priced at Rs. 17,999, and the third is priced at Rs. 19,999. The Redmi Note 9 Pro Max can be purchased from Amazon.in or mi.com starting at 12pm noon (IST). These are the revised prices for the phone after the GST rates were increased. Also, there are no launch offers on either of the online stores. To recall, Xiaomi had confirmed the new first sale date last week.

Redmi Note 9 Pro Max specifications

The Redmi Note 9 Pro Max is loaded with a 6.67-inch Full HD+ display with a screen resolution of 2400 x 1080 pixels along with triple Corning Gorilla Glass 5 protection.

The smartphone is powered by the latest Qualcomm Snapdragon 720G processor along with Adreno 618 GPU. The Redmi Note 9 Pro Max is available with up to 8GB of RAM and it is loaded with up to 128GB of internal storage, which can be expanded up to 512GB via microSD card slot.

On the camera front, the Redmi Note 9 Pro Max is loaded with a quad-camera setup with a combination of 64-megapixel primary lens, 8-megapixel ultra wide-angle lens, 5-megapixel macro sensor and 2-megapixel depth sensor. For the front, there is a 32-megapixel in-display selfie shooter. The phone is backed by a 5020mAh battery and it runs on MIUI 11 based on Android 10.

Display

Type Full HD+ (Dot Display with 20:9 cinema screen)
Resolution 2400 x 1080 pixels
Screen Size 6.67 inches

Memory

RAM 8 GB
Internal Memory 128 GB
Expandable 512 GB (MicroSD)

Camera

Rear Camera 64MP + 8MP + 2MP + 5MP (Quad Camera – 64MP rear camera, 8MP 120 degree ultra-wide angle lens with 1.12 micron pixel size, 2MP depth sensor and 5MP camera for 2cm macro photography)
Front Camera 32MP (with f/2.0 aperture)
Image Stablizer No
Flash Yes (LED FLash)
Video Recording Yes

Battery

Capacity 5020 mAh (with 33W fast charging)
Type Non Removable

Dimension

Design Bar

Operating System And Processor

Processor Octa Core 2.3 GHz (Qualcomm Snapdragon 720G processor, Adreno 618 GPU)
Operating System Android 10 (MIUI 11)

Connectivity

Network 4G/LTE, 3G, 2G
GSM/CDMA GSM
Bluetooth 5.0 (A2DP, LE)
WiFi Yes (Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac, dual-band, Wi-Fi Direct, hotspot)
Internet LTE, GPRS, EDGE
GPS With GLONASS, With A-GPS ( NavIC)
USB Type-C (2.0, Type-C 1.0 reversible connector)
HDMI No
Headphone Connector 3.5 mm (Active noise cancellation with dedicated mic)
SIM Dual
NFC No
DLNA No

Multimedia

Radio Yes
Media Player Yes (MP3/WAV/eAAC+/Flac)
Video Player Yes (MP4/H.265)

Additional Feature

Water Resistant No
Sensors IR Sensor, G- sensor, Fingerprint, Accelerometer, Proximity
Built in Applications Yes (Google Search, Maps, Gmail, YouTube, Calendar)
Warrenty 1 Year
Dustproof No
Shockproof No
Keypad Touchscreen (Capacitive with Multitouch)
Water Proof No

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iPhone 12, Xiaomi Devices from China Hit by India Import Hurdles: Sources

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By Reuters | Updated: 25 November 2020

India’s tight control of quality clearances for electronic goods from China slowed the import of Apple’s new iPhone model last month and held up other products made by companies like Xiaomi, according to two industry sources.

Applications to the quality control agency, the Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS), typically used to be processed within 15 days, but some are now taking up to two months or longer.

BIS started delaying approvals in August for China-made imports of devices like smartphones, smartwatches and laptops, part of the fallout from deteriorating ties with China after a border clash in June that left 20 Indian soldiers dead.

Since the clash India has tightened rules for investments from China and banned hundreds of Chinese mobile apps, including from tech giants Tencent, Alibaba and ByteDance. It banned 43 more apps on Tuesday.

When Apple’s new iPhone 12 was caught in the delays, Apple India executives called on BIS to speed its approval up, giving assurances that the company would continue to expand its assembly operations in India, the two sources said.

It was not clear how long the iPhone 12 application was delayed, and Apple did not respond to a request for comment.

The company has assembly operations in India, but newer models and the iPhone 12 are imported from China, where contract manufacturers make the bulk of Apple’s devices.

As of Wednesday, 1,080 applications to BIS for laptops, tablets and other devices were pending, with 669 of those waiting more than 20 days, according to the agency’s website.

These included applications for devices from China-based factories of Wistron and Compal Electronics, and from Hangzhou Hikvision, the data showed.

Some of the applications for approval have been pending since September.

Calls for boycotts

Indian traders and Hindu nationalist groups have for months called for boycotting imported products from China because of the border clash, while Prime Minister Narendra Modi continues to promote self-reliance and local production.

“While the BIS is delaying approvals for products like smartwatches, the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology is pushing companies to make these devices in India,” said one of the sources.

Under BIS’s registration scheme, certain electronic goods, whether imported or locally made, need to meet certain standards. After companies get their products tested in a certified laboratory, BIS approves the applications.

Wistron and Compal did not respond to requests for comment. Hikvision declined to comment.

BIS Director General Pramod Kumar Tiwari and India’s tech ministry did not respond to requests for comment.

The clearance delays are the latest headache for technology companies whose supply chains were hit by the COVID-19 curbs, pushing some smartphone makers to resort to imports of even models made in India. The delays also come during India’s festive season when customers make big ticket purchases of everything from mobile phones to gold and cars.

The BIS delays have also hit smartwatch imports for companies including Xiaomi and Oppo, the two sources said.

Xiaomi and Oppo did not respond to requests for comment.

In July, India’s trade ministry also restricted inbound shipments of TVs by requiring importers to get a special licence, a move that one of the sources said continues to hurt companies such as Xiaomi and Samsung.

Xiaomi was denied the special licence to import roughly 30,000 units of TVs, while Samsung has faced similar import hurdles, the source said.

Samsung did not respond to a request for comment.

© Thomson Reuters 2020

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Xiaomi Rides Smartphone Shipment Surge to Post 19-Percent Jump in Profit

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By Reuters | Updated: 24 November 2020

Xiaomi reported a 19 percent jump in third quarter net profit on Tuesday, beating estimates, as the Chinese smartphone maker’s smartphone shipments over the quarter surged by 45.3 percent on a year earlier.

Smartphone revenue grew to CNY 47.6 billion (roughly Rs. 53,500 crores), an increase of 47.5 percent in the same period, it said in a statement. Overall quarterly revenue rose to CNY 72.1 billion (roughly Rs. 81,100 crores) up from CNY 53.7 billion (roughly Rs. 60,400 crores).

Analysts had on average forecasted that Xiaomi would report quarterly net profit of around CNY 3.28 billion (roughly Rs. 3,700 crores), according to Refinitiv data.

Xiaomi has grabbed market share from in China and Europe as its rival Huawei has struggled with US sanctions that have disrupted its supply chain.

The company anticipates it will continue to gain market share after the last round of US sanctions against the latter disrupted its supply chains in August, several industry sources told Reuters.

Xiaomi placed orders for up to 100 million phones between the fourth quarter of 2020 and first quarter of 2021, up 50 percent on projections before the August restrictions, consultancy Isaiah Research said.

The company rose to become the third-biggest seller of handsets in the third quarter, shipping 47.1 million units with 45 percent growth, according to consultancy Canalys. Samsung is the largest, followed by Huawei.

Xiaomi is also attempting to court Huawei’s distributors in Southeast Asia and Europe in the hopes of gaining exclusive deals, and is actively targeting Huawei’s high-end market share in China, said a source at Xiaomi familiar with the matter.

© Thomson Reuters 2020

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Apple to Pay $113 Million to Over 30 US States to Settle iPhone ‘Batterygate’

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By Agence France-Presse | Updated: 19 November 2020

Apple has agreed to pay $113 million (roughly Rs. 840 crores) to settle litigation with more than 30 US states over its slowdown in performance of older iPhones to manage battery power.

The latest “batterygate” settlement will divide the settlement among California and 33 other states, according to a statement by state Attorney General Xavier Becerra.

The settlement resolves complaints that the tech giant made misrepresentations about iPhone batteries and software updates that throttled processing performance to manage insufficient battery power, according to the state official.

“Apple withheld information about their batteries that slowed down iPhone performance, all while passing it off as an update,” said Becerra.

“This type of behaviour hurts the pockets of consumers and limits their ability to make informed purchases. Today’s settlement ensures consumers will have access to the information they need to make a well-informed decision when purchasing and using Apple products.”

The settlement resolves complaints about Apple’s iPhone 6 and 7 generation phones which according to the states’ complaint were susceptible to performance loss.

Apple had no immediate comment on the matter.

In the court documents, the iPhone maker said it agreed to the payout “solely for the purposes of settlement,” without any admission of wrongdoing.

Earlier this year Apple agreed to pay up to $500 million (roughly Rs. 3,700 crores) to settle a class-action lawsuit over the same issue.

In December 2017, Apple admitted that iOS software was tweaked to slow performance of older iPhone models whose battery life was deteriorating to prevent handsets from spontaneously shutting down.

Critics accused Apple of surreptitiously forcing users to buy phones sooner than necessary, and the outcry forced Apple to upgrade its software and offer steep discounts on battery replacements.

Apple also settled a case with France’s consumer watchdog to pay EUR 25 million (roughly Rs. 200 crores) in a related case.

French prosecutors opened an inquiry in January 2018 at the request of the Halt Planned Obsolescence (HOP) association.

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Apple Hits Back at European Activist Max Schrems’ Complaints Against Tracking Tool

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By Reuters | Updated: 17 November 2020

An Austrian privacy advocacy group drew a strongly critical response from Apple on Monday after it said an online tracking tool used in its devices breached European law.

The group, led by campaigner Max Schrems, filed complaints with data protection watchdogs in Germany and Spain alleging that the tracking tool illegally enabled the $2 trillion (roughly Rs.1,48,83,500 crores) US tech giant to store users’ data without their consent.

Apple directly rebutted the claims filed by Noyb, the digital rights group founded by Schrems, saying they were “factually inaccurate and we look forward to making that clear to privacy regulators should they examine the complaint”.

Schrems is a prominent figure in Europe’s digital rights movement that has resisted intrusive data-gathering by Silicon Valley’s tech platforms. He has fought two cases against Facebook, winning landmark judgments that forced the social network to change how it handles user data.

Noyb’s complaints were brought against Apple’s use of a tracking code, known as the Identifier for Advertisers (IDFA), that is automatically generated on every iPhone when it is set up.

The code, stored on the device, makes it possible to track a user’s online behaviour and consumption preferences, vital in allowing companies to send targeted advertisements.

“Apple places codes that are comparable to a cookie in its phones without any consent by the user. This is a clear breach of European Union privacy laws,” Noyb lawyer Stefano Rossetti said.

Rossetti referred to the EU’s e-Privacy Directive, which requires a user’s consent before installation and using such information.

No access

Apple said in response that it “does not access or use the IDFA on a user’s device for any purpose”.

It said its aim was to protect the privacy of its users and that the latest release of its iOS 14 operating system gave users greater control over whether apps could link with third parties for the purposes of targeted advertising.

The Californian tech giant said in September it would delay plans to launch iOS 14 until early next year.

Apple accounts for one in every four smartphones sold in Europe, according to Counterpoint Research.

The claims were made on behalf of a German and a Spanish consumer and handed to the Spanish data protection authority and its counterpart in Berlin, said Noyb.

Spain’s privacy protection agency confirmed it received a complaint from Noyb against Apple but declined to comment.

The Berlin agency had no comment. In Germany, each federal state has its own data protection authority.

Noyb said its claims were based on the 2002 e-Privacy Directive that allows national authorities to impose fines autonomously, avoiding lengthy proceedings it faced in its case against Facebook that was based on the EU’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).

The GDPR regime launched in 2018 included a mandatory cooperation mechanism among national authorities, which Noyb says has slowed progress.

Rossetti said the action aimed to establish a clear principle that “tracking must be the exception, not the rule”.

Apple, responding, said: “Our practices comply with European law and support and advance the aims of the GDPR and the ePrivacy Directive, which is to give people full control over their data.”

© Thomson Reuters 2020

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Huawei Sells Honor Smartphone Brand in Face of US Sanctions

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By Associated Press | Updated: 17 November 2020

Chinese tech giant Huawei is selling its budget-price Honor smartphone brand in an effort to rescue the struggling business from damaging US sanctions imposed on its parent company.

The move announced Tuesday is aimed at reviving Honor by separating it from Huawei’s network equipment and other businesses, which Washington says are a security threat, an accusation Huawei denies. They are under sanctions that block access to most US processor chips and other technology.

Huawei’s announcement gave no financial details but said the company will have no ownership stake once the sale is completed. Huawei will retain its flagship Huawei smartphone brand.

The buyer is a company formed by a technology enterprise owned by the government of the southern city of Shenzhen, where Huawei is headquartered, with a group of Honor retailers. Earlier news reports on rumours of a possible sale put the price as high as CNY 100 billion (roughly Rs. 1,13,300 crores).

“The move has been made by Honor’s industry chain to ensure its own survival,” said a Huawei statement.

Huawei, China’s first global tech brand, is at the centre of US-Chinese tension over technology, security and spying.

American officials say Huawei might facilitate Chinese spying, which the company denies. They also see Chinese government-supported technology development as a threat to US industrial dominance.

US security complaints about Huawei focus on its business making switching equipment for phone and Internet companies and its leading role in next-generation telecom technology. The Trump administration is lobbying European and other allies to exclude Huawei and other Chinese suppliers as they upgrade networks.

Meanwhile, Huawei’s chief financial officer, Meng Wanzhou, the daughter of company founder Ren Zhengfei, is being held in Canada and is fighting extradition to the United States to face charges related to possible violations of trade sanctions on Iran.

Sanctions imposed last year block Huawei’s access to most US processor chips and other technology. Those were tightened this year when the White House barred manufacturers worldwide from using US technology to produce chips for Huawei, including those designed by its own engineers.

Tuesday’s announcements gave no indication how Honor’s new owners planned to regain access to US chips and other technology including Google’s popular music, maps and other services. Other Chinese smartphone brands such as Xiaomi, Oppo and Vivo operate without such restrictions.

Honor, founded in 2013, is one of the world’s biggest-selling smartphone brands. Huawei says it ships 70 million handsets a year.

Total shipments of Huawei and Honor handsets fell 5 percent from a year earlier in the quarter ending in June to 55.8 million, according to Canalys. Sales in China rose 8 percent but shipments abroad fell 27 percent.

Huawei reported earlier sales for the first nine months of 2020 rose 9.9 percent to CNY 671.3 billion (roughly Rs. 7,60,700 crores). That was down from 13.1 percent growth in the first half, but the company said it still was profitable.

Huawei’s smartphone sales outside China have suffered because the company is barred from preinstalling Google services, which many customers expect. Huawei is allowed to use Google’s Android operating system because it is open source and involves no commercial transaction with the American company.

Huawei says it has removed US components from its core products but the president of its consumer unit, Richard Yu, warned in August the company was running out of chips for smartphones.

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Apple’s Tracking Tool Target of Privacy Activist Max Schrems’ New Complaints

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By Reuters | Updated: 16 November 2020

A group led by privacy activist Max Schrems on Monday filed complaints with German and Spanish data protection authorities over Apple’s online tracking tool, alleging that it allows iPhones to store users’ data without their consent in breach of European law.

It is the first such major action against the US technology group in regards to European Union privacy rules.

Apple says it provides users with a superior level of privacy protection. The company had announced it would further tighten its rules with the launch of its iOS 14 operating system this autumn but in September said it would delay the plan until early next year.

The complaints by digital rights group Noyb were brought against Apple’s use of a tracking code that is automatically generated on every iPhone when it is set up, the so-called Identifier for Advertisers (IDFA).

The code, stored on the device, allows Apple and third parties to track a user’s online behaviour and consumption preferences, vital for the likes of Facebook to be able to send targeted advertisements that will interest the user.

“Apple places codes that are comparable to a cookie in its phones without any consent by the user. This is a clear breach of European Union privacy laws,” said Noyb lawyer Stefano Rossetti.

Rosetti referred to the EU’s e-Privacy Directive, which requires a user’s prior consent to the installation and use of such information.

Apple’s planned new rules would not change this as they would restrict third-party access but not Apple’s.

Apple accounts for one in every four smartphones sold in Europe, according to Counterpoint Research.

The claims were made on behalf of an individual German and Spanish consumers and handed to the Spanish data protection authority and its counterpart in Berlin, said Noyb, a privacy advocacy group led by Austrian Schrems that has successfully fought two landmark trials against Facebook.

In Germany, unlike Spain, each federal state has its own data protection authority.

Rossetti said the action was not about high fines but rather aimed at establishing a clear principle whereby “tracking must be the exception, not the rule”.

“The IDFA should not only be restricted, but permanently deleted,” he said.

© Thomson Reuters 2020

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