NPCI responds to WhatsApp Payments concern, JioPhone available on Amazon India, Airtel Rs 9 recharge plan, and more: Daily News Wrap

Here are the top news stories of the day.

  • Published: February 16, 2018 9:29 PM IST

It’s Friday and probably that’s the reason for a calm day in the world of tech. But that does not mean it was short on news. National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI) responded to concerns of Paytm regarding WhatsApp Payments saying “it will get public launch only after supporting interoperability”.

In other news, Microsoft is adding a new mode that will eliminate micro-latencies and add more power at the sacrifice of power efficiency. Google just showed how it sealed a licensing deal with Getty Images by eliminating ‘View Image’ and ‘Search by Image’ option from Google Image Search. Meanwhile, Apple confirmed an incoming fix for iOS bug while Airtel launched the cheapest one-day tariff pack. Here is all the major tech news that you need to know.

NPCI on WhatsApp payments

WhatsApp Payments has just started rolling out on a test basis in India, but the service is already finding itself logging heads with others. Paytm recently raised concerns about the implementation of UPI-based payments interface by WhatsApp and said that it violates fundamental principles laid out by NPCI.

Now, NPCI has responded to the concerns by saying that WhatsApp Payments beta launch is limited to a user base of 1 million and has a low per transaction limit. It says four banks will join the multi-bank BHIM UPI model in phases (in the coming weeks) and full feature product shall be released after the beta test is successful. The most important point here is that WhatsApp Payments will be permissible for public launch only when it adheres to basic interoperability guidelines.

Windows 10 Getting ‘Ultimate Performance’ Scheme

Microsoft Windows 10 Insider build 17101 has a new feature that will allow users to add performance to their system. After introducing Game Mode with Windows 10 previously, Microsoft has added a new feature called “Ultimate Performance” power mode within the operating system. The feature is basically designed for high-end PCs and gaming machines.

Microsoft’s Brandon LeBlanc says the new power scheme will eliminate micro-latencies associated with fine-grained power management techniques. Windows currently defaults to balanced power scheme which offers a balance between power consumption and performance of the device. The build also brings improved emoji, updates to Windows app permissions, and other small improvements and bug fixes.

Google makes it harder to steal photos from Google Images

Google recently signed a licensing deal with Getty Images and the major implication of the deal has been ending the View Image and Search by Image features within Google Image search. Google says this move will help reduce copyright infringement through the popular search engine.

Now, when someone makes Google Image search, they will be presented with Visit, Save, View Saved and Share options as opposed to ‘View Image’ option which lived between Visit and Save tabs. Another change is that disclaimer pertaining to copyright infringement is more prominent than in the past. These could well be in response to Google’s settlement with Getty Images.

Apple confirms a Fix for Telugu character crash bug is coming

Apple’s iOS 11.2.5 was found to have a weird bug that could crash any messaging app upon receiving a string of Telugu characters. The bug was found to affect only devices running iOS 11.2.5 or older and not the ones running iOS 11.3 public beta. Now Apple has confirmed that it is working on a fix for the same.

Apple seems to have the fix ready in the form of iOS 11.3 but it says that actual fix will arrive even before the release of iOS 11.3. The bug involves sending a Telugu character to iOS devices and it would immediately crash Apple’s Springboard. The only way to regain access to messaging apps including iMessage, Facebook Messenger and WhatsApp by asking a friend to send you a message and then delete the thread containing the Indian character.

JioPhone on Amazon India

Reliance Jio has started selling the JioPhone, its 4G feature phone officially on Amazon India. The feature phone is priced at Rs 1,500 and customers will be eligible for cashback over the next three years. Amazon India says it will deliver the device to mentioned address and customers need to activate the device by visiting nearest Jio store.

The JioPhone is a smart 4G feature phone that comes bundled with an assistant and also supports Google Assistant. The feature phone runs KaiOS and it recently received the standalone Facebook app. Jio is estimated to have sold over 6 million of them since its launch and IDC says Reliance is now the leading feature phone brand in the country.

Walmart in talks to buy more than 40 percent stake in Flipkart

Walmart wants to take its fight with Amazon to India. The Arkansas-based retail giant is planning to buy more than 40 percent stake in Flipkart, a leader in e-commerce and rival to Amazon India. The largest operator of brick-and-mortar stores globally plans to buy existing and new shares of Flipkart and diligence is expected to begin next week.

The deal would see Flipkart valued at more than $12 billion, the price SoftBank offered to buy one-fifth of the firm last year. Flipkart’s currents include Tiger Global Management, eBay Inc, China’s Tencent and Microsoft Corporation.

Airtel Rs 9 pack offers unlimited calls, 100MB data for a day

Airtel is just not ready to concede to Reliance Jio in their ongoing tariff war. The leading telecom operator in the country has announced new Rs 9 tariff plan, which is now the cheapest one-day voice and data plans available in the market.

With the recharge of Rs 9, Airtel prepaid users will get unlimited local, STD and roaming calls for one day. The pack also gives 100 SMS and 100MB of mobile data. In comparison, Reliance Jio’s plans start at Rs 19 and it offers unlimited calls, 20 SMS, and 150MB of data for one day.

  • Published Date: February 16, 2018 9:29 PM IST