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Indian Navy Signs Deal With Tata Power SED For Portable Diver Detection Sonar General

Tata Power Strategic Engineering Division will supply the Indian Navy with Portable Diver Detection Sonar or the PDDS, which will enhance its underwater surveillance capability. Fitted on ships, the PDDS detect and track underwater threats, and allow the Navy take preventive measure against possible damage to lives or property. The move is seen as a boost for the government's 'Make in India' initiative. The Indian Navy entered the contract with Tata Power SED under the 'Buy and Make' category, the according to the Defence Ministry. This deal is in line with the government's 'Make in India' initiative for the defence sector, which aims to boost indigenous procurement of defence supplies. The company in a statement said the order for the sonars is one of the largest in the world market. "This is the second contract to be signed by the Indian Navy under the 'Buy and Make (Indian)' category to boost government's defence indigenisation effort," the defence ministry said in a statement. Earlier this year, the Indian Navy signed a contract for the supply of Surface Surveillance Radar for warships. 

(NDTV, Nov 17, 2020)

Smart speakers shipment in India likely to cross 7.5 lakh units in 2020, Amazon Echo leads: Report General

Shipment of smart speakers in India is expected to cross 7.5 lakh units this year with consumers adopting smart technologies for their homes, according to a research report released by Techarc on Monday. Amazon Echo led the smart speaker market with 91 per cent share in July-September 2020. It was followed by Xiaomi with 7 per cent share and Google with 2 per cent share, the report said. As Indian homes go more for smart technologies, voice-controlled devices like a smart speaker have an increasingly important role to play, Techarc founder and chief analyst Faisal Kawoosa said in a statement. "Amazon has nurtured the ecosystem well by encouraging a wide choice of apps (skills) to be developed giving users a lot of engaging content for using the device which has made Echo devices very popular,” he added. According to the report, the trend of buying smart speakers with display is on the rise. "In the quarter July-September 2020, shipments of smart speakers with display rose by 87 per cent compared to the previous quarter," the report said. The average selling price of a smart speaker for January-September period was Rs 5,560 which is expected to go high as the proportion of display-enabled devices increases in the overall shipments. For July-September, the average selling price was Rs 6,100, the report said.

(ET, Nov 17, 2020)

Expansion of PLI Scheme to Ten More Sectors Policy

The Union Cabinet has given its approval to introduce the Production-Linked Incentive (PLI) Scheme in 10 more sectors for enhancing India’s manufacturing capabilities and exports (Atmanirbhar Bharat). Earlier, the government had announced a production linked incentive or PLI scheme for medical devices, mobile phones and specified active pharmaceutical ingredients, with a proposed outlay of Rs. 51,311 crore.  PLI Scheme: A scheme that aims to give companies incentives on incremental sales from products manufactured in domestic units. The scheme invites foreign companies to set units in India, however, it also aims to encourage local companies to set up or expand existing manufacturing units.  Expansion of PLI Scheme to Ten More Sectors:    The ten sectors include food processing, telecom, electronics, textiles, specialty steel, automobiles and auto components, solar photo-voltaic modules and white goods such as air conditioners and LEDs.  The sectors had been identified on the basis of their potential to create jobs and make India self-reliant. The PLI scheme for these ten sectors will be operational for five years with a total estimated outlay of Rs 1.45 lakh crore. The PLI scheme will be implemented by the concerned ministries/departments.Savings from one PLI scheme of an approved sector can be utilized to fund another sector.The scheme for these sectors will be in addition to the PLI schemes for mobile phones and allied equipment manufacturing, pharmaceutical ingredients and medical devices. Several more pharmaceutical products have been brought under the aegis of the PLI scheme, including complex generics, anti-cancer and diabetic drugs, in-vitro diagnostic devices and special empty capsules.  Push to Digital Economy: India is expected to have a USD 1 trillion digital economy by 2025. Additionally, the Government's push for data localization, Internet of Things, projects such as Smart City and Digital India are expected to increase the demand for electronic products.  Increase Exports: The Indian pharmaceutical industry is the third largest in the world by volume and 14th largest in terms of value. It contributes 3.5% of the total drugs and medicines exported globally. India is the world's second largest steel producer in the world. It is a net exporter of finished steel. A PLI scheme in Specialty Steel will help in enhancing manufacturing capabilities for value added steel leading to increase in total exports. Specialty steel is made by adding various elements to iron, to achieve various properties, such as heat resistance, hardness, and corrosion resistance.  Secure Telecom Infrastructure: Telecom equipment forms a critical and strategic element of building a secured telecom infrastructure and India aspires to become a major original equipment manufacturer of telecom and networking products.  Doubling Farmers’ Income: The growth of the processed food industry leads to better price for farmers and reduces high levels of wastage.  


Haier India’s #LightUpAHeart Digital Film General

Haier, the Home Appliances & Consumer Electronics brand today launched its new digital film #LightUpAHeart, that celebrates the life of office people who work closely together but have drifted apart this Diwali due to remote office and work from home setups. The digital film seeks to play a vital role in nurturing office relationships and rekindle Diwali festivities with colleagues who despite efforts are not able to meet and celebrate the festival of lights together this year. Every year offices are decked up for the festival of Diwali - from lit up buildings to colourful Rangolis on the floor. To lighten the mood, the entire office can be seen playing games and enjoying good food. People are seen having a cheerful time with their colleagues as they are dressed up in ethnic attires. However, this year Diwali is going to be a different affair for office goers. The global pandemic has had far-reaching implications on people who are working in isolation from their homes and remote places. Through its Diwali campaign, Haier wants to highlight how offices become a second home for office goers and how bonds transcend professional ties to become personal. Storyboard: 

(Business World, Nov 12, 2020)

A new government regulation could halt the streaming services dream run in India General

Digital streaming platforms have had a dream run in India. But that might soon change. The Indian government yesterday (Nov. 11) announced that all digital news, audio, and visual content platforms would now be under the information & broadcasting (I&B) ministry’s jurisdiction. So far, over-the-top (OTT) platforms such as Netflix, Amazon Prime, and Disney+ Hostar were under the purview of India’s information technology and electronics ministry. This change may seem like a technicality but raises concerns over censorship in the name of content regulation. “The new notification will have a major impact on the OTT business in India, as prior to this content hosting platforms/intermediaries were not required to adhere to any certification standards or quotes, or come under the scrutiny of any government body,” said Kazim Rizvi, founding director of The Dialogue, a New Delhi-based public policy think tank. For now, though, the official government notification only grants the I&B ministry administrative jurisdiction over digital platforms. But observers worry that the change in jurisdiction could be an ominous sign of things to come.

(Quartz India, Nov 12, 2020)

Electronics design firm Syrma to merge with SGS Tekniks to create Rs 1,200-cr entity General

Syrma Technology and SGS Tekniks on Wednesday announced a merger agreement to further strengthen their design and manufacturing capabilities for global and domestic OEMs. The cash cum stock merger will see the creation of Syrma SGS Technologies with a combined turnover of over Rs.1000 crores, with 55% revenues coming from exports primarily to USA and Europe. The deal was supported through a Private Equity investment by GEF. "The current revenue of Syrma is over Rs 550 crore, post the merger we will have a combined revenue of Rs 1000 crore," said Sandeep Tandon, Managing Director, Syrma Technology. "We are projecting growth between 25% to 30% year-on-year  and by 2021 we aim to achieve Rs 1200 crore in revenue." Tandon said that with the Indian EMS market is growing at a CAGR of over 25%, there is an increase in opportunity to outsource manufacturing in consumer electronics, home appliance, mobile phones, and so on.  “Application areas such as medical electronics and defence electronics are seeing a surge leading to growth in the overall electronics sector. With Government recently announcing incentive schemes like PLI, Specs, and EMC 2.0, for developing the ecosystem, there is a bigger need for technological advancement in the EMS sector," Tandon said. Further, there is huge opportunity to add IoT to a wide range of products.

(ET, Nov 11, 2020)

Consumer electronics retailers have only grown in September, October: Retailers Association of India General

Consumer electronics and appliance retailers are the only ones who have grown sales in September and October over the same period last year, while retailers of other categories continue to report lower sales even though there is a month-on-month sequential recovery, says a latest survey by Retailers Association of India (RAI). The country’s apex retail trade body said sales of consumer electronics retailers went up by 2% in September and 8% in October as compared to same periods of last year. Consumer electronics companies like LG, Samsung, Sony, Lenovo and Apple have reported their best sales ever in October in India and a recovery of consumer demand in July-September with Indian households continuing to buy appliances like refrigerators, washing machines and dishwashers which helps them to automate daily chores and televisions for home entertainment. Sales of laptop, tablets and smartphones have been brisk too due to work and study from home. RAI reported that at an overall level, retailers said sales have declined by 31% year-on-year in October from a decline of 50% in July-September period and 78% decline April-June quarter. Kumar Rajagopalan, CEO at RAI, said the industry is beginning to see green shoots of recovery with a steady month-on-month improvement for businesses.

(ET, Nov 11, 2020)

Samsung launches 43-inch rotating TV ‘Sero’ in India General

Samsung on Wednesday expanded its lifestyle TV range in India with the launch of ‘Sero’ — the world’s first mobile optimised TV that rotates between horizontal and vertical orientations at the flick of a button. The ‘Sero’ will be available in 43-inch screen size with navy-blue bezel design. The lifestyle TV is priced at Rs 1,24,990 and will be available exclusively at Reliance Digital stores. “With consumers now using their TVs in different ways than ever before, including scrolling through social media, watching the latest viral videos or binge watching their favourite OTT shows, we wanted to redefine their content viewing experience by moving it to a bigger screen,” said Raju Pullan, Senior Vice President, Consumer Electronics Business, Samsung India. The ‘Sero’ — named for the Korean word for ‘vertical’ — is geared toward a younger social media generation with an interest in viewing experiences such as the ones found on their mobile devices. The TV uses AI to upscale content to 4K resolution, so users can stream content in spectacular detail, regardless of the source and comes with 60W front-firing speakers. It comes with Portrait Mode for consumers to choose from various stylish vertical backgrounds to enhance their home. The Ambient Mode+ on the TV allows users to display useful information or blend the TV into its surroundings, making the big blank screen a thing of the past.

(The Indian Express, Nov 11, 2020)

India PC market clocks 9.2% growth to 3.4 million units in September quarter: IDC General

E-learning and remote working needs have helped the Indian PC market log its biggest quarter in seven years with shipment rising 9.2 per cent year-on-year to 3.4 million units in July-September, as per research firm IDC. The shipment - which includes desktops, notebooks and workstations - stood at 3.1 million units in the third quarter of 2019. "(About) 3.4 million units (were) shipped during the quarter, as the demand for e-learning and remote working remained strong, resulting in Q3 2020 being the biggest quarter in the last seven years in India," IDC said on Tuesday. Although the commercial segment had very few government and education projects, the consumer segment recorded its biggest quarter ever with 2 million shipments, growing 41.7 per cent year-on-year and 167.2 per cent from the previous quarter, it added. The demand for notebooks remains much higher than the current supply, which is likely to lead to another strong quarter of shipments in October-December, it said. HP Inc retained the top position in the overall PC market with a share of 28.2 per cent in September 2020 quarter, followed by Lenovo (21.7 per cent), Dell Technologies (21.3 per cent), Acer Group (9.5 per cent) and Asus (7.5 per cent).

(ET, Nov 10, 2020)

A New Framework for a Secure Digital India IT

Across the globe, governments are putting national security considerations at the centerstage of their regulatory interventions. These regulations cover domains that in recent years have included non-traditional security concerns. In the area of investments, for example, many countries have modified their rules, two and a half decades since the establishment of the global trade order under the aegis of the World Trade Organization. Globally, foreign investments worth more than US$ 150 billion have either been blocked or withdrawn for national security reasons in the period from 2016 to September 2019. For instance, the president of the United States (US) prohibited the proposed takeover of chipmaker Qualcomm by Singapore-based Broadcom for national security reasons. More recently, such national-security compulsions have guided rule-making in the area of digitalisation. The Indian government, for example, has banned more than 150 China-origin applications due to security concerns. In the US, the president issued in August this year, two executive orders to restrict transactions by US users and entities with ByteDance and Tencent, both China-owned corporations, which own the popular social media platforms, TikTok and WeChat. Other notable instances of such actions include Russia’s barring of the use of LinkedIn in 2016 and the US’ ban on Russian security company, Kaspersky.[8]

(ORF, Nov 10, 2020)

The long read: India’s tender prices tumble, despite Discom delays General

The Indian solar market has proven attractive to international solar players in recent years. This interest, it seems, has continued despite of the impacts of the Covid-19 pandemic. “Even during a lockdown, India finalized [solar] bids worth 12 GW,” Power Minister RK Singh recently said. According to Sourya Choudhary, head of the utilities business at Amp Energy, international interest in the Indian market and highly competitive tender outcomes have been driven by a confluence of factors. “The sustained interest from domestic as well as global players is a result of … [the] immense market size of National Solar Mission [100 GW solar by 2022] along with defined timelines to achieve that, increased focus both domestically as well as globally to move into renewables, availability of lower-cost growth capital, and muted returns in other geographies offering better opportunity cost.” Shantanu Jaiswal, head of India research, and Rohit Gadre, an associate at BloombergNEF, said that new entrants have bid aggressively at recent auctions because they want to gain experience developing standalone solar projects in India. They aim to do this before the country shifts completely to more complex auctions that require the integration of solar with wind and or storage. They said that their analysis shows that by the late 2020s, solar paired with battery storage will have a lower levelized cost of energy (LCOE) than new-build coal.

(PV Magazine, Nov 10, 2020)

Taiwan team agrees to invest in YSR Electronics Manufacturing Cluster in Andhra Pradesh General

Taipei Economic and Cultural Centre (TECC), Chennai, Director General Ben Wang, leading a delegation of representatives of several Taiwanese firms, participated in the Taiwan-AP business roundtable held under the chairmanship of Industries Minister Mekapati Goutham Reddy here on Friday.  Taiwanese companies such as Foxlink, Greentech Industries, Apache Footwear, Intelligent SEZ, Foxconn, Applied Materials and PSA Walsin participated. Underscoring the need for close ties between India and Taiwan, the minister said that AP can play a key role in strengthening the relations.  The Industries Minister assured to set up a dedicated Taiwan Desk under the aegis of YSR AP ONE business enablement centre under the Industries department and nominate a special representative of AP in Taiwan to coordinate areas of mutual interest. Ben Wang agreed to extend support for the development of YSR Electronics Manufacturing Cluster at Kopparthy in Kadapa district.The roundtable also focussed on attracting electronic component manufacturers to AP, thereby enhancing value addition and deepening the industry ecosystem.  The minister mooted creation of a hi-tech hub for manufacturing bicycles and e-bikes catering for domestic as well as export markets. A joint statement by Ben Wang and Goutham Reddy identified five key areas of collaboration. Later in the day, Ben Wang called on Chief Minister YS Jagan Mohan Reddy. During the meeting, areas of mutual collaboration were identified for the benefit of the State. 

(Indian Express, Nov 07, 2020)

Ather Energy Raises $35 Million In Series D Funding Led By Sachin Bansal General

  • Hero MotoCorp also invested $12 million
  • Ather Energy will open nine new markets – Pune, Ahmedabad, Mumbai, Delhi, Coimbatore, Kochi, Kozhikode and Kolkata in the coming days, and install Ather Grid in these areas

Ather Energy said that it has raised an investment of $35 million in its latest round of Series D funding. This funding was led by Sachin Bansal’s $23 million. Hero MotoCorp also invested $12 million as a part of the Series D round in Ather Energy. The company said in a statement that this round of investment will allow Ather Energy to accelerate its expansion plans and speed up deliveries of Ather 450X.

It also said that Ather Energy will open nine new markets – Pune, Ahmedabad, Mumbai, Delhi, Coimbatore, Kochi, Kozhikode and Kolkata in the coming days, and install Ather Grid in these areas. The statement added that the continued investment by the existing investors is a manifestation of confidence in the brand and the sector.

Bansal said that Ather Energy has set a new benchmark for intelligent electric bikes in the Indian automobile industry. Its new product line and expansion plans across the country will make EVs a part of the Indian landscape.

New manufacturing facility in Hosur


Tarun Mehta, co-founder and CEO, Ather Energy, said that after the successful launch of our new product line, the company is looking forward to delivering the vehicles and seeing them across all cities. The pandemic has changed the landscape of personal transport and the company hopes that high-performance alternatives available people will choose electric vehicles for their daily commute.

The company also said that it is moving to a new manufacturing facility in Hosur, Tamil Nadu. It will be designed to produce up to one million vehicles a year.

In July, it had raised Rs 840 Million (Rs 84 Crore) from one of world’s largest two-wheeler maker Hero MotoCorp. The funding was raised during series C round.

According to a recent report by Report Linker, India electric vehicle ecosystem market will reach a value of $216.3 billion by 2030. The EV market is anticipated, as per the report, to grow at a robust CAGR of 43.13 per cent during the forecast period from 2019 to 2030. Additionally, installation of charging infrastructure is projected to grow at a CAGR of 42.38 per cent.

Source: https://www.electronicsb2b.com/

Google, Walmart hit by India's move to limit some digital payments players Telecom

Global tech giant Google on Friday criticised India's move to cap the share of transactions some companies within the country's digital payments space can account for, saying it would hinder the nation's burgeoning digital payments economy. Google's criticism came after India's flagship payments processor the National Payments Corp of India (NPCI) on Thursday said third-party payments apps, from Jan. 1, will not be allowed to process more than 30% of the total volume of transactions on state-backed United Payments Interface (UPI) framework, which facilitates seamless peer-to-peer money transfers. The move will likely stymie the growth of payments services offered by Facebook, Alphabet's Google and Walmart, while boosting the likes of Reliance's Jio Payments Bank and SoftBank-backed Paytm, which are armed with bank permits. More than 2.07 billion UPI transactions were processed in October, according to NPCI, with Walmart's PhonePe accounting for just over 40% of those transactions. Google Pay was a close second, with rivals like Paytm and dozens of others splitting the remaining 20% share.

(ET, Nov 07, 2020)

Rooftop solar market in 2020 General

Rooftop solar has been the fastest growing sub-sector in clean energy lately, with a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 47% between 2016 and 2019. As of December 31, 2019, total installations in India’s commercial and industrial (C&I) rooftop solar segment reached about 3,966 MW, as per a report by The Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis (Ieefa).  India has an ambitious target of achieving 40 GW of installed rooftop solar capacity by 2022. Currently, rooftop solar segment is lagging with total installations of 4.6 GW by the end of March 2020, which is way off the target of 40 GW by 2022.  With just 12% of the target achieved, the industry has been grappling with abolishment of net-metering policies across states. The Covid-19 pandemic added to the woes. The industry has suffered a significant setback in terms of project delays, shortage of labor, postponement of capex plans, uncertainty over import duty on panels, etc. 

(PV Magazine, Nov 06, 2020)

India's festive season drives up sales of Samsung's consumer electronics General

Samsung Electronics Copany is seeing a big surge in consumer appliance sales during India's festive season, a senior company executive said, helped by pent-up demand following a nationwide lockdown to battle the coronavirus pandemic. A slew of new launches across categories like televisions, refrigerators, and washing machines as well as financing schemes have buoyed sales, said Raju Pullan, senior vice president for consumer electronics at Samsung India. "We're seeing 32% growth (year-on-year) across televisions, refrigerators, washing machines and microwaves," Pullan told Reuters on Thursday. The demand uptick is good news for the Indian economy, which contracted by 23.9% in April-June during a stringent lockdown to slow the spread of the pandemic.  Indians typically make big-ticket purchases of everything from gold to cars and electronics during the country's festive season, which typically begins around October and lasts until the end of the year. While the value of overall sales last month was much higher in cities like Delhi and Mumbai, sales growth in smaller towns outpaced the bigger cities, Pullan said. Samsung also witnessed a shift in consumer behaviour with growing purchases of pricey, high-end televisions. "Consumers are spending more time at home, and are not able to venture out for entertainment," said Pullan. "That's leading to some quality purchases."

(Business Today, Nov 06, 2020)

Electric vehicle adoption in India will be led by three-wheelers IT

A joint research by KPMG and the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) expects India to see a gradual, phased adoption of electric vehicles. The market penetration will be the fastest in the three-wheeler (3W) segment, followed by electric buses, two-wheelers and then passenger taxis. The report expects electric vehicles to account for 65-75% of new sales in the three-wheeler (3W) segment and 25-35% in two-wheeler (2W) in 2030. Intra-city transport buses will see 25-40% penetration. However, the adoption in passenger 4W segment will lag, with 10-15% penetration in personal cars and 20-30% in the commercial segment (electric vehicles for shared transport, including by taxi aggregators such as Ola and Uber). The growth of electric four-wheelers will be restricted by a limited number of products, high prices, insufficient battery promise, low performance, and an underdeveloped charging ecosystem. Mainstream players are likely to remain focused on internal combustion engine (ICE)-powered cars for the next few years, which will delay the adoption of electric cars.  Batteries account for around 50% of the EV cost. As the nation meets its Li-ion cell requirements mostly from China, government thinktank NITI Aayog is mulling a phased manufacturing programme to set up large-scale export-competitive integrated battery and cell manufacturing gigaplants in India.

(PV Magazine, Nov 05, 2020)

PV powered desalination is “the most competitive design General

Almost 97% of our planet’s water is found in oceans, yet desalinated saltwater accounts for only 1% of drinking water worldwide, according to the International Water Association. One reason for this has been the high energy requirements, and thus high cost, of desalination. But improved technologies, as well as the need for water in arid regions, have led to increasing development of both thermal and renewables powered desalination. One of the largest projects announced to date is the Chtouka Ait Baha, planned in the Souss Massa region of Morocco. The plant will have a daily capacity to produce 275,000 cubic meters of water, which could be extended to 400,000 before 2030. A group of scientists led by the French Alternative Energies and Atomic Energy Commission took the specifications from the Chtouka Ait Baha project as the basis for a case study comparing available technologies for desalination. The study compared photovoltaics, concentrating solar power (CSP), and desalination powered by a (mainly fossil fuel) grid, with further analysis on the possibility of integrating energy storage as well.

(PV Magazine, Nov 05, 2020)

IoT: The Growth Engine For The Electronic Component Market General

In the past few years, the influence of the Internet of Things (IoT) has been felt in almost every sector. Now, its large scale impact is slowly being seen with countless benefits and opportunities across various industries such as smart homes, healthcare, power, agriculture, etc. The adoption of IoT in the industrial space is also increasing as connected devices provide more efficiency and convenience in manufacturing and industrial processes. The innovations in the manufacturing industry, and the advent of Industry 4.0, have also contributed to the growth of the IoT market.

According to Verified Market Research, the global Internet of Things market (IoT market) size was valued at US$ 212.1 billion in 2018 and is expected to witness a growth of 25.68 per cent from 2019 to 2026. By then, it is expected to reach a figure of US$ 1,319.08 billion. Cisco, the world’s largest manufacturer of data communications networking equipment, estimates that as many as 50 billion devices of all types, shapes and sizes will be wirelessly connected to the Internet by the end of 2020.

Source: https://www.electronicsb2b.com/

Microsoft to drive public sector on digital path: India head IT

Microsoft on Friday said it is committed to partnering with the public sector in India to enable a technology-led transformation and build a strong digital skilling ecosystem that empowers everyone to benefit from technology. Sharing its commitment to partner with the public sector ecosystem in the country, with the technology and tools required to accelerate digital success, the company said an inclusive economic recovery requires innovation and a disruptive pace. “The public sector has been using technology to not only rebound from the crisis, but also emerge at the forefront of digital transformation in India. Cloud and AI are playing a central role in reshaping education, health, public services, MSME and agriculture,” Anant Maheshwari, President, Microsoft India, said during the online ‘Digital Governance Cloud & AI Summit’. According to Ajay Sawhney, Secretary, Ministry of Electronics and IT, the last few months have highlighted the importance of digital systems. “The government is looking to create collaborative mechanisms with the private sector to participate in problem solving by using new technologies. We are excited about the potential of data analytics and AI technologies,” Sawhney said during the virtual event.

(The Rahnuma Daily, Nov 03, 2020)

Tata Group to invest Rs.5,000 cr to set up phone component plant for Apple Telecom

The Tata Group is investing ₹5,000 crore to set up a phone component manufacturing plant at the industrial complex in Hosur, Tamil Nadu. The new company, Tata Electronics, has been allotted 500 acres by TIDCO(Tamil Nadu Industrial Development Corporation), and the bhoomi puja was performed on Tuesday. The investment will be scaled up depending on the level of sourcing from the facility and could even touch ₹8,000 crore. Neither the Tata Group nor the Tamil Nadu government confirm the development, but reliable sources said the unit will be manufacturing components for Apple, which is looking to diversify its sourcing base from China. Foxconn is already manufacturing handsets, including iPhone 11, for Apple at its facility in Sriperumbudur, outside Chennai. Titan Co Ltd’s precision engineering division, Titan Engineering and Automation Ltd (TEAL), will provide the expertise for this project. The new unit will have a staff strength of 18,000 by October 2021 and 90 per cent of it will be women. The Tata Group, it appears, is taking advantage of the productivity-linked incentive scheme that the Modi government has announced to deepen India’s electronics manufacturing base including achieving self-sufficiency in manufacturing of mobile handsets.

(BusinessLine, Oct 28, 2020)

BECA : The deal that will make Indian missiles deadlier has finally been signed General

The Basic Exchange and Cooperation Agreement for Geo-Spatial Cooperation or BECA, long in the making, has finally been signed by India and the US. The agreement will enable India to gain access to extremely accurate geo-spatial data. This is going to have major implications for a range of military aspects, such as giving Indian missiles a killer edge. Here are some key things about the agreement that what it will bring about. BECA is the last of the three basic pacts that America signs with close partners. The pact basically facilitates interoperability of forces and exchange of sensitive and classified information. The other two pacts enable sharing of military logistics and secure communications. The geospatial information that will be shared under BECA include nautical and aeronautical charts. Supplemented by highly accurate US satellites, this geospatial information can help in navigation and, more importantly, in targeting military assets.

(Indian Defence News, Oct 27, 2020)

Sahasra to invest Rs 350 crore over 4 Years Telecom

Indian electronics parts maker Sahasra has earmarked an investment of Rs 350 crore over the next four years for assembling mobile phone memory chipsets, laptop hard drives and motherboards in India with two new manufacturing facilities coming up in Rajasthan and UP. The integrated circuit (IC) packaging plant for memory, which is being set up in Bhiwadi, Rajasthan will entail an investment of Rs 140 crore to produce 40 million ICs annually and is approved to receive incentives by the central government under the production-linked incentive scheme, Sahasra group managing director Amrit Manwani told ET exclusively. Until now this was the domain of US, Japan and Taiwan where fabs would make semiconductor wafers, which would be packaged by the packaging companies,” he said. “We are getting into the packaging business. Once we have this ecosystem in the country, the next step would be to set up a fab factory in India.” The company is aiming to scale up to 100 million IC units annually, Manwani said, and is already in dialogue with major handset manufacturers including Foxconn, Wistron, Lava, Dixon, Micromax and Reliance Jio for supplying memory.

(ET, Oct 26, 2020)

India’s 2020 Festive Season will generate $6.5 Billion in online sales General

Google’s Mobility Report indicates how disruptive the impact of Covid-19 and the ensuing lockdown was on population movement. Retail- and recreation-related mobility declined by 90% in metro areas for the month of April; the effect on tier I and tier II cities was slightly less severe, at 86% and 80%, respectively. This also meant that there were job losses, and the demand for nondiscretionary spending took a back seat. Fast-forward to September, and we notice a marked improvement, with mobility recovering by at least 40% for all cities, with tier 2 cities leading the charts. Of course, it is still quite far away from the level of movement before the pandemic, but it is undoubtedly better and points at slow resurgence in economic activities. While we are optimistic about the online channels doing well during this holiday season, some of it will come at the expense of offline retail.  The current crisis has transformed buying behavior, with general averseness to go out; consumers have latched on to online channels. The inhibitions of buying online are gone, and a transformation that would have taken two years has happened in five months. Indian economic contraction will be more severe than previously anticipated, with the latest forecast projecting a decline of 10.3% in GDP for 2020 compared to the forecasted decline of 4.5% released in June. We also expect an increase in share of purchase from tier 2 and 3 cities due to migration of

(Forbes, Oct 23, 2020)

India should remove Chinese firms Huawei, ZTE from 5G & other ICT networks, US official says IT

A official in the Donald Trump administration has sought to push India to remove Chinese firms Huawei and ZTE from India’s upcoming 5G trials and other Information and Communication Technology (ICT) networks as the US and India explore ways to improve commercial ties in the sector. “I would encourage the Government of India to review the risk to India’s communications networks to undertake appropriate measures to remove and exclude equipment from Huawei, ZTE, and other untrusted vendors from India’s 5G networks and broader ICT infrastructure,” said Greg Kalbaugh. He is the deputy undersecretary for policy at the International Trade Administration, an agency functioning under the US Department of Commerce.  Amid border tensions with Beijing, India is reportedly planning to shut out both Huawei and ZTE from the 5G trials. Speaking at an online event organised by the US India Business Council (USIBC), an advocacy group, Thursday Kalbaugh said vendors from China cannot be trusted since they must comply with their government. “As India, the United States and many other countries have already experienced, utilising technologies from untrusted vendors that are subject to the control of the government of China is an unacceptable risk,” he said.

(The Print, Oct 23, 2020)

Global Automated Test Equipment Market To Be Valued At $4.82 Billion By 2025: Research And Markets IT

The global automated test equipment market was valued at $1.1 billion in 2019 and is expected to be valued at $4.82 billion by 2025 as per a report by Research And Markets. It added that it will grow at a CAGR of 3.6 per cent. The growth of the automated test equipment industry is due to its escalating demand in electronic manufacturing sector for examining systems as well as electronic components for defects during production of components. It also helps in identification and testing of errors in integrated circuits, chip systems, and wafer testing. This, in turn, will boost the market trends over the coming years. The advent of next-gen devices will further spur the market expansion over the years to come. The report said that the thriving vehicle sector and commercialization of IoT activities will further boost the scope of the business over the forecast timeline. North American sub-continent will be the major regional revenue contributor towards the overall market during 2019-2025. The regional market growth is attributed to the slew of product applications in aerospace and defence sectors.

(Electronics B2B.com, Oct 23, 2020)

Bayesian algorithm to reduce LCOE of bifacial projects General

Researchers at Germany's Helmholtz-Zentrum Berlin (HZB) have developed an illumination model for the deployment of bifacial solar panels, which they claim can help to reduce the levelized cost of energy (LCOE) in large-scale PV projects. The proposed model is based on the Bayesian optimization method. The approach is based on Bayes' theorem, which is a simple mathematical formula that can be used to calculate conditional probabilities and update existing beliefs based on the arrival of new, relevant evidence.  The scientists said the model covers a range of parameters that influence the LCOE of bifacial plants, including PV components, land costs, the distance between modules, inclination angles, albedo, and weather conditions. The scientists applied the algorithm to calculate the annual power yield of four solar plants at three locations near Seattle (warm-temperate Mediterranean climate), Dallas (humid subtropical climate), in the Mojave Desert (hot desert climate), and Havana, Cuba (tropical climate). The scientists said the model covers a range of parameters that influence the LCOE of bifacial plants, including PV components, land costs, the distance between modules, inclination angles, albedo, and weather conditions. The scientists applied the algorithm to calculate the annual power yield of four solar plants at three locations near Seattle (warm-temperate Mediterranean climate), Dallas (humid subtropical climate), in the Mojave Desert (hot desert climate), and Havana, Cuba (tropical climate).

(PV Magazine, Oct 23, 2020)

Manufacturing a green solar bounce in India General

: India has set an ambitious target of reaching 450 GW of renewables capacity by 2030, most of which is expected to come from new solar deployment. The country now has the challenge of meeting its renewables target whilst aligning with Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s goal to build a ‘Self-Reliant India’. This ambition is driving the government’s shift in procurement strategy to restrict imports and encourage domestic manufacturing. Some commentators have observed that going ‘cold turkey’ on imports is the best way to develop indigenous capabilities. In the wake of the Covid crisis, economies the world over are talking about ‘building back better’ and the ‘green bounce’; essentially, seeing the need to rebuild their economies as an opportunity to develop low-carbon power and zero-emission transport. As far as renewable energy is concerned, India has a domestic manufacturing capability for wind turbines, but it currently depends on imports for most of its solar equipment. There is an urgent need to grow solar capacity to boost access to clean energy, electrify transport and deliver wider benefits for society. In FY 2019-20, India imported INR 128 billion ($1.7 billion) of solar cells and modules, with nearly 80% coming from China. The question is, with no indigenous solar manufacturing to speak of, and with aspirations to become a giga-scale manufacturing centre, how can the country accelerate from zero to INR 128 billion? Going ‘cold turkey’ is probably not the answer, but manufacturing under license might be.

(PV Magazine, Oct 23, 2020)

Samsung Readies Retail Stores across 1,000 Cities for Hassle-free Festive Shopping Experience; Announces Exciting Finance Offers General

Samsung, India’s largest and most trusted consumer electronics brand, has prepared its neighborhood retail stores across 1,000 cities in India for the festive season, providing consumers a safe and hassle-free shopping experience as they venture out to buy Samsung televisions and other digital appliances. To make the festive purchase more convenient, Samsung is also bringing attractive never seen before financing offers to its retail stores. The new consumer financing offers include an industry first easy finance options under My Samsung My Combo scheme that will enable consumers to purchase multiple Samsung products under one single EMI and do away with the hassle of managing multiple EMIs. Consumers availing this finance scheme can purchase products with EMIs starting as low as – INR 1,790 for two products, INR 2,490 for three products and INR 3,390 for four products. To gear up its retail stores for the festive season, the Company has trained over 11,000 of its sales staff across the country on Samsung’s exciting new range of consumer electronics products that have been launched ahead of the festive season as well as the exciting new finance schemes on offer.

(Samsung Newsroom India, Oct 23, 2020)

Govt. warns Twitter over 'misrepresentation of India's map’ General

The government has shot off a stern letter to Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey, conveying its strong disapproval over misrepresentation of the Indian map. In a strongly-worded letter, Electronics & IT Ministry Secretary, Ajay Sawhney has warned the platform that such attempts not only bring disrepute to the company but also raises questions about its neutrality and fairness as an intermediary. A major controversy erupted after Twitter India showed Jammu and Kashmir as part of Peoples Republic of China in the timelines. A location tag of a live video posted on October 18 by national security analyst Nitin Gokhale showed the Leh’s Hall of Fame memorial in Jammu and Kashmir and as part of China. Gokhale posted screenshots of the same on Twitter while raising the issue "Tweeple pl put Hall of Fame Leh as your location for live broadcast and see what’s happening. It shows location as Jammu and Kashmir, Peoples Republic of China. I tested it again. Outrageous. Pl flood Twitter with complaints. GoI should take immediate action." The IT secretary, in his letter, has reminded Twitter that Leh is the headquarters of Union Territory of Ladakh and 'both Ladakh as well as Jammu and Kashmir are integral and inalienable parts of India', governed by the Constitution of India.

(LIveMint, Oct 22, 2020)

Rajnath unveils new version of DRDO”s procurement manual to engage pvt sector in defence R&D General

Defence Minister Rajnath Singh on Tuesday unveiled a new version of the procurement manual of the premier military research institute DRDO featuring simplified procedures for involvement of the private sector in various research and development projects. Defence ministry officials said the new version of the manual has been brought out to encourage participation of private industry, including start-ups and micro, small and medium enterprises in defence research in sync with the government”s ‘Atmanirbhar Bharat’ (self-reliant India) initiative. All deals, projects and research initiatives in DRDO are guided by the procurement manual. The government has already announced its vision to make India a global hub of defence manufacturing, and initiated a series of reform measures to encourage the domestic defence industry. “The procurement manual-2020 will facilitate faster execution of R&D projects/programmes. The modified features in the manual will go a long way to facilitate participation of industry in various R&D projects,” the defence ministry said.Some of the salient features of the new manual include increase of threshold limit for advance payment, placement of order on second lowest bidder (L2) in case lowest bidder L1 backs out and ”bid security declaration option” for depositing earnest money.

(Defence Aviation Post, Oct 22, 2020)

E-Tendering Portals Show Digitalization is the Future for India’s Solar Industry General

The ongoing COVID-19 crisis has accentuated the need to automate and digitalize practices and processes in the renewable energy sector. There is enormous potential for the industry to adopt smarter solutions to increase efficiency and decrease delays through and post-pandemic. Although alternatives already exist, the pace at which the industry is adopting them has remained slow. The Pandemic has revealed the flaws in the government processes, which is overly reliant on manual in-person processes and interactions. Whereas organizations adopting automation have fared better during the pandemic. For example, DISCOMs with robust online payment systems reported a better rate of payment collections after lockdown. The Bangalore Electricity Supply Company had told Mercom that about 61% of their bill collections came through online payment gateways like Electronic Service (ECS), debit or credit card, and net banking. The Tata Power Delhi Distribution, a power utility supplier, catering to seven million customers in the north and north-west Delhi, said it received over 90% of its bill payments in digital mode during the lockdown. The Ministry of New and Renewable Energy has asked all the State Electricity Regulatory Commissions amid the pandemic to allow the online listing of petitions and hear urgent matters through video conferencing after receiving a request from renewable energy developers.

(Mercom India, Oct 22, 2020)

JioMart Starts Selling Electronics With 60% Discount On Cameras, TV, Gaming Consoles & More General

After venturing into full-fledged ecommerce and fashion retail, JioMart has now launched electronics vertical, with upto 60% discount on various products such as camera, TVs and more. How will Jio fulfill these electronics orders? And which products are available on JioMart now? Keep reading to find out more! In a direct challenge to Flipkart and Amazon, JioMart has now launched their electronics vertical on their app. As per reports coming in, JioMart is offering up to 60% discount on the hottest selling electronics products such as gaming consoles, cameras, home appliances and more. Their website says, “India’s largest electronics store now on JioMart,” As of now, JioMart is offering these products under their electronics segment: Gaming consoles and accessories, Home appliances (Geysers, Irons, Air purifiers)Kitchen appliances (Juicers, food processors) Cameras, TV and audio accessories Sports and fitness, Shavers, hairdryers in personal care Smart lights and cameras under smart devices Power banks and chargers apart from other electronic accessories such as pen drives, memory cards, headsets, etc., As per the reports, Jio will fulfill all orders related to electronics via Reliance Digital, which is the consumer electronics brand under Reliance Retail. Earlier, when JioMart had started selling fashion products, then the orders were fulfilled by Reliance Trends. Now, it;s expected that Reliance will also start selling medicines since they have already acquired NetMeds, via Reliance Retail Ventures.It seems that Reliance’ JioMart is turning out into a superapp, slowly but gradually. We will keep you updated, as more details come in. 

(Trak.in, Oct 22, 2020)

Tree view Unveils Irresistible Festive Offers for its Smart TV Range in India General

The following press release comes to you under an arrangement with News Voir. PTI takes no editorial responsibility for the same.) Bangalore, Karnataka, India (NewsVoir) • Renowned Telungu Cinema actors Naga Chaitanya and Samantha Akkineni unveiled a host of offers for consumers looking to purchase smart TVs this festive season • Tree view TVs can be purchased at an EMI of just Rs. 1* • QThree Ventures will now be manufacturing TVs from its existing facility in Gujarat – ABAJ-Q Three Techpark Q Three Ventures, the exclusive license holder for Treeview TVs in India, today unveiled a host of festive offers for its line-up of Smart Android Full HD LED TVs completely made in India. The Smart Android Full HD LED TVs are available in screen sizes ranging from 32inch to 65inches, packed with a host of features such as Smart Apps (Facebook, YouTube Cast, Eshare, Miracast etc.). Telugu film stars Naga Chaitanya and Samantha Akkineni unveiled mega deals for consumers on Tree view’s wide range of Smart Android Full HD TV models. Adding joy to the festive season, these exciting offers across product categories come with strong discounts and assured gifts with every purchase.

(Outlook, Oct 22, 2020)

HCL, IBM expand alliance to help organizations with digital transformation IT

IT services major HCL Technologies on Thursday announced a new partnership with IBM to help clients accelerate their digital transformation by migrating enterprise mission-critical workloads to the IBM public cloud. In December 2018, HCL Technologies had announced acquisition of select IBM software products for USD 1.8 billion (over Rs 12,700 crore). The deal spanned products in areas including security, marketing and collaboration solutions, and represented a total addressable market of more than USD 50 billion. HCL Technologies, in a statement on Thursday, said the IBM Ecosystem Unit (IEU) at HCL will assist clients, including enterprises in regulated industries such as financial services, telecommunications, life sciences and healthcare and energy and utilities. The IEU will help enterprises develop digital and cloud-native solutions that will help advance their cloud journeys. These solutions will be built on the IBM public cloud using IBM Cloud Parks, containerized software running on Red Hat Open Shift, and Watson-powered advanced data and analytics, it added. HCL's IEU will offer a wide spectrum of services and solutions, leveraging IBM Cloud, data and analytics, artificial intelligence, machine learning capabilities and security to foster innovation for enterprises, the statement said.

(ET, Oct 02, 2020)

Making new strides in tech: LG launches world's first rollable TV at Rs 64 lakh General

Tech giant LG, via a post on its official website, announced the world's first rollable TV which is finally going on sale. The 65-inch LG Signature OLED R is now available at seven consumer electronics store throughout South Korea and will cost 100 million won, or more than $87,000 (approximately Rs 64 lakh).  The Signature OLED R is built around a flexible OLED panel that LG describes with characteristic restraint as “the most innovative development in television technology in decades.” Because of its flexible nature, it can retract partially or fully into its base, adapting to different aspect ratios or hiding the panel completely when not in use. Its name "R" contains the meaning of "revolutionary," "rollable" and "redefine the space," according to the home appliance maker. The 65-inch TV model named RX is highlighted by its screen that rises from a box and can be rolled up inside. Depending on how much the screen has rolled up inside the base, it provides three different viewing options for users to design interior space. While the full view option is for watching TV, the line view option exposes only a part of the screen and offers five different stylish modes: music, clock, frame, mood and ThinQ home dashboard to check conditions of other smart devices inside the house. 

(ET, Oct 20, 2020)

Growth in the SMT Sector can take India’s Electronics Industry to the Next Level General

The Indian electronics sector accounts for 2.5 per cent of the country’s GDP, and employs over 13 million people, directly and indirectly. It is one of the fastest growing industries in India and around the world. According to MeitY, this sector was expected to contribute US$ 400 billion by the end of 2020, though the outbreak of COVID-19 has impacted all sectors adversely. In order to boost the sector and attract FDI, government bodies are working on several export-oriented policies that will further reduce the complex taxation policies within the nation. Though the electronics industry has strengthened its roots, 80 per cent of components are still being imported from China and other countries, and we continue to lack sophisticated manufacturing facilities. As technology is advancing continuously and since demand has increased, the use of PCBs has increased considerably across the consumer electronics segment, covering smartphones, tablets, computers, liquid crystal displays (LCD) and LEDs. According to experts and electronics associations such as ELCINA, the market share of consumer electronics is much higher than industrial electronics and this is expected to spearhead the sector. Soldering and placement equipment is being increasingly used in the manufacture of various consumer electronics products, which in turn has escalated the demand for and application of surface mount technology (SMT) equipment. With the invention of smart and industrial electronic devices, the SMT cleaning market too has evolved because of greater demand for cleaning equipment required during the production process.

(Electronics B2B.com, Oct 19, 2020)

Micromax announces new sub-brand ‘in’ to realize vision of Aatmanirbhar Bharat Telecom

Making a comeback in the smartphone segment, Indian consumer electronics brand Micromax has unveiled a new sub-brand ‘in’ — riding on the Prime Minister’s call to realize an Atmanirbhar Bharat and close on the heels of the PLI approvals accorded by the Government of India. Highlighting its ‘Indian’ quotient, Rahul Sharma, Co-founder, Micromax, launched the ‘in’ brand over Twitter and the company’s other digital handles on Friday, October 16. With the ‘in’ brand of mobiles, the company wants to give a legit Indian option to consumers in the mobile phone industry. Micromax was a leading brand in the Indian mobile phone space until it lost the race to Chinese brands. The new avatar is inspired by the fun-filled, bold and aspirational Indian millennials, who are looking for performance-oriented products for their digital journey on the go and are set to drive India’s success story. Sharma said, “We are delighted to make a comeback in the India market with our sub-brand ‘in’. When you have the word India or ‘in’ on you, it gives a sense of responsibility, the weight of a billion hopes. But bigger than anything is the pride it gives. Our endeavour is to bring India on the global smartphones' map again with 'in' mobiles.”

(Best Media Info, Oct 19, 2020)

Chinese exporters may incur Rs 40k crore loss this Diwali season amid boycott call by local sellers General

Chinese companies exporting goods to India may suffer Rs 40,000 crore business loss this Diwali season as the Indian traders’ community is geared up to boycott the sale of goods from China. In a statement issued by traders’ body Confederation of All India Traders (CAIT), National President B. C. Bhartia and Secretary General Praveen Khandelwal said that out of around Rs 70,000 crore businesses done in India every year during the Diwali season by traders, goods worth around Rs 40,000 crore were imported from China in the past years. “But because of the brutal massacre by China killing 20 Indian soldiers mercilessly, there is great anger and resentment towards China in the people of the country which has prompted the people not to buy Chinese goods.”  he traders are preparing themselves with sufficient stocks of goods, according to Bhartia and Khandelwal. Particularly mobile, electronics, electrical goods, toys, home furnishings, kitchen accessories, gift items, watches, readymade garments, footwear, cosmetics, beauty products, furniture, FMCG products, consumer durables, stationery, Diwali puja and decorative articles for the home, shop, and offices, etc. are likely to be sold in large quantities. The body has also urged small scale industries along with local artisans, and craftsmen through its state-level chapters to prepare goods related to Diwali. These sellers would be encouraged to sell their goods in the markets through trade organizations spread across India.

(FE, Oct 18, 2020)

Government Reining in Digital News Media? IT

Government Reining in Digital News Media? In October 16, the Department for Promotion of Industry & Internal Trade, Ministry of Commerce & Industry, issued a clarification to the note it had issued on September 18, 2019 “liberalising” the foreign direct investment (FDI) regime for digital news media entities by specifying that those “engaged in uploading/streaming of news and current affairs…have been permitted FDI up to 26% through the Government approval route.” The following categories of entities, registered or located in India, come within the purview of the FDI cap, according to the clarification issued by Nikhil Kumar Kanodia, Director (FDI), which is being reproduced verbatim below: digital media entity streaming/uploading news and current affairs on websites, apps (applications) or other platforms; news agency which gathers, writes and distributes/transmits news, directly or indirectly, to digital media entities and/or news aggregators; and news aggregator, being an entity which, using software or web application, aggregates news content from various sources, such as news websites, blogs, podcasts, video blogs, user submitted links, etc. in one location. 

(Newsclick, Oct 18, 2020)

'PLI along with the ban on import of AC with refrigerant to further aid domestic manufacturers' Policy

The government has banned import of air conditioners in order to boost domestic production. In a notification issued by the Director-General of Foreign Trade (DGFT) on Thursday, split system and others ACs with refrigerants have been moved from "free" to "prohibited" category. The notification states that only the import of air conditioners with refrigerants is prohibited. The government has banned import of air conditioners in order to boost domestic production. China and Thailand are the top exporters of air conditioners to India, as per government data. Together the two contribute over 90% of India’s imports of the good. Mr B Thiagarajan, the Managing Director of Bluestar joined ET Now to talk about the recent measures by the government. He said that these measure by itself does not have much impact on the company & industry but all the measures put together will give a boost to the industry.



5G to act as a catalyst for India's digital growth: Amphenol's Joshy Paul General

The US-based antenna company Amphenol said that the fifth generation or 5G rollouts in India would prove to be a catalyst for the country's digital growth, and it sees huge potential following partnerships with Reliance Jio, Bharti Airtel, and state-run Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited (BSNL). "5G to act as a catalyst for the digital growth, the introduction of new products and services, new streams of multiple value chains and greater efficiencies in productivity across industry verticals resulting in enhanced customer experience," Amphenol chief executive Joshy Paul told ET Telecom. Amphenol Antenna Solutions (AAS) is a division of Amphenol Corporation, an $8 billion revenue company listed at the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE). With the adjusted gross revenue (AGR) matter off the list, the multinational vendor feels that all telecom operators would focus on new offerings with bouquets to attract new and retain existing customers. "We believe the market will move towards 5G in a big way in the coming months," the top executive said, and added that there is a huge growth potential in the Indian market not being the second-biggest market after China, but with the focus being shifted to the south Asian country.

(ET, Sep 29, 2020)

Apple suppliers commit to $900 mn investment to build capacities in India General

The Indian government’s production-linked incentive (PLI) scheme is bringing in big money into India as companies look to add local manufacturing capacities on the back of the scheme. According to a report by Reuters, three suppliers for Apple -- namely Foxconn, Wistron and Pegatron -- have committed $900 million in India over 5 years. The three manufacturers plan to invest Rs. 4,000 crore, Rs. 1,300 crore and Rs. 1,200 crore in the country, respectively, said the report. According to two industry executives, the investments are being made to add capacities and ramp up domestic production of mobile phones for Apple and other brands. Foxconn and Wistron already make smartphones for Apple, while Pegatron has recently set up a local entity in India to kick start its operations here, according to filings with the registrar of companies. Apple has been moving parts of its manufacturing operations to India through these firms. Foxconn currently makes the iPhone 11 in its Chennai factory, while Apple had confirmed earlier that the 2020 version of the iPhone SE is also made in India now.

(LiveMint, Sep 28, 2020)

Centre’s tie up with private tech players strengthens Digital India vision IT

MoS MeitY Sanjay Dhotre : Digital Technology Sabha witnesses participation of eminent speakers across the country and abroad in the midst of Covid-19 pandemic. The luminaries included Minister of State for IT, Secretary MeitY, DG, NIC and IT Secretaries of different states among others emphasise on the need of proactive use of modern tech tools to roll out services uninterruptedly, despite severe challenges thrown by the global pandemic. Sanjay Dhotre, Union Minister of State for Electronics and Information Technology has said the Centre’s collaboration with major private technology players has further strengthened the vision of Digital India and it has placed India in a better position globally. Dhotre was addressing the audience in the recently concluded Digital Technology Sabha 2020, themed around, ‘Covid-19 and its aftermath: The future of e-governance and way forward’ held from August 25 to 28, 2020. He said that the core vision of Digital India is divided into three broad aspects – digital infrastructure, governance and services on demand. He informed that after the Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s call for Atmanirbhar Bharat or self reliant India, the manufacturing of N95 Mask, ventilators and vaccines initiatives has gone up.

(Express Computer, Sep 28, 2020)

Five cheapest products available on Apple online store in India General

US-based electronics giant Apple launched its first exclusive online store in India on Wednesday (September 23). The online store, which Apple launched just days ahead of the festive season, offers a full range of products, support and premium experience to consumers across the country. Apple has joined hands with Blue Dart for logistics support and the latter will work as the company's on-ground fulfillment partner. The Apple India store, the 38th online store worldwide, would have specialists to lend expert advice and support to the Indian customers.  Priced at Rs 1,700, Apple's official 'USB-C to USB Adapter' is without doubt one of the cheapest products available on Apple's online store in India.  Apple's original lightning cable is also selling for Rs 1,700 on Apple's online store in India.  At Rs 900, this is the cheapest product available on Apple Online Store in India. Apple Watch's official straps selling for Rs 3,900 on Apple Online Store in India and though they are a little expensive but it is because of their high quality.

(Zee News, Sep 28, 2020)

PUBG ban not likely to be revoked anytime soon: Report General

The ban on PUBG came as a big blow for PUBG Corporation, the creator of the title, and Tencent Games, the Chinese company behind its mobile version. Now, fans have been hoping that PUBG Corp's recent decision to dissociate from Tencent in India might reverse the ban, but a new report suggests that is not likely to be the case anytime soon. Earlier this month, India's Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology banned as many as 118 Chinese applications. The list included PUBG Mobile and its Lite version - two battle royale games with a ginormous player-base in India. The government said that the apps engaged in activities prejudicial to the sovereignty and integrity of India, defense of India, security of the state, and public order. In light of the ban in India, which attributed to nearly 24% of PUBG's all-time global downloads, Tencent suffered a major setback and lost nearly $34 billion in market value over two days. This was the second-biggest dip for the Chinese conglomerate since the Trump administration banned transactions with its WeChat messaging app - also over security concerns.

(NewsBytes, Sep 27, 2020)

India is the battleground country for Samsung and Apple Telecom

Samsung Electronics and Apple are doing everything they can to capture India, with 1.4 billion potential customers and the world’s second-largest market.. They are competitively opening stores, upping the marketing and introducing affordable smartphone models in a race to be the pioneers in the country.  The company plans to open an offline store in Mumbai, India, next year. Apple CEO Tim Cook tweeted the U.S. smartphone maker will “connect and expand support in India.”.   Samsung, which opened its first physical store in India in September 2018, recently rehired Sumit Walia from India’s smartphone maker Oppo as the head of marketing for the India division. He is now Samsung India's marketing head, mobile division. Sumit built his career at various smartphone manufacturing companies, such as Huawei and LG Electronics, and worked for nine years at Samsung India before heading to the homegrown company. He was largely responsible for Oppo’s remarkable success in the past year. Oppo was the fifth-largest smartphone brand in India in the first quarter of this year and outperformed Realme in the next quarter to reach fourth place.

(Korea JoongAng Daily, Sep 27, 2020)

We have an order book of Rs.54,500crore& they will be discharged in next 6-7 years : Narayan Prasad, CMD, Mazagon Dock Shipbuilders General

Vice Admiral, Narayan Prasad, CMD, Mazagon Dock Shipbuilders and Sanjeev Singhal, Director (Finance) and Chief Financial Officer, talks about the upcoming IPO, current and expected order book, diversification of business among others during an exclusive interview with Swati Khandelwal, Zee Business. Edited Excerpts:Congratulations on your upcoming IPO. Please run us through the details of the IPO and what would you suggest to people who can be interested in this IPO? Also, talk about the size of the IPO, the state government wants to divest here and where the proceeds will be used? The offer summary is Initial Public Offer (IPO) of about 3 crores 59 lakhs shares of the face value of around Rs 10 per share including employee reservation of 3,45,517 equity shares. The net offer of 3 crores 25 lakh 3,500 equity shares which constitute 15% of the post-offer paid-up equity share capital. There is an OFS of around 3 crores 59 lakhs 9,017 equity shares of the face value Rs 10 per share. As I have said earlier, its price band has been decided between Rs 135 to Rs 145 per equity share of the face value of Rs 10 each. The QIB portion will stand around 50%, the Non-institutional Investors (NII) portion stands at 15% and the retail portion is 35%.

(Indian Defence News, Sep 27, 2020)

AtmaNirbhar Bharat: Why is DRDO’s latest laser-guided anti-tank missile more than special for Indian Army General

The country is moving fast in defence sector under AtmaNirbhar Bharat Abhiyan. Under this, DRDO has now achieved great success by successfully testing the laser-guided anti-tank missile. The test was fired conducted from the MBT Arjun tank in Ahmednagar, Maharashtra. During this test, the anti-tank missile successfully destroyed the target at a distance of three kilometers. This anti-tank guided missile is precisely aimed at its target, guided by a laser.  According to DRDO it has been developed with multiple-platform launch capability and is currently being technically evaluated by firing from a gun mounted in MBT Arjun. The missile has been successfully tested at the Armored Corps Center and School in Ahmednagar. The tests conducted revealed that missiles fired from the MBT Arjun tank successfully destroyed the target for three kilometers. Regarding the various features of the missile, the DRDO stated that the explosive rear armor of the anti-tank guided missile employs a hot warhead to defeat protected armored vehicles. The missile has been developed with multi-platform launch capability and is currently undergoing a technical evaluation test from MBT Arjun’s gun.

(Defence Aviation Post, Sep 26, 2020)

Constant rule tweaks, corporate reluctance make India’s defence offset policy ineffective General

India’s defence offset policy, introduced in 2005, has largely failed to achieve its objectives due to constant tweaks, as well as reluctance on the part of foreign defence manufacturers to take the additional cost burden of offsets, defence industry experts say. On September 23, the Comptroller and Auditor General of India said in a report that the objectives of India’s offset policy had remained largely unachieved more than a decade after its adoption. The CAG also slammed french aerospace firms Dassault Aviation and MBDA, the main contractors in the Rs 59,000 croreRafale deal for the Indian Air Force, and said they had not discharged 30 percent of their offset obligations, which was to transfer high-end technology to help India’s Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) develop a jet engine for the LCA Tejas. “Till date the Vendor has not confirmed the transfer of this technology,” the CAG’s report, tabled in Parliament on Wednesday, said.

(Defence Aviation Post, Sep 25, 2020)

Fifteenth Finance Commission may suggest cess on direct taxes for defencefund General

Be prepared to pay more tax next year. The Fifteenth Finance Commission (FFC) chaired by NK Singh may suggest a cess on direct taxes for a non-lapsable national defence fund.ET learns from multiple sources that the FFC, which is scheduled to submit by the end of October its report and recommendation on how union and state governments should share tax revenues for five years beginning 2021, is likely to suggest monetisation of land and sequestering a portion of import duties for the fund. Total land under the control of defenceorganisations is estimated to be over 1.75 million acres. ``The Commission is deliberating on its multiple TORs. Its recommendations would be contained [in] its final report. Any speculation or conclusion in this regard would be misleading,’’ an FFC spokesperson said responding to ET’s query on the fund. The government last year empowered the commission with an additional terms of reference (ToR) to enable it to make a specific suggestion on how to create the fund. Demanding the fund, the defence ministry had stressed on the need to increase focus on national security

(ET, Sep 25, 2020)

Smart Innovations: Going beyond merely making in India General

In January this year, Samsung launched its new line of refrigerators—Curd Maestro—that customers can use to make curd at home. Given the fascination Indian homes have for everything curd, it is no surprise these refrigerators saw very strong demand pan-India. “Curd is an essential in Indian households. We launched the Curd Maestro refrigerator after extensive consumer research in India that has helped us address consumer pain points when it comes to making curd at home,” says Amitoj Singh, senior director and head, product innovation team at Samsung India.“We found the common pain point was setting the curd and getting the same consistency and taste. The younger generation did not have the time for the process of boiling then cooling the milk, adding a bit of curd, and then ensuring it is kept in the fridge once it is set. This refrigerator addresses all these pain points,” he explains.

(FE, Sep 24, 2020)

SHARP Announces World’s First 4K Ultra HD Windows Collaboration Display General

SHARP Business Systems announced the launch of PN-CD701, the world’s first ‘Windows Collaboration Display’, which offers best in class environment for business meetings with better space utilization and more productive collaboration with minimal setup.Windows Collaboration Display – PN-CD701, is specially designed keeping in mind the office and remote working requirements of the large corporates. The next-generation interactive display enables better space utilization and more productive collaboration in meetings, boardrooms and training rooms which would totally revolutionize the way official conferences are conducted whether working from home or office space. The display comes with certification from Microsoft and Skype for businesses.  Announcing the launch, Shinji Minatogawa, Managing Director, SHARP Business Systems (India) Pvt. Ltd., said, “Sharp has always been renowned for its dedication to constantly developing innovative technologies to support the evolving needs of its customers. Our products not only offer improved technology and the latest features but also improve their quality of life. With the launch of the world’s first 4K Ultra HD ‘Windows Collaboration Display’,’ we have yet again delivered on this promise and offered our customers with the seamless all-in-one solution that allows them to work comfortably and efficiently from anywhere in the world.”

(ELE Times, Sep 24, 2020)

Reliance Retail is set to wage an online price war against its rivals, as festive season nears General

Reliance Retail is set to kick off an online price war this festive season as ecommerce unit JioMart forays into fashion, smartphones and consumer electronics, expanding its presence beyond grocery, said people with knowledge of the matter. Pricing will be lower than Amazon and Walmart-owned Flipkart in most cases, they said. The deep discounting play will largely be on private and exclusive brands such as its own fashion labels, apart from electronic goods from BPL, Kelvinator, Sharp and others. Prices will be lower for mainstream electronic and smartphone brands too, they added. Companies like Apple and Samsung have said in the past that they do not control pricing on any channel as per Indian laws. Having just raised Rs 13,000 crore for its retail business, Reliance aims to launch these categories in most cities where it has a store presence by next month and run big festive online discounting sales similar to Flipkart's Big Billion Days and Amazon's Great Indian Festival sales from Navratri till Diwali - the biggest ecommerce business period of the year, said the people cited above. This spans the month between mid-October and mid-November.

(ET, Sep 23, 2020)

Electronics Industry in India: At the cusp of turning tide General

In the electronics sector, the country is heavily dependent on Chinese suppliers. Electronic goods account for 32 per cent of our overall imports from China which meets 40 per cent of our total imports of electronic goods, which includes consumer electronics, industrial electronics, computer and IT hardware, mobile  phones, strategic electronics, light emitting diodes etc. Between April 2019 and February 2020, total imports of electronic goods stood at Rs 3.59 lakh crore. Out of this, imports from China stood at Rs 1.42 lakh crore or 40 per cent of total imports of such goods.We imported 98 per cent of parts used in electronic integrated circuits and micro assemblies from China. Similarly, our reliance on China was 93 per cent in colour TV sets and 90 per cent when it comes to imports of the subscriber-end equipment in the telecom industry.Although the overall mobile phone imports declined sharply in FY20, the share of China increased in total imports. Cell phone imports almost halved to Rs 6,313 crore in April-February of FY2019-20 from Rs 11,304 crore in the full year of FY2018-19 primarily because of the increase in domestic manufacturing and the hike in import duty on handsets.

(ELE Times, Sep 23, 2020)

Resumption of customs duty on open cells will put pressure on TV industry: CEAMA General

The move to reimpose a 5% import duty on open cell panels, a key component used in the manufacturing of television sets, will add pressure on the TV industry and impact prices of TV sets sold in India, industry body Consumer Electronics and Appliances Manufacturers Association (CEAMA)said on Sunday. Open cell panels, that form nearly 65% of the total production cost of televisions, will attract 5% import duty from 1 October, Mint reported earlier today citing governement sources. The duty exemption on imports of open cell panels expiring at the end of this month will not be extended as the government pushes to expand domestic manufacturing, the report said.While government officials estimate that the impact of the duty could translate to Rs150-250 per television, manufacturers say end consumer prices could go by Rs400-1,200, depending on the size of the television set.  As part of 'Atmanirbhar Bharat' the government is keen to expand domestic production capacity for open cell panels as it seeks to curb imports. The year-long exemption given to open cell panels expires on 30 September, the Mint report said.Industry body Consumer Electronics and Appliances Manufacturers Association or CEAMA said the move will add pressure on the industry that is already struggling from covid-induced pressure on consumer demand.

(LiveMint, Sep 20, 2020)

Consumer electronics industry hopeful of robust sales this festive season General

The appliances and consumer electronics industry is expecting double-digit growth in sales in the upcoming festive season, which will be further supported by absence of domestic helps and people working from home, according to industry body CEAMA. The consumer electronics and appliances sector, which has already started on a positive note with Onam in August, saw sales growth in last couple of months owing to pent-up demand, but there is another element playing a role of a key driver, i.e. consumers are looking for a substitute for domestic help amid health safety concerns due to COVID-19. This has already led to a higher demand for appliances such as washing machine, microwave, dishwasher, refrigerators, etc," the Consumer Electronics and Appliances Manufacturers Association (CEAMA) said. Though, the industry is "optimistic", the retailers are cautious as "scheme and promotions might not be as aggressive" like earlier in this year in the festive season, which roughly accounts up to 25 per cent of the total sales, as the brands are struggling with liquidity and other challenges.

(BS, Sep 20, 2020)

Minesweepers elusive, Indian Navy scouts underwater mine-disposal bots General

The Indian Navy is looking to acquire 10 autonomous underwater vehicles (AUV) geared to detect and actively destroy underwater mines and similar threats. The requirement, published last month, is the latest iteration of a long standing — and so far fruitless — quest for long endurance surveillance AUVs. In this latest quest, the navy’s Special Operations & Diving Directorate has said it is looking for AUVs that are two-man portable, designed for surveillance, identification and explosive ordinance disposal (EOD) at harbour and at sea. The navy’s request for information (RFI) says it is looking for AUVs that upon identifying mines or underwater improvised explosive devices (IEDs), can then be remotely commanded to fire an explosive shaped charge to detonate and destroy the object. The control console for the AUV, as is standard for such products, needs to be deployable on a rigid inflatable boat, with a 3-km radius of operations. The threat to harbours has been pronounced for years, and amplified by the Indian Navy’s much larger — and ludicrously meandering — quest for minesweeper ships. A fruitless 15 year effort to acquire a desperately needed dozen mine countermeasure vessels (MCMVs) has hit wall after wall, with an exasperated Indian Navy down to its final pair of ships capable of clearing mines. Last heard, the navy had decided to loosen requirements to make way for a larger competition. While the EOD AUV is a far smaller procurement thrust, it is an unignorable reminder of the Indian Navy’s chronic lack of success in acquiring mine countermeasure assets.

(Indian Defence News, Sep 14, 2020)

DRDO plans national programme on directed energy weapons for battles of future General

The Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) is now planning a national programme on directed energy weapons (DEWs) like high-energy lasers and high-powered microwaves, which are increasingly being considered crucial around the world for the contactless conflicts of the future. The national programme will have short, medium and long-term goals, with the eventual aim being to develop different DEW variants of up to 100 kilowatt power, in collaboration with the domestic industry, sources said. The DRDO has been working on several DEW projects for long, ranging from ‘chemical oxygen iodine’ and ‘high-power fibre’ lasers to a secretive ‘Kali’ particle-beam weapon for ‘soft-kills’ against incoming missiles and aircraft. industry, sources said. But they are nowhere near becoming operational. The need for a focussed approach on DEWs has now gained urgency amid the ongoing military confrontation with China in eastern Ladakh. DRDO has so far developed two anti-drone DEW systems, which will now be productionised in large numbers with the help of the industry.

(ET, Sep 14, 2020

Bharat Electronics upbeat on defence business, seeks to ride government's self-reliance push General

Bharat Electronics Limited NSE 4.40 % is upbeat about its business prospects in the defence sector seeking to ride on the government's thrust on self-reliance though it's facing the prospect of short-term adverse impact from COVID-19. In fact, the Bengaluru-based defence PSU was sitting on an order book of Rs 51,973 crore as on April one this year, according to company officials. defence contributed 82 per cent of sales revenue of BEL in 2019-20, up from 68 per cent in the previous fiscal. The remaining 18 per cent revenue came from the non- defence sector. BEL's Chairman and Managing Director M V Gowtama said the government's emphasis on 'Make in India' in the defence sector provides a great opportunity for the company to enhance indigenous efforts and to address the emerging opportunities.  The Navratna PSU under the Ministry of defence achieved a turnover of Rs 12,608 crore during 2019-20, a growth of 6.94 per cent compared to the previous financial year.  "BEL is targeting a healthy growth of 12-15 per cent during 2020-21", Gowtama said in a September seven letter to the shareholders. The real impact of the pandemic on the company is to be seen in the near future as the situation is evolving, he said, adding, however, that it has started taking mitigation measures to reduce the impact.

(ET, Sep 13, 2020)

Electronics manufacturing vision: Managing e-waste is critical General

India is determined to become a leading manufacturing hub of electronics. In 2019, the National Policy on Electronics (NPE 2019) stated its intent to focus on manufacturing for both domestic and global markets. The NPE 2019 moved from regressive tariff impositions on imports to providing incentives to manufacturers. It is in the same spirit that the government recently notified three schemes, worth approximately Rs 50,000 crore, in order to position India as a global hub for electronics manufacturing. Developed economies have a voracious appetite for electronics, and if India starts exporting one of the highest-selling traded items, it will give India a lot of muscle in global trade. However, with great power also comes great responsibility.  An increase in electronics manufacturing is also going to lead to an increase in electronic waste. Electronic waste refers to electrical and electronic equipment, whole or in part discarded as waste by the consumer or bulk consumer, as well as rejects from the manufacturing, refurbishment and repair processes. India is currently the third-largest e-waste generator in the world, after China and the US. According to Global E-waste Monitor 2020, India generated 3.2 million ton of e-waste in 2019, out of which only 30,000 ton was collected and recycled. It is further estimated that in 2020, India will likely produce 5.2 million tons of e-waste annually. It is critical that India is perceived as an environmentally-responsible manufacturer. It would be detrimental for India to be treated like a backyard cheap labour factory that manufactures electronics but doesn’t clean up after itself. The good news is that the government and the industry are both committed to responsible e-waste management. India is the only country in Southern Asia with e-waste legislation.

(FE, Sept 10, 2020)

Reliance terms reports of stake sale to Amazon speculative General

Reliance Industries NSE 0.66 % Ltd reportedly has offered a 40 per cent stake in its retail arm worth about USD 20 billion to Amazon.com, Inc, a report the company said was speculative.  Bloomberg News citing a source reported that "Amazon has held discussions about investing in the conglomerate's Reliance Retail Ventures Ltd unit and has expressed interest in negotiating a potential transaction". The report went on to say that Reliance was "willing to sell as much as a 40 per cent stake in the subsidiary to Amazon" and the deal size at USD 20 billion would be the biggest ever in India. While Amazon refused to comment, Reliance said, "In light of a high incidence of speculative media queries and incorrect and ex parte media articles relating to purported capital transactions into Reliance Industries or our group companies, we would like to reiterate that as a policy, we do not comment on media speculation and rumours and we cannot confirm or deny any transaction which may or may not be in the works."   "The company evaluates various opportunities on an ongoing basis, it said, adding that the company has "made and will continue to make necessary disclosures in compliance" with listing obligations and disclosure requirements.  "Vide this communication, we appeal to the media to carefully examine any such speculative information and safeguard themselves and their readers, many of whom are individual retail investors, from publishing/recycling unfounded and/or incorrect news," Reliance said.

(ET, Sep 10, 2020)

Mahindra Electric launches global electrification solution for light electric vehicles General

Mahindra Electric Mobility Ltd, part of the USD 19.4 billion Mahindra Group, is proud to be one of the founding partners of the first ever World EV Day, to be held today. World EV Day is being hosted by Green.TV and is dedicated to raising awareness about global electric mobility. On this day, global leaders will gather together to highlight the benefits of electric mobility, and promote EVs on a global platform. The journey towards a future driven by e-mobility is well under way, according to Mahesh Babu, MD & CEO of Mahindra Electric Mobility, India. “Our goal with EVs is to revolutionize first and last mile transportation globally and take e-mobility to the masses. World EV Day is a great forum for us to discuss the next big ideas for the global markets and we take this opportunity to launch our MESMA 48 platform globally.”   Mahindra Electric’s robust MESMA 48 platform offers globally competitive quality and is cost effective. It is one of the company’s most utilized EV technology solution architecture. The platform is highly scalable and has till date powered over 11,000 EVs on Indian roads. It can electrify a range of vehicles including three wheelers, quadricycles and even compact cars.

(Auto Components India, Sep 09, 2020)

US sanctions on Huawei to hit Samsung, other chipmakers General

Memory chipmakers, including Samsung Electronics, will feel the pinch of additional US sanctions on Chinese telecom giant Huawei Technologies that take effect next week, industry sources said on Wednesday. The new sanctions, which ban the supply of semiconductors made with US equipment, software and design to Huawei without prior approval from Washington, are set to become effective from next Tuesday, Yonhap news agency reported. It will hit the shipments of Samsung Electronics, the world’s top memory chip maker, SK hynix Inc. and most other global players will virtually stop shipments to the Chinese company next week, they said.  “I understand that Samsung Electronics will stop shipping chips to Huawei from next Tuesday, though there is a possibility of selling products after winning US approval,” an industry observer said.That is because US technologies are used in almost all sectors of chip production from design software to production equipment, according to the sources.Huawei is known as one of Samsung’s top five customers. SK hynix reportedly depends on Huawei for some 10 per cent of its sales. The envisioned American sanctions are widely expected to have a negative impact on Samsung Electronics and other industry players over the short term, but they would unlikely have a great impact in the long haul, industry watchers said. They further said Samsung Electronics could benefit from the US move, as it may come as an opportunity to widen its gap with Huawei in the smartphone market and play catch-up with the Chinese firm in the 5G sector.

(The Tribune, Sep 09, 2020)

What is the PLI scheme and why is this particularly crucial for promoting mobile phone manufacturing in India? Telecom

Currently, the mobile manufacturing industry receives semi-knocked-down (SKD) units of mobile phones in India and assembles them locally, availing duty benefits. However, under this scheme proposed by the Modi-led government, completely-knocked-down (CKD) units can be brought down, boosting the growth of domestic manufacturing. American chipmaker Qualcomm’s President, Jim Cathey, has remarked that India has a large pool of skilled and unskilled workers which could prove to benefit large-scale manufacturing and is at a geographical advantage as supply chain management would be feasible. He also said that the timing of the PLI scheme is very smart as it comes at a time amid trading tensions between China and other countries and growing conflicts between India and China. At a summit organised by the USIBC, PM Narendra Modi urged US companies to come forward and invest in the Indian industry, claiming that it would be very timely. As part of the vision of the National Policy on Electronics 2019, and in a strategic effort to promote India as a global hub for ESDM ( Electronics System Design and Manufacturing) by strengthening the nation’s capabilities of developing key components, and enabling competence in the industry, the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology introduced PLI or Production Linked Incentive Scheme on April 1st. The scheme was open for application from the 3rd of June and closed with the deadline of July 31st.

(The Mobile Indian, Sept 09, 2020)

GM-Nikola partnership will create a formidable challenge for Tesla IT

If you want something done right, do it yourself. If you are an old-school manufacturer and want credit from investors for innovation, make sure someone else’s name is attached. General Motors Co. on Tuesday announced a strategic partnership with Nikola Corp. that will give it a $2 billion equity stake in the electric-vehicle startup. Rather than pay cash for the ownership foothold, GM is paying in services: It will be the exclusive supplier of fuel cells for Nikola’s Class 7/8 trucks outside of Europe, provide access to its battery technology and take on the manufacturing and engineering work for Nikola’s Badger electric-pickup model. GM expects more than $4 billion in benefits from the tie-up, between the equity stake and additional payments for manufacturing and parts work.  GM’s backing provides a much-needed dose of credibility for Nikola, whose shares added a more than 30% gain on Tuesday to a high-flying streak that belied a lack of meaningful revenue thus far. The partnership will save the company an estimated $5 billion in manufacturing and engineering expenses; basically, it no longer needs to literally reinvent the wheel. But Nikola’s brand and buzz also provide valuable credibility for GM’s electric vehicle aspirations. Arguably, the 112-year-old titan from Detroit is the one who needed this partnership more.

(ET, Sep 09, 2020)

India is emerging as a large scale electronics manufacturing center General

You probably notice that maximum of the tech giants like Apple, Samsung, and all, those who have facilities in China are shifting to other countries day by day. Let you know, as per a recent report, Samsung is going to shut down its last China-based TV manufacturing facility by this November. In this case, most of the giants prefer India. On this topic, the Union Minister of India Mr. Ravi Shankar Prasad said, “India is emerging as a big manufacturing center and the global manufacture ecosystem is realising that they must have other places apart from China. I am glad to inform that Apple is shifting to India in a significant way, Samsung has already come and they further want to expand. I have been told that around eight factories of Apple have shifted to India from China.” He also added, “When we came to power in 2014, there were only two mobile factories in India, now its number has crossed 250. We launched Atmanirbhar Bharat with production linked incentive. We invited global companies to come to India and also Indian companies to match,” Mr. Prasad described that Atmanirbhar Bharat means not an isolated India, rather it means India to be a major economy of the world to support the global economy. “I announced this scheme in April, during the height of COVID and gave July 31 as the last date for filing applications. They have committed to make mobile phones and components worth Rs 12 lakh crores in 5 years of which Rs 7 lakh crores worth products will be exported. It will provide jobs to three lakh in India directly and nine lakh Indians indirectly,” – Ravi Shankar Prasad.

(Technosports, Sep 08, 2020)

Dixon Technologies hits record high, crosses Rs 10,000-crore in m-cap General

Shares of Dixon Technologies continued their northward run, gaining 4 per cent on the BSE on Monday to hit a record high of Rs 8,935 on expectation of higher demand of consumer electronics. The company's market capitalisation crossed Rs 10,000 crore today after five straight day of gains. The stock surpassed its previous high of Rs 8,822, touched on August 28, 2020, on the BSE. With 10 per cent rally in the past week, the stock has rallied 208 per cent from its recent low of Rs 2,900, hit on March 24, 2020. Dixon is the largest electronic manufacturing services (EMS) player in India with a diversified product portfolio in various sub-segments of the electronics verticals. It is the largest Home-grown electronic manufacturer, providing design focused solutions in multiple business segments to customers across the globe. Indian EMS Market size was approx. $6 billion in FY20 and is expected to touch $40 billion by 2025 at a CAGR of 47 per cent from 2020 to 2025. “

(Business Standard, Sep 08, 2020)

India, US, Israel collaborating in 5G tech: Official Telecom

India, Israel and the United States have begun collaboration in developmental area, and in next generation of emerging technologies, including a transparent, open, reliable and secure 5G communication network, a top official has said. The branching out of this trilateral initiative in development and technological arena is a result of the people-to-people collaboration, in particular those by Indian diaspora in the US and Israel, that was initiated by Prime Minister Narendra Modi during his historic visit to Israel three years ago in July 2017, community leaders said. A collaboration in 5G is a just tip of the iceberg and a first step, according to US Agency for International Development (USAID) Deputy Administrator Bonnie Glick. "Because we'll collaborate in science and research and development in coming up with the next generations of technologies, things that the likes of you and the rest of us on the phone can't even imagine what they might be. But by partnering by officially, affirming the importance of this relationship, we'll advance it," Glick told in an interview after the US-India-Israel forum featuring discussions on strategic, tech and development/water cooperation held last week. "We are thrilled to work with these partners to solve the world's development challenges," she said in her keynote address to the virtual US-India-Israel summit that focused on trilateral partnerships in the strategic, technology and development arenas. The summit was also addressed by Israeli Ambassador to India Ron Malka and his counterpart Sanjeev Singla.

(ET, Sep 08, 2020)

Samsung India expects online business to grow over 35% in 2020 Telecom

Tech giant Samsung on Monday said it expects its online business in India to grow 35% in 2020 over the last year, driven by strong overall demand and success of its M series of devices. The company, which had introduced its M series of smartphones in February last year for online channels, said it expects the cumulative sales from this range to cross $3.5 billion by the end of 2020. "Business, on the other side of lockdown, has been rapid and resurgent and that's an ode to the fact that mobile phones are a huge part of consumers' lives and there was a pent-up demand," Samsung India Senior Vice President Asim Warsi told. He added that while the industry, as per various analyst reports, could be dipping 5-10% or more on the full-year basis, Samsung's online business is expected to post over 35% growth in value terms. He added that the company has had a slew of launches - eight smartphones straddling across different price points, tablets and wearables in the post-lockdown period. He noted that the company will launch a new smartphone under the M series later this month - M51 - featuring 7,000-mAh battery, 6.7-inch display, Qualcomm Snapdragon 730 processor, 64MP quad rear camera setup and 32MP front camera. Warsi said the company sees its online business in India to be more than double in the second half of 2020 versus the year-ago period.

(ET, Sep 08, 2020)

IT Ministry seeks bids from cos to help recycle, refurbish end-of-life lithium-ion batteries, PCBs IT

The Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology has floated an expression of interest (EoI) to invite companies that can assist in recycling and refurbishing of end-of-life lithium-ion batteries as well as printed circuit boards (PCBs), according to documents seen by The Indian Express. The project, to be executed by the Centre for Materials for Electronics Technology (C-MET), will also aim at extraction of precious metals such as cobalt, nickel, lithium, copper, aluminium, gold, and platinum from such end-of-life lithium-ion batteries or PCBs, according to the documents. “Another objective of the project is to encourage establishment of start-ups to collaborate/partner C-MET by getting trained in different aspects of the process involved in E-waste management and to commence their own industries in the relevant areas, after they become strong enough to commence their own facilities,” the EoI document said.  The aim of the project is to contain the import of raw materials used for the manufacturing of lithium-ion batteries and PCB, as well as contain the e-waste generated by electronic gadgets using these components.

(The Indian Express, Sep 07, 2020)

Vodafone Idea needs to back up rebranding with up to $2 bln network investments: Analysts Telecom

Vodafone Idea's rebranding exercise has to be backed by an annual capital expenditure of around $2 billion to bolster its 4G network, if the telco is to arrest customer losses and grow revenue market share, say analysts and experts. A refreshed brand alone, they said, would not help the company retain customers or attract new ones, if the telco’s network was weak and its products and services weren’t competitive or comparable with those of Bharti Airtel and Reliance Jio. Nitin Soni, a senior director at global ratings firm Fitch, said: “Rebranding alone won’t stop subscriber losses at VIL … that can happen only when the telco invests at least $1.5-2 billion annually in network-related capex and makes its 4G experience comparable with Airtel and Jio.”  Vodafone Idea's rebranding exercise has to be backed by an annual capital expenditure of around $2 billion to bolster its 4G network, if the telco is to arrest customer losses and grow revenue market share, say analysts and experts. A refreshed brand alone, they said, would not help the company retain customers or attract new ones, if the telco’s network was weak and its products and services weren’t competitive or comparable with those of Bharti Airtel and Reliance Jio. Nitin Soni, a senior director at global ratings firm Fitch, said: “Rebranding alone won’t stop subscriber losses at VIL … that can happen only when the telco invests at least $1.5-2 billion annually in network-related capex and makes its 4G experience comparable with Airtel and Jio.”

(ET, Sep 07, 2020)

India's electronic exports can rise 16 fold to $180 billion by 2025 General

With global supply chain for electronic goods witnessing a restructuring as companies look to reduce dependence on China, India's domestic electronic goods industry is staring at a potential windfall. Estimates by Electronics and Computer Software Export Promotion Council (ESC) suggest electronics exports from India may potentially hit $180 billion by 2025 from just $11.28 billion in 2019-20. To achieve that however, the industry believes it needs proper long term policy support from the government. ESC has submitted a charter to the government that proposes expanding the existing production linked incentive scheme beyond just mobile and smartphones to the entire electronic manufacturing sector. "We have created a roadmap for taking India's electronics exports, which includes mobile phones and accessories, components and other electronics and hardware items to $180 billion by 2025 to bring exports from the segment more or less at par with software exports," says Mr. Sandeep Narula, Chairman, ESC. "Bold decisions are needed to create an enabling ecosystem for the sector to strengthen its manufacturing base and exports." India's domestic production in the sector at $70 billion accounts for just 3.3 percent of the global electronics market estimated at $2.1 trillion giving it significant headroom for growth. The domestic industry however suffers from disabilities like higher taxation, cost of finance and power which make it uncompetitive against China, Taiwan, Korea, Vietnam or Japan.

(Business Today, Sep 02, 2020)

Amp Energy India appoints Azure Power’s CFO as director to fuel expansion plans General

Amp Energy India, renewable energy company, on Tuesday said it has appointed Surendra Gupta as its director and chief financial officer (CFO) to lead their India expansion plans to serve both commercial and industrial, and utility customers. Gupta, who succeeds Shyam Sharma, was the CFO at Azure Power and has also worked with the Al Suwaidi Group, Samtel Colour, Fenner India, Birla Yamaha, HCL and Bharat Electronics previously. “He joins us at an important time when we are looking at major expansion across India in the renewable energy sector and will help steer the company for the next level of balanced, long-term growth. He was instrumental in creating a major utility-focused renewable independent power producer (IPP) which will be very complimentary for us as we create a balanced IPP,” said Pinaki Bhattacharyya, co-founder, managing director and chief executive officer, Amp Energy India. Gupta said that Amp is ready for its next level of growth and he would contribute to its growth. He is a chartered accountant and has experience in manufacturing, EPC contracting and renewable energy sectors in India and abroad.

(ET, Sep 02, 2020)

Asus aims to capture 5% of commercial PC market in a year from launch IT

Taiwanese electronics brand Asus which is set to debut in India’s commercial PC market this month, is aiming to capture 5% market share within a year of launch and is looking to invest aggressively in product development, marketing, retail and back-end service infrastructure.  Asus’s business head for smartphones in India Dinesh Sharma, who has been appointed to lead the commercial PC operations as well, told ET, that the company is looking at hiring in big numbers to expand the newly formed vertical. “We will be launching a range of products, notebooks, desktops, all in ones and mobile workstations for micro businesses, SMBs and large enterprise customers, between the 8th-25th of this month and investing heavily to expand the vertical,” Sharma said.  Asus will also offer value-added services for enterprises such as warranty extension, accidental damage protection, hard disk retention service, and priority service, he said. “We are actually number one in the consumer PC segment in most of the countries….Southeast Asia, Europe, Canada. We are in the top three across the world and now in India also in the last quarter, which is Q2 2020, we become the top three brands in the consumer PC with more than 16% market share,” Sharma said.  Asus’s Sharma added that after achieving this milestone in the consumer PC market, the brand now wants to foray into the commercial PC business, which also happens to be the right time given that demand for electronics is soaring due to the pandem.

(ET, Sep 01, 2020)

New electronic skin can react to pain like human skin IT

Researchers, including one of Indian-origin, have developed electronic artificial skin that reacts to pain just like real skin, opening the way to better prosthetics, smarter robotics and non-invasive alternatives to skin grafts. The prototype device developed by a team at RMIT University in Australia can electronically replicate the way human skin senses pain, the study published in the journal Advanced Intelligent Systems, reported. The device mimics the body's near-instant feedback response and can react to painful sensations with the same lighting speed that nerve signals travel to the brain.  According to the researchers, the pain-sensing prototype was a significant advance towards next-generation biomedical technologies and intelligent robotics. Skin is our body's largest sensory organ, with complex features designed to send rapid-fire warning signals when anything hurts, they said. “We’re sensing things all the time through the skin but our pain response only kicks in at a certain point, like when we touch something too hot or too sharp,” said study author Madhu Bhaskaran from RMIT University.  “No electronic technologies have been able to realistically mimic that very human feeling of pain — until now. Our artificial skin reacts instantly when pressure, heat or cold reach a painful threshold,” Bhaskaran explained. The pressure sensor prototype combines stretchable electronics and long-term memory cells, the heat sensor brings together temperature-reactive coatings and memory, while the pain sensor integrates all three technologies. According to the team, the memory cells in each prototype were responsible for triggering a response when the pressure, heat or pain reached a set threshold.

(Tribune, Sep 01, 2020)

'We ain't leaving India': Chinese firms on 'Boycott China' call General

Undeterred by adversity all around, companies with origins in China that have made steady inroads in India's domestic electronic goods market over the last decade remain committed to what they say is a lucrative and profitable market in India. In reached out to in the smartphone and consumer electronics sectors say they have neither put off their future investments in the country nor altered their product launches in any significant manner. This despite the fact that the Indian government is actively looking at ways to diminish the role of Chinese companies in Indian market. Additionally, the mood of the nation seems to have also turned against them with campaigns for a boycott of Chinese goods being run all over the country.  Consumer electronics firm TCL said it has already made investments to the tune of Rs 2,400 crore at its factory in Tirupati and is gearing up to launch a complete IOT package of smart products. "Our investments are to ensure we keep launching new products such as the recent Qled TV line up. We have witnessed a growth 3 times more than that of 2018," says Mike Chen, General Manager, TCL India. "We also launched a smart AC recently and going forward we want to bring products that gives you complete IOT package of smart living. We will be making an announcement soon."

(Business Today, Aug 31, 2020)

Jio, Airtel rule Covid-time war for India's smartphone, TV public square Telecom

Sushant Singh Rajput wasn't a big star until June 14 when he died. Certainly no Amitabh Bachchan of India's audiences that he seems today if we just returned from the moon.Credit SSR's acting, propelled by the tailwinds of controversy. His "Dil Bechara", unveiled 6 weeks later by Disney Plus and Hotstar on July 24, sits in the same slot as Amazon Prime Video's "Gulabo Sitabo" anchored by the great Bachchan in the immediately preceding period.  The review of a 67-page deck by Nielsen and Broadcast Audience Research Council (BARC) in its 10th edition, mapped with an 81-page edition No.11 presented by BARC chief Sunil Lulla on August 27, shows that Bachchan's "Gulabo..." and Rajput's "Dil Bechara" were the respective numero uno of direct-to-digital movies of the lockdown period between June 6-July 3 and July 1-August 20.

(ET, Aug 31, 2020)

LG sees 'window of opportunity' to come back into Indian smartphone market Telecom

South Korean electronics major LG is planning to use the “window of opportunity” provided by the anti-China mood in India currently to stage a comeback in smartphones, targeting the sub-Rs 15,000 segment to claw back its way back in an industry now dominated by brands from across the Great Wall. The company is seeking to scale up local manufacturing by 15 times until Diwali and expand distribution.  In an interview with ET, Advait Vaidya, business head - mobile communications at LG Electronics, said the brand has seen 10 times increased sales of smartphones in the past two months due to the anti-China sentiment. “The short-term window of opportunity is big enough for us to enter the space and achieve scale,” he said. Diverging from its global portfolio, this year, LG is building an ‘India specific and India first’ product portfolio to cater to unique consumer demands here, Vaidya said. “So, this year, starting August, we will be launching six phones across all segments - starting from the sub-Rs 10,000 category up to the flagship segment. We are ramping up distribution across channels, online and offline,” he said. The company is also targeting corporate sales and foraying into the tablet market by year end.

(ET. July 05, 2020)

Hyundai, Uber join hands to develop electric air taxis General

South Korean automobile manufacturer Hyundai Motor Company today entered into a partnership with US ride-hailing giant Uber to produce electric air taxis. Hyundai also unveiled a new full-scale concept PAV (personal air vehicle), developed jointly with Uber, at the ongoing Consumer Electronics Show 2020. Hyundai is the first automotive company to join the Uber Elevate initiative. Under the partnership, Hyundai will produce and deploy the air vehicles and Uber will provide airspace support services, connections to ground transportation and customer interfaces through an aerial rideshare network. The two entities are also collaborating on infrastructure concepts to support their take-off and landing. The concept PAV -- S-A1 -- is an eVTOL (electric vertical take-off and landing) aircraft designed for aerial ridesharing purposes. The S-A1 will seat five people, including the pilot, and have a cruising speed of 290 kmph, with a flying trip up to 100 km. The cruising altitude of the air vehicle will be around 1,000-2,000 feet above the ground. Being a completely electric air vehicle, the S-A1 will utilise distributed electric propulsion, powering multiple rotors and propellers around the airframe to increase safety by decreasing any single point of failure. During peak hours, it will require about five

(India Today, Jan 07, 2020)