Tag Archive: China



Although Facebook has been blocked in China for over a decade, the social media giant is on a hunt for an office space in Shanghai that it would use to make hardware.

Citing sources, The New York Times reported on Wednesday that the office could also help Facebook with its broader ambitions in China.

Facebook’s plans are tentative and would depend on approval from the Chinese government.

“We have long said that we are interested in China and are spending time understanding and learning more about the country in different ways,” a Facebook spokeswoman said.

Facebook’s new hardware initiatives would require plugging into China’s electronics supply chain, which helps build some of the world’s most popular gadgets like Apple’s iPhone.

The office would first be used by the employees of Facebook’s hardware effort called Building 8.

In 2015, Facebook obtained a license to open an office in Beijing but the permit lasted only three months and it could not establish a space in that time.

Oculus, the virtual reality company Facebook bought three years ago, already has an office in Shanghai.

At the moment, Facebook uses third parties and its own employees to sell ads in China.

Facebook employees run special security software on devices when they travel in China and do not have access to secretive or critical business information – all due to cyber-security concerns.

China is a large market for Facebook because it has the world’s largest population of online users.

Earlier this year, Facebook released a Chinese version of its Moments photo-managing app through a small local company.

Facebook has been selling advertisements to the Chinese companies hoping to reach the rest of the world. The Chinese ad sales, supported from its office in Hong Kong, are some of the largest in Asia, the report added.

 

 

Source : (gadgets.ndtv.com)

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China’s top cyber authority ordered the country’s top tech firms to carry out “immediate cleaning and rectification” of their platforms to remove content deemed offensive to the Communist Party and the country’s national image, it said on Wednesday.

The watchdog held a meeting with representatives from firms including Tencent Holdings Ltd, Baidu Inc and Sohu.com Inc, on Tuesday where it gave them a list of specific errors, the Cyberspace Administration of China (CAC) said in a statement on social media.

The violations include distorting Chinese history, spreading fake news, misinterpreting policy directives and failing to block content that subverts public stability.

“[The sites] must adhere to the correct political line and moral norms,” the statement said.

Chinese authorities have recently cracked down on platforms that allow users to share media from outlets that are not sanctioned under state-issued licenses, amid a wider censorship campaign spearheaded by President Xi Jinping.

On June 1 the CAC ushered in new regulations requiring all offline and online media outlets to be managed by Party-approved editorial staff. Workers in the approved outlets must receive training from local propaganda bureaus.

In the wake of the new regulations several sites have been targeted with fines and closures under the watchdog’s orders.

In specific examples, the CAC criticised one platform that failed to censor articles that “seriously deviated from socialist values” by saying China benefited from US assistance during conflicts with Japan during World War II.

Other examples included a story detailing alleged affairs by party officials, an opinion piece that decried China’s death penalty and an article that urged readers to invest in speculative real estate projects.

The CAC said the firms were required to immediately close offending accounts and strengthen “imperfect” auditing systems to avoid future punishment.

 

 

Source : (gadgets.ndtv.com)


China’s government has told telecommunications carriers to block individuals’ access to virtual private networks by February 1, people familiar with the matter said, thereby shutting a major window to the global Internet.

Beijing has ordered state-run telecommunications firms, which include China Mobile, China Unicom and China Telecom, to bar people from using VPNs, services that skirt censorship restrictions by routing web traffic abroad, the people said, asking not to be identified talking about private government directives.

The clampdown will shutter one of the main ways in which people both local and foreign still manage to access the global, unfiltered web on a daily basis. China has one of the world’s most restrictive internet regimes, tightly policed by a coterie of government regulators intent on suppressing dissent to preserve social stability. In keeping with President Xi Jinping’s “cyber sovereignty” campaign, the government now appears to be cracking down on loopholes around the Great Firewall, a system that blocks information sources from Twitter and Facebook to news websites such as the New York Times and others.

While VPNs are widely used by businesses and individuals to view banned websites, the technology operates in a legal gray area. The Ministry of Industry and Information Technology pledged in January to step up enforcement against unauthorised VPNs, and warned corporations to confine such services to internal use. At least one popular network operator said it had run afoul of the authorities: GreenVPN notified users it would halt service from July 1 after “receiving a notice from regulatory departments.” It didn’t elaborate on the notice.

It’s unclear how the new directive may affect multinationals operating within the country, which already have to contend with a Cybersecurity Law that imposes stringent requirements on the transfer of data and may give Beijing unprecedented access to their technology. Companies operating on Chinese soil will be able to employ leased lines to access the international web but must register their usage of such services for the record, the people familiar with the matter said.

“This seems to impact individuals” most immediately, said Jake Parker, Beijing-based vice president of the US-China Business Council. “VPNs are incredibly important for companies trying to access global services outside of China,” he said.

“In the past, any effort to cut off internal corporate VPNs has been enough to make a company think about closing or reducing operations in China. It’s that big a deal,” he added.

China Mobile Ltd., the Hong Kong-listed arm of the country’s biggest carrier, declined to comment. Representatives for publicly traded China Telecom Corp. and China Unicom (Hong Kong) Ltd. couldn’t immediately comment. The ministry didn’t immediately reply to an email seeking comment.

 

 

Source : (gadgets.ndtv.com)


In today’s weird news, a Chinese billionaire’s son purchased eight iPhone 7 smartphones. But that’s not the weird part. The iPhone 7 smartphones were purchased for the son’s dog. You may need a moment to digest what you just read, but the story is fantastically true.

Wang Sicong is the son of Wang Jialin, a Chinese businessman whose net worth is over $30 billion. The son bought his dog Coco eight iPhone 7s, according to a post on the dog’s account on Weibo. Yes, the dog has his own Weibo account too – and, it’s verified. The iPhone 7 in China is priced between CNY 6,388 and 7,988 (roughly Rs. 64,210 to Rs. 80,000), which means Sicong spent upwards of CNY 51,071 (roughly Rs. 5,13,000). For the son of a businessman worth $30 billion, that price would not pinch too much.
While Apple fans in China started lining up outside the Apple Store on Friday, Sicong easily managed to get eight of the latest devices from Apple only to give it to his beloved dog. The dog, of course, is seen happily posing with his new collection.

This isn’t the first time Wang Sicong’s dog has received such spotlight. In May 2015, Sicong purchased two Apple Watch Editions for his dog (named Wang Ke Chi Bi), which the dog flaunted on his two front paws. In fact, the Apple Watch Edition models were a lot pricier compared to the iPhone 7, costing somewhere between $10,000 (roughly Rs. 6,40,000) and $17,000 (roughly Rs. 11,00,000) each.
By the looks of it, Sicong’s dog is an all out Apple fan and one can expect him to sport the latest Apple Watch Series 2 in the near future.

 

Source : (gadgets.ndtv.com)


Huawei has expanded its portfolio by launching the Maimang 5 smartphone in China. The Huawei Maimang 5 is priced starting at CNY 2,399 (roughly Rs. 24,100), and will be sold on the company’s own store in China from July 21.

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The Huawei Maimang 4 was launched in China last year, and the company went on to call it the Huawei G8 when it was launched in other countries. Following that naming scheme, the Huawei Maimang 5 may be called the Huawei G9 when it launches globally. The smartphone has a fingerprint scanner at the back, and comes with a metal unibody with rounded corners. It features a 5.5-inch full-HD (1920×1080 pixels) IPS display with a pixel density of 401ppi. The display is further protected by a 2.5D glass. It is powered by a Snapdragon 625 octa-core processor clocked at 2GHz, and comes in two storage/ RAM bundles – 3GB of RAM/ 32GB of inbuilt storage, 4GB of RAM/ 64GB of inbuilt storage. The Huawei Maimang 5 supports expandable storage via microSD slot.

Optics include a 16-megapixel rear camera with OIS, PDAF, and the ability to record 4K video with 30fps. There is an adjacent 8-megapixel selfie camera with a wide-angle lens and beauty filters. The Huawei Maimang 5 is packed with a 3340mAh battery that is rated to deliver up to 22 hours of talk time and 800 hours of standby time. In China, Huawei will begin with selling the 4GB RAM variant only for now, in Champagne Gold and Rose Gold colour options. The 3GB Ram variant will soon be available in Champagne Gold, and Moonlight Silver colour variants.

The Huawei Maimang 5 offers dual-SIM dual standby support (hybrid dual-SIM slot), and runs on Android 6.0 Marshmallow-based EMUI 4.1 on top. Connectivity options include 4G LTE (with VoLTE for China Mobile), Wi-FI, 802.11 b/g/n, Bluetooth 4.1, GPS/A-GPS, USB OTG, and USB 2.0 Type-C port. The 3GB variant is priced at CNY 2,399 (roughly Rs. 24,100), and the 4GB variant is priced at CNY 2,599 (roughly Rs. 26,100). The company has not disclosed when its plans to sell the smartphone as the Huawei G9 in foreign markets.

Source : (gadgets.ndtv.com)


Apple Inc said its iPhone 6 and 6 Plus were still available for sale in China after Beijing’s intellectual property regulators barred their sales saying the designs had infringed a patent held by a Chinese company.

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“We appealed an administrative order from a regional patent tribunal in Beijing last month and as a result the order has been stayed pending review by the Beijing IP Court,” Apple said in a statement on Friday.

The notice, dated May 19, banning sales of certain iPhone models in Beijing was posted on a Chinese government website.

The Chinese market is vital to Apple, driving more of its sales than any other region outside the United States. But the tech giant has faced greater scrutiny there in recent months, with its online book and film services blocked by Chinese regulators earlier this year.

Apple historically had enjoyed favourable treatment in China, but Beijing’s crackdown on the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus is a reminder that the tech giant is not immune to the scrutiny that other US tech firms have long faced in the country, said analyst Colin Gillis of BGC Partners.

“There’s a variety of risks of having dependence on sales in China to Apple, and government intervention in whatever form is one of them,” he said.

Last month, Apple announced that it would invest $1 billion in Chinese ride-hailing firm Didi Chuxing, a move that was widely viewed as an attempt to shore up relations in China.

 

Source : (gadgets.ndtv.com)


After the Samsung Galaxy C5, the company has also made the Galaxy C7 go official. While the Galaxy C5 is up for pre-orders in China, and will be available from June 6, availability details of the Galaxy C7 haven’t been revealed yet.

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The Samsung Galaxy C7 is essentially the larger variant of the Galaxy C5. It runs on Android 6.0 Marshmallow out-of-the-box, and sports a hybrid dual-SIM card slot. It features a 5.7-inch Super Amoled full-HD (1080×1920 pixels) display, and is powered by an octa-core Snapdragon 625 SoC coupled with 4GB of RAM.

The Galaxy S7 bears a 16-megapixel rear camera, and an 8-megapixel front camera – both with f/1.9 aperture. The smartphone offers 32GB and 64GB storage options, which is expandable via microSD card (up to 128GB) via the hybrid dual-SIM slot. There’s a 3300mAh battery inside, and connectivity options include NFC (with Samsung Pay support), 4G LTE, Wi-Fi a/b/g/n, and Bluetooth 4.2.

The fingerprint scanner is embedded inside the home button in the front, and will be available in Gold, Pink Gold, Grey, and Silver colour options. The Galaxy C7 is at a slight higher price point than the Galaxy C5, with the 32GB variant priced at CNY 2,599 (roughly Rs. 26,600), and 64GB is at CNY 2,799 (roughly Rs.28,600).

Just to compare, the Samsung Galaxy C5 has a 5.2-inch full-HD (1080×1920 pixels) Super Amoled display, runs on an octa-core Snapdragon 617 SoC, and packs a 2600mAh battery. All other specs remain the same. The Galaxy C5 smartphone is only available on pre-orders in China as of now. The 32GB is priced at CNY 2,200 (roughly Rs. 22,500), and the 64GB is priced at CNY 2,400(roughly Rs. 24,600).

 

Source : (gadgets.ndtv.com)


Meizu, after launching its Pro 6 and m3 note smartphones this month, has now launched the m3. The smartphone is now up for pre-orders in China, and has been priced at CNY 599 for the 2GB of RAM/ 16GB of inbuilt storage variant, and CNY 799 for the 3GB of RAM/ 32GB of inbuilt storage variant.

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The dual-SIM Meizu m3 runs the custom Flyme 5 OS, based on Android 5.1 Lollipop. It features a 5-inch HD (720×1280 pixel) display with a pixel density of 296ppi, and Schott Xensation cover glass for protection. The m3 is powered by an octa-core MediaTek MT6750 SoC (4 Cortex-A53 cores clocked at 1.5GHz, and 4 Cortex-A53 cores clocked at 1GHz), coupled with either 2GB or 3GB of LPDDR3 RAM.

The m3 bears a 13-megapixel rear camera with an f/2.2 aperture, LED flash, and phase detection autofocus (PDAF). It also bears a 5-megapixel front-facing camera with an f/2.0 aperture. The smartphone comes in 16GB and 32GB inbuilt storage variants, expandable via microSD card via the hybrid dual-SIM slot. The smartphone supports 4G LTE connectivity, though band information has not been provided – making it uncertain if the China variants support Indian LTE bands.

Other connectivity options of the Meizu m3 include Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n, Bluetooth 4.0, GPS/ A-GPS with Glonass. The smartphone is powered by a 2870mAh battery, weighs 132 grams, and measures 141.5×69.5×8.3mm. Onboard sensors include accelerometer, gyroscope, ambient light, and a magnetometer.

The Meizu m3 will be available in Gold, Grey, White, Blue, and Pink colour variants, and features a moulded polycarbonate body. For now, no details have been provided about availability in countries apart from China

 

Source : (gadgets.ndtv.com)


The blocking of Apple mobile entertainment services in China poses fresh challenges for the tech company as it prepares to report its first-ever drop in iPhone sales.

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The news on Thursday that Apple Inc’s online book and film services had gone dark in China came at a vulnerable moment for the company. Apple executives have said that iPhone sales will fall for the first time in the company’s second quarter, and the results for that quarter will be released on Tuesday. Investors are sensitive to any signs of trouble in Greater China, the company’s second-largest market by revenue.

Apple executives have flagged the growing services business as a potential source of revenue as sales of the company’s flagship devices level off, upping the stakes for success in China, said analyst Bob O’Donnell of TECHnalysis Research.

“It raises questions in an area that we know long-term is going to be very strategically important to Apple,” he said.

The New York Times reported on Thursday that a state regulator demanded Apple halt the service. The move came after Beijing introduced regulations in March imposing strict curbs on online publishing, particularly for foreign firms.

Still, the outage is only troubling if it persists, O’Donnell said. Apple said in a statement on Thursday that it hopes to make the services available to customers in China as soon as possible.

Apple has a strong track record of working with officials in China, where it has launched a series of services including mobile payment Apple Pay, but some analysts questioned whether the company may receive a chillier reception in the future.

“Is this the beginning of more pressure on Apple by the Chinese government?” asked analyst of Frank Gillett of research firm Forrester. “It’s a symbolic turn, and the question is to what extent is it a harbinger.”

The company released its book and movie services in China only late last year, leaving Chinese consumers little time to form a habit.

“People who are buying iPhones in China aren’t buying them for iTunes,” said O’Donnell. “They are buying it for the status and the cachet of owning an Apple product, and that is really more about the hardware.”

Chinese consumers’ appetite for the phones themselves will be critical to quarterly earnings. Apple is expected to post its first-ever quarterly drop in iPhone sales, to about 50 million units, reflecting a saturated global market.

Wall Street expects adjusted earnings per share to drop 14 percent to $2.00 and revenue to drop 10 percent to $52.0 billion (roughly Rs. 3,46,634 crores), according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.

 
Source : (gadgets.ndtv.com)


As expected, Gionee on Tuesday launched its W909 clamshell Android smartphone in China. Priced at CNY 3,999 (roughly Rs. 41,000), the handset is already up for pre-orders in the country. Its availability details outside China have not yet been mentioned.

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It is worth mentioning that the Gionee W909 is also arguably one of the first flip phones in the market to come with a fingerprint sensor, USB Type-C port, and dual touchscreens as well. It sports a metal build and houses some high-end specifications under-the-hood.

The Gionee W909 runs Android 5.1 Lollipop and supports dual-SIM functionality. It includes two 4.2-inch HD (720×1280 pixels) resolution IPS display, with the outer display featuring a 2.5D glass. The smartphone is powered by an octa-core MediaTek MT6755M processor, clubbed with 4GB of LPDDR3 RAM.

The smartphone bears 64GB of inbuilt storage, of which 52GB is user-accessible. The built-in storage can be expanded via microSD card (up to 128GB). The Gionee W909 bears a 16-megapixel rear camera with phase detection autofocus (PDAF) and LED flash, along with a 5-megapixel front-facing camera.

On the connectivity front, the flip phone supports 4G LTE networks, along with Bluetooth v4.0, GPS, Wi-Fi, and USB Type-C connectivity. Backed by a 2530mAh battery, the W909 on paper can deliver up to 29.7 hours of talk time and 408 hours of standby time. It measures 124.1×62.8×16.5mm, weighs 207 grams, and features a fingerprint sensor at the back that can unlock the handset in 0.38 seconds.

Since the Gionee W909 carries a flip phone design, it also has T9 keypad with physical buttons to navigate, launch the camera and more, besides having an on-screen keyboard. It is only available in Rose Gold colour variant.
The last flip phone by a popular tech brand was seen by Samsung in November last year as it launched the W2016 smartphone in China. The Android-based dual-SIM smartphone features two 3.9-inch Super Amoled touchscreens, both with WXGA (768×1280 pixels) resolution. Although it sports nearly the same innards as the Gionee W909, it lags behind in terms of battery and RAM. It also misses out on a fingerprint sensor and USB Type-C connectivity.

 

LG too last year launched its flip phone, the Wine Smart but with less-powerful specifications.

 

Source : (gadgets.ndtv.com)