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Week In Review: SD Asia’s Top 3 Articles From Last Week

Tousif Alam February 12, 2016

Every day, we at SD Asia work hard to bring you the best startup, entrepreneurship, business and tech news from Bangladesh, from Asia and around the world. There are times when we hear of news that holds us in awe, or times when our review lists have created a storm. More importantly, we try to inspire the Bangladeshi startups first.

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cyber security

Leveling Up Your Online Security

Access to the internet has been made possible from every

wifi

Karnataka Will Soon Have Free WiFi Hotspots at 144 Bus Stations

The Karnataka State Road Transport Corporation (KSRTC) will launch WiFi

IMJ VC Firm

IMJ Investment partners launches US$53M fund for Japan-based startups

Singapore-based VC IMJ Investment Partners has announced the establishment of

microsoft-event

Microsoft Lays Off 'Dozens' as It Cuts Costs in Mobile Division

Microsoft is reportedly laying off many of its employees related to

lenovo-vibe-p1-turbo-launched

Lenovo Vibe P1 Turbo Launched

Lenovo has quietly launched yet another variant of the Vibe

News

wifi

Karnataka Will Soon Have Free WiFi Hotspots at 144 Bus Stations

SD Asia Desk India, News February 11, 2016

The Karnataka State Road Transport Corporation (KSRTC) will launch WiFi at 144 major bus stations across the state, including connections at four bus stations in Bengaluru, where the pilot survey is being conducted. The internet speed at these locations will be 512 kbps. The 1st 60 mins or 100MB is free.

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IMJ VC Firm

IMJ Investment partners launches US$53M fund for Japan-based startups

SD Asia Desk Asia, News February 11, 2016

Singapore-based VC IMJ Investment Partners has announced the establishment of IMJ Investment Partners Japan Fund 1 (IMJIP Japan Fund 1) to boost Japan’s tech ecosystem. It has already raised 2 billion yen (US$18 million) and will seek to hit 6 billion yen (US$52 million) by end of 2016.

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microsoft-event

Microsoft Lays Off ‘Dozens’ as It Cuts Costs in Mobile Division

SD Asia Desk News, World February 11, 2016

Microsoft is reportedly laying off many of its employees related to its mobile division in multiple countries including Finland, in an attempt to cut costs. The report claims that the company is handing out pink slips to employees in an attempt to curtail the expenses in its mobile division. The division saw a significant drop in the revenue last quarter.

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lenovo-vibe-p1-turbo-launched

Lenovo Vibe P1 Turbo Launched

SD Asia Desk News, World February 11, 2016

Lenovo has quietly launched yet another variant of the Vibe P1, called the Vibe P1 Turbo. The smartphone boasts a massive 5,000mAh battery, and can also be used as a power bank to charge other devices. The smartphone is up for preorders on Lenovo’s Indonesian website, IDR IDR 3,999,000, which roughly translates to $300.

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Internal Samsung file leaks revealing Android 6.0 features for the Galaxy S6

SD Asia Desk News, World February 11, 2016

A leaked Consumer Consultant Guide meant for the eyes of Samsung employees only, reveals the capabilities of the Samsung Galaxy S6 and Samsung Galaxy S6 edge once the two handsets are updated to Android 6.0. The file contains information about some of the new features that Android 6.0 is bringing to Android handsets.

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amazon-sign-kindle-fire-hd

Amazon to buy 26% stake in Tatas-owned publishing house Westland

SD Asia Desk India, News February 11, 2016

E-commerce giant Amazon Inc has struck a deal to buy a 26 per cent stake in Westland Ltd, a subsidiary of Tata Group’s retail firm Trent Ltd. The deal involves Amazon picking the stake for Rs 9.4 crore ($1.4 million), valuing Westland at Rs 36.15 crore. Amazon retains the rights to eventually buy out Trent from the JV.

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lg-g51

LG G5 with Snapdragon 820 chipset

SD Asia Desk Asia, News February 11, 2016

LG is all set unveil the G5 on February 21 at MWC 2016. Just ahead of launch, the smartphone was spotted on Geekbench sporting Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 820 chipset, 4GB of RAM and running on Android 6.0 Marshmallow OS. Based on the rumors, the G5 could flaunt a 5.6-inch QHD (2560×1440 pixels) display.

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twitter-algorithm-hed-2016

Twitter Starts Using an Algorithm to Curate Users’ Timelines

SD Asia Desk News, World February 11, 2016

The San Francisco-based tech company has introduced an algorithm that will reorder the top of users’ timelines with tweets it predicts will be interesting and relevant to them. Tweets that are selected are based on a number of criteria including account interactions, engagement, user interests and network activity. The rest of the newsfeed will then follow the traditional reverse-chronological order.

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twitter

Twitter’s User Growth Goes Nowhere As It Meets Revenue Expectations Of $710M

SD Asia Desk News, World February 11, 2016

Twitter’s monthly active user growth, on a quarterly basis, was flat, compared to a slight jump that what analysts were expecting. Last quarter, the company had 320 million monthly active users, and this quarter was no different.  The company reported 305 million monthly active users for Q4, compared to 307 million in the previous quarter, excluding SMS fast followers.

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Student.com Bags $60M To Grow The Reach Of Its Student Digs Marketplace

SD Asia Desk Asia, News February 11, 2016

Student.com, an accommodation marketplace founded back in 2011  to focus specifically on the needs of international students, is announcing a $60 million combined Series B and C round today, led by global investment firm VY Capital. Horizons Ventures, Expa, Spotify founders Daniel Ek and Martin Lorentzon and Hugo Barra from Xiaomi also participated in the round.

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Indonesia’s Kincir launches news portal for the young at heart

SD Asia Desk Asia, News February 11, 2016

Indonesian fan-based social media platform Kincir today launched a youth-focussed online news portal Viral during a media conference in South Jakarta.Viral will contain news and feature stories on entertainment and lifestyle targeted for youth aged 15 to 25 years old. The portal will also discuss current issues, such as politics or terrorism, emphasising the youth’s perspective and lingo

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Singaporean fintech startup gets funding from Indonesian Lippo conglomerate

SD Asia Desk Asia, News February 11, 2016

After closing a pre-series A round in November last year, Singaporean startup Call Levels today announced a strategic investment from Indonesia’s Lippo Group. The amount was not disclosed. The team decided to accept, given the interesting prospect of future collaboration with the conglomerate’s portfolio companies.

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Social Networking Website Affimity Gets $1.2 Million In Seed Round

SD Asia Desk India, News February 11, 2016

Affimity, a Bangalore-based social networking platform, has raised $1.2 million in its seed funding round from a group of angel investors and founders based in Silicon Valley. With the new cash coming to the company, Affimity will now expand its operations in India as well as in abroad.

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google

Google completely drops Flash ad support in favor of HTML5

Shuvo News, World February 10, 2016

Google has announced that it will be switching to HTML5 100% for its ad networks, dropping the existing Flash format. This will enable the ads to be playable on a vast majority of the devices, such as on mobile, where Flash is not supported. Google has advised advertisers to update their ads to HTML5.

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Opera Confirms Getting $1.2 Billion Acquisition Bid Led By A Consortium Of Chinese Investors

SD Asia Desk China February 10, 2016

Norwegian browser company Opera has announced that it has received a $1.2 billion acquisition offer from Golden Brick Silk Road, a Chinese investment fund and consortium of popular Chinese internet companies. As per the proposed agreement, the firms will get 100% stake in Opera.

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Greenway Secures $2.5 Million In Fresh Round

SD Asia Desk Asia, India February 10, 2016

Greenway Appliances, a company which makes biomass cooking stove, has received $2.5 million in a fresh funding round from Acumen, a global non-profit investment organisation focused on poverty issues. Two out of every three households in the country still cooks on traditional mud stoves using wood and dung, which not only consume large amounts of fuel but also emit toxic fumes that

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Avanti

Mumbai-Based Avanti Learning Centres Raises Rs-33Cr Funding

Shuvo India February 10, 2016

Mumbai-based startup Avanti Learning Centres has secured Rs.-33.1-crore, led by the Dell Foundation, Asha Impact, and existing co-investors Ted Dintersmith and Pearson Affordable Learning Fund (PALF). Avanti uses a blended learning model to provide science and mathematics teaching and IIT JEE/CET/AIPMT coaching at affordable prices across India. Currently, the platform serves over 50,000 students.

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Cyber-Crime

49% Of Bangladeshi Students Have Encountered Cyber Bullying

Shuvo Bangladesh February 10, 2016

To better understand online behaviors, Telenor Group released the results of its Safer Internet study, which examined internet safety knowledge among 1,896 students in Bangladesh. Amongst the pupils surveyed, 49% of students have experienced either ‘being bullied or disturbed online’ or ‘being bullied by the same person both online and offline’.

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gsmarena_002

Twitter’s First View Lets Advertisers Reserve A Top Spot In Your Timeline For 24 hours

Tousif Alam World February 10, 2016

The social giant Twitter aims to open up a whole new area of possibilities for social marketing. The idea is simple – give an advertiser the exclusive rights to the very top advertising spot in the timeline. Twitter will be limiting each advertising deal to 24 hours, after which it will be substituted for another one.

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World-Remit

WorldRemit, Money-Transfer Service For Migrants, Raises $45M In Funding

Shuvo World February 10, 2016

Fintech startup WorldRemit has raised $45-million from TriplePoint Venture Growth BDC Crop. and Silicon Valley Bank. WorldRemit provides a money-transfer service aimed at helping migrants send money to their families back home. WorldRemit said it generated almost $40 million in revenue last year, enabling around 400,000 transfers on average each month.

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AdBlock Fast For Samsung’s Android Browser Is Now Back In the Play Store

Tousif Alam World February 10, 2016

At the beginning of this month Samsung released a new version of its Internet browser for Android 5.0 and up. This adds a new API which developers can use to create ad-blocking extensions. Just a few days later, one of the first such extensions, AdBlock Fast, landed in the Play Store – only to be pulled by Google soon after.

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amazon

Amazon Launches Game Engine Lumberyard And GameLift For Gamers

Shuvo World February 10, 2016

To lure gamers to its cloud platform, Amazon has recently announced the launch of two new game development tools, called Amazon Lumberyard and GameLift. Lumberyard is a free cross-platform for 3D game engine developers. And, GameLift allows game developers to quickly scale their session-based multiplayer games with AWS’s cloud infrastructure.

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adobe

Adobe Launches Animate CC– A Rebraded, Successor To Flash Professional

Shuvo World February 10, 2016

Adobe has launched the latest version of its animation tool Flash professional, rebranding it as Animate CC. Animate CC is used to create high-quality animations for the web but with the support of modern tools such as native HTML5 Canvas and WebGL support. It also allows the program to be connected and compatible with the Creative Cloud services.

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Bangladesh Kicks Off Bandwidth Export To India

Shuvo Bangladesh February 10, 2016

Bangladesh started exporting bandwidth to India’s northeastern state of Tripura on Monday. Bangladesh Submarine Cable Company Ltd or BSCCL started supplying 10 Gbps bandwidth on a trial basis on Sunday and India confirmed it is using the whole capacity. Bangladesh will earn $10 for per Mbps of bandwidth, accumulating up to $1.2–million or Tk 9.6-crore a year.

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Unencrypted Message

Now Gmail Will Warn You About The Emails Sent Over Unsecured Connections

Shuvo World February 10, 2016

On the occasion of Safer Internet Day, Google has announced that it is adding new security precautions to make emailing safer for users. Now, Gmail will notify you when you receive a message from or are about to send a message to, someone whose email service doesn’t support TLS encryption.

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BTRC

Dhaka Phone Sues BTRC For Tk 4,000cr Compensation

Shuvo Bangladesh February 10, 2016

Dhaka Phone has filed a Tk-4,018.86-crore compensation suit against BTRC for abruptly shutting down its service. The land phone operator claimed that BTRC’s move to shut down its services six years back was unlawful. Dhaka Phone made several attempts to get back the license and return to the operation but the regulator did not respond to their requests.

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Verizon reportedly in the market to buy Yahoo for large user base

SD Asia Desk News, World February 9, 2016

Verizon, which acquired AOL last year, is now reportedly interested in taking on Yahoo as well.According to Bloomberg, the wireless telecom giant has tasked AOL CEO Tim Armstrong with figuring out how to make it happen.The company’s massive user base and mobile video ads would likely bring in quite a lot of revenue.

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google

Google Launches Flood Alerts Feature In India

Tousif Alam India February 9, 2016

Google has just announced that it’s introducing its flood alerts feature in India. The feature will be available through Google Public Alerts, which is basically a platform that the company uses for disseminating emergency messages. Clicking on an alert will display related details such as a map, expected timeline, as well as tips on how to stay safe.

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amazon-kindle-paperwhite-2015

Amazon Kindle Discounts: 7″ Fire For $40, Paperwhite For $100

Tousif Alam World February 9, 2016

Amazon has aggressively slashed prices of its Kindle products. The cheap 7″ Kindle Fire drops $10 to just $40. If you buy popcorn at the movie theater, you’ll probably spend more. Other promotions include $50 off the Kindle Fire HDX 8.9 (now $430) and $50 off the Kindle Fire HD 10 (now $180).

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Linkedin Pixlr

LinkedIn Stock’s Worst Day Since Debut

Shuvo World February 9, 2016

LinkedIn’s shares closed down 43.6% on Friday, wiping out nearly $11-billion of market value. The stock plunged as much as 46.5% to a more than three-year low of $102.89, registering its sharpest decline since the company’s high-profile public listing in 2011. At least 9-brokerages downgraded the stock to “hold” from “buy”, saying the company’s lofty valuation was no longer justified.

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amazon-sign-kindle-fire-hd

Amazon Stops Returns For Smartphone Purchases In India

Tousif Alam India February 9, 2016

Amazon has announced that it will no longer be accepting returns for smartphone purchases in India. From February 7 onwards, Amazon will only allow customers to initiate a replacement for their purchase, and not a return with a refund. Those who received a damaged device will get the only free replacement.

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GOOGLEDEV

Google Offers 2GB Of Free Drive Storage For Securing Your Account

Shuvo World February 9, 2016

To celebrate Safer Internet Day 2016, Google is once again offering free 2GB of Drive storage for reviewing your account’s security settings. Google rolled out a similar promotion last year. The free storage is immediately credited to your Google account once you perform the Security Checkup, and you have until February 11 to claim the additional storage.

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appleevent-600x400

Apple Is Letting Developers Use Its Swift Benchmark Suite As Open Source Toolkit

Shuvo World February 9, 2016

Apple’s Swift team has open sourced its benchmark suite of tools for developers to help avoid slowed performance when one updates to the code. The Swift benchmark suit has 75 different bench marks with core libraries for benchmarking functions. And, because it’s open source, you can contribute to the suite as well.

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Instagram

Instagram Now Lets You Switch Between Multiple Accounts

Shuvo World February 9, 2016

Instagram announced that it’s officially launching multi-account support inside the photo sharing social app. Now, users can maintain more than one account on the same device. You add new accounts from the settings menu, and once that’s done, just tap your username at the top of your profile to move between them.

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Cerberus

ASUS Announces New Cerberus Series Gaming Peripherals

Shuvo World February 9, 2016

ASUS has announced a new Cerberus Series of gaming peripherals consisting of an LED-backlit USB keyboard, ambidextrous optical mouse, and mouse pad suitable for all styles of gaming. ASUS has priced the keyboard, mouse and mouse pad at INR-3500, INR-1800, and INR-1200 respectively. The new peripherals are expected to be available by the second or third week of February.

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Inc42

Inc42 Raises Undisclosed Amount In Pre-Series A Round

Shuvo India February 9, 2016

Inc42, a two-year-old blog-centric startup, has fundraised an undisclosed amount in Pre-series-A, led by existing investors Unicorn India Ventures. Inc42 pens down pieces and publishes stories catering around the overall startup ecosystem development. The blog also publishes various opinion pieces by notable founders, sourced from a variety of sources in a bid to provide up and coming entrepreneurs.

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e-commerce

e-CAB Declares 6 Pointer Demand For Upcoming Budget

Shuvo Bangladesh February 9, 2016

For the upcoming 2016-2017 National Budget, e-CAB has declared 6 pointer demands in a recent press release. One of e-CAB’s major demands were: keeping the e-Commerce sector tax-free till 2025. The other demands include all banking charges on e-Commerce transaction to remain under 1%, e-Commerce trade license fee to reduce under Tk.-3,000 and remove VAT on online transactions till 2025.

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GoogleChrome

Google Announces CSS Variable Support For Chrome

Shuvo World February 9, 2016

Google has announced that it’s going to introduce CSS custom properties in Chrome-49. This new development will help you clean your code and permit powerful runtime effects. Users have been using preprocessors like SASS/LESS which are static and cannot be changed at runtime. CSS custom properties will allow a developer to define a variable and use it throughout their code.

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robi-airtel

Telcos Welcome Robi-Airtel Merger

Shuvo Bangladesh February 9, 2016

Country’s Four telecom operators yesterday welcomed the proposed merger between Robi and Airtel. However, current top two operators–Grameenphone and Banglalink–raised concerns over spectrum holding, technology neutrality for spectrum and the numbering schemes of the merged entity. BTRC will organize a public hearing on February 17.

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GoogleTest

Google To Test Driverless Cars For First Time In London

Shuvo World February 8, 2016

Internet giant Google will be testing its driverless car in London soon. In fact, it would be the first time the vehicles would be tested extensively outside the US by Google. Google had said that they will make nearly 100 cars like this for testing purpose.

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