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'Bangladesh brings under-connected people under digital connectivity'

Faisal Mahmud January 18, 2017

The Bangladesh government has taken massive initiatives for bringing the under connected people under necessary digital connectivity, Zunaid Ahmed Palak, state minister for ICT division said during a focus group discussion at the 47th World Economic Forum (WEF) on Wednesday. The WEF seminar titled ‘Innovations to connect to unconnected’ was attended by global leaders including Paul Kagame, President of Ruanda,

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Mastercard Index of Consumer Confidence Published; Bangladesh Recorded The Largest Gain

The Mastercard Index™ of Consumer Confidence survey, which is conducted

Byjus

India's Leading Edtech Startups Byju’s Acquires Vidyartha

Byju’s, one of the leading edtech startups in India, has

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National Board Of Revenue Plans To Launch Online VAT Registration In March

The National Board of Revenue plans to launch online VAT

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Google for Android's New update Recovers Inconsistent internet connections

Google is focusing on making the its services more accessible. The

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India’s Leading Edtech Startups Byju’s Acquires Vidyartha

Nahid Farzana India January 18, 2017

Byju’s, one of the leading edtech startups in India, has acquired Bangalore-based Vidyartha, a data-driven platform offering customized learning guidance to students. This acquisition strengthens Byju’s efforts to create personalised learning experiences for the students in the K-12 segment.

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National Board Of Revenue Plans To Launch Online VAT Registration In March

Nahid Farzana Bangladesh January 18, 2017

The National Board of Revenue plans to launch online VAT registration in March so that businesses can prepare to file returns electronically from the beginning of next fiscal year. Manual registration will come to an end after the online system is introduced. The revenue authority plans to open 12 centers to help businesses register and file returns online.  

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Google for Android’s New update Recovers Inconsistent internet connections

Tousif Alam World January 18, 2017

Google is focusing on making the its services more accessible. The Google (search) app for Android got a nifty addition that performs your searches when you’re offline. The app will now take your search query while you are offline, save it, then deliver the result as soon as your connection is reestablished.

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Singapore’s Ecommerce And Logistics Company Anchanto Launches New Software To Help Merchants Sell On A Multitude Of Marketplaces

Nahid Farzana Asia January 18, 2017

Ecommerce and logistics company Anchanto has launched a new software platform that helps merchants, brands, and distributors sell products on a multitude of marketplaces. The product, called SelluSeller, was announced today during a company event in Singapore. Users can manage their inventory and simultaneously upload their listings to several ecommerce websites, including Lazada, Matahari, and Flipkart.

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Indian Medtech Startup Practo Raised US$55M

Nahid Farzana India January 18, 2017

Practo, a leading healthcare platform with operations in India, Southeast Asia and Brazil, has announced US$55 million Series D funding in a round led by Tencent Holdings. With these funds, Practo will further build an integrated platform to unlock value for the entire healthcare ecosystem and invest further in its international operations.

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Telecom Regulator Eased Conditions For Mobile Phones Import

Nahid Farzana Bangladesh January 18, 2017

The telecom regulator has eased conditions for importing mobile phones, which importers say will help reduce handset prices and improve quality. As per a new decision, the approvals taken from the regulator for importing handsets will remain valid for six months. Importers now receive a no-objection certificate (NOC) for three months only, which puts them in a tight schedule.

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This photo illustration taken in Tokyo on July 13, 2016 shows the Pokemon official site through a Japanese internet website announcing the latest information for "Pokémon GO".
With Pokemon-mania sweeping the planet, Nintendo's nascent shift into mobile gaming has proved a massive hit, vindicating the Japanese videogame giant's decision to unshackle itself from a long-standing consoles-only policy. / AFP / KAZUHIRO NOGI / TO GO WITH Japan-US-IT-Nintendo-Pokemon-lifestyle,FOCUS by Harumi OZAWA
        (Photo credit should read KAZUHIRO NOGI/AFP/Getty Images)

Pokemon Go Hits $800m Revenue

Tousif Alam World January 18, 2017

According to App Annie reports, Pokemon go brought in revenues of $950 million in 2016. The game, developed by Niantic, was the first to reach $600 million and now it’s the first to reach $800 million. It only took 110 days, over two times faster than Candy Crush Saga (which took over 250 days).

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LG Filed Foldable Phone-Tablet Hybrid Patents

Tousif Alam World January 18, 2017

LG just filed another patent for a foldable phone, which hold on to your hats, folds on the vertical side. So when you open the device, you actually get a tablet-looking device in Landscape mode. The device will be with touchscreen display on the front and the back.

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Hong Kong’s Soundbrenner Raises US$1.5M For Market Expansion

Nahid Farzana Asia January 18, 2017

Soundbrenner announced today it has raised US$1.5 million to pursue the next stage in product development and pursue market expansion in 2017. This means investing the money in R&D, retail distribution and entering the music education industry. The company is currently working on the second-generation hardware product and is improving the accompanying software.

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NBR To Open Three Email Accounts To Better Connect With The Taxpayers

Nahid Farzana Bangladesh January 18, 2017

The National Board of Revenue plans to open three email accounts to receive complaints about harassment faced by the taxpayers at the field level. The taxpayers will be able to give suggestions and seek solutions from the authority for tax, VAT and customs related problem. The email accounts are feedbackcustoms@nbr.gov.bd, feedbackvat@nbr.gov.bd, feedbacktax@nbr.gov.bd.

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Vine app turned into Vine Camera

Tousif Alam World January 18, 2017

In the latest update, available now on iOS and Android, the Vine app has now turned into Vine Camera. With this, you can now shoot six seconds videos in the same familiar interface and with the same tools as with the previous app, except now there is no longer the same social network attached to it.  

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Chinese internet company LeEco Landed US$2.4 Billion In Fresh Funding

Nahid Farzana China January 17, 2017

Chinese internet company LeEco announced Sunday that it landed RMB16.8 billion (US$2.4 billion) in fresh funding led by China’s real estate titan Sunac China Holdings Ltd. Sunac will become the company’s second-largest shareholder after the deal. This hefty round would definitely ease the capital pressures the company has faced and to rebuild confidence in its investors

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Jakarta-Based Human Resource Technology Platform Ekrut Raised Seed Funding From East Ventures

Nahid Farzana Asia January 17, 2017

Jakarta-based human resource technology platform Ekrut today announced that it has raised an undisclosed seed funding from East Ventures, which recently announced its fifth fund for Southeast Asian startups. Launched in September 2016, Ekrut is a curated marketplace for employers and qualified talents.  

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Chinese Tech Giant Baidu Opens AR Lab

Nahid Farzana China January 17, 2017

Chinese tech giant Baidu is making use of its artificial intelligence research- through augmented reality. Today, the top search engine firm unveiled its AR Lab, a spin-off from its Institute for Deep Learning. Baidu plans to use its new Beijing lab, as well as technology from its AI research- image recognition, object detection, and more- to build smartphone-based AR applications.

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New Zealand-Based Ad-Tech Startup Postrs Raised US$2.1M To Enter Indonesia, The Philippines

Nahid Farzana Asia January 17, 2017

New Zealand-based ad-tech startup Postr today announced that it has attracted NZ$3 million (US$2.1 million) led by an undisclosed “group of private investors” in Singapore and previous investors. Postr stated that the investment is meant to fuel their international expansion to Australia and Southeast Asia.

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Southeast Asia Startup Funding At Record High In 2016

Nahid Farzana Asia January 17, 2017

Startups in Southeast Asia pulled in more moolah than ever before from investors in 2016. Total funding in the region hit US$2.6 billion, up over 60 percent from the previous year’s US$1.6 billion. The number of deals fell for the first time in five years to 365 – from 380 in 2015 – amidst talks of a cooling off in startup

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Singapore’s The Artling Raised US$1.8M To Grow Bigger

Nahid Farzana Asia January 17, 2017

Art and luxury item marketplace operator The Artling has raised a series A worth US$1.75 million, it announced today. The startup will use the funding to hire more people and focus more on marketing, two areas it held off on previously in order to control its spending. It will also be moving into a larger space as the team grows.

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German Media Company Hubert Burda Media Acquires Hong Kong’s Luxury News Portal LifestyleAsia

Nahid Farzana Asia January 16, 2017

Burda International, a unit of German media company Hubert Burda Media, has acquired LifestyleAsia.com, a luxury products news portal with operations in Hong Kong, Singapore, Thailand and Kuala Lumpur. Together with Burda’s brands (Prestige, August Men and Pin), this strategic acquisition will form a leading digital and print luxury content platform in Southeast Asia and Hong Kong.

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EZ-Link To Partner With Alibaba Cloud And NUS To Pilot A Big Data-Analytics Project

Nahid Farzana Asia January 16, 2017

In a tie-up between three organizations, Alibaba Cloud, the National University of Singapore and the city-state’s card-based wallet system, EZ-link, announced a Memorandum of Understanding to boost big data capabilities. EZ-Link will partner with Alibaba Cloud and NUS to pilot a big data-analytics project. The project will analyze card usage patterns across the various schemes, touch points and customer categories.

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Bangalore-Based Startup Zolo Raised US$5M Series A

Nahid Farzana India January 16, 2017

Zolo, a Bangalore-based startup providing a platform for managed co-living spaces in India, has secured US$5 million in Series A funding led by existing investor Nexus Venture Partners. Zolo plans to use the capital to grow aggressively to reach from 5,000 locked-in beds to over 12,000 beds, and expand to Chennai and Delhi-NCR by the end of this year.

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Mobile Operators Can Now Resell Previously Blocked Connections

Nahid Farzana Bangladesh January 16, 2017

Mobile operators can now resell previously blocked connections- a development that will bring a sigh of relief to market leader Grameenphone as it is close to exhausting its existing number series. To resell, the operators will have to transfer the balance amounts on those SIMs to the telecom regulator and also keep a register of the previous owners’ names.

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ICT Division, Robi And 10 Minute School Working Together To Promoting Digital Education

Nahid Farzana Bangladesh January 16, 2017

The ICT division, Robi and 10 Minute School are going to work together for promoting digital-education in the country. An agreement was signed among these organizations yesterday at the Janata Tower Software Development Park. Under the agreement, students of the government’s 2001 digital labs and more than 30,000 multimedia classrooms across the country will get access to quality education content.

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Online Education Startup Udacity Launches Deep Learning Nanodegree Foundation Program

Nahid Farzana Asia January 15, 2017

Udacity, the online education startup is partnering with YouTube star Siraj Raval for a new deep learning nanodegree foundation program that will be co-taught with Udacity’s Mat Leonard. Foundation Programs are going to be a major focus for Udacity in the coming year. They fill a niche for students not quite ready for a full nanodegree program.

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Sony Entertainment CEO Michael Lynton Now To Serve As Snapchat’s Chairman

Nahid Farzana World January 15, 2017

Michael Lynton, the CEO of Sony Entertainment, will be stepping down from the company in order to serve as chairman of Snap (the makers of Snapchat). As CEO of a massive entertainment company, it would make sense that Snap would need someone like that helping to support the company’s executive team with experience and connections.

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Bangalore-Based Edtech Startup Unacademy Raises US$4.5M To Grow Its Educator Base

Nahid Farzana India January 15, 2017

Unacademy, an Bangalore-based edtech startup providing free online learning platform, has raised US$4.5 million in its Series A round of funding, led by Nexus Venture Partners and Blume Ventures. With the new round of funding, Unacademy will grow its educator-base from 200 to 2,000 in the next one year, across varied exam preparation, language learning and professional growth topics.  

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Zhihu Became China’s First Knowledge Sharing Unicorn With 100M USD Series D

Nahid Farzana China January 15, 2017

China’s Quora-like Q&A service Zhihu announced today the completion of a US$100 million Series D. The funding would boost the startup to unicorn status with a valuation of over US$1 billion. Investors of the round include Capital Today, Tencent, Sogou, SAIF Partners, Qiming Venture Partners, and Sinovation Ventures.

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Realty Startup Square Yards Raises US$10M

Nahid Farzana India January 15, 2017

Square Yards, an online to offline real estate transaction player based out of Delhi, has raised US$10 million in fresh investment in the form of convertible notes from multiple individual investors. The new financing will help to accelerate their expansion into newer international geographies and at the same time strengthen their existing distribution network in 10+ countries.

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Mobile Wallet Users To Struggle Following Central Bank’s New Directive

Nahid Farzana Bangladesh January 15, 2017

Mobile wallet users will struggle following the implementation of the central-bank’s latest directive, which lowered the ceiling for transactions. In an effort to arrest the misuse of the system, Bangladesh Bank dispatched a notice instructing mobile-financial service providers to allow a maximum of Tk 15,000 to be deposited into an account each day and Tk 10,000 to be taken out.

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App Store reached $5.4B in Q4 2016

Tousif Alam World January 15, 2017

According to SensorTower report,  the Apple App Store reached $5.4B in Q4 2016, a 60% increase year-on-year.Google’s Play Store enjoyed an even bigger growth – 82% compared to the same period of 2015, but is still trailing the App Store in absolute figures – its $3.3B total is less than what Apple’s store generated the year before.

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Microsoft Acquires Maluuba

Tousif Alam World January 14, 2017

Microsoft has acquired The Montreal-based startup Maluuba. Maluuba focuses on natural language processing, in service of pursuing general artificial intelligence, or building computers that can think like people. Microsoft notes in a blog post that its work will help with Microsoft’s broad goal of making AI more accessible and useful to the general public.

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Online Talent Crowdfunding Platform hahow Raised Funding To Accelerate Expansion

Nahid Farzana China January 14, 2017

hahow, an online talent crowdfunding platform based in Taiwan, announced the completion of US$316,000 angel funding from Cherubic Ventures, an early stage technology-focused venture capital firm. With the acquisition of the funding, they are able to better optimize the user interface and add more interactive features to make learning more interesting. They are going to accelerate expansion in Taiwan.

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500 TukTuks, 500 Startups’ Microfund For Thailand, Has Finally Closed At A Sum Of US$15.4 Million

Nahid Farzana Asia January 14, 2017

500 TukTuks, 500 Startups’ microfund for Thailand, has finally closed at a sum of US$15.4 million, up from US$10 million at its launch. Led by Krating Poonpol and Natavudh Moo Pungcharoenpong, the fund gained massive interest from high net-worth individuals and corporate investors, leading to the increase in its size. With more capital, 500 TukTuks is moving at full speed.

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Microsoft Bangladesh & PlusOne Teamed Up To Provide Virtual Access To Healthcare

Nahid Farzana Bangladesh January 14, 2017

Microsoft Bangladesh and PlusOne, a cloud-based telemedicine platform, have recently teamed up to provide more people with virtual access to healthcare in Bangladesh. The Microsoft Azure cloud-based platform powered by RingMD will enable patients and doctors in Bangladesh or abroad to take part in live video and audio consultation, take appointments online and share encrypted medical records.

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Real Estate Aggregator Platform Square Yards Secured Funding For International Expansion

Nahid Farzana India January 12, 2017

Real estate aggregator platform Square Yards has raised $10 million from a clutch of high net worth individuals, including the family office of Kanpur-based Lohia Group. The company will use the funding for expanding its distribution network in India and internationally, and fund its growth for the next 12-15 months.

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Facebook Will Allow Publishers To Post Multiple Instant Articles In A Single Post

Nahid Farzana World January 12, 2017

Facebook has announced that it will allow publishers to post multiple instant articles in a single post and also it will test mid-roll video ads for advertising and promotional purposes. People using the latest version of iOS and Android apps for Facebook will be able to see these posts in NewsFeed and on a publisher’s Page in the coming weeks.

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Nearcircles Raised US$1 Million To Grow Its Footprint In Indonesia

Nahid Farzana Asia January 12, 2017

Nearcircles, the app that lets people create private social networks with others who live in their neighborhood, has raised US$1 million in a pre-series round to grow its footprint in Indonesia, where it recently expanded. The funding came from IDN Financials, which is based out of the startup’s home market, Singapore.

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Netflix Competitor In Asia Hooq Raised Funding From Singtel, Sony, Warner

Nahid Farzana Asia January 12, 2017

Hooq, a Netflix competitor in Asia, raised US$25 million from its existing investors Singtel Sony Pictures, and Warner. The streaming service – majority-owned by Singapore’s top telco – first launched in India, Thailand, and the Philippines in early 2015, later also taking on Indonesia and Singapore. This round takes Hooq’s total amount of funding to US$95 million.  

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Bangladesh Made A Record Of World’s Largest Science & Tech Class

Nahid Farzana Bangladesh January 12, 2017

Bangladesh made a record of world’s largest science and technology class with the participation of 3 thousand 200 students. The class took place at Kuliar Char Upazilla, Kishorganj and Md. Zafar Iqbal, professor of Shahjalal University of Science & Technology took the class. The class was arranged with a view of getting the name written in Guinness Book of World.

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Uber to Simplify User Experience

Tousif Alam World January 12, 2017

Uber has revamped its mobile apps focusing on simplifying the experience and allowing you to order a ride with as few taps as possible. Enhancing upon that is the new calendar shortcuts function that was unveiled today. The calendar shortcuts feature is currently in the process of rolling out to Uber’s app for iOS.

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Teletalk Signs Two Separate Deals Worth $33M To Upgrade Network

Nahid Farzana Bangladesh January 12, 2017

State-owned mobile operator Teletalk yesterday signed two separate deals worth $33.1 million with equipment vendors Nokia and Alcatel-Lucent Shanghai Bell (ASB) to expand its network for both 2G and 3G services. Under the agreements, Teletalk will set up 942 new 3G sites and 1,240 2G sites in Dhaka, Rajshahi, Khulna, Barisal and Sylhet divisions.

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