Reliance Jio postpones launch of low-cost phone

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The launch of JioPhone Next, which was scheduled on September 10, has been delayed because of the global chip shortage.

The low-cost phone, developed jointly by Google and Reliance Jio, is being tested among “a limited set of users for further refinement,” Reliance said in a statement. The two companies are “working to make it available more widely in time for the Diwali festive season,” the statement added.

At its annual general meeting in June, Reliance Industries Chairman Mukesh Ambani said the company would launch a 4G smartphone that will be “ultra-affordable” for consumers who depend on slower networks.

Drone delivery of medicines to be piloted

Telangana will pilot the ‘Medicines From the Sky’ initiative in 16 green zones to deliver drugs and vaccines using drones, said Union Civil Aviation Minister Jyotiraditya Scindia on Saturday.

In conjunction with the Ministry of Civil Aviation, the Telangana government will divide the interactive space map into the green, yellow and red zone. No permission is needed to fly drones in the green zones.

The pilot will span 24 days, where four batches will carry out sorties for six days each. The drones will carry vaccines in cold storage boxes equipped with temperature sensors and data loggers to record the performance. The results of the pilot will pave the way for a nation-wide rollout.

Microsoft acquires TakeLessons

Microsoft has acquired TakeLessons, a platform for students to connect with individual specialised tutors on topics like music, language learning, and more.

The TakeLessons acquisition is aligned with Microsoft's mission to expand in the education market, the company said. Microsoft Teams has more than 100 million students on its platform, as of January 2021.

TakeLessons will have “more opportunities to serve customers and families around the world” with better resources to “build better products, attract more high quality teachers, and offer a wider selection of subjects,” according to TakeLessons in an FAQ about the acquisition on its website.

Zomato shuts grocery delivery again

Zomato has cancelled its grocery delivery plans for the second time in two years, the company announced in an email to its grocery partners, according to news reports.

The company first experimented grocery delivery during the nation-wide lockdown last year. It shut down after it failed to scale. In July, Zomato began a pilot for 45-minute grocery delivery in Delhi-NCR, which was to end by September 17.

WhatsApp offers encryption on cloud backups

Facebook-owned Whatsapp on Friday said the social media platform will extend its end-to-end encryption (E2EE) to backups both on Android and iOS.

E2EE backups will be encrypted with a unique, randomly generated encryption key. People can choose to secure the key manually, or with a user password.

When a user chooses the password option, the key is stored in a Backup Key Vault, which is built based on a specialised, secure HSM hardware that can be used to securely store encryption keys.

The HSM-based Backup Key Vault will be responsible for enforcing password verification attempts and rendering the key permanently inaccessible after a limited number of unsuccessful attempts to access it.

Edited by Kunal Talgeri

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