Category Archives: News

Spotify launches new programme for emerging podcasters in India!

Spotify launches new programme for emerging podcasters in India!

Technology News: Swedish music streaming platform Spotify has launched a new programme that will elevate emerging podcasters around the world, including in India, and provide them with support to grow their audiences.

Spotify launches new programme for emerging podcasters in India!
Spotify launches new programme for emerging podcasters in India!

The company launched ‘RADAR Podcasters’ programme in 15 global markets, including India. It takes its name and format from RADAR’, which supports up-and-coming artists.

Additionally, Spotify also announced the initial slate of podcasters that will be spotlighted with the RADAR programme.

The first three podcasts chosen from India to be a part of this slate, include Anurag Minus Verma,’ Chumma conversations with Satshyaa’ and Getting Lost with Archit and Shirin: All About Food’.

In India, Spotify will focus on a different local language every three months.

“For the next round of this initiative, the focus will be on Tamil, one of the fastest growing languages on Spotify in India for both music and podcasts,” the company said in a statement.

On a quarterly basis, participating markets will give two-three emerging creators a spotlight selected from the millions of podcasters using Anchor, Spotify’s podcast creation platform.

Through this programme, more than 40 creators from around the world will be highlighted, in countries where podcasting continues to grow.

Each quarter, Spotify’s Podcast team in participating markets will select three up-and-coming creators to spotlight.

“We’ll focus on creators with shows that exhibit authenticity and inclusivity, give us a reason to keep listening, and educate and entertain,” the company added.

Air India fined Rs 10 lakh for denying boarding despite valid tickets

Air India fined Rs 10 lakh for denying boarding despite valid tickets

Civil aviation watchdog Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) has imposed a fine of Rs 10 lakh on Air India for denying boarding to passengers holding valid tickets.

Air India fined Rs 10 lakh for denying boarding despite valid tickets
Air India fined Rs 10 lakh for denying boarding despite valid tickets

After going through the airline’s submissions, as part of enforcement action, the DGCA has levied the penalty, and has advised the airline to immediately put systems in order to resolve the issue.

The action by the regulator comes after multiple reports of flyers being denied boarding by airlines despite being in possession of valid tickets and reporting at the airport on time.

The DGCA conducted ground checks at a few airports before slapping fine on the airline.

“In the case of Air India — where the regulation is not being followed — a show cause notice was issued to the airline and also a personal hearing was afforded. It appears that the airline does not have a policy in this regard and is not paying any compensation to hapless passengers, whose numbers can be anybody’s guess,” the regulator said in a statement.

Monkeypox: US reports first case, 14 confirmed in Europe

Monkeypox: US reports first case, 14 confirmed in Europe

The US has confirmed the first case of Monkeypox in a Massachusetts man, while the infection spreads to Europe with 14 cases of the virus confirmed across the UK, Portugal and Spain.

Monkeypox: US reports first case, 14 confirmed in Europe
Monkeypox: US reports first case, 14 confirmed in Europe

According to a statement from the US’ Massachusetts Department of Public Health (DPH) the patient in Massachusetts had not recently travelled to countries where the disease occurs but had visited Canada. “The individual is hospitalised and is in a good condition,” the statement added.

It has, however, not yet been determined if the Massachusetts case was part of the growing European outbreak, Jennifer McQuiston, deputy director of the CDC’s division of high consequence pathogens and pathology, told STAT news.

On Wednesday, Spain announced that it was investigating eight suspected cases — all in gay and bisexual men. Portugal said it was investigating more than 20 suspected cases, five of which have already been confirmed.

It is not currently clear if the outbreaks are linked to each other or to the one in the UK, where the infection has been confirmed in nine and one probable case has been reported. The cases in the UK also appear to be linked to sexual transmission among gay and bisexual men, likely due to contact with infectious lesions in the skin.

Meanwhile, the World Health Organisation (WHO) has issued an warning that more cases of the monkeypox virus could be reported in Britain. An investigation is underway by British health officials to detect the cause of the outbreak which has hit mainly London, now affecting nine people.

“Based on currently available information, infection seems to have been locally acquired in the United Kingdom. The extent of local transmission is unclear at this stage and there is the possibility of identification of further cases,” the WHO added. Three cases from the same household were initially confirmed on May 6, followed by four more cases a few days later. Two additional cases, one in London and one in the South East of England, were also detected.

However, the World Health Organisation (WHO), which previously designated monkeypox as a priority pathogen, has organised a meeting of experts on monkeypox and orthopoxviruses — the wider family of pox viruses — for early next week.

Monkeypox is a rare but potentially serious viral illness that typically begins with flu-like illness and swelling of the lymph nodes and progresses to a rash on the face and body. Most infections last 2-to-4 weeks.

The Nawab’s Garden in Hyderabad has everything you need for good Photshoot Pics

The Nawab’s Garden in Hyderabad has everything you need for good Photshoot Pics

In today’s day and age, it is mandatory to capture every moment of a special occasion. Be it weddings, baby showers, or birthdays; clicking pictures against a scenic background with proper lighting is a must.

The Nawab’s Garden in Hyderabad has everything you need for good Photshoot Pics
The Nawab’s Garden in Hyderabad has everything you need for good Photshoot Pics

Giving Hyderabadis an opportunity to click these pictures with aesthetic backgrounds, location facilitators for photo shoots, Elements First have launched their first venture in Hyderabad called The Nawab’s Garden.

The venue is spread over one acre providing a royal backdrop wherever you look. The place has around 50 sets that are more than enough to flood your social media profiles with pictures of different backgrounds. From age-old Nizam style architecture to floral setting, it has a varied style of backdrops.

This lush green garden location that is coupled with a few props can be booked on an hourly basis. If you are looking for an early morning vibe, book the morning slot. Likewise, if you are craving shots with good lighting, for the night slot the place is lit up appropriately. Or you can also book the evening slot, to make use of the golden sunshine hour for sunlit pictures.

The package will also include a changing room, decorative lights and sungun sets for photographers. Drones are also allowed in certain parts of the location.

Brands using Google Messages to bombard Indian users with unwanted ads

Brands using Google Messages to bombard Indian users with unwanted ads

Several companies and brands are reportedly abusing Google Messages’ RCS (Rich Communication Services) feature in India to bombard users with multiple ads, specifically selling personal loans and life insurances, without their consent.

Brands using Google Messages to bombard Indian users with unwanted ads
Brands using Google Messages to bombard Indian users with unwanted ads

Multiple users took to social media platforms that RCS ads in Google Messages appear to be coming from “Verified Business” accounts and the frequency of such ads has picked up over the last few months in the country.

The RCS upgrades SMS with branding, rich media, interactivity and analytics. With RCS, businesses can bring branded, interactive mobile experiences, right to the default messaging app.

According to Google, millions of businesses rely on SMS to communicate with mobile consumers.

RCS Business Messaging upgrades SMS with branding, rich media, interactivity, and analytics. With RCS, businesses can bring branded, interactive mobile experiences, right to the native Android messaging app.

However, users in India now report a deluge of ads, primarily related to personal loans, gambling companies and life insurance, reports 9to5Google.

A query sent to Google India went unanswered.

One user complained on Twitter that he does not even have an active SIM card on his smartphone but even then, he was sent one of these personal loan ads from BankBazaar which is India’s largest fintech co-branded credit card issuer and online platform for free credit score.

“The amount of ads [Google Messages] it’s sending is crazy, multiple every day. Yes, these are NOT messages, these are ads being pushed by the app to Indian users. It’s the default messaging app on most Android phones here,” posted tech tipster Ishan Agarwal on Twitter.

Android Police reported that the problem has been around for about a year, and “complaints appear to be coming overwhelmingly from users based in India”.

“The trend initially blew up with Kotak Mahindra Bank, Bajaj Finserv, Buddy Loan, and PolicyBazaar have turned out to be the biggest offenders,” the report claimed.

While several brands globally use messaging apps and SMS texts to advertise new products, these ads going on in India “are not necessarily the result of a user’s buying activity,” the reports noted.

Vintage Mercedes sells for nearly Rs 1,100 cr, becomes world’s most expensive car

Vintage Mercedes sells for nearly Rs 1,100 cr, becomes world’s most expensive car

A vintage 1955 Mercedes-Benz has been sold for $143 million (about Rs 1,100 crore), making it the most expensive car ever sold at an auction.

Vintage Mercedes sells for nearly Rs 1,100 cr, becomes world’s most expensive car
Vintage Mercedes sells for nearly Rs 1,100 cr, becomes world’s most expensive car

Canada-based RM Sotheby’s announced that it has auctioned off a 1955 Mercedes-Benz 300 SLR Uhlenhaut Coupe, earlier this month, for 135 million euros, or about $143 million, reports CNBC. The sale smashed the previous record for the most expensive car sold at auction by more than $95 million and topped the $70 million record for a car sold privately.

The winning bid was made by British car collector, advisor and dealer Simon Kidston on behalf of an unnamed client. Kidston lobbied the Mercedes-Benz board for 18 months to consider selling the car, the report said.

The sale, first reported by Hagerty Insider, took place May 5 in a secretive and highly unusual auction at the Mercedes-Benz Museum in Stuttgart, Germany. Only selected collectors and Mercedes-Benz customers were invited to attend.

The 300 SLR Uhlenhaut Coupe is one of only two created in 1955 and is regarded as one of the most prized cars in auto history. It was built by Mercedes’ race department and named after its chief engineer and designer, Rudolf Uhlenhaut.

The car was based on the company’s successful W 196 R Grand Prix car, which won two World Championships with driver Juan Manuel Fangio. The 300 SLR had a larger, 3.0-liter engine and was able to reach 180 mph, making it one of the fastest road-legal cars at the time.

The Mercedes-Benz company owned both of the 300 SLR cars, and the May 5 sale took many collectors by surprise.