Monday, April 6, 2020

Airtel Payments Bank, Bharti AXA General Insurance Partners to Offer Insurance Products Covering COVID-19

Airtel Payments Bank, India’s first Payments Bank, has partnered with Bharti AXA General Insurance, a joint venture between Bharti Enterprises, one of India’s leading business groups, and AXA, one of the world’s largest insurance companies, to offer simple and focused health insurance plans for providing financial protection against COVID-19 in these challenging times.

Under the partnership, the companies have rolled out two health insurance plans - Bharti AXA Group Health Assure which offers lump sum benefit of Rs 25,000 and Group Hospital Cash which provides daily benefit starting Rs 500 per day - to provide protection against COVID-19.

Bharti AXA Group Health Assure Policy covering COVID-19comes with a fixed cover offering 100 per cent sum insured as a lump sum, if the policy holder is diagnosed positive or gets quarantined in a government hospital or military facility/establishment. In case, the policy holder is diagnosed negative after being quarantined for at least 14 days in a government hospital or military facility/establishment, he or she will be entitled to 50 per cent of the sum insured. The policy offers protection for COVID-19 from day one of the purchase and can be purchased at a price of Rs. 499 (including GST) for fixed sum insured of Rs. 25,000. It can be availed from the Banking Section of the Airtel Thanks App or by visiting the nearest active Banking Point of Airtel Payments Bank.

Group Hospital Cash Policy provides per day fixed allowance on hospitalization with Enhanced ICU Cash. Under this policy, depending on the plan, a customer is entitled to a fixed per day benefit of Rs 500 or Rs 1000 paid for each day of hospitalization, up to maximum for 10 days. This benefit doubles, if the policy holder is treated in Intensive Care Unit (ICU). A customer can claim the benefit, if hospitalised for minimum 24 hours. After the initial waiting period of 30 days from the first policy inception date, Group Hospital Cash covers pre-existing diseases and specified conditions. The product also provides coverage for a policy holder who is hospitalised for treatment of COVID-19. It can be purchased from any active Banking Point of Airtel Payments Bank. The product will be soon available under the banking section of Airtel Thanks mobile app.

With no pre-medical check-up required, both the products are currently available for Savings bank account customers of Airtel Payments Bank who are not suffering from COVID-19 or its symptoms.

Mr. Anubrata Biswas, MD and CEO, Airtel Payments Bank, said, “We are delighted to offer insurance products designed to provide financial protection during the current outbreak of COVID-19. With our technology platform and deep distribution reach, we will be immediately able to offer this product to millions of customers at this hour of need. We wanted to ensure health protection for our customers in the challenging times and, therefore, partnered with Bharti AXA General Insurance to offer health products which are easily available. These products affirm our commitment to empower every Indian with digital, contextual and timely solutions.”

Mr. Sanjeev Srinivasan, MD and CEO, Bharti AXA General Insurance, said, “We are happy to join hands with Airtel Payments Bank with our two need-based health insurance plans and leverage the power of digital to maximize the penetration of health insurance in India. We believe that ensuring a safety net against the financial repercussions of COVID-19 or any disease is just as important as exercising precautions against it. As an organization, we have always been responsive to every need of the hour and it is among our foremost endeavors to support our customers in such times of distress. This alliance further strengthens our commitment as a responsible protection partner.”

The validity period of these policies is restricted to one year and will be issued on individual name basis only.

ABB, NASSCOM Partners to Develop Competency Standards for New-Age Technology Jobs in India

In a major push for skill development in the technology industry, ABB, in association with the National Association of Software and Services Companies (NASSCOM) has developed a standardized qualification criterion for two IoT-related job roles – IoT Network Communications and IoT Cyber Security. This first of its kind industry collaboration will facilitate the much-needed uniformity and formalization by aiding the hiring and evaluation of these high-skilled jobs across the sector. The Qualification Packs (QPs) define the competency standards that will provide a framework for academic institutions to design their course curriculum to better conform to industry hiring standards. The qualification packs for the two job roles have been approved by National Skill Development Corporation (NSDC), National Skill Development Agency (NSDA), and National Skills Qualifications Committee (NSQC).

These standardized assessments will lead to the creation of skilled and certified talent for IoT from which the industry can hire the right talent for new-age jobs, thereby reducing the cost of hiring and increasing the time for productivity.

The QPs will be promoted across the industry for the purpose of hiring, promotions and curating learning & development (L&D) programs, thereby laying the foundation for standardized employment practices for skilled jobs in the IT-ITeS industry.

NASSCOM estimates that nearly 40% of the country’s workforce needs to be reskilled if they are to work in the artificial intelligence (AI), internet of things (IoT), machine learning and blockchain spaces. To this effect, the government will popularize the initiative in academic institutions across the country, to help bridge the prominent skill gap that currently exists in the industry. The initiative will allow the Indian Government to streamline the entry of skilled personnel into the industry and ensure minimal retraining and attrition costs across companies.

Commenting on this, Rajarshi Banerjee, Head of ABB Ability Customer Experience and Innovation - AMEA, ABB, said, “At ABB we take pride in being part of this industry-wide endeavour to navigate through the next era of digitalisation and industry 4.0. The rapid pace of technology disruption continues to render significant shifts in human resource requirements. The need of the hour for the industry is a specialized set of skills beyond the traditional course curriculum, as also demonstrated by the current Covid-19 situation where virtual/digital has become integral to operations in most companies. Our joint effort with NASSCOM has led to the creation of these qualification packs that will serve as a guiding light across the industry – recruiters, educational institutes and prospective recruits, as guide-rails both for the curriculum and recruitment. We have created a standardized format for the industry, which we believe will result in developing a quality pool to help companies across sectors, to hire from.”

“An increase in implementation of cybersecurity and other disruptive technologies like IoT, AI etc, has led to an incumbent need for standardizing specialized skill sets, to ensure that the future workforce is equipped with the knowledge and awareness of the applicability that the industry demands and needs,” said Apala Ray, Global Cybersecurity Manager, Industrial Automation Process Industries at ABB. “These Qualification Packs will serve as a compass for the future workforce as well as corporates to navigate new technologies in this space and thereby, capitalize on them. We are proud to have been a key enabler in this first-of-its-kind initiative in India,” she added.

Sharing his thoughts on the partnership, Amit Aggarwal, CEO, IT-ITES Sector Skills Council, NASSCOM, said that, “As the world gets increasingly connected, IoT emerges as an even more prominent technology for our future. With the number of businesses adopting IoT technologies constantly growing, the industry is in need of a qualified workforce that can deliver intelligent solutions for changing consumer and business behaviour. We are certain that this initiative will benefit the sector as a whole and help us in our journey to further consolidate India as a talent hub for new-age technologies.”

NASSCOM has been at the forefront of an industry-driven effort in India to develop ‘Future Skills Competency Standards’ that define the skills required to do jobs in technologies like IoT, AI, Big Data Analytics (BDA), Cloud Computing and several others. NASSCOM has developed these job competency standards together with the industry representatives that have helped create a common language across industry, academia and government on hiring, training and skilling. For an employer, it means the individual is ready to work from day 1, thus creating a win-win for the employee, the employer and the country.

The qualification packs were designed by NASSCOM and ABB in association with other industry partners after detailed functional analysis of the level of knowledge, skills and aptitude required for each of the job roles. This initiative will also form the basis for the government and other tech companies to define job roles and qualification packs for other emerging, new age technologies.

Xiaomi Rolls Out PatchWall 3.0 for Mi TV Users in Indian Market

Xiaomi, India’s number one smartphone and smart TV brand, today, announced the release of PatchWall 3.0, the latest version of Mi TV’s intelligent content-first software. Sticking to Mi TV’s content first philosophy, the new update features a deeper integration with Disney+ Hotstar and addition of new content partners, Mi List along with other UI enhancements. Cleaner animations, a new Mi Lanting Pro font, horizontal scrolling are some of the key features and improvements in PatchWall 3.0

Introduced in 2018 for Xiaomi’s Mi TVs, PatchWall amplifies the content and user experience of viewers with its AI powered capabilities. One of the most comprehensive content platforms, PatchWall helps users discover content in over 13 languages categorised over 9 categories.

Raghu Reddy, Chief Business Officer, Xiaomi India said, “At Xiaomi, we are always exploring and innovating to improve the technology experience of our customers. PatchWall has not only been a key differentiator for us but has also fueled an overwhelming response and popularity for Mi TVs in India. Since the launch of PatchWall in India in 2018, 4.5 billion minutes of content has been streamed on the platform.  With the latest Patchwall 3.0 we are strengthening on our "Content first" philosophy with improved curation & discoverability while also making it more convenient with 1 click play experience. We sincerely hope that these innovations elevate our Mi TV user’s overall entertainment experience.”

Content First Philosophy

Keeping in view the rising popularity of OTT based content in India, Xiaomi has partnered with Disney+ Hotstar , to introduce a first-of-its-kind dedicated sports channel in PatchWall 3.0. The channel not only helps discover content with ease but also gives a one-click play option for various sports content. Content related to ongoing tournaments spanning across different sports such as Kabaddi, Tennis, Cricket and more can be streamed seamlessly on the channel.

With the new addition of Docubay and Lattu Kids, Xiaomi's PatchWall 3.0 now has 20+ content partners, which will provide an eclectic mix of high quality content to the Mi TV users in India. Docubay will stream international documentaries across various topics, and Lattu Kids will provide over 1,500 hours of content suitable for children.

The new Mi List features curated lists of movies and TV shows from different genres. It is a contextually-aware list, which means it recommends specific content that users may want to see during specific occasions like festivals, days of national importance and more.

Next Gen User Experience

The zero-screen in PatchWall 3.0 places content higher than the input tab and also enables horizontal scrolling through different lists. The horizontal design language is also deeply integrated into the show details page. The animations for browsing through carousels have been redesigned to give more focus on the current selection. The Mi Lanting Pro font which was introduced in MIUI 11, has been added to PatchWall 3.0. The update will also feature a set of under the hood animations that further enable content discoverability and a cleaner TV experience.


PatchWall 3.0 will be rolled out on Mi TVs with the latest software update from April 06, 2020 to Mi TV 4A, Mi TV 4C Pro, Mi TV 4A Pro, Mi TV 4 Pro, Mi TV 4X, and Mi TV 4X Pro.

CODE19 Online Hackathon Against Coronavirus in India to Begin on April 10, 2020


The event is being organized by Motwani Jadeja Foundation (MJF) and its think tank, The Motwani Institute for Thought Leadership in Innovation (MITLI)
More than 3,000 participants are expected to take part in the online hackathon that will run for 72 hours.
The outcome would be qualitative, open-source prototypes to help tackle various challenges facing India during or after the COVID19 crisis
Mentors and guides would help participants sharpen their product ideas and convert them to successful real-world products that will aid the fight against Coronavirus
Prize money worth US$ 10,000 on offer
Registration open to all at till 6 pm IST on April 10th

The Silicon-Valley-based Motwani Jadeja Foundation is bringing together the best minds in a 72-hour online hackathon called “CODE19” to find solutions to India’s challenges against the Coronavirus outbreak.

The contest, which begins on April 10th, 2020 (Good Friday), is expected to see over 3,000 participants across nationalities, ethnicities and gender. Working online from the comfort of their homes while India is on a 21-day lockdown, they will collaborate with mentors, subject-matter specialists, data sources and a network of collaborators in the quest for solutions against COVID-19. The online hackathon is open to everyone as individuals and teams, without any criteria or age limit. Those wishing to participate can sign up on till 6 pm IST on April 10.

Said MsAsha Jadeja Motwani, the well-known entrepreneur, investor and philanthropist who is the Founder of Motwani Jadeja Foundation: “Coronavirus is a huge health challenge facing India. Any new crisis requires a new set of ideas and mitigation strategies. Hence, it is our collective responsibility to put our heads together to come up with new ideas and solutions to fight the virus. CODE19 is a platform to bring such bright minds together. By harnessing the power of collaborative computer programming, it aims to create qualitative, open-source projects that would help solve the most pressing problems of the Coronavirus crisis in the country.”

She further added: “The focus of CODE19 is on developing solutions quickly and applying them in everyday life. The participants would be tasked with decoding the Coronavirus outbreak and its impact on India, encoding smart solutions to mitigate the impending Corona-inflicted challenges, and winning prizes worth US$10,000 to realize their solutions. The ideas and innovations they create would readily be available for scaling and implementation across the country.”

Projects are divided into eight specific themes:Medical treatment and testing; Travel and Tourism; Mitigation - Isolation, protection/masks, and social distancing in India; Social life, welfare, and awareness; Research and development; Open innovation for COVID-19; Education and awareness; and Industry.

The participants would work on solutions through ideations, wireframes, designs, developments and testing the prototype they are creating. Mentors and guides will help them sharpen their product ideas and convert them to sure-shot successful products that will aid India’s fight against Coronavirus. Under the Open Innovation category, participants would be free to propose their own ideas, technologies and innovative solutions, bioinformatics, datasets, apps for diagnosis, and the likes, which can be leveraged for strengthening the fight against Coronavirus.

CODE19 will also have a few online sessions including talks with business leaders as well as Yoga and Meditation, to keep the participants inspired. Prize money worth US$ 10,000 is on offer for the winners. There will be public voting at the end of the event to assess the most exciting projects. The winners would be announced at 9 pm on April 14.

Code19India is being held in collaboration with Bengaluru-based HackerEarth. The Association of Designers in India (ADI) is also on board and shall assist in providing mentors through its network.

Amazon Prime Video Marks the Digital Premiere of Prakash Raj Starrer Kannada Blockbuster Maya Bazaar 2016


* Prime members across 200 countries and territories can stream the comedy feature film shortly after its theatrical release.
* Directed by Radhakrishna Reddy, the film comprises a stellar cast including Prakash Raj, Raj B. Shetty, Vasishta N. Simha, among others.
* Prime offers incredible value with unlimited streaming of the latest and exclusive movies, TV shows, stand-up comedy, Amazon Originals, ad free music listening through Amazon Prime Music, free fast delivery on India’s largest selection of products, early access to top deals, unlimited reading with Prime Reading, all available only for Rs 129 a month

Amazon Prime Video today announced the digital premiere of the recently-released Kannada crime-comedy Maya Bazaar 2016. Directed by Radhakrishna Reddy, the film features Prakash Raj, Raj B. Shetty, Vasishta N. Simha playing an honest cop, a conman and a hopeless romantic who form an unusual team to pull off a huge scam in the times of demonetization. Starting April 3, Prime members across 200 countries and territories can stream this hilarious comedy feature, shortly after its theatrical release.

Maya Bazaar 2016 will join the thousands of TV shows and movies from Hollywood and Bollywood in the Prime Video catalogue. These include Indian-produced Amazon Original series like The Family Man, Mirzapur, Inside Edge and Made In Heaven, and award-winning and critically acclaimed global Amazon Original series, including Tom Clancy’s Jack Ryan, The Boys, Hunters, Fleabag and The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel, all on Prime Video, which is available at no extra cost for Amazon Prime members. The service includes titles available in Hindi, Marathi, Gujarati, Tamil, Telugu, Kannada, Malayalam, Punjabi and Bengali.

Prime members will be able to watch Maya Bazaar 2016 anywhere and anytime on the Prime Video app for smart TVs, mobile devices, Fire TV, Fire TV stick, Fire tablets, Apple TV, etc. In the Prime Video app, Prime members can download episodes on their mobile devices and tablets and watch anywhere offline at no additional cost. Prime Video is available in India to Prime members for just ₹999 annually or ₹129 monthly, new customers can find out more at and subscribe to a free 30-day trial.


Maya Bazaar 2016 touches upon the subject of demonetization, and revolves around an honest police officer and a small-time conman who end up crossing paths at a time when the two are in dire need of money. Directed by Radhakrishna Reddy, the film comprises a stellar cast including Prakash Raj, Raj B. Shetty, Vasishta N. Simha, among others.


Prime Video is a premium streaming service that offers Prime members a collection of award winning Amazon Original series, thousands of movies and TV shows—all with the ease of finding what they love to watch in one place.  Find out more at

●        Included with Prime Video: Maya Bazaar 2016 joins thousands of TV shows and movies from Hollywood and Bollywood, including Indian produced Amazon Original series such as The Family Man, Mirzapur, Inside Edge and Made In Heaven, and award-winning and critically acclaimed global Amazon Original series including Tom Clancy’s Jack Ryan, The Boys, Hunters, Fleabag and The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel available for unlimited streaming as part of a Prime membership. Prime Video includes titles available in Hindi, Marathi, Gujarati, Tamil, Telugu, Kannada, Malayalam, Punjabi and Bengali.

●        Instant Access: Members can watch anywhere, anytime on the Prime Video app for smart TVs, mobile devices, Fire TV, Fire TV stick, Fire tablets, Apple TV and multiple gaming devices. Prime Video is also available to consumers through Airtel and Vodafone pre-paid and post-paid subscription plans. In the Prime Video app, Prime members can download episodes on their mobile devices and tablets and watch anywhere offline at no additional cost.

●        Enhanced experiences: Make the most of every viewing with 4K Ultra HD- and High Dynamic Range (HDR)-compatible content. Go behind the scenes of your favorite movies and TV shows with exclusive X-Ray access, powered by IMDb. Save it for later with select mobile downloads for offline viewing.

●        Included with Prime: Prime Video is available in India at no extra cost to a Prime members for just ₹999 annually or ₹129 monthly, new customers can find out more at and subscribe to a free 30-day trial.

Saturday, April 4, 2020

Xiaomi Announces ‘Redmi Creator Academy’ in India Aimed at Promoting High Quality Content Creation Practices

Xiaomi, India’s number one smartphone and smart TV brand today announced Redmi Creator Academy (RCA) for millions of aspiring content creators. RCA is Xiaomi’s first series of virtual masterclasses aimed at providing industry’s best learning practices to aspiring content creators.

Redmi Creator Academy kick starts its first phase with virtual YouTube Video masterclasses with several media, YouTube and in-house experts from Xiaomi India. All sessions start from Monday, 6th April 2020 across Redmi India YouTube channel and will be conducted daily throughout the week absolutely free of cost.

One week of virtual masterclasses will be spread across the entire journey of building high quality YouTube videos and all experts will cover all important aspects of creating content along with marketing it. Here are the details of each session which can be attended

Monday, 6th April 2020
Creative Writing
Tuesday, 7th April 2020
Legal Aspects
Wednesday, 8th April 2020
Production Workflow
Thursday, 9th April 2020
Publishing & SEO Best Practices
Friday, 10th April 2020
Social Media Marketing

List of Speakers and moderator:

Sandeep Sarma, RevAtlas
Megha Vishwanath, CNBC TV 18
Bharat Nagpal, iGyaan
Ruhez Amrelia, Techno Ruhez
Ershad Kalebullah, Mr. Phone
Harshitha Thammaiah, Xiaomi India
Sandeep Kumar Raju, Xiaomi India
Shree Das, Xiaomi India
Sumit Sonal, Xiaomi India
Sivakumar Ramamoorthy, Xiaomi India
Moderator: Ankit Vengurlekar, Xiaomi India

Anuj Sharma, Chief Marketing Officer, Xiaomi India commented, “India has one of the world’s biggest and most vibrant content creator communities. Redmi has always stood strong as an enabler of the creator community. With so many different aspects that go into becoming a successful creator and the lack of a credible platform to share all the dos and don’ts, we feel this gap needs to be addressed. Redmi Creator Academy aims to change that by providing a platform for all the budding creators across various disciplines and thus enabling their creativity. We are extremely excited for the launch of the first series of RCA and hope that it helps millions of creators to achieve their dreams.”

The Best of Entertainment by the NCPA Starts from April 3 to April 9, 2020 at 6:00 pm

Don’t let the lockdown dull you spirits. While we get used to the new normal, India’s premier cultural institution, the National Centre for the Performing Arts (NCPA), will showcase the best of events from its archives on YouTube to lift your spirits in these challenging times. The showcase will include exclusive videos specially curated from NCPA's extensive library. Starting from Friday, 3rd April, you can log on to NCPA's YouTube channel and watch performances across genres from the archives. Here is the list of top 8 shows, so you can block your calendar.

Enjoy the best of the arts from from the comfort of your home!

YouTube link:

Speaking about this initiative, Mr. K N Suntook, Chairman and SOI founder NCPA,said“The NCPA is a repository of great artistic treasures. Our genre heads and the NCPA team have worked hard to put this together. As a cultural organisation, we felt this treasure must be shared in these difficult times in the safest way possible. The best of concerts, lecture-demonstrations and workshops presented at the NCPA can now be viewed online on our YouTube channel. We are grateful for the support that we have received from the artistes”. 

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