India

ZOVI (zovi.com) is a popular apparel and accessory brand in India, which exclusively retails online. The company aims to be a one-stop shop for clothes, shoes, and accessories and offers a complete range of fashion products for men, women, and boys. Launching a Windows Phone app, ZOVI allows you to browse through and purchase items from the collection of fashion apparel and accessories with a few taps.

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Nickelodeon (nick.com), often shortened to Nick, is a popular multi-platform media network for kids. With an approach that puts 'kids first', Nickelodeon takes pride in encouraging kids to be themselves – funny, messy, and free-spirited.

In India, Nickelodeon is a part of Viacom18, the joint venture between Viacom Inc and the Network18 Group. The company has recently launched Nick World app for Windows Phone for kids in India. The fun video application for your little ones is loaded with the best of Nick shows to watch on the go. The app features the popular shows aired on Nickelodeon, Nick Jr., Teen Nick, and Sonic.

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Micromax Canvas Win W092 is one of the two Windows Phone devices launched by the company this week, and is the cheapest Windows Phone device to be released in India. The Canvas Win W092 is priced at INR 6,500 ($110) and will be available in the market starting early July 2014.

The budget smartphone aims to compete with the Nokia Lumia 520, another popular affordable Lumia available in the region. I spent some time with the device at the launch event, and here are my first impressions of the phone.

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Micromax Canvas Win W121 is one of the two Windows Phone devices launched in India by the company, the first domestic smartphone manufacturer to do so. The Canvas Win W121 is priced at INR 9,500 ($160) and will be available in the market starting early July 2014.

The budget smartphone aims to compete with the Nokia Lumia 520 and Lumia 525, as well as the latest Lumia 630, the only other Windows Phone 8.1 device in the market. I spent some time with the device at the launch event, and here are my first impressions of the phone.

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Micromax is the second largest smartphone company in India, piggybacking on the success of feature phones and cheap and mid-range Android smartphones. Recently, the company became the 10th largest mobile phone player in the world.

At a press conference in New Delhi today, Micromax unveiled two Windows Phone devices for the Indian market. Micromax is the first Indian smartphone manufacturer to launch Windows Phone devices, although we know that Celkon, XOLO, and others are following soon.

The two devices Micromax launched today are the Canvas Win W121 and Canvas Win W092. Both phones will be in the market starting in July 2014. The Canvas Win W121 is priced at INR 9,500 ($160) while the Canvas Win W092 is priced at INR 6,500 ($110).

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Couponraja (couponraja.com) offers coupons, promotions, and deals from over 1000 online retailers across India.

Launched in October 2011, the service attempts to be a one-stop source for big savings with minimum hassle. The company has launched their official app for Windows Phone last week that helps searching for and using coupon codes in an easy and seamless manner.

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Flipkart.com is one of the leading online retailers from India, and offers a broad selection of products across diverse categories.

Flipkart launched their official Windows Phone in April this year, and we also wrote about the v1.1.0.0 update a few weeks. The app has now been bumped up to v1.2.0.0, and adds a few new features and improves the experience. Apart from some bug fixes and enhancements, the latest update also reflects Flipkart’s new brand identity.

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ixigo.com (pronounced ‘ik-si-go’) is a travel search engine in India. The service acts as an infomediary that aggregates travel websites to compare information and deals. ixigo does not handle bookings but instead redirects the users to book directly from other online travel agencies.

The official ixigo app – ixigo Flights Search – landed on the Windows Phone Store a few weeks ago and allowed you to find the best airfares across India’s leading OTAs like MakeMyTrip, goibibo, via, Expedia, and others. However, the latest update v2.0 also adds searching for hotels and trains.

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Yesterday we reported on some new features and enhancements that were rolling out to Cortana for some users. Twenty-four hours later and we still aren't seeing the updates on our phones, but other users in our forums are having better luck.

First up, we should mention that there is a user in our forum named 'Talderon' who claims to work for Microsoft with specific knowledge about Cortana. While we have not been able to verify his authenticity, the information he posts is fairly detailed and interesting. None of what he reveals is secret, but rather specific functions of Cortana and status updates on known issues, etc.

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And finally it’s here! XOLO Win, the maiden Windows 8.1 tablet from XOLO, the premium devices brand from LAVA International, was first showcased at the CES 2014 in January and has just gone on sale.

The tablet is now available exclusively on Flipkart.com, one of India’s largest online retailer, for INR 19,990 ($350). You could also exchange your old smartphone or tablet to get up to INR 3,000-5,000 off on the price. There are also a few launch day offers that will get you a cashback, 50% off on next purchase of Bluetooth Keyboard, and INR 1500 worth of pre-selected eBooks.

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On the heels of the Xbox Media Briefing at E3, Microsoft has announced the details about Xbox One availability in India.

Xbox One will be available in India from September 23, 2014 starting at INR 39,990. Every Xbox One system will include the Xbox One console with a 500GB hard drive, Blu-ray player, and built-in Wi-Fi as well as one Xbox One Wireless Controller. There would also be a free 14-day trial of Xbox Live Gold for new members. 

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Ditto TV (dittotv.com) is India’s first subscription-based Live TV and Video-on-Demand service that delivers live television, movies, and videos to your internet-enabled devices. A product of Zee Entertainment Enterprises Limited (ZEE), one of India's leading television, media, and entertainment companies, the service offers over 105 Indian live television channels as well as movies and latest television shows available on-demand.

While the official Ditto TV app has been available for Windows 8 devices since quite a while, the Windows Phone app finally arrived earlier this week.

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RoomsTonite claims to be India’s first and only last-minute hotel booking mobile app. The service ties up with select hotels that have a great TrustScore in different cities and provide rooms at the lowest rates compared to other travel portals.

The official RoomsTonite app for Windows Phone launched recently, and provides a real-time connect with the hotel property management system ensuring a seamless and quick booking experience. You can make a booking in just three taps, and receive a booking confirmation directly from the hotel in less than 30 seconds.

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Graphic India is a character entertainment company focused on creating leading characters, comics, and stories through mobile and digital platforms. The company has the launched its official app exclusively on the Windows Phone Store.

The app allows users to watch video shots based on Graphic India’s characters leading Indian characters and comics. The app features six shows at the moment with new episodes each week, and will launch more in the coming months.

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Windows Phone and Android have a lot in common. Both are competing for second place in app revenue against the juggernaut that is Apple, and both types of handsets/tablets are more affordable than iOS devices. Although Android has a leg up over Windows Phone worldwide, Microsoft’s mobile platform has a great opportunity to surpass Android in a number of emerging markets like China and Brazil.

There are many factors at play in the ongoing mobile battle between Microsoft and Google. To get a better idea of how each side stacks up, we spoke with Martin Koppel, COO at mobile payment specialist Fortumo. If Martin’s predictions are correct, Windows Phone’s continued growth in developing markets will soon put it on much more even footing with Google’s mobile OS.

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Tokkri (tokkri.com) is an Indian startup that aims to create a directory listing of retail outlets in India. The service, available for Delhi NCR, Mumbai, and Bangalore as of now, helps you to discover places to shop near you.

Now, Tokkri has an app for Windows Phone, and it allows you find an outlet of a brand or get a list of available brands nearby. All store information is segregated based on category, location, and ratings to help you find the required information quickly.

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Microsoft Ventures in India today announced the graduation of 17 technology startups as part of its Accelerator program. The announcement came at an event held in Bangalore today that saw an audience of over 800 mentors, industry influencers, venture capitalists, angel investors, and journalists.

The Demo Day event also saw the announcement of Think Next, Microsoft Venture’s new initiative to boost the startup ecosystem of India.

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