The online admission process for Class 11, which was marred by technical glitches, will restart from June 22. The Minister for School Education Vinod Tawde said that the administration will take a day off to resolve the technical glitches that are clogging the system to ensure that it functions smoothly.
He assured the parents that even though there will be a days delay the process of filling the Online Part I and Part II forms shall be error free and that no meritorious student shall be put at disadvantage. “Online admission process has started in all the divisional boards of Mumbai, Pune, Nashik, Aurangabad, Nagpur and Amravati,” he said.
“There have been some technical glitches like the server getting slow or hanging in between have been experienced in Mumbai, Pune, Nagpur and Nashik. As a result 30,000 odd students are still to fill up their Part I of the form. While about 67,300 odd students have filled up their Part II (choice of colleges),” he added. Read | Maharashtra FYJC 2017: form filling begins; On day one, most inquiries come for quota admissions. Click here
Tawde said that a meeting held today decided to add three more servers. He added that at the end of the day on June 22 hehimself will check the steps taken to ensure smooth functioning of the online admission process.
Tawde said that the problem arose as about 2.75 lakh students who have passed their SSC exams began logging online to fill their forms.
“We have decided to increase the number of servers, increasing bandwidth and updating the online process to ensure that no more confusion is created,” he said. He added that those who have filled their Part I or Part II online forms will not have to re-enter their details again. Read | Top 25 universities in India: NIRF ranking 2017. Click here
He disclosed that as of now about 1.75 lakh SSC passed students are yet to fill their online forms. Replying to a query about the case in the Bombay High Court related to making Maths an optional subject, he said that a year ago when he had spoken about it a section of the media had lashed out at him remarking “has the Education Minister lost his mind.”
He said that many students find subjects like Maths and English tough to crack. Tawde said that the HC has directed the government to talk to educational experts and then file an affidavit.
Taking on the section of the media, he wanted to know as to what they have to say now about the HC directive. He clarified that the teachers jobs will not be affected as those students who want to have better and
Share prices for Apple, Google parent company Alphabet, Amazon, and Microsoft all appeared at $123.47, which would’ve marked a whopping crash if it were true. Amazon’s opening price, for instance, is $972.79 per share — it’s a long way down to $123.47 and would’ve been catastrophic.
For Amazon, for instance, it would’ve marked a catastrophic drop from its opening price of $972.79 per share. The dubious share prices were due to a glitch and affected roughly 16 stocks, but not all of them negatively. For Zynga, the ailing Facebook game maker that was once on the roll, the glitch gave the impression that it’s once again successful.
Tech Stocks Crash Glitch: What Happened?
In a statement to the Financial Times, Nasdaq explained that the whole issue stemmed from “improper use of test data” that third-party financial data providers picked up.
As the U.S. market closed early Monday before the 4th of July holiday, traders got alarmingly wrong stock prices for several companies, including some of the largest and most successful technology companies. Amazon’s and Alphabet’s stock prices appeared to show a staggering drop of more than 80 percent.
Third-party data providers pushed the wrong prices after the early market close, as the exchange operator was testing its pricing data feed. Some providers such as Yahoo Finance, Google Finance, and Bloomberg LP showed the fake changes in share prices. Nasdaq spokesman Joe Cristinat says the test data is sent on a daily basis, but the fact that third-party providers distributed it was a glitch and the changes never really happened. Nasdaq is reportedly working with providers to solve the matter.
No Nasdaq Technical Issue
On the bright side, at least the wrong prices appeared on a holiday when the market had closed. Such mistakes would have a greater impact when the market is open. Christinat highlighted that Nasdaq itself did not have any technical issue and it didn’t make any trades at the wrong prices. Third-party data providers simply took the test data and improperly distributed it as if the figures were real. The stock prices on Nasdaq’s official website showed the real figures, unaffected by the glitch that third-party data providers experienced.
“We can confirm that our third-party finance data partner was providing some inaccurate information, which they received from Nasdaq,” Google told Financial Times. “This is currently being fixed and we hope to update our stock price data shortly.”
Amazon’s Prime Day is just hours away, and the online retailer wants to keep anticipation high. To that end, the company has unveiled a sneak peek at some of the deals you can expect throughout the 30-hour extravaganza.
As is typical for Amazon, the company’s preview includes some generic promises, such as up to 40 percent off gaming laptops—but a handful are truly excellent deals. We’ve picked the top three that jumped out to us. Keep these on your radar, and when Prime Day sales truly kick off at 6 P.M Pacific / 9 P.M. Eastern on Monday evening, we’ll be tracking the best of the Prime Day tech deals on PCWorld.com.
Note: To take advantage of Prime Day sales, you must be a member of Amazon Prime. This service is Amazon’s $99-a-year club that offers free two-day shipping on orders, as well as a litany of frills like free premium video and music streaming, free online photo storage, a Kindle lending library, and various promotional offers. New Prime members get a free 30-day trial, which means you can sign up, get the Prime deals, and then dump the membership before the $99 fee kicks in.
Amazon Echo for $90
This is easily the best deal yet for Amazon’s smart speaker. The lowest ever price was during its pre-order period, when early adopters could snag it for $99. This undercuts that by $10, and the lowest price on CamelCamelCamel by $40. The Echo—powered by the Alexa digital personal assistant—is a fantastic smart speaker for those looking to get started with smart home gadgets.
The Amazon Echo has proven to be a massive hit for Amazon Prime Day 2017, as the number of smart speakers sold this year worldwide is already three times the number sold in last year’s version of the annual shopping event.
Google tried to draw customers away from buying the Amazon Echo in this year’s Prime Day with a $99 Google Home bundle, but it appears that there is no way to stop the popularity of the Alexa-powered smart speaker.
Amazon Echo Sales Surge
It was largely expected that Amazon Echo sales for this year’s Prime Day will be higher, primarily because there are a few more models of the smart speaker that are available. However, the announcement that Amazon Echo sales are three times higher compared to last year was made halfway through Prime Day, which suggests that by the end of the event, that figure will be even higher.
Amazon Prime Day offered discounts to Amazon Prime subscribers on various products, and Amazon did not hold back for its Amazon Echo product line. For example, the original Amazon Echo, which has an original price of $179.99 and sold in last year’s Prime Day for $129.99, is being sold for only $89.99 this year. Customers who visit Amazon’s website will be greeted by large banners for the Amazon Echo, further drawing eyes toward the deals for the smart speakers.
According to insiders from the company, thousands of Amazon Echo devices are being sold per minute. The Amazon Echo Dot, originally priced at $49.99 and now sold for only $34.99, appears to be the first model that will be sold out.
“Prime Day has beat all of Amazon’s expectations,” the source said, adding that the company is “shocked” by the increase.
Heightened Interest In Smart Speakers
The surge in sales for Amazon Echo products can be attributed to the heightened interest from customers on smart speakers, as the product has slowly moved into the mainstream since the Amazon Echo started selling in late 2014.
The Google Home has since entered the market, with the Apple HomePod and Microsoft Invoke arriving as additional challengers soon. The digital assistants powering smart speakers have also steadily improved, with the devices taking up more headlines, for better or worse.
The increased sales for the Amazon Echo in this year’s Prime Day could also be attributed to a bigger window for the annual event, in addition to its expansion to 13 countries worldwide. Nevertheless, the surge in interest for smart speakers is evident in higher Amazon Echo sales, which is great news for one of the world’s largest retailers.
Updated July 14:The Internet-Wide Day of Action to Save Net Neutrality on July 12 enjoyed a healthy turnout.Thousands of companies and some visible tech celebrities united against the FCC proposal called Restoring Internet Freedom, by which the new FCC chairman Ajit Pai hopes to loosen regulations for the ISPs and telecom companies that provide Internet service nationwide. The public has until mid-August to give comments to the FCC.
The protests took many forms. Organizations including the American Civil Liberties Union, Reddit, The Nation, and Greenpeace placed website blockers to imitate what would happen if the FCC loosened regulations. Other companies participating online displayed images on their sites that simulated a slowed-down Internet, or demanded extra money for faster access.
Tech giant Google published a blog post in defense of net neutrality. “Today’s open internet ensures that both new and established services, whether offered by an established internet company like Google, a broadband provider or a small startup, have the same ability to reach users on an equal playing field.”
Facebook joined in with Sheryl Sandberg posting her message on Facebookas well as Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg.“Keeping the internet open for everyone is crucial. Not only does it promote innovation, but it lets people access information that can change their lives and gives voice to those who might not otherwise be heard,” Sandberg said.
In Washington, FCC Commissioner Mignon Clyburn said in a statement that she supports a free and open internet. “Its benefits can be felt across our economy and around the globe,” she said. “That is why I am excited that on this day consumers, entrepreneurs and companies of all sizes, including broadband providers and internet startups, are speaking out with a unified voice in favor of strong net neutrality rules grounded in Title II. Knowing that the arc of success is bent in our favor and we are on the right side of history, I remain committed to doing everything I can to protect the most empowering and inclusive platform of our time.”
Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., and Sen. Brian Schatz, D-Hawaii, wrote a letter to the FCC Tuesday – one day early — to make sure the FCC’s system was ready to withstand a cyberattack, as well as the large volume of calls expected Wednesday.
What led up to the protest
The July 12 Internet-Wide Day of Action strove to highlight how the web would look if telecom companies were allowed to control it for profit. Organizing groups such as Fight for the Future, Free Press Action Fund, and Demand Progress want their actions to call attention to the potential impact on everyday users, such as having to pay for faster internet access.
Where net neutrality stands: Under the Open Internet Order enacted by the FCC in 2015, internet service providers cannot block access to content on websites or apps, interfere with loading speeds, or provide favoritism to those who pay extra. However, FCC Chairman Ajit Pai, selected by President Trump in January, has been advocating a completely open internet, where the ISPs could control access or charge fees without regulation. A Senate bill that would relax regulations, called Restoring Internet Freedom (S.993), was introduced in May and was referred to the Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation.
What this protest is for: The July 12 protest, which organizers are calling the Internet-Wide Day of Action to Save Net Neutrality, will fight for free speech on the internet under Title II of FCC’s Communications Act of 1934. On that date, websites and apps that support net neutrality will display alerts to mimic what could happen if the FCC rolled back the rules.
Who will come together for the protest: More than 180 companies including Amazon, Twitter, Etsy, OkCupid, and Vimeo, along with advocacy groups such as the ACLU, Change.org, and Greenpeace, will join the protest and urge their users and followers to do the same.
Where the protest will take place: Sites that support net neutrality will call attention to their cause by simulating what users would experience if telecom companies were allowed to control web access. Examples will include a simulated “spinning wheel of death” (when a webpage or app won’t load), blocked notifications, and requests to upgrade to paid plans. Organizers are also calling on supporters to stage in-person protests at congressional offices and post protest selfies on social media with the tag #savethenet.
Who opposes the protest: FCC Chairman Ajit Pai and large telecom companies, such as Verizon and Comcast, want to relax net neutrality rules. Some claim that an unregulated internet will allow for more competition in the marketplace, as well as oversight of privacy and security measures.
Why this protest matters: The July 12 protest is projected to be one of the largest digital protests ever planned, with more than 50,000 people, sites, and organizations participating. If successful, it would be reminiscent of a 2012 blackout for freedom of speech on the internet to protest the Stop Online Piracy Act and the PROTECT IP Act, and an internet slowdown in 2014 to demand discussions about net neutrality.
Nokia 6, the current top-end Android smartphone from the house of HMD Global, will be made available in its first sale via Amazon India on August 23. Registrations for the first Nokia 6 sale are now open on the e-commerce site. To recall, at the Nokia 6 India launch in mid-June, HMD Global had announced launch offers for the smartphone, and Amazon India is listing the same offers on its registrations page. Unlike the Nokia 3 and Nokia 5, the Nokia 6 is the only smartphone from HMD Global that will officially be available exclusively online in India.
Nokia 6 price in India, launch offers
Nokia 6 price in India is Rs. 14,999, making it the most expensive Nokia Android phone in the market. Amazon India launch offers include Rs. 1,000 cashback for Amazon Prime users when they purchase the device using Amazon Pay balance. Vodafone users will get 10GB data per month at Rs. 249 per month for 5 months on their Nokia 6. All buyers will also get 80 percent off on Kindle eBooks (up to Rs. 300), and Rs. 2,500 off on Makemytrip.com (Rs. 1,800 on hotels & Rs.700 off on domestic flights).
Nokia 6 specifications
Nokia 6 specifications include a 5.5-inch full-HD 2.5D screen with Corning Gorilla Glass protection and a fingerprint sensor. The Nokia 6 runs on Android 7.0 Nougat and is powered by Snapdragon 430 SoC coupled with 3GB of RAM. The handset packs 32GB inbuilt storage, and supports microSD cards up to 128GB capacity, and houses a 3000mAh battery.
On the camera front, the Nokia 6 sports a 16-megapixel rear sensor, while the front camera’s resolution is 8-megapixel and both come with an f/2.0 aperture. The handset has USB 2.0 port for connectivity, fingerprint sensor in the front, dual stereo speakers and Dolby Atmos audio enhancement.
Samsung Exynos, from its official Twitter handle, put out a tweet that read, “Do what you want. #Exynos will get things done. Learn more about #Exynos8895.” (Source: Samsung Exynos/Twitter)
Samsung might have given a glimpse of the upcoming Galaxy Note 8 smartphone. Samsung Exynos, from its official Twitter handle, put out a tweet that read, “Do what you want. #Exynos will get things done. Learn more about #Exynos8895.” The tweet is accompanied by an image, speculated to be that of Galaxy Note 8. It reveals a near bezel-less smartphone with a large dual curved edge display. The corners are more rounded, and side curves are not as prominent as Galaxy S8 series smartphones. There’s no power button on the right side, suggesting this is just a prototype device.
Meanwhile, a report in Digitimes has revealed that Samsung will launch the Galaxy Note 8 in September this year. “Samsung Electronics is likely to launch its Galaxy Note 8 smartphone in September 2017 at the earliest, to make up the product gap left by its predecessor, the Galaxy Note 7, according to upstream component makers in Taiwan,” the report read.
Samsung Galaxy Note 8’s front render was previously leaked by tipster Slashleaks on Twitter. The image reveals large Infinity display with no bezels on the sides, and extremely thin bezels on top and bottom. The Galaxy Note 8 is expected to feature the same 18:9:5 aspect ratio like we saw on the Galaxy S8 smartphone. The home button is gone, and fingerprint scanner is likely to be present at the back of the device.
Previously, a report in The Korean Herald claimed Samsung will host an event on August 23 in New York to unveil the Galaxy Note 8. Of course, we’ll have to wait for an official confirmation to know whether the smartphone will be announced in August or September.
Samsung Galaxy Note 8 is rumoured to feature the yet-to-be launched Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 836 processor. The smartphone could be the most expensive that the Korean giant has ever made, with its price pegged at € 999 (or approx Rs 73,880). The Galaxy S8 could feature a 6.3-inch Super AMOLED Infinity display. It will ship with S Pen and company’s smart assistant Bixby. Samsung Galaxy Note 8 will come with 6GB RAM and 128GB internal storage.
Blackstone, the world’s largest real estate investor, has warned that the outlook for America’s enclosed shopping malls is darkening quicker than experts expected as the growing online retail threat hammers their valuations.
More than 10 per cent of US retail sales are transacted online, according to Credit Suisse, forcing big chains to shutter thousands of stores in recent years. Retailers have announced plans to close 76m square feet of store space already this year, according to CoStar, a data provider, almost as much as that announced in the whole of 2016.
Retail woes are intensifying pressures on shopping malls, especially of the lower-end “enclosed” type in smaller American cities and towns, where tenants are moving out or demanding lower rents. The enclosed mall is the classic indoor commercial hub that emerged in the 1950s, rather than the malls built around an anchor grocery chain or department store.
“The retail industry is clearly facing headwinds. And it’s the first time we’ve seen secular rather than cyclical headwinds,” said Nadeem Meghji, head of North American real estate at Blackstone. “We’re now seeing pressures even on luxury retailers, which I didn’t expect to happen as fast as it has.”
The market for second-tier enclosed malls has virtually frozen given how concerned investors are, but Mr Meghji estimated that in the past two years prices may have plunged as much as 40 per cent on average for the 1,100 enclosed regional malls in the US. Even for the top 50, prices have probably declined by 20 per cent, the Blackstone executive said.
The private equity firm’s $102bn real estate arm still owns some grocery shop-anchored malls in high-density population areas, but no longer has any exposure to the enclosed shopping mall sector.
“The internet has made the value proposition for a lot of shopping malls less relevant,” Mr Meghji said. “If you add in the factor that they actually tend to have higher operating costs due to security, electricity and so on, then they are high-cost rental spaces for retailers.”
However, Greg Maloney, chief executive for Americas retail at JLL, the real estate investment and management company, said the “doom and gloom” was overdone, pointing out that a retail property can be converted to alternative uses such as housing. He argued that overbuilding is the central challenge rather than internet shopping.
“People say the internet killed bricks-and-mortar retailers. But bricks and mortar killed itself,” he said. “People say they don’t know how we’ll survive, but we do it by adapting.”
Yet concerns about the march of online retailing are mounting in most parts of the retail industry. Sears, the department store chain founded in 1886, is emblematic of the challenges. In March it warned there was “substantial doubt” over its ability to continue operating, and its Canadian subsidiary filed for bankruptcy last month.
The US company managed to steady its shares with a fierce cost-cutting drive this year but many investors expect it to fall by the wayside. Given Sears’ long pedigree, that could deepen investor pessimism surrounding the industry, according to Larry Perkins, head of SierraConstellation Partners, a restructuring firm.
“The big names mark the tipping points, and everyone is now looking at Sears as it is such a marque name,” he said. “Its cultural significance is disproportionate, given its legacy and history.”
China has asked the country’s three top internet providers to prevent cell phone users from getting access to online material that it does not control.
Reports say the telecommunications companies China Mobile, China Unicom and China Telecom have been told about the policy. The goal appears to be to keep the companies from permitting access to content not approved by the government.
This month, the Chinese government reportedly shut down a popular virtual private network service, Green VPN.
Virtual private networks, or VPNs, permit users to send secure information over an open internet connection. They are popular ways for internet users in China to get access to internet content outside of China.
The move was seen as part of a government campaign to license only companies that it trusted.
However, China’s Ministry of Information has denied that it licensed the company, Chuanglian VPN, to sell its services.
It went on to note that, “The company involved has never received a telecommunications business license from either the Ministry of Information Industry or the Ministry of Communications.”
Efforts to control internet growing?
In January, China increased efforts to control the internet by banning unauthorizedinternet connections. Such connections can include those provided by VPNs. China’s Ministry of Industry and Information Technology said the government has set a goal of doing this by the end of March according to the state-run Global Times.
Many Chinese internet users are able to use software and services to avoid Chinese government censorship of online material.
One blogger, known as “Zola,” who is a free-speech activist said it is not clear if all VPN activity will be banned from the beginning of February. Zola said the government could do this, but it would be costly to carry out such a ban.
“If the authorities really want to shut down all VPNs, so that only protocol ports it trusted were able to get online, and all the others were blocked…this would be very difficult, and it would cost a lot of money,” he said.
Zola doubted that the government would want to harm the economy by closing down VPNs completely.
Another internet used, who did not want to be named, said, “It seems as if everything’s going to get a whole lot stricter from Feb. 1 next year.” The user added, “This will affect our ability to visit overseas websites, because right now they can only be viewed with VPN.”
I’m Mario Ritter.
Ding Wenqi reported this story for Radio Free Asia. Mario Ritter adapted it for VOA Learning English. Hai Do was the editor.
The new G6 from LG is a really good Android phone in its own right, but if you were on the fence, T-Mobile and LG have a pair of offers that you might find too good to refuse. Starting with T-Mobile, the spunky “uncarrier,” as it likes to call itself, is offering the LG 6 for $20 per month for 24 months, plus a $20 down payment. That breaks down to $500, versus the phone’s $650 MSRP.
So right off the bat you’re set to save $150 on the G6. To sweeten the pot, T-Mobile is throwing in a free LG G Pad X 8.0 tablet, which it normally sells for $240 ($10 per month for 24 months). Tablets are not as popular as they once were, but it is still a nice inclusion at no extra cost. If nothing else, you could gift it to a friend or family member, or hawk the thing on eBay or Craigslist.
On top of the discount and free tablet, LG is running a separate promotion in which G6 buyers can claim a free Google Home smart speaker. That’s another $129 value. If you’re keeping count, that is $150 saved on the phone itself, a $240 tablet, and a $129 smart speaker for a grand total of $519 in saved money and free goodies combined.
The pot gets even sweeter if you’re into mobile gaming. Yet another promotion tied to LG’s latest flagship phone is its LG G6 Game Collection offer. Through that promo, you can get up to $200 towards in-app game credits on Google Play. The total value of the deal depends on which games interest you. For example, LG offers a “Vault of Coins” for Temple Run 2 and a “Nice Pile of SimCash” for SimCity BuildIt, to name two examples. You can check out the rest of the in-app offers here.
We’re not quite as enthralled with the G6 as we are Samsung’s Galaxy S8 and S8+ handsets. However, the reduced cost and free goodies combine to make a strong argument in favor of the G6. As a refresher, the G6 wields a gorgeous 5.7-inch QHD+ IPS display powered by a Qualcomm Snapdragon 821 SoC and 4GB of RAM. It also has 32GB of built-in storage (expandable via microSD), 5MP front camera, 13MP rear camera, a bevy of sensors, and a 3,300 mAh non-removable battery with Qualcomm Quick Charge 3.0 support.