Mid-week Buzz – Reliance launches local search, CDMA BlackBerry, AirDeccan is now SimliFly Deccan, BSNL offers two numbers in single SIM, digital music sales in India..and more

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[Rumor of the week]

Reliance to buy Seventymm (then why the heck did they launch BigFlicks?)
In its bid to expand its footprint in the entertainment business, Anil Ambani-controlled Anil Dhirubhai Ambani Group (ADAG) is negotiating a buyout of India’s largest online movie rental company Seventymm, which delivers video compact discs and digital video discs to homes of around 25,000 customers.

[New Launches]

Reliance ties up with Sulekha.com for local search service
Local search applications on the mobile space are picking up steam. Reliance Communications has joined hands with Sulekha.com, a leading online social media and local commerce site, to roll out a city-specific search service on Reliance Mobile World (R-World). The new local search option, called CitySearch, will allow Reliance subscribers to conduct local searches and download city-specific details and share the information with others using their mobile phones.

RCOM launches India’s first CDMA BlackBerry phone
RIM has joined up with Reliance Communications to offer India’s first CDMA BlackBerry phone in India. Till now, BlackBerry phones were only available through GSM operators such as Airtel and Hutch. “Reliance is planning to cash in on the web browsing capability of BlackBerry and want to position it ‘beyond e-mail’ by offering services such as online trading,” says Prakash Bajpai, president, RCOM. Apart from this, Reliance will offer Bloomberg services and also the facility to stream videos.

Reuters launches India website, mobile portal
Reuters has launched an ad-supported English website, www.reuters.co.in. The company has also launched a mobile site, wap.reuters.co.in, which can be accessed through GPRS. The website has a channel on South Asia, the first on any Reuters international site

Shemaroo experiments with 15-minute Bollywood
Shemaroo Entertainment has tied up with BPL Mobile to broadcast 15-minute Bollywood movies on mobile phones. The films will be streamed on the GPRS-enabled phones of BPL Mobile subscribers.

BSNL to offer two numbers on single sim in UP
Taking technology towards more convenient form for its customers, Bharat Sanchar Nigam Ltd (BSNL) has come up with a unique concept of offering two distinct numbers via one sim card to subscribers in Uttar Pradesh.

“Under the new offer, the subscribers will get an opportunity to have two BSNL connections, both with distinct features, while keeping a single sim card in their handset,” said Satish Kumar, general manager, (Mobile) while talking to Business Standard.

The idea of providing two numbers while having one sim card struck the operators when the demand for providing closed user group (CUG) services increased. BSNL has been providing these services to a large number of companies, groups and associations including government departments for some quite time now. Under these services, the users are allowed to make outgoing calls up to a certain limit. Once this limit is reached, the facility of making outgoing calls ends, thus leaving the users to recieve only incoming calls coming.

OnYoMo launches movie ticket availability information on your mobile

YouMagix – a new experiment in local listing/classified business

[Market Research/Reports]

Online classifieds market in India
Complete coverage of present status of online classified market in India – market size/opportunity etc.

Online matrimonial searches on the rise: Study
Matrimonial search is the 13th most popular activity on the Internet among 12 million urban users in India, says a study by research firm Juxt Consult. Dating/friendship sites are the 10th most popular pastime. E-mail, job search and instant messaging are the top three activities on the Net, in that order, says the study. [Read our analysis on India matrimony market]

State of online/digital music sales in India
According to a survey by Soundbuzz, a Singapore-based digital music services provider, more than 88 per cent of the total revenue of Rs 4,100 crore projected for the Indian music industry by 2009 will come from the sale of digital music. Soundbuzz estimates that the sale of digital music for mobile devices in India will touch Rs 3,601 crore by 2009, up from Rs 450 crore in 2005. But that doesn’t really matter because industry estimates suggest that only 10 per cent of the music downloaded from the Internet is legal. Thanks to the lure of free content, the owners of music rights never get paid.

Every second metro man a metrosexual: ACNielsen
The Nielsen survey reveals that three in five single men claim they try to look stylish at all times. The importance of the male grooming market in India is clear, with the market worth Rs 695 crore (YTD January 2007) and growing at a rate of 11 per cent. In metros alone, it is growing at 12 per cent .The categories witnessing significant growth include creams, gels and deodorants. As if on cue, the markets have witnessed the launch of several beauty products targeting men-only in recent years.

[Face off]

AirDeccan is now SimpliFly Deccan
This Bangalore-based no-frills carrier will also ditch the logo of two palms joining together to reflect a flying bird or the tail of an airplane and will use the Kingfisher bird logo, which is also the UB Group logo.

Deccan’s aircraft would also be painted red and white, similar to Kingfisher Airlines’ colours, instead of the current blue and white. The uniform of Deccan’s cabin crew will also be changed to red and white from the current blue and yellow. This, too, will sport a logo of Kingfisher.

TV18 Group Rebranded Network18
According to the plan, CNBC-TV18 and CNBC-Awaaz will now be rechristened CNBC18 and CNBC-Awaaz18 respectively. Likewise, GBN, the broadcaster of CNN-IBN and IBN 7, will also undergo a similar change. A Bangalore-based company has been working on the new logo.

[Miscellaneous]

TRAI’s Do-not-call-registry and it’s effect on BanKaro

tags: adag, seventymm, reuters india, rcom cdma blackberry phone, shemaroo, , , online digital music sales, , tv18, network18, simplifly deccan

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