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Parties Use Social Media for Voter Connect

Teams of thousands of workers and volunteers are keeping social media pages of different political parties abuzz like a well-oiled machine to run campaigns and garner support of target voters for the next month’s Assembly elections in Gujarat. If the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) relies on its  established network of followers on Facebook, YouTube,  Twitter and Instagram, the opposition Congress and the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) are using popular messaging platform WhatsApp extensively to reach out to voters at the grassroots level.  BJP’s social media campaigns are focused on highlighting the achievements of the party-led government in Gujarat during the last two decades. The saffron outfit is also tapping on the emotive issue of Gujarati pride through the newly-launched campaign “Aa Gujarat Me Banavyu Chhe (I have created this Gujarat).” The Congress, on the other hand, is harking back to the era when it ruled the state, the contributions its governments made for development of the state  and how the BJP has done nothing in its 27 years of rule. The AAP has created a narrative around the party’s numerous “guarantees” announced by its national convener Arvind Kejriwal during his poll campaigns in the state and is relying extensively on WhatsApp to connect with voters.

Meta launches ‘Find, Message and Buy on WhatsApp’

WhatsApp is launching the ability to find a business right on the app so people can now browse businesses by categories – such as travel or banking – or search by the business name. This will save people from having to find phone numbers off websites or type a number into their contacts. These new features are introduced to offer users a convenient way to quickly get assistance from the millions of small businesses and tens of thousands of brands already on WhatsApp. It will be available first to Brazil, Indonesia, Mexico, Colombia, and the UK. It consists of two steps:- Find a business, Buy. If you run a business in Brazil, that means people will be able to find you, contact you and purchase from you all in one WhatsApp chat. This is the next step for business messaging and it will unlock more opportunities for all.

Reliance Jio announces rollout of ‘True 5G’ service in Delhi, NCR cities

Reliance Jio has announced that it is the first operator to provide True-5G services across entire Delhi-NCR region. The high-speed 5G network is now available in Delhi, Gurugram, Noida, Ghaziabad, Faridabad and other major locations. Jio claims that its True 5G network can be accessed in major parts of Delhi NCR. The True 5G network from Reliance Jio first started rolling out in October. The company plans to cover most metro cities before the end of this year. Jio has committed to roll out its 5G network across India by end of 2023. Jio Welcome Offer

Another criterion to access the Reliance Jio True 5G is enrolling for the Jio Welcome Offer. 

The Jio Welcome Offer offers Unlimited Data at up to 1 Gbps+ speeds. In terms of cost, Reliance Jio is offering 5G speeds at no additional cost for now. Your 4G plans will work with 5G speeds. 

Reliance Jio True 5G Features

Stand-alone (SA) 5G architecture with no dependence on 4G network.

Wide range of 5G spectrum across 700 MHz, 3500 MHz, and 26 GHz bands.

Carrier Aggregation combines these 5G frequencies into a single “data highway” using Carrier Aggregation.

India saw third-highest crypto app downloads between 2015 and 2022

India ranked third globally in terms of the number of downloads of cryptocurrency exchange applications between August 2015 and June 2022, data from a working paper released by the Bank for International Exchange (BIS) showed. The total downloads of such apps in India stood at 31.7 million. The United States of America (USA) saw the highest number of downloads at 126.9 million, followed by Turkey with 44.2 million downloads. The high number of downloads in India was due to the bull run in the market, curiosity around the crypto technology and access to smartphones and better internet facilities. “India is a country with a very high focus on technology as a delivery model for all products and services,” Vivek Iyer, partner at advisory firm Grant Thornton Bharat said. “Crypto has been an interesting concept and the intellectual curiosity for grasping the same is the reason I would probably attribute to the downloads,” he added.

2022 e-commerce festival sales almost 2x of 2019

E-commerce retailers led by Amazon and Flipkart garnered sales worth Rs 76,000 crore during the one-month festival sale event — almost double the pre-pandemic figure of Rs 40,000 crore in 2019, according to a report by consulting firm Redseer. This is also about 25 per cent year-over-year (YoY) growth compared to the festive sale month of CY2021. Redseer had earlier projected e-commerce sales of Rs 83,000 crore for the festival sale period that began on September 22 and extended till October 23 this year. For platforms that did not run a sale during any of these dates, the report considered BAU (business-as-usual) order volumes. Though a major portion of the sales during the festive season continues to come from electronic products and mobile phones, this category grew only 7 per cent YoY. “Electronics and mobile (sales) have now come down a little bit from a growth perspective to 7 per cent compared to last year,” said Ujjwal Chaudhry, partner, Redseer Strategy Consultants. Festive sales are being driven by Tier-2 and Tier-3 cities, with 64 percent of transacting shoppers coming from these places. About 125 million shoppers placed orders across platforms in the festive month, aided by Tier 2+ cities. Fashion led the growth, especially in Tier-2 markets. It was mainly driven by unbranded fashion. Here, one in every five orders was a Kurti or Saree.

Flipkart key driver of 13% spike in Walmart’s international revenue

Walmart’s international net sales were up 13.3 per cent YoY at $26.8 billion in constant currency led by Flipkart, said the company in this Q3 FY23 results. The Walmart management added that the early timing of Flipkart’s Big Billion Sale from Q4 last year to Q3 this year benefited the company. Doug McMillan, president and CEO, Walmart said that Flipkart’s performance has been strong with one billion visits by consumers during the eight day Big Billion Sale. “What is important is that 60 percent of these consumers came from tier-2 and 3 cities,” he added. He added that the Phonepe’s performance was strong, with 10 Billion transactions done in a quarter for the first time. The company stated that its advertisement business saw good traction from Flipkart ads. Global ad business grew over 30 per cent, led by 40 per cent at Walmart Connect in the US and strength in Flipkart Ads. Globally Walmart’s revenue touched $152.8 billion, up 9.8 per cent in constant currency.

Social media trends for 2023

The social media space has not seen a good growth in the second half of 2022. Twitter is embroiled in controversies. Meta has also reported a slump in its ad sales. Social media firms’ stock value went down by billions. Is it the end of social media? Experts say it is not. Trends predicted for 2023 are increase in micro-influencers, increase in regulations for social media content, growth in social commerce. There will be a shift to platform-wise content and engagement strategy. Nano-influencers who are specialists in a particular domain will be in demand. There will be focus on getting opt-in user data for direct communication. Audio will be more used as compared to social media, as it provides a lot more consumable content than text. And it leaves people free to multi-task. B2C trends in terms of use of content such as gifs, memes will witness increased adoption by B2B brands. There will be an increase in social media content consumption. Vernacularisation of social media platforms will be on the rise. Tech will continue to disrupt how social media interacts. There will be more investment in analytic tools. There is a scope for small businesses to grow through influencer marketing.

India secures 1st rank in ‘AI talent concentration’

India has climbed up six places to 61st rank in the Network Readiness Index 2022 report prepared by US-based non-profit body Portulans Institute, the telecom ministry said. The country’s overall score has improved to 51.19 in 2022 from 49.74 in 2021, the statement said. “India has improved its position by six slots and is now placed at 61st rank as per the Network Readiness Index 2022 (NRI 2022) report released recently,” the statement said. The report states that India secured 1st rank in ‘AI talent concentration’, second rank in ‘Mobile broadband internet traffic within the country’ and ‘International Internet bandwidth’, third rank in ‘Annual investment in telecommunication services’ and ‘Domestic market size’, fourth rank in ‘ICT Services exports’, fifth rank in ‘FTTH/Building Internet subscriptions’ and ‘AI scientific publications’.

Co-parenting Apps Gaining Popularity In India

Many Indian couples fighting divorce cases are increasingly relying on coparenting apps to communicate with each other to avoid friction while maintaining records of their children. Mostly US-based co-parenting apps such as We Parent, Our Family Wizard and Talking Parents are becoming part of Indian couples fighting acrimonious divorce battles or seeking separation with mutual consent. Interestingly, Indian courts are also acknowledging the effectiveness of such apps and allowing the prayers of parties to direct the other side to use such apps. These apps help facilitate the information sharing of school records, medical records, daily activities, schedules and pictures which can be shared with the parent that does not have a child’s custody. It also helps to keep an account of shared expenses between parents. According to Advocate Mrunalini Deshmukh, these co-parenting apps are  very recent phenomena. Initially, Non-Resident Indians were using this but now increasingly local couples embroiled in divorce cases are also insisting on the use of such apps during custody battles.

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