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Government looks to overhaul Startup India initiative; Tesla to set up manufacturing hub in China, not India

Startup_mukulThe Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion (DIPP) will overhaul the Startup India initiative to ensure that more startups are able to benefit from the programme while Tesla Motors has chosen China over India to set up its manufacturing hub. Here’s a quick round-up of the startup and technology stories of the day.

Government to revamp Startup India policy

The Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion (DIPP) will overhaul the Startup India initiative to ensure that more startups are able to benefit from the programme, The Economic Times reported. The move comes after only 200 startups registered for recognition, with 30 being shortlisted by the inter-ministerial board. Among the 30, only one firm Hyderabad-based Cygni Energy was given full recognition. The DIPP will create a learning module on incorporation of a company and business models and will provide counselling and training services to those startups that are unable to furnish all the documents. Furthermore, startups will not need a certificate of recognition from the government for legal advice on filing patents as the service will be provided by a group of advocates for free. The DIPP will also impose a limit on the fees charged by incubators for certifying a startup as an innovative business as many firms complained that they were being charged exorbitant rates for providing recommendation letters, However, startups feel that instead of providing incentives and benefits, it should focus more on removing regulatory hurdles.

China overtakes India for Tesla manufacturing hub

Tesla Motors will set up its production base in Shanghai, China in an investment that may be valued at $9 billion. The firm has signed an agreement with Jinqiao Group, a Shanghai government-owned company, to build its production facilities in the municipality, Bloomberg reported. The tie-up will see each firm invest 30 billion yuan ($4.5 billion), with Jinqiao providing land for the plant as well. By setting up a manufacturing unit in China, Tesla can avoid a 25% import levy which would make its vehicles more competitive against Audi and BMW and local auto firms BYD Co. and BAIC Motor Corp.

Ola receives licence in Karnataka

ANI Technologies Pvt. Ltd, which runs taxi aggregator service Ola, has obtained a licence from the Karnataka government under the Karnataka On-demand Transportation Technology Aggregators Rules 2016 for operating 100 taxis, The Economic Times reported. Ola will have to install GPS and digital meters in all cars in its fleet, as per the rules, transport commission Rame Gowda said. Ola has also applied for a licence in Delhi and is expected to receive it within the next two weeks. Besides Ola, Uber, TaxiForSure, Ridz, Welink and Shreyas are the other players that have applied for a licence. Uber is yet to receive the licence as it has not submitted all documents to the transport department.

Samsung takes on Apple in mobile wallet strategy

Samsung is taking a different path for its mobile wallet, Samsung Pay: the firm will not charge its financial partners a fee but will use its wallet to drive the sales of phones and other devices, Reuters said. Apple, on the other hand, takes a small charge from banks for each transaction made through its Apple Pay platform. The two firms compete with each other in the US, China, Australia and Singapore. While Apple Pay is available in Britain and Canada, Samsung Pay is on offer in Spain and South Korea. Both firms can partner with banks as the technology is not exclusive; however, Samsung has an edge over Apple. Negotiations with Apple can be complex, while the Korean firm is more flexible from a bank’s perspective. Samsung also trumps Apple in terms of technology: Apple Pay operates sales terminals with NFC technology, Samsung Pay-operated phones are compatible with not only near field communication (NFC) but the older magnetic secure transmission (MST), which mimics the magnetic strip on traditional payment cards. This gives Samsung an advantage in countries like the US, where NFC terminals are few.

Twitter launches new app, allows users to tweet long videos

Twitter has launched a new app, Twitter Engage. It will also allow users to tweet longer videos, 140 seconds long versus 30 seconds previously. Those registered with Twitter’s professional publishing tool can post 10 minute videos. The new app will help users share content with followers and engage further with audiences. The app highlights the important mentions and tweets from followers and provides detailed analytics about account performance, Twitter feed and audience demographics. The app is currently available for download only on iOS.

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