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Apple’s iPhone 12 Pro, iPhone 12 Pro Max to sport 6GB RAM: Report

SAN FRANCISCO, Nov 25: Barclays analyst Blayne Curtis and his associates have revealed that Apple’s iPhone 12 Pro and iPhone 12 Pro Max, due to be launched in September 2020 are going to sport 6GB RAM.

The Cupertino-based company is expected to launch three iPhones next year and Barclays believes that iPhone 12 Pro and iPhone 12 Pro will feature mmWave 5G support, news portal iMore reported on Friday.

Additionally, the 2020 iPhones could pack rear-facing 3D sensing cameras for better photographic and augmented reality capabilities. An earlier report predicted this technology will debut in the next iPad Pro before making it to iPhone.

The iPhone maker is also planning to launch an affordable smartphone iPhone SE 2, with production reportedly slated to start in February.

The phone will have an A13 chip, which is also being used in iPhone 11, along with 3GB RAM and will have three colour options: silver, space grey and red. It is likely to start selling at a price of $399.

BSNL employee unions go on hunger strike

NEW DELHI, Nov 24: BSNL employee unions have alleged that the management is forcing personnel to opt for voluntary retirement scheme (VRS) by creating a fear psychosis and have called for pan-India hunger strike on November 25.

The unions, representing more than half of BSNL employees, have alleged that the management is threatening employees of reduction in retirement age to 58 years and far away postings if the employees don't opt for VRS, said All India Unions and Associations of Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited (AUAB) Convenor P Abhimanyu.

"We are not opposing VRS. Those who want and think it is beneficial for them should opt for it. It is not beneficial for lower level employees and they are being threatened to take VRS, else retirement age will be reduced to 58. It is a forced retirement scheme, therefore we are going on a hunger strike on Monday," Abhimanyu said.

The unions, in a notice for hunger strike, have alleged that those opting for VRS will not be able to apply for pension commutation, which is one-third of pension amount payable over 15 years in advance, only after attaining the age of 60 years.

"In case of any casualty, a person will not be able to apply for pension commutation. His family will get only family pension which is very less. Those who opt for VRS will not be able to claim benefit of the third pay revision. ... With 4G services starting soon and the proposed tariff hike in the sector, BSNL will become eligible for the third pay revision," Abhimanyu said.

He alleged that banks few years back offered better VRS compared to the scheme offered by BSNL, which is not lucrative.

"If management stops threatening employees, the number of employees opting for VRS will significantly come down," Abhimanyu said.

According to BSNL Chairman and Managing Director P K Purwar, over 77,000 out of around 1.6 lakh employees of the loss-making telecom firm have opted for VRS.

According to the plan, all regular and permanent employees of BSNL, including those on deputation to other organisations or posted outside the corporation on deputation basis, who attended the age of 50 years or above are eligible to seek voluntary retirement under the scheme.

The amount of ex-gratia for any eligible employee will be equal to 35 days salary for each completed year of service and 25 days salary for every year of service left until superannuation.

Employees' benefit accounts for 75-80 per cent of total revenue earned by the company annually. BSNL is looking at a savings of about ₹7,000 crore in wage bill, if 70,000-80,000 personnel opt for the scheme.

Indian Govt allows telcos to defer spectrum dues

NEW DELHI, Nov 20: The Union cabinet on Wednesday gave beleaguered telecom operators Bharti Airtel Ltd and Vodafone Idea Ltd a breather by allowing them to defer payments for spectrum purchases by up to two years.

The move to defer payments for 2020-21 and 2021-22 will be a relief to these companies while helping Reliance Jio Infocomm Ltd as well. It follows the Supreme Court’s 24 October ruling that directed older telecom firms to pay at least ₹92,000 crore in past dues to the government within three months.

“Department of Telecommunication will give an option to the Telecom Service Providers (TSPs) to defer payment of the spectrum auction instalments due for 2020-21 & 2021-22, either for one or both years. These deferred amounts bill be spread equally in the remaining instalments to be paid by TSPs. Interest as stipulated while auctioning of the concerned spectrum will however be charged so that NPV (net present value) is protected," the government said.

Vodafone Idea and Bharti Airtel suffered record losses in the September quarter, hit by the apex court’s ruling that upheld the government’s broader definition of revenue on which it calculates levies on telecom operators. Bundling of unlimited free voice services with very cheap data prices by Reliance Jio had forced Bharti Airtel and Vodafone Idea to match tariffs, leading to an erosion in earnings.

“The decision for deferring spectrum payment instalments for two years will be implemented within a fortnight. Amendment to the license shall be issued expeditiously with the approval of hon’ble minister of communications," the government statement added.

This also comes at a time when Bharti Airtel, Vodafone Idea and Reliance Jio are raising tariffs, indicating that a three-year-long price war that led to an unprecedented industry consolidation is nearing an end.

“Deferment of spectrum auction instalments will ease the cash outflow of the stressed TSPs and facilitate payment of statutory liabilities and interest on bank loans. Continued operation by TSPs will give a fillip to employment and economic growth. Improved financial health of TSPs will facilitate maintenance of quality of services to consumer," the statement said.

 

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