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Shabana Azmi to star in Renuka Shahane’s directorial

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Actress Renuka Shahane will direct a Hindi film that will star veteran actress Shabana Azmi.

“Karwaan” actress Mithila Palkar will also play a prominent role in the film. There were rumours of Kajol also joining the cast.

“I am directing a film with Shabanaji and Mithila. There is a third protagonist in the film. I am in the process of finalising for that part,” said Renuka.

 

The film spans the lives of three generations of women. This isn`t the first film that Renuka will direct. She earlier directed a Marathi film “Rita”, which was a screen adaptation of Renuka`s mother Shanta Gokhale`s novel.


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B-town celebs admit they promote political parties

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More than 30 Indian film and TV industry actors/artistes agreed to spread the propaganda of political parties through their social media accounts for money, which they asked to be paid in cash, in other words in untaxed black money, it has been revealed in a sting operation.

Actors Vivek Oberoi, Shakti Kapoor, Jackie Shroff, Amisha Patel, Mahima Chaudhary and Sonu Sood, and singers Kailash Kher, Abhijeet and Mika were some of those caught on camera accepting the deal for toeing the agenda of a political party or endorsing it for money.

The celebrities were caught on camera accepting the cash-for-tweet offer during a sting operation conducted by media portal Cobra Post over a period of 3-4 months last year.

 

Cobra Post released the sting operation in a video documentary titled ‘Operation Karaoke’, in which actors, dancers, singers and models were caught accepting the offer for promoting political parties through hidden cameras.

The reporters, acting as agents working on behalf of the Congress, the BJP or the Aam Aadmi Party, made an offer to pay 10-20 per cent of the decided sum in cheque or bank transfer, and the rest through cash, which the celebrities accepted.

Vidya Balan, Raza Murad, Arshad Warsi and TV actor Saumya Tandon were the only ones who refused the offer.

Celebrities were offered Rs 2 lakh to Rs 20 lakh per message according to their brand value. Some celebrities even asked the reporters-cum-agents for up to Rs 20 crore citing the sway they hold on the Twitter sphere.These celebs agreed to promote the party — any which was proposed to them — to create a favourable environment before the 2019 general elections. They swore to keep the entire exercise a secret and the agenda hidden.

“This way, you (celebrities) are manufacturing an opinion through social media. If you reveal that you have taken money for the promotion that you are doing, it would be fine… If we go by the trend, these people may not shy away from propagating a communal agenda either,” said journalist and former Aam Aadmi Party member Ashutosh during the press conference.

He compared the celebrities who accepted the deal to “trolls” and called trolling a “paid syndicate mafia”.

Hartosh Singh Bal, political editor of Caravan magazine, also addressed the reporters and termed the incident a telling foreboding of the “dangerous times” ahead.
“We are going to see the consequences of this in the coming elections,” he said.

The impact most of these celebrities can have through their handles in denting or boosting a party’s image can be gauged from the number of followers almost each of them has on Twitter.

Amisha Patel has 3.95 million, Vivek Oberoi above 2 million and Sonu Sood 1.5 million followers on Twitter.

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Qualcomm Snapdragon X55, Second Gen 5G Smartphone Modem, Announced Ahead of MWC 2019

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Qualcomm has announced its second-generation Snapdragon X55 5G cellular modem and a suite of 5G solutions for network operators and device manufacturers, including its own 5G test networks. The company has made these announcements just ahead of the MWC 2019 trade show in Barcelona next week. The new Snapdragon X55 modem will serve as the follow-up to the Snapdragon X50, which will be seen in smartphones launching as soon as this week. According to Qualcomm, the second-gen Snapdragon X55 will allow network operators and smartphone manufacturers accelerate the pace of 5G rollouts across the world.

The Snapdragon X55 uses a 7nm manufacturing process and supports networks ranging from 2G to 5G in a single chip. It supports the 5G mmWave and sub-6GHz frequency bands and will work on standalone 5G networks as well as those that use 4G backends, which will be the most common as the new technology is being introduced. It promises downloads of up to 7Gbps and uploads of up to 3Gbps with compatible 5G networks and also supports Cat 22 LTE for up to 2.5Gbps downloads when used with matching 4G networks. Power efficiency is improved compared to the Snapdragon X50,

Qualcomm says that all major frequency bands used around the world are supported, including the TDD and FDD standards, which will help manufacturers develop devices for global markets quickly and easily. The company has also launched suitable antenna modules and RF transceivers that can be used in conjunction with the Snapdragon X55.

 

The company expects to see its new products in smartphones, laptops, tablets, portable hotspots, AR/VR and automotive products very soon. The Snapdragon X55 modem and complementary products will be sampled to manufacturers in the first half of this year, and the products they develop should be ready to ship by the end of 2019.

In a press statement, Cristiano Amon, president of Qualcomm Incorporated, said “Qualcomm Technologies is spearheading the first wave of 5G launches with our first generation 5G mobile platform… We expect our 5G platform to accelerate 5G commercial momentum and power virtually all 5G launches in 2019 while significantly expanding the global 5G rollout footprint.”

5G devices and networks have been in development for several years, and many of the first 5G smartphones are expected to launch or at least be announced at MWC 2019 and in events leading up to it. 5G promises not only to increase cellular data speed but also drastically cut latency to enable highly responsive applications such as autonomous vehicle control, virtual reality experiences, and much more.

Samsung is expected to launch at least one 5G-enabled Galaxy S10 variant this week, OnePlus has confirmed that it will demonstrate a 5G prototype device at MWC, and other brands including Huawei, LG, ZTE, Lenovo, Xiaomi and Vivo are also likely to make announcements.

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Samsung Launches New Robots to Make Your Lives Easier, Including a Robotic Arm That Helps in the Kitchen

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Samsung wants an army of robots to invade your kitchen so that you can simply sit back and relax. The South Korean electronics giant revealed its latest lineup of premium home appliances at the Samsung Technology Showcase, ahead of the 2019 Kitchen and Bath Industry Show (KBIS) in Las Vegas. Samsung showed off a number of upcoming products that include a robotic arm that can help in cooking and a robot that aids in growing vegetables right inside your kitchen.

The Bot Chef by Samsung is a robotic arm that can help you while you’re cooking. Bot Chef can do everything from cutting meat to adding seasoning after you’ve cooked something. You can also upload recipes so that the robotic arm knows what it’s supposed to do.

Samsung says the Bot Chef can be ideal for physically-challenged users who could use assistance while in the kitchen. The robotic arm includes a LiDAR sensor and an ambient light detector. Samsung claims these products are its vision for the future of smart homes.

 

The company has also revealed a new vacuum cleaner that uses artificial intelligence. Called Samsung Bot Clean, the robot uses LiDAR and can inform the owner about its status once it is done cleaning the house.

In addition, Samsung also unveiled its new Chef Garden refrigerator at the event. The new refrigerator includes a bunch of smart features including automatically setting up the temperature, humidity, and lighting to grow essential herbs right inside the refrigerator.

The Samsung Bot Air can detect contaminated places around the house and automatically fix the air quality while moving around the house. The company also revealed a wearable walking robot, Gait Enhancing and Motivating System (GEMS), for people who have problems walking properly.

Samsung launched its robotics platform, Samsung Bot, at CES in January this year. The company showed off a number of robots which are now being shown off with more details. The company is now looking to expand its platform with more products.

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