Smartphone Market Maintains Growth in South East Asia in 16Q2; Samsung, OPPO, True and ASUS Dominate

According to the latest International Data Corporation (IDC) Asia/Pacific Quarterly Mobile Phone Tracker, total smartphone shipments in the South East Asia (SEA) region is approximately 28 million units in the second quarter of 2016 reflecting an 18.1% increase quarter-on quarter (QoQ) and continued positive growth year-on-year (YoY) of 6.5%. Countries in the SEA region tracked by IDC’s local and regional analysts are Indonesia, Malaysia, Myanmar, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam.

The report states that competitive price points and heavy marketing activities in a now crowded market are the key driving factors for the budget conscious SEA market.

In terms of market share, the overall smartphone market remains dominated by Samsung, followed by OPPO, True (an operator in Thailand), Asus and Lava.

 

 

  • Samsung retained its top position by relying on its price and spec competitive Galaxy J series which was highly suited for the budget conscious SEA market. Meanwhile, the flagship Galaxy S7 series saw better YoY performance in terms of unit shipments compared to the Galaxy S6 series launched back in 2015.
  • OPPO moved to second position for the first time. Despite Oppo’s continued marketing investments to build a solid brand equity for its F1 family, it was the Neo model that drove up its volume.
  • Asus’ position is supported by its highly affordable Zenfone Go model. Meanwhile, the growth of its flagship, the Zenfone 2 Laser, slowed down in preparation for the new Zenfone 3 targeted for launch in the third quarter.
  • Unit shipments for True and Lava were propelled by heavy operator activities to increase 3G subscribers nationwide in Thailand.

 

 

Meanwhile, 3G handsets still make up majority of the market share as they carry significantly lower price points as opposed to 4G ones, a pivotal factor particularly for SEA consumers. Furthermore, the slow uptake of 4G is largely attributed to the temporary rise of 3G devices in Thailand, where operators were in a rush to migrate subscribers from 2G to 3G, handing out large amounts of free or heavily discounted handsets.

Source: IDC

Press Release: Singtel Offers ZoneAlarm Mobile Security App

Singapore, 5 September, 2016 – Singtel is collaborating with Check Point Software Technologies Ltd to offer ZoneAlarm Mobile Security, a world-class mobile security app that provides comprehensive protection from malware, hackers, WiFi attacks and other cyber threats.

 

Available for iOS and Android devices, ZoneAlarm performs detailed risk assessments by scanning installed apps, detecting unsafe WiFi networks and recommending the most secure WiFi hotspot options. It alerts users of suspicious processes running on their phones and protects their operating
system from attacks.

 

“For convenience, many people keep their credit card details, passwords and other sensitive information on their mobile devices. Mobile security is more important than ever as cyber threats become more prevalent. With ZoneAlarm and other products in the new Singtel Mobile Protection suite, our customers can enjoy a worry-free experience for mobile banking, online shopping and web surfing,” said Ms Diana Chen, Vice President of Mobile Marketing, Singtel.

 

ZoneAlarm is available as a value-added service to all Singtel mobile postpaid customers at a special price of S$2.90 per month. It is available at a further discounted price of S$2.00 with any subscription of MobileSwop, Singtel’s device care add-on service.

 

Customers can sign up for ZoneAlarm via My Singtel app or any Singtel Retail Shop

(Video) Maybank launches Samsung Pay Service in Singapore

It is official that Maybank will offer Samsung Pay to their credit and debit cardholders. This is inline with the bank’s objective in pushing digital initiatives in the South East Asia region. Samsung Pay provides an additional payment option for Maybank’s customers.

Senior management from Maybank and Samsung at the launch of Samsung Pay by Maybank Singapore (left to right): Choong Wai Hong, Head, Community Financial Services, Maybank Singapore; Karen Low, Head, Cards & Unsecured Lending, Maybank Singapore; Lim Kuo Siong, Head, Information Services, Maybank Singapore; Mohd Suhail Amar Suresh Abdullah, Group Chief Technology Officer, Maybank; Michael Foong, Group Chief Strategy Officer, Maybank; Lim Hong Tat, Group Head, Community Financial Services and CEO, Maybank Singapore; Eugene Goh, Vice President, IT & Mobile, Samsung Electronics Singapore; Andy Sim, Vice President and Head, New Business Development, Samsung Electronics Singapore; Christopher Tarr, Director, Samsung Pay – Southeast Asia & Oceania
Senior management from Maybank and Samsung at the launch of Samsung Pay by Maybank Singapore (left to right): Choong Wai Hong, Head, Community Financial Services, Maybank Singapore; Karen Low, Head, Cards & Unsecured Lending, Maybank Singapore; Lim Kuo Siong, Head, Information Services, Maybank Singapore; Mohd Suhail Amar Suresh Abdullah, Group Chief Technology Officer, Maybank; Michael Foong, Group Chief Strategy Officer, Maybank; Lim Hong Tat, Group Head, Community Financial Services and CEO, Maybank Singapore; Eugene Goh, Vice President, IT & Mobile, Samsung Electronics Singapore; Andy Sim, Vice President and Head, New Business Development, Samsung Electronics Singapore; Christopher Tarr, Director, Samsung Pay – Southeast Asia & Oceania. Source: Instagram user @weewu

As the world is moving towards transactions using smartphone, Samsung, as the world’s largest mobile phone maker, plays a strategy role in assisting the bank’s initiative in digitizing banks’ services.  With Samsung Pay, the bank expects the adoption to be 10,000 for the first year and 20,000 by the end of second year.

Besides payment, Maybank is exploring other banking solutions using Samsung Pay’s biometric authentication technology. Integration of loyalty cards and cardless withdrawals are services in the pipelines and will be made available to the bank’s customers in the near future.

Maybank has also supported Fintech community and will be a key partner of the Fintech festival in Singapore this November.

To view the presentation at Galaxy Studio, see below Facebook Live video below

Press Release – STINGRAY OPENS REGIONAL HEADQUARTER IN SINGAPORE

Stingray launches new office to serve growing demand in the Asia-Pacific region


Singapore, July 7, 2016 – Stingray Digital Group Inc. (TSX: RAY.A; RAY.B.), a leading business-to-business multiplatform music solutions provider, continues to expand its activities in the Asia-Pacific market. Stingray strenghtens its presence in this pivotal region with the opening of a regional headquarter in Singapore. This launch follows the recent acquisitions of iConcerts, a television channel that reaches more than 250 million households, and Digital Music Distribution PTY in Australia.

Stingray’s Singapore office will be headed by Mathieu Sibille who, in addition to his current position as CEO of iConcerts, will also act as managing director for Asia-Pacific. Mathieu Sibille will spearhead local operations, develop the company’s growth through strategic partnerships, and liaise with music industry stakeholders from Tokyo to Sydney.

“I cannot overstate the importance of the Asia-Pacific region to our global development plan,” said Eric Boyko, President, Co-founder and CEO of Stingray. “By 2020, Pay-TV subscriptions in the region will experience double-digit growth, making a permanent Stingray presence essential to propelling our current momentum. I am thrilled to count on the experience and expertise of Mathieu Sibille to expand our client network, and look forward to bringing our portfolio of curated products and services to even more music lovers.”

“We could not have selected a better location than Singapore, a hub of creativy and technology, to grow Stingray’s operations in the region,” said Mathieu Sibille, General Manager, Asia-Pacific for Stingray. “Singapore’s strategic location will allow us to respond in a flexible and reactive way to our current and future clients’ needs. The new Stingray office will serve as a major centre for our clients and will serve a key role in customer support, sales, and development.”

About Stingray

Stingray (TSX: RAY.A; RAY.B) is a leading business-to-business multi-platform music and in-store media solutions provider operating on a global scale, reaching an estimated 400 million Pay-TV subscribers (or households) in 152 countries. Geared towards individuals and businesses alike, Stingray’s products include the following leading digital music and video services: Stingray Music, Stingray Concerts, Stingray Brava, Stingray Djazz, Stingray Music Videos, Stingray Lite TV, Stingray Ambiance and Stingray Karaoke. Stingray also offers various business solutions, including music and digital display-based solutions through its Stingray Business division. Stingray is headquartered in Montreal and currently has over 300 employees across the world, including in Toronto, Miami, London, Amsterdam and Tel Aviv. Stingray was recognized in 2013 and 2014 as a finalist in the Top 50 of Deloitte’s Technology Fast 50TM list, and figures amongst PROFIT magazine’s fastest-growing Canadian companies. In 2016, Stingray was awarded best IR for an IPO at the IR Magazine Awards – Canada.


Press Release (pdf attached) – B&O PLAY Announces the Company’s first wireless earphones – Beoplay H5


B&O PLAY announced the company’s first wireless earphones – Beoplay H5. The product is designed by one of Scandinavia’s foremost designers, Jakob Wagner. Users can choose one of the preset sound profiles in Beoplay App on their smartphone or Apple Watch, such as working out, commuting, listening to podcasts or relaxing, or they can adjust the tonality and staging with the playful and intuitive B&O PLAY ToneTouch interface. 

Beoplay H5 comes complete with a charger and a carrying pouch in Black and Dusty Rose. Both colours will be available from 31 July 2016 onwards at Airport Duty Free, Apple Premium Resellers, Bang & Olufsen Grand Hyatt, Challenger, Newstead and leading independent retailers for a suggested retail price of SG$379.

See Specs below

[pdf-embedder url=”http://theneodimension.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/06/BEOPLAY-H5-Specifications.pdf”]

See below for the full press release

[pdf-embedder url=”http://theneodimension.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/06/Press-Release-BangNOlufsen-Launches-Beoplay-H5.pdf”]

Press Release – Ultimate Ears Now Lets You Say It to Play It

UE Speakers with Siri and Google Now Voice Integration Let Music Fans Easily Access Music Faster

SINGAPORE — 22 June 2016 — Today, Ultimate Ears wants you to speak up and use your voice by introducing Siri® and Google Now™ voice integration on UE BOOM 2 and UE MEGABOOM. Now, music fans can simply say it to play it, allowing them to stay connected in the moment by providing faster, easier access to their music using Siri and Google Now voice directly from their Ultimate Ears speakers. The new push-to-talk feature brings even more convenience to UE’s award winning on-the-go Bluetooth® speakers.

From cliff to cave, Ultimate Ears’ speakers are meant to be with you, wherever, whenever. They’re waterproof (IPX7), rugged and blast incredible 360-degree sound. This latest integration amps up the possibilities of where you can take your music and how easily you can access it all.

“Music lovers can now truly stay in the moment, playing their favorite song from the middle of the pool or even while diving off a cliff with their UE speaker in hand,” said Charlotte Johs, general manager of Ultimate Ears. “No matter how wet, muddy or wild the situation, with Siri and Google Now voice integration on UE BOOM 2 and UE MEGABOOM, fans no longer need to pick up their phone to play DJ. Now, they can just say it to play it.”

Gone are the days of hunting down your favorite song on your phone as this new voice integration provides access to tunes in just a couple of seconds. Through a quick push of the Bluetooth button and a simple voice request, you can quickly get the party started and never miss a beat.

Pricing and Availability

Siri and Google Now voice integration is available on UE BOOM 2 ($319.00) and UE

MEGABOOM ($399.00) through the free UE BOOM and UE MEGABOOM apps. The app enhancement is available through the iOS® and Android™ app stores on June 22. Speakers are sold separately. For more information, please visit www.ultimateears.com.

OnePlus 3 is Hitting Singapore This July

SINGAPORE, 15 Jun 2016OnePlus is releasing its long-awaited flagship smartphone, the OnePlus 3 in Singapore from Q3 (July) onwards at traditional retail stores. Available in Graphite and Soft Gold.

OnePlus 3 will be available in Graphite and Soft Gold

The OnePlus 3 features Dash Charge fast charging technology, which adds a day of power in only half an hour. It comes completely unlocked – no carrier contracts necessary, and an unlocked bootloader . It is also the first OnePlus smartphone to be available for purchase at launch without an invite on OnePlus’ e-commerce site.

“We know that the best smartphone is the one that works exactly how you want it to,” said OnePlus Founder and CEO Pete Lau. “The OnePlus 3 delivers that experience. It combines what our customers already love about our products with what they want and expect next. For example, Dash Charge sets a new standard for fast charging technology. It’s a flagship smartphone inspired by – and made for – our fans.”

Dash Charge – A Day’s Power in Half an Hour

The OnePlus 3 utilizes Dash Charge technology, a faster, cooler and safer way to charge a smartphone. Unlike other quick charging technologies, Dash Charge replenishes more than 60% of the 3,000 mAh battery in 30 minutes and continues fast charging even when streaming video or playing energy-intensive games. This is made possible by leveraging a large electric current for stable, consistent charging speeds. In addition, Dash Charge carries more current than other charging solutions, and at lower temperatures, by shifting the power management process from the phone itself to the Dash Charge adapter, so a vast majority of the heat generated while charging never reaches the device. Along with five custom safety measures in place to safeguard the adaptor, cable and phone itself, users can charge their OnePlus 3 as fast as possible without worry.

Smart Capture – High-quality Photos and Easy Selfies

The 16 MP rear camera on the OnePlus 3 provides better imaging with incredible detail and clarity. OnePlus’ proprietary Smart Capture, allows users to capture the ideal shot in any environment. Smart Capture functionalities include HD Mode, Auto HDR and Dynamic De-noise, which compares several frames of the same photo and blends them together in post-processing to reduce noise. The OnePlus 3 also includes a new Smile Capture feature, allowing user to take selfie photo using the front-facing 8 MP camera simply by smiling.

Dual-stabilization technologies – Optical Image Stabilization (OIS) and Electronic Image Stabilization (EIS) – help reduce blur, ensuring photos come out as planned.

Premium Design – Elegantly Curved Aluminum Unibody

The design of the OnePlus 3 takes aesthetics, quality and usability to a new level. The all-metal unibody, carved from a single slab of space-grade aluminum alloy, makes for a seamless, resilient build, while the balance of soft curves against sharp lines creates a striking impression and comfortable grip. At 7.3 mm, the OnePlus 3 is one of the thinnest flagships ever. The 5.5-inch 1080p Optic AMOLED display produces colors that are more vivid and true-to-life than ever before – even in bright sunlight.

Fast, Powerful, Customizable

The OnePlus 3 was designed to deliver maximum performance. Packing the new quad-core Qualcomm® Snapdragon™ 820 processor (up to 2.2 GHz), the OnePlus 3 performs tasks 35% faster than the OnePlus 2 and features a 40% boost in graphical power – all at a fraction of the power consumption.

The device also sets a new standard in smartphone memory. The OnePlus 3 boasts 6 GB of LPDDR4 RAM, allowing for next-level multitasking without delay or lag and ensuring it can handle the most demanding apps. The OnePlus 3 also features an improved, more durable ceramic fingerprint sensor that improves accuracy with increased use. Offering the ability to unlock the device in under 0.3 seconds, even from a sleeping screen, users can access their phone faster and more accurately.

Their custom operating system, OxygenOS, offers a fast, clean, customizable and bloat-free operating system based on Android Marshmallow. With off-screen gestures and customizable capacitive hardware and software buttons built in, the OnePlus 3 allows customers to personalize their smartphone experience.

The unlocked OnePlus 3 never ties you down to a carrier. Customers can have more control over connectivity with the ability to choose from a wide band of support for service providers across the globe. Additionally, with dual Nano SIM card support, the OnePlus 3 can connect to two networks with ease.

Availability

Fans in Singapore can expect to lay their hands on the OnePlus 3 at traditional retail stores from the start of Q3 (July), with pricing to be confirmed. The OnePlus 3 will be available for online purchase, followed by traditional retail stores.

Specification

[pdf-embedder url=”http://theneodimension.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/06/Specsheet-OnePlus3.pdf”]

Review (With 15% Discount Code) – Sudio Vasa Blå, A Classy Device for the Busy Professionals

For those audiophile out there, Sudio is certainly not a foreign brand. Their Sudio Vasa is one of their popular range of wired earphones. Now, this premium model is available in wireless version – Sudio VASA Blå.

If you have not heard the product, I hope my review will be a good research material. If you have already decided to buy the product, you can get the earphones from their online store  at SGD 165. Point to note, shipping to Singapore is free via DHL Express and it will take about 3 to 4 days to reach you. If you need it urgently, you can top up S$7.99 for express shipping and you will get it between 2 to 3 days.

All products shipped to Singapore will get a 20% tax rebate, so essentially it is 20% off the retail price listed on the online store.

If you need an additional 15% discount for your Sudio earphones, you can use the promo code: NEODIMENSION

Appearance

sudio Vasa Bla_1

Arrived in a beautiful white box. The visually appealing design of the package gives a premium impression on the level of details that Sudio has placed in delivering supreme audio experience to the users. Looking inside, it is extremely clean and organized with clear wordings on what are included in the package. No complicated compartment in the box and that makes it easy to store your device and accessories back into the box (maybe this is relevant to some of you). See below for what’s inside the box.

  • Sudio VASA Blå.
  • Micro-USB Charging Cable
  • Leather case
  • Rose Gold-coated cable clip
  • 4 different size of earphone cushions (excluding the one on the earphones)
  • Owner’s manual/Guarantee card/Quick start

sudio Vasa Bla_2

Unable to hide my excitement, let’s take a closer look on the product. The wire connecting the ear speakers are toughened with flat thin rubber instead of the conventional rounded coated insulating wires. I suspect such design is to make it easier for the carbon clip to better secure the wire on the cloth. In addition, I feel that the length of the wire is shorter than the other Bluetooth earpieces i.e. measured approx. 52 cm.

sudio Vasa Bla_3
Battery attached on the wire

Similar to the Sudio VASA (non-wireless version), the VASA Blå is elegantly designed with Rose gold wrapped around the ear speakers.

3-buttons control
3-buttons control

On the wire, you’ll find a sweat-proof 3-button control that also serves as a microphone and a battery on the other end of the wire that is able to last for 8 hours of continuous-play.

Experience

Getting started is extremely easy. Hold the middle button on the control until the red light blinking (approx. 7 seconds). The device is now on pairing mode. Next, locate “Sudio VASA BLA” on your phone and connect. Ta-Da! You are done!

Weighting only 14g. This device is extremely light to carry around. However, what really surprise me is the weight distribution of the product. The perfect balance between the left and right makes it hassle-free when you wear it over your neck and shoulder. Although a clip is bundled for the user to secure the wire, it is really not needed. Nonetheless, the rose gold clip is indeed a pretty accessory to bring it out.

The high battery capacity of 8-hours continuous playback is a huge plus point. It is not often to find a light wireless earpiece like Sudio VASA Blå in the market that, at the same time, offers long hours of usage.

Note: I have not done a single charging on this device since unboxing but I have been bringing it out for a 20 min run daily for the past 1.5 week and it is still functioning.

Audio

Personally, I think the bass and treble are pretty balanced. As objective as I want to, I source for reviews all over the internet and the conclusion I could gather from there – People just like the bass! Likely, it is due to its powerful 10.2 mm driver. Nonetheless, audio is always subjective and it differs from person to person. To eliminate any potential biases, l will rather focus on the call quality.

As a freelancer, I am always on the move and often, I speak to clients over my mobile phone. As such, I would need to be contacted almost 24/7. I even bring my phone when I am out for a run. A good wireless earpiece that offers good call quality is very important to me. To do a proper test, I use the Sudio VASA Blå during a 30-min conference call and I must say that there isn’t much distortion and the voice is clear. The entire conference was done over Blackberry’s BBM via a home Wi-Fi network.

Sudio Vasa Bla and BlackBerry Classic
Sudio Vasa Bla and Blackberry Classic

Verdict

A perfect blend between fashion and technology. The VASA Blå is designed for the busy professionals. Lightweight and elegantly-designed but do not be deceived by the look, the device is also constructed with powerful audio technology for greater music experience. Entertainment aside, this product still delivers commercial-grade call quality for the busy professionals who need to be on-the-call anytime of the day.

 

Event Coverage – Singtel Music – No More Data Charges For Music Download

Singtel partners popular music providers – Spotify, KKBOX, AMPed and MeRadio to provide data-free music services to Singtel customers.

Ms Diana Chen, VP of Mobile Marketing at Consumers Singapore, Singtel introduces Singtel Music to the media. Source: Instagram user @weewu

Customers can add Singtel Music to their mobile plan for a fee to get a premium account from either Spotify, KKBOX or AMPed which allows them to stream/download millions of songs without utilizing their data limit. Along with that, Singtel Music subscribers could tune into MeRadio stations at no data charge.

Singtel Music customers will enjoy:

  • unlimited data-free music streaming and downloading and ad-free listening from either a Spotify, KKBOX or AMPed premium account
  • Invitations to exclusive events including music showcases and artistes’ meet and greets
  • option of $7.90/month with a 12-month contract or $9.90/month with no contract

All Singtel postpaid customers are eligible to subscribe to the Singtel Music. Subscription charges will be included in their monthly Singtel bill.

Samsung is the official device companion for Singtel Music and customers can look forward to exclusive music events and experiences powered by the latest Samsung devices and accessories.

 

 

Press Release: MTV’s MTV TRAX APP PARTNERS DIGI IN MALAYSIA

Source: MTVTRAX

MTV announced the launch of its new mobile service, MTV Trax in Malaysia.

MTV Trax is the most up-to-date, easy-to-use and instantly accessible mobile music service available anywhere today, offering music fans – with too much choice and too little time – a one-touch access via their smartphones to the hottest, hand-picked music from their favourite artists. Available to smartphone users in Malaysia, music playlists on MTV Trax reflect many of MTV’s music programme playlists on the channel.

“In this age of easy access to music and audience’s shorter attention spans, fans place a high value on curated content from credible, trusted music experts. Delivering high quality products and experiences is key to winning over our audience as we continue to engage them,” said Paras Sharma, Vice President of MTV & Digital Media, Viacom International Media Networks Asia. “The expertise of MTV coupled with MusicQubed’s easy-to-use technology makes MTV Trax the perfect option for fans and Digi customers in Malaysia. Imagine a selection of 100 new tracks each week, delivered directly to users’ smartphones…We’re putting music that matters in their pockets.”

Powered by the MusicQubed platform, MTV Trax is refreshed overnight while users sleep, so they simply wake up to new music. Music fans can enjoy unlimited play, listen offline from any location, ‘heart’ favourite tracks to create their own playlists and share what they are listening to on Facebook, Twitter and Google+. “MusicQubed delivers premium music playlists to people who want to listen to popular music whenever and wherever they choose. Flexibility is key and so a convenient and simple mobile service, packed with the music you love, holds mass appeal,” said Chris Gorman OBE, Chief Executive, MusicQubed.

Anyone with an account at Digi Shelf, or Apple, Windows App or Google Play stores can download the MTV Trax app free-of-charge by searching for ‘MTV Trax or by visitingwww.mtvtrax.com/my. App users then sign up via Facebook or Gmail to enjoy a two-week free trial, where they will have full access to the playlists.

After the free trial, users may continue the full service by taking up the ‘Premium’ monthly subscription of US$2.99 (iOS)/ US$1.70 (Android/Windows) or access 60 tracks per month on shuffle play for free on ‘Lite’ mode. Additionally, Digi subscribers who have activated Digi Music Freedom can download the app’s content at no internet charge.