Wednesday, June 1, 2016

Datsun redi-GO Fun, Smart – New Kid on the Block

Small cars are on my mind currently. Why, you ask? Well, I have more than a decade old weather beaten Santro that I just love but would now like to upgrade. Hence started my hunt for a small car. Well, why small car? Do you need to ask that question in India? The traffic, the chaotic driving conditions, tight parking and manoeuvring all make driving a small car an absolute necessity for a woman driver like me. Besides, I am looking for a city car which is zippy and I must admit that I have a bit of a weakness for a stylish vehicle. I have already test driven the small Marutis and the Hyundai Eon (overpriced). Next on my list is the Datsun redi-Go. Fun. Freedom. Confidence. The ultimate Urban Cross - Datsun redi-GO - the capability of a crossover with the convenience of a hatchback.

Here are the three reasons that make me want to test drive this car today:

Aesthetics: There are no two ways about it. A stylish, modern design is what my heart desires. And after Kwid which took India by storm last year, Datsun redi-Go has worked on giving us contemporary yet classy looks. It looks fun and sporty – both the things I dig. And its stylish lines make its design a head turner. I really like its honeycomb grille in front along with very stylish and elongated head lamps and tail lamps. I like that they have invested in the little things on the design which makes it stand apart from the other small cars in the market.

The Tall boy Design: I have loved the Santro that I own for its amazing tall boy design. I have never liked the low slung design of Maruti vehicles. This design makes the cabin feel roomier and also gives a better view of the surroundings while driving. Datsun redi-GO promises the same tall boy design. The high road clearance is an added boon as we all know how unscientifically road humps are designed in India. In all, this car has taken into consideration easing the practical aspects of driving in India. And this really works for me.

Fuel Efficiency and Good cabin space: We all know that fuel efficiency is very important especially with the high petrol prices in India. At a promised 25 km./litre, its fuel efficiency is better than the other cars in this segment. Of course, on real road conditions, this mileage will reduce but hopefully not too much. It promises good cabin and boot space which I am interested in. It also offers things like a drive computer which is nifty and much appreciated for someone like me. Overall, from what I have seen I really like the car.

I have called the toll free number and booked my test drive. Since the Datsun redi-GO is only being launched on 7th June, information about the variants, colours offered, exact on-road pricing and test drives are not yet available which is a real dampener. I am also keen to know what the waiting periods are for this car because I personally hate to wait for any car for months after booking. So, I will be soon taking this beauty for a test drive in Bangalore. Let’s see if she will deliver on my expectations!

All pictures courtesy: Datsun website

Friday, August 21, 2015

Airtel 4G – A revolution in speedy internet

Internet is an integral part of our lives. In fact, I really find it hard to believe that there was a time when we didn’t have internet. Now, we have smartphones that make us access information anytime anywhere. For people like me who work online, it is imperative that I have a good network connection with high speeds. This is to enable me to download large files, browse through videos and other information and transmit data speedily. Often, that does not happen as smoothly. Even the networks that promise very high speeds often end up being erratic.

There are times when it is difficult to even get 3G speeds while traveling. On my recent trip to Rajasthan, I was completely frustrated when I got 2G speeds most of the time. You can imagine how exasperating it is to wait forever for pages to load. Even answering a simple email and sending it across was an ordeal. Also, I needed to urgently modify a ticket online but could not do so because of such poor speeds on my mobile. Hence I had to call a relative and ask for help.

This is where Airtel’s promise of 4G seems wildly exciting. Imagine the possibilities with lightning-fast internet network.

Here are some of the things that I would do:
1. Movie downloads: Yes, at the current speeds, it is a pain to download a movie and then wait for hours while it gets downloaded. Now, I can have the movie downloaded in no time. Just the thought of it makes me so happy.
2. Music: I love music. I love to hear music when I work. Hence I either play playlists or Youtube videos while I work. Now the videos will not keep buffering and spoiling my listening pleasure if the speeds are this good.
3. Browsing: I read a lot of articles, blog posts, e-books online. I am also a person who often does online courses. You know the courses that include lots of videos and graphics. Generally, these videos take quite some time to load and play and often I have to use a high-speed network to access them. Thus, I lose out on utilizing the time I waste sometimes in commute or while waiting for ages outside a doctor's office. Now, I can plug in my headphones and instantly access these videos even on my smartphone. How lovely is that!
4. Videos: I love watching trailers and song videos regularly on my phone. I also love watching videos of my children that have been uploaded online. These ought to be a breeze with a faster network.
5. Video calls: These will become significantly better improving communication with my clients as we can see and hear each other better in real time.

So, there you see how excited I am to do all my favorite things once I get Airtel 4G SIM for my phone.

Sunday, August 9, 2015

Fun with Colgate Magical Castle

I have never seen so much excitement around a toothpaste purchase. Seriously, Colgate has introduced this fun Magical Castle and characters inside their toothpaste carton. Cut and prop and you have a Castle appearing right  before your eyes. See how my son had fun with it. Brushing your teeth was never this much fun!

Do also check out Colgate's fun advertisement:

Wednesday, July 8, 2015

Surf it fast with UC Browser

I was a huge cricket fan when I was younger. In my teen years, the cricket played was much less just the Tests and the One dayers. And the coverage was pretty basic. None of your slow motion replays and glitzy commentators. Just a pretty basic cricket coverage on the National DD channel. Of course, the internet was not there. Hence we really missed out on watching cricket coverage so many times.

These days, I get to watch high quality HD action on my satellite television package. Really, it is a delight to watch. But, you know I also regularly surf and watch cricket on the mobile through Apps. In fact, this World Cup, I was away on a trip to an old relative’s place. They have a pretty basic television in their house which luckily had the channel that I was interested in watching. But, guess what, their cable network went down on a crucial juncture in the second innings. It was so frustrating. Despite multiple calls to the cable operator, it seemed highly unlikely that the problem was going to be rectified any time soon. That was when internet cricket coverage came to my rescue. I searched online and started watching the match ball by ball. But, you know what was the dampener? The buffering took an awful lot of time. I was stuck on deliveries forever, waiting for the video to stream properly. It was such a nuisance. So, you know what I did. Fed up I switched to audio commentary. I know, pathetic right! But what choice did I have? And I watched rather heard the rest of the match because at least that way I could get to understand the scores ‘live.’

I recently came across UCBrowser.  You can easily download the browser. On the UC Browser, find the blue icon of UC Cricket. Open it and browse lightning fast through to the cricket match that you wish to watch. No problems or rebooting or frozen feeds. No issues of googling to check the score.  You save all the time on repeated searches.

To tell you the truth, since my last bad experience I had hardly ever seen cricket coverage on my phone. But with UC browser, it was surprisingly good. There was no phase lag and all the relevant information was available right there. Subsequently, I find myself utilizing internet more often to watch cricket on the go. It works well, is fast and efficient and does not let you waste time waiting for buffering.

So, if you  are an avid cricket fan and who is not in India, then you must try this browser out. Just download it on your phone and you are good to go. Get all the cricket news at your fingertips.

Thursday, May 14, 2015

My Airtel App and its features

I have been an Airtel subscriber for many years now. As a matter of fact, I have Airtel subscription for my landline and broadband. I also have an Airtel plan for my mobile phone. Since my smartphone accompanies me everywhere and I do a lot of browsing, answering emails and shopping on my phone, it was sort of obvious that I would love to have more control of my Airtel accounts on my fingertips. Hence as soon as I heard of the Airtel Money App, I immediately downloaded it.

The bright red icon is now synonymous with Airtel. There was a very short registration process which verifies your mobile number and after inputting certain details you get access to all the services on the App.

The 3 best features that I liked about Airtel App are:
Screenshot of Airtel App
Access your Airtel bill and pay it online:

Whether you are a post paid or pre-paid Airtel customer, you can access your bill, get regular updates about balance remaining and pay your bill on time. You can also pay many other bills right from your phone including for other service providers and utilities. You can also access the bill of your landline and Broadband. You can get notifications about the amount due through Airtel Money App.

Recharge your mobile:

I have a pre-paid Airtel mobile account hence I manually recharge both my mobile data and mobile pack regularly. With Airtel Money, it is a breeze to recharge the same without accessing any other details. It really is simple and very useful. 
Certainly, it is one of the most useful features for me.

Another screenshot of Airtel App
Get some great offers:

Yes, you get discounts for shopping on your favorite portals. There is this cute feature on Airtel App that asks you to shake the phone for offers. And then the offers just tumble out. There are also discounts on your airtel accounts as well. So, yes, shake that phone, use the App and get some nifty discount coupons.

Apart from these, you can recharge your Airtel DTH account using the App, know the account details and get notifications about dues etc.

Smartphone Apps have made our lives so easy these days. With easy access to wi-fi, one is always having the Apps at our fingertips to access information, pay bills and shop. It really has become an Appy world.

As an Airtel consumer, the Airtel money App is a huge timesaver and lifesaver for me. I don’t have to wait to get on my laptop to watch my multiple accounts. Especially with my pre-paid connection, one never knows when one may need to recharge, and that is where Airtel App comes in handy.

If you are an Airtel subscriber, do download the App today and use it. It is really simple and user friendly.

Wednesday, May 6, 2015

#EkNayiLeague Yeh hai kya?

It has been very interesting to watch Kapil Dev talk about #EkNayiLeague. Kapil is the endearing cricketer I grew up watching. He bought the first World Cup home. It is nice to see him talk directly to our sporting heroes like Sania Mirza or Yuvraj Singh in the short Youtube snippets that I've seen aired. Frankly, it has piqued my curiosity.

What is this Ek Nayi League? I don't think it is a cricketing league on the lines of IPL. The reason being that Kapil was already involved in the ICL, which later became defunct. Also, since he is addressing a broad range of sportspeople, it is clear that the league involves playing of some sort but not necessarily cricket.

Since, he also throws clues at us by saying that the players will all lose if they play with their hearts while they need to use their (then points to his head) mind, it is clear that it a game of wits. This game does not require physical strength or else our sporting heroes will not fail. This game is definitely one that requires careful planning, strategy and perhaps knowledge. Is it some sort of a quiz like the Kaun Banega Crorepati that Mr. Bachchan hosted so well. Of course, considering that Kapil Dev is the force behind it, it could be a sports quiz that wins you prizes.

It could also be some other game show where wits are pitted against each other to win. That is the reason why he insists that you need your head more than heart or passion. Could it be a game show that somehow involves sports and mind. Now, that would be a lot of fun, don’t you think? For one, I would love to know the format of this. I do hope that they involve common people instead of only celebrities.

Another thought that courses through my mind is whether it is an online game show. I will tell you why I think this. There is a website for #EkNayiLeague and Kapil has taken to twitter to unveil the idea of this league. He is also asking us to follow him on twitter so that we will know about this unique League. Hence, definitely his target audience is an online audience. It could be a TV game show for which he is doing online marketing too, but I have a feel that it must an online game show of wits. Could it be about stock market. Play, invest and win? That requires both risk taking as well as intelligence.

I am eagerly awaiting the unveiling of the idea behind #EkNayiLeague. I am sure there are many others just like me waiting to check if what they have guessed is indeed what this new league is.

Do stay tuned to their website at Ek Nayi League to know more and to stay updated about this exciting new fixture. You may also submit your idea on their website to win an exciting prize of Rs. 1 lakh.

Thursday, April 16, 2015

Holidays with kids

The vacation is over and done with. Now the actual challenge is in keeping the children busy. I don't want them to be stuck to the telly all day long. But, it is a tough balancing act. The younger one often sneaks in some extra time. He is very persistent, and he knows that when mommy is working, it is the best time to get things done his way.

Anyway, they are also playing cricket, TT and swimming. Talking about swimming, the younger one picked up a nasty ear infection while on vacation. It was swimmer's ear that he picked up as contaminated water got into his ear from a swimming pool. Luckily, he is well now but will have to wear ear plugs before swimming and even taking a shower.

I hope that they do more reading. The elder one is already doing some online courses. Mostly I want them to enjoy the time while still letting me work and do other chores.