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Vivo Readying to Launch Products Across Price-points in India

The company is planning to do away with "online" only devices and said all its upcoming smartphones would be available both online and at brick-and-mortar stores

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"Vivo X21" is the first smartphone with an in-display fingerprint scanner that recently arrived in India. (IANS)
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As the competition gets fierce in the Indian smartphone market, Chinese player Vivo is geared up to launch devices across price points in the next six months, a top company executive said on Tuesday.

According to Nipun Marya, Head of Marketing Strategy, Vivo India, the company is focusing on multi-dimensional strategies to fend off growing competition, especially in the offline segment.

“We will offer products in multiple price points… whether it is the Rs 10,000 price bracket, the Rs 20,000-Rs 30,000 segment or the premium segment (Rs 30,000 and above),” Marya told IANS in an interview.

Vivo India had an overall share of 60.7 per cent (by volume) in the Rs 20,000-Rs 25,000 segment (for the month of April) and 53 per cent share in the Rs 20,000-Rs 30,000 price segment, according to German research firm GfK, which tracks sales to end consumers.

The company, which is set to launch a nearly bezel-less smartphone “NEX S” in India on July 19, said it is also making rapid strides in innovation and the under-display fingerprint scanner was one such step.

“Vivo X21” is the first smartphone with an in-display fingerprint scanner that recently arrived in India.

The upcoming “NEX S” smartphone features an all-glass design with 90 per cent of screen-to-body ratio and unlike a majority of smartphone makers, Vivo has ditched the “notch” in the device.

Vivo
Representational image.

Another USP of the device, according to Vivo, is the placement of the earpiece speaker — also under the display.

“The phone uses a new technology called ‘screen soundcasting’, that turns a screen into audio output,” Marya told IANS.

“We have more India-focused R&D innovations in the pipeline and want to become a full-range player in the country,” he added.

The company last month launched Vivo Y83 under its Y series of product portfolio. Priced at Rs 14,990, the device sports “FullView” Display 2.0 and houses 4GB RAM and 32GB ROM (expandable up to 256GB), 13MP rear camera and 3260mAh battery.

Focused on strengthening its offline presence, Vivo said handing over the right product to end users is what matters the most.

Also Read: Snapchat’s Camera May Help You Shop at Amazon

The smartphone player already has brand ambassadors stationed at its retail and exclusive stores across the country, who are well equipped to handle queries related to both the software and the product as well as users’ complaints.

“India is a vast country and you have to have proper reach. We made that by increasing the number of our retail outlets. We expanded our distribution network with over 70,000 Vivo retail stores and more than 250 Vivo exclusive stores,” Marya informed.

The company is planning to do away with “online” only devices and said all its upcoming smartphones would be available both online and at brick-and-mortar stores.

“We have a manufacturing facility in Greater Noida where all smartphones being sold in India are made,” Marya noted. (IANS)

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Cepheid to Establish Manufacturing Unit for TB Diagnostics in India

Rifampicin is a drug commonly used in treating TB bacteria in first line of treatment

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The GeneXpert Edge is developed specifically for near-patient testing, to help support a one visit test-and-treat approach.
The GeneXpert Edge is developed specifically for near-patient testing, to help support a one visit test-and-treat approach. (IANS)

Expanding its footprint in India, US-based molecular diagnostics company Cepheid Inc on Thursday announced its plans to establish a manufacturing unit in the country to improve Tuberculosis (TB) diagnostics.

Cepheid’s GeneXpert MTB/RIF test is a closed-cartridge-based system that is easy to operate by minimally trained staff and gives results in approximately two hours, speeding the conventional backlog that used to exist in traditional diagnostic methods.

The new manufacturing unit would produce MTB/RIF test cartridges, contribute to the government’s “Make in India” initiative and thus bringing the company’s global expertise in TB diagnostics to India, the company said in a statement.

As part of the plan, Cepheid also unveiled its latest portable, easy-to-use TB-testing system — the GeneXpert Edge — which is expected to be available in India later this year, the company said.

The GeneXpert Edge is developed specifically for near-patient testing, to help support a one visit test-and-treat approach.

“Cepheid recognises the need for technological advancement and is committed to contributing significantly to India’s goal of TB eradication,” said Peter Farrell, Executive Vice President, Worldwide Commercial Operations, Cepheid.

Cepheid's Xpert MTB/RIF test has the potential to detect Mycobacterium tuberculosis(MTB)
Cepheid’s Xpert MTB/RIF test has the potential to detect Mycobacterium tuberculosis(MTB).

“We are hopeful that GeneXpert Edge will help eliminate delays in TB diagnostics by providing definitive results within hours and facilitating fast and easy last-mile delivery even in the remote villages of India,” he added.

India has nearly one-fourth of the global TB patients and an estimated 4.8 lakh lives are lost every year due to delayed diagnosis and inadequate treatment and there are above 2.5 million new cases of TB every year. The country aims to eradicate TB by 2025.

Approved by the World Health Organisation (WHO) in 2010, more than 1,200 Cepheid’s GeneXpert Systems have been installed in the last two years at various Revised National Tuberculosis Control Programme (RNTCP) sites in the country and more than 2.5 million cartridges were supplied last year at various centres of Central TB Division (CTD).

Also Read: Fruit Bats Identified As Source Of Nipah Virus Outbreak in Kerala

Cepheid’s Xpert MTB/RIF test has the potential to detect Mycobacterium tuberculosis(MTB) and rifampicin-resistance mutations, which are markers for MDR-TB strains in under two hours.

Rifampicin is a drug commonly used in treating TB bacteria in first line of treatment.

Xpert MTB/RIF tests also have excellent negative predictive value, which allows clinicians to manage TB-negative patients more effectively to prevent unnecessary and costly respiratory isolations. (IANS)