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Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Pregnant woman friendly "WiFi" of Qihoo 360 ~ Xiaomi objects !

VSNL, Dishnet,  Now ISP,  Mantra Online – one may not remember or know them now …. They were the service providers for Dial-up connections, widely used a decade ago.   Dial-up Internet access is a form of Internet access that uses the facilities of the public switched telephone network (PSTN) to establish a connection to an Internet service provider (ISP) by dialing a telephone number on a conventional telephone line.   Those days, one had to have a Telephone line and during browsing – no calls could be made nor any received on that landline.

‘Wireless connections’ have changed the way people access web.  The Wi-fitechnology  uses radio waves to provide wireless high-speed Internet andnetwork connections. Some say that  termWi-Fi is not short for "wireless fidelity," but it actually  is  a trademarked phrase that means IEEE 802.11x.  Wi-Fi is defined as any "wireless local area network" (WLAN) product based on the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers' (IEEE) 802.11 standards".The debate over just how dangerous small electromagnetic signals are has been going on for years. Doctors in the United States launched an unofficial campaign last year to try and limit women’s exposure to phones, computers, microwave ovens and wireless equipment, claiming the radiation they emit poses a threat to developing babies.

Xiaomi Inc.  also  "Millet Technology"  is a privately owned Chinese electronics company headquartered in Beijing, China.The world's 3rd largest smartphone distributor, Xiaomi designs, develops, and sells smartphones, mobile apps, and consumer electronics.  Since the release of its first smartphone in August 2011, Xiaomi has gained market share in mainland China and expanded into developing a wider range of consumer electronics, including a smart home device ecosystem.  Xiaomi’s phones and powerbanks sell like hotcakes in India too – on the web.

In the just published 2015 ranking list of MIT’s 50 smartest companies - Xiaomi climbed to the 2nd position this year, up from 30th position last year, while Apple climbed to the 16th position, up from nowhere last year.   Apple might dominate a number of lists – but here it has to do lot of catching with Xiaomi.  There is another Chinese company - Qihoo 360 Technology Co. Ltd., an internet security company known for its antivirus software (360 Safeguard, 360 Mobile Safe), Web Browser (360 Browsers), and Mobile Application Store (360 Mobile Assistant),  founded by Zhou Hongyi and Qi Xiangdong in June 2005.  It is its latest product that is in news / controversy !!

Chinese tech firm Qihoo 360 launched an upgraded version of its P1 Wi-fi router late last week, which it claims can protect pregnant women against radiation from electromagnetic signals.The company, famous for its cyber-security products, released the improved version of the six-month-old device just one day after rival Xiaomi, China’s top smartphone maker, started selling its latest Wi-fi router, which it claims can store a "lifetime" of photos.At a launch event this month, he explained that the router can protect pregnant women from the potentially harmful signals as it reduces them by up to 70 per cent.Qihoo 360 unveiled the device, an upgrade to an existing product, which has three settings it describes on its website as wall penetration, balance and "pregnant women".

Their statement that they are targetting people who are afraid of radiation, immediately invited criticism from Xiaomi over the use of such scare targets.“We firmly oppose, and feel ashamed of, those who create rumours and arouse instability for business purposes,” Xiaomi said on its official Weibo account."The so-called pregnancy mode is just a marketing tactic. Wi-fi usage is safe, so please rest assured when using it," Xiaomi said in a post on social media site Weibo.

The two firms are fierce rivals.  There is controversy surrounding the health effects of electromagnetic signals such as wi-fi on humans - although the low-level non-ionising kind used by telecommunications devices is scientifically said not to cause significant harm.The BabySafe Wireless Project is a US-based campaign group which argues that wireless radiation does pose a risk to pregnant women and their unborn babies.However, the World Health Organization says that the evidence so far does not support the claims.

With regards – S. Sampathkumar

24th June 2015.

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