Miscellany

Miscellany

Excitement around H-1B visa losing sheen

The process of filling petitions for H-1B visas for the season 2018-2019 has just begun amid unprecedented scrutiny. The screening process is indeed going to be very stringent and many immigration attorneys in the US are expecting highest level of visa rejections this time.

Race to be first with 5G intensifies

The Trump administration’s concern about China’s growing technology clout is putting even more pressure on US wireless carriers in their marketing battle over which company will be the first to offer 5G.

Star, Sony, Google, Facebook in fray for media rights

Recession proof Indian cricket will once again test new frontiers on April 3 when the first ever e-auction bidding process for BCCI media rights commences at 2 pm IST. The winner takes all for the next five years, broadcasting a total of 102 matches, which will form part of the ICC’s Future Tours Programme (FTP) from April 15, 2018 to March 2023.

Pfizer seeks another miracle drug

It has been 20 years since Viagra was introduced, and Pfizer is still searching for another drug with as much earning power as the revolutionary blue erection pill.

If anything, the chances for another miracle drug may be waning as the pharmaceutical giant constrains its research and development budget amid broader cost-cutting efforts.

Pfizer forecasts it will spend $7.4 to $7.9 billion this year on R&D, compared with $7.7 billion last year, according to projections released in February.

Road gets tougher for electric car innovator Tesla

Tesla, which until recently had been seen as cruising to a bright future, has suddenly hit a rough stretch as fresh concerns over the future of autonomous vehicles have exacerbated worries over its ability to hit production targets.

Shares in the California electric car innovator skidded 7.7 per cent on Wednesday at the close, a day after an 8.22 per cent slide. The declines have wiped out some $9 billion in market value.

Nasa pushes back space telescope launch to 2020

The launch of National Aeronautics and Space Administration’s (NASA) next giant space telescope has been delayed until at least May 2020, the US space agency said on Tuesday, in the latest setback for the much-anticipated project.

The James Webb Space Telescope — which Nasa has long expected to replace the fabled Hubble — was initially meant to go into service this year but has faced multiple hitches.

Driver cancellation falls after action from cab aggregators

Cancellation of rides by cab drivers have come down in the past few months after the aggregators started taking strict action and imposing fine on them. The online cab industry has been seeing high driver side cancellations till the first half of 2017. These have come down by half in the past few months, as per the data from RedSeer Consulting.

Upstarts Are Swiping Business from Visa and Mastercard in India

Global card companies like Visa Inc and Mastercard Inc are losing market share to upstarts in the world’s most innovative payments market: India.

Transactions through India’s homegrown Unified Payments Interface — which allows mobile apps run by retailers, airlines and other firms to take payment directly from bank accounts — reached almost half the value of debit and credit cards swiped at stores last month, central bank data show.

Robots could replace surgeons in battle against cancer

Fred Moll was a young surgical resident when he assisted on his first keyhole surgery in 1982. The technique, otherwise known as laparoscopic surgery, requires doctors to use unusually slender, extra-long tools to perform operations through tiny incisions. Today’s laparoscopic surgeons use high-definition cameras to look inside patients’ bodies, but even the older primitive version Moll used blew his mind. “Wow,” he recalls thinking. “This has to be a better way of doing things.” He withdrew from his residency and began working on medical devices.

PM to meet PSU chiefs

Prime minister Narendra Modi will chair a meeting of heads of top state-run enterprises next month to chalk out a strategy for the functioning and role of CPSEs to realise the vision of a ‘new India’, officials said.

Officials in the departme­nt of public enterprises said the prime minister will preside over the conclave on April 9 on the theme of ‘redefining the role and functioning of CPSEs’ to realise the New India-Vision 2022.

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