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In Brief: PolicyBazaar insures 1 mn in 9 months; A new app-free last mile car service

In Brief: PolicyBazaar insures 1 mn in 9 months; A new app-free last mile car service
Photo Credit: 123RF.com
28 Jan, 2021

Insurance aggregator PolicyBazaar said it has insured 1 million Indians between April and December 2020. Over these nine months, the startup sold 4,00,000 health insurance policies, amounting to over Rs 7 lakh crore, a statement said. In the same period, the company saw over one crore visitors, of which 65% were under the age of 40, 25% between 40 and 60 years old and 10% over 60. The surge was driven by increased demand for health insurance in the wake of the pandemic, new innovative higher sum insured products, flexible payment options and simpler processes to buy a policy, the statement said. 

Ex-servicemen launch app-free EV service 

MotherPod Innovations, which is managed by former servicemen, in partnership with Electra EV, has launched an app-free car service, dubbed SainikPod Sit & Go, for last-mile connectivity. Users in Bengaluru can flag down an available electric car -- evident from its green rooftop indicator -- and once inside, they can book a ride by giving a missed call to the number provided in the vehicle. To ensure safety, the former army men themselves train the drivers of the car, which are monitored via a centralised Sainik control room.

Chiratae Ventures onboards Hettich to global advisory board

Venture capital firm Chiratae Ventures has appointed Andreas Hettich to its global advisory board. He is also the chair of the advisory board at Hettich Group, a furniture fittings manufacturer with an annual revenue of €1.1 billion. Its holding group, Dr. Hettich Beteiligungen, has backed companies such as EWIKON, Halemeier and educational company das Forscherhaus, among other entrepreneurial holdings. 

Airtel 5G ready for commercial networks 

Bharti Airtel on Thursday announced that it has successfully demonstrated live 5G service over a commercial network in Hyderabad. This makes it the first telecom to do so in India. The demonstration was conducted over an existing liberalised spectrum in the 1800 MHz band through the NSA (Non Stand Alone) network technology, a statement said. Using dynamic spectrum sharing, Airtel operated 5G and 4G concurrently in the same spectrum block. This demonstration validated the 5G readiness of Airtel’s network across all domains -- radio, core and transport, the statement said.

Now, face and fingerprint unlock for WhatsApp Web 

Messaging platform WhatsApp on Thursday said it has added device-linked security updates for its web and desktop users. To link WhatsApp Web to one’s account, the user will be asked to use their face or fingerprint unlock on their phones, before scanning a QR code from the phone to link their device, a statement said. By design, WhatsApp cannot access the biometric information stored by a user’s device's operating system, the Facebook-owned company said.

Nasscom to launch platforms to digitise MSMEs

To help MSMEs address the skills gap in digital technology, the Nasscom Centre of Excellence for IoT and AI will launch two platforms, dubbed FUSION 4.0 and Udyam 4.0. The FUSION platform, a statement said, will drive innovation in large manufacturing enterprises by leveraging customized solutions from deeptech startups. Udyam 4.0, on the other hand, will help manufacturing MSMEs collaborate with technology MSMEs and deeptech startups to adopt low-cost and easy-to-deploy digital solutions.