The world is going digital, but do you know where does India stand on the competition in the world of digital technology? According to IMD, India ranks 45th on the Global Competitive Index and is far behind from top countries like Switzerland, Singapore, the UK and the US.

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However, the trend shows that India has taken a swirling leap in the past two years. So, the National Platform is already and it’s just the right time when you can step ahead and establish yourself in the world of digital technology. To reach the top rank, here are some key ways to rule the world of digital technology:

  1. It’s the era of small enterprises and innovative technology and products or services brought by these enterprises under branding schemes like Digital India and Make in India can give you success in no time.
  2. Choose whether you want to become a platform owner (designing & developing), digital partner (using Application Programing Interfaces or APIs), or become a producer or supplier to directly sell goods at marketplaces. Depending on the niche you want to take up, newcomers should consider all the market factors and the scope of growth before choosing your set up.
  3. There are five criteria for a win-win situation- ‘Proposition, Personalization, Partners, Protection and Price’. If you can master and scale all these factors according to the consumer needs, you can reach the top rank in the world of digital technology in no time. One of the current and most popular business models is based on innovation in the field of STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics).
  4. Since large platforms and marketplaces like Amazon and Alibaba are going beyond their traditional limits and expanding their global market presence, it’s important for you to choose a niche that is little unexplored. For example, digitization of niches like Women’s Fashion and Electronics or even blogging are already overloaded and you are quite likely to be left behind, unless you have a unique business model.

With growing use and awareness in the world of digital technology, it is important for us to understand that there is no ‘one rule’ that fits all and you ought to face a dreadful competition. For such a stage, innovation and strategy are the only two keys to rule over the digital market.

  1. Lastly, advertising and trust building are the two factors for attracting the masses. One thing to know here is, that most masses are attracted to what is tagged as ‘free’ or on which coupons and vouchers can be applied.

Other factors to consider for ruling the world of Digital Technology are cyber security issues, privacy control, business policy, price strategy, balance of internal and external monetization and most importantly, mindfulness.

Did you know that an average/fresher fashion designer can start his career at ₹ 4, 00, 000 per year? And, if you are creative and an out of the box thinker, then you can even run your own fashion label and become a billionaire! From selection of fabrics and patterns to sketching and designing of products, a fashion designer is not just about glitz and glamour – it requires the x-factor and a persistent hard work to become a fashion designer of some repute.

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Know about yourself

You can choose to become a fashion designer if:

  • You have a descent colour, design and aesthetic sense, eye for details and knowledge of fabrics- to count the least. Just check out with the fashion festival going on at Amazon and Myntra.
  • You are still at the 10+2 level, want to kickstart your career in the quickest time and have an artistic instinct.

A combination of technical and a creative balance is a must.

How to get started?

Unless you have a miraculous luck, you do need to have a formal fashion designer education to step into this world. You can get a Bachelor’s in fashion designing or fashion merchandising after your 10+2. Here you are taught and trained about different fabrics and designs, usage of computer aided design (CAD), project handling and more. Top fashion designing institutes in India are:

  • National Institute of Fashion Technology (Delhi, Mumbai, Bengaluru, Chennai, Patna, Hyderabad, Mohali) – through NIFT Entrance Exam

Fashion Design, Accessory Design, Fashion Communication, Textile Design, Apparel Production, Leather Design

  • Pearl Academy (Delhi) -through Pearl Academy Entrance Exam

Fashion Design, Media Communication, Fashion Styling & Image Design, Interior Architecture & Design, Fashion Business Management, Marketing & Retail Management Luxury Brand Management, Jewellery Design, Branding & Advertising Management.

Future Ahead

The Indian Textile Market is rapidly growing at 17% per year- thanks to online shopping platforms like Jabong and Myntra which have actively involved Indians to dress up and focus on looking good. Thus, looking at the ever increasing demand, the Indian fashion market is starving out of trained professionals, especially those who have an amalgamation of fashion and designing sense, management, technology awareness and communication.

Job Roles

You generally start as an assistant, attached to a reputed fashion designer, and get about 15k to 20k a month. There are different job roles in the world of fashion designing ranging from fabric quality control manager, apparel production manager, cutting assistant, illustrator, and room and outside sales representative etc. Top fashion companies and houses include big names like Ritu Kumar, Rohit Bal, Sandeep Khosla, Tarun Tahiliani, Abu Jani and others.

With a vibrant and a conspicuous culture of India, we, the people of India have developed peerless taste buds and culinary skills. Here are the top 10 Indian Cuisines and Delicacies to binge on that has got regional significance:

  1. Delhi
  2. tad 1The cuisine of Delhi is an amalgamation of different cultures. From the famous Rabri- Kulfi- Faluda Chaat to the Paranthe Wali Gali at Chandni Chowk – the capital has got a cuisine of itself that is cherished by the rest of India. Popular dishes to try here are: Kathi Roll, Gol Gappas, Aloo Tikki Chaat, Momos, Shahi Paneer, Butter Chicken and Nihari Mutton in Old Delhi.
  1. Kolkata

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With a rich historical significance, Kolkata is just not about Maach- Bhaat. The Bengalis have a hinge towards the sweeter palate and have experimented with tropical fruits and vegetables since centuries. Some of the must have recipes on all grand Bengali occasions are – Shukto, Chanar Daal, Aalur Dom, Doi Maach, Malai Chingri, Aamer Chaatni, Paayesh, Eelish Bhapa, Mutton Kosha and the unquestionable Rasogolla.

  1. Mumbai

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Amidst the hustle bustle of the business capital of India, Mumbai have developed a distinct cuisine style that is meant for the fast pacers. Eat- as you- go is their style and some of the famous dishes to binge on here are Mumbai Vada Pav, Pav Bhaji, Kaandha Poha, Shakkar Pada, Sabudana Vada,, Puran Poli and Ganesha’s favourite Modak.

  1. Chennai

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To keep away the heat and sweat of the coast, people of Chennai and Tamil Nadu prefer eating something light and healthy that gives them a sense of fulfilment all day long. Today, south Indian dishes like Dosa, Sambhar Vada, Idli, Rasam and Payasam are experimented worldwide and cherished by even the people of West due to their high nutritional values.

  1. Kashmir

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Contrary to the South, the people of Kashmir developed a taste that will keep their body warm and protected from the crazy Himalayan cold waves. They love spices, saffron and dry fruits and their favourite recipes are Mutton Rogan Josh, Dum Aaloo, Kahwa, Muji Gaad, Aab Gosht and Modur Pulav.

  1. Rajasthan

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The city of the royals eat everything in the classic king style. Being quite dry throughout the year, Rajasthanis, and especially Western Rajasthanis, prepare food that can resist spoilage for a long time and thus, you can usually see their food laid with Pure Ghee and Rich Spices. Popular food to try here are: Dal Bati Churma, Laal Maas, Mohan Maas, Ker Sangri, Gatte Ki Sabzi and Mawa Kachori.

7. Hyderabad

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The pride of the South – the land was once ruled by the Nizams who couldn’t do a day without the epic Hyderabadi Biryani! Living the tradition till date, people of Hyderabad and those visiting this city can rarely miss the chance of dunking in the Biryanis and the Kebabs. Some of the other dishes that cannot be missed here are: Dum Pukht, Paaya, Maghaz Masala, Boti Kebab, Qabooli Biryani and Hyderabadi Marag.

8.Gujarat

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Did you think that it’s all about sweetness in Gujarat? Well, definitely the people are, but, not their cuisine! Gujarati cuisine has a pleasant taste that hits four of your taste sensations at a go – sweet, salt, sour and spice. Reminder – you will get only pure vegetarian dishes here! Dishes that you may like here are Dhokla, Khandvi, Shrikhand, Thepla, Undhiyu, Kadhi and of course the evergreen Gujarati street food Fafda and Jalebi.

  1. Sikkim

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The best of the North East cuisine can be tasted at Sikkim. The Sikkimese cuisine is much recognized with their flavourful and delicious Thukpas and Momos. Besides enjoying the scenic beauty and admiring the monasteries of Sikkim, popular dishes to try out here are: Gya Thuk or Thukpa, Daal Baat, Phagshapa and the world famous Sikkimese Momos.

  1. Punjab

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Last, but not the least – when talking about Indian cuisines, how we can ever miss out Punjab – the Baadshah of food makers in India. Laid with pure white butter and a sinfully rich aroma, popular dishes to try here are: Dal Makhani, Butter Chicken, Rajma Chawal, Chole Bhature, Sarson ka Saag with Makkhi Di Roti, Tandoori Chicken, Amritsari Fish, Paneer Tikka and then compliment everything with the refreshing Lassi Malai Maar Ke or Chaanch!

Are you too demotivated about what’s happening with your life? To make the most out of your precious time, here are the top 4 interesting and self-help books that are of great value and that truly deserves your time:

  1. The Secret by Rhonda Byrne

The bestselling book of 2006, The Secret is based on the fact that positive thinking can create miracles and help you gain success in anything, be it health, wealth or happiness. The law of attraction keeps the world running and the book is based on scientific facts that are embellished with creative thinking.

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  1. Law of Attraction: The Science of Attracting More of What You Want and Less of What You Don’t by Michael J. Losier

Again based on the same law, following this book will help you to keep everything just at its place. The powerful and hidden forces around us can be deliberately manipulated to seek ideal relationships, increase wealth in abundance, improve business as well as discover ideal job and success in whatever you do.

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  1. Conversations with God: An Uncommon Dialogue: Book 2 by Neale Donald Walsch

The Conversations with God is a series of books where Walsch attempts to tell about three basic messages from god that is: we are all one, there’s enough and that ours is not the better way, but, it is merely another way. The book recommends many social and economic changes that will make you more adaptable, functional and sustainable and thus, will bring reincarnation to your present life.

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  1. The Power of Your Subconscious Mind by Joseph Murphy

The five most amazing things that you will learn from the book The Power of Your subconscious Mind are:

  • Your prayers are accepted once you mentally accept everything about it and believe in it.
  • Your subconscious mind is your god that has answer to all your problems.
  • Faith helps you heal and helps you recover all traumatic experiences.
  • A subconscious mind cannot be forced to do everything just through your will power, it rather requires daily investment.

The Power of Your Subconscious Mind

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Whether you are planning to join a professional course like MBBS, Engineering or MBA or perhaps willing to get entry into the government sector – cracking competitive exams is the only gate and the biggest hurdle for building a successful career. Here’s how you must proceed about it:
1. Know what is required
Download the previous year Advertisement/ Brochure of the exam and jot down all the necessary points – including eligibility, special cases, number of seats/ vacancy, date of exam, syllabus etc. and then you must start planning your routine accordingly.

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2. How to proceed?
Be it IIT, AIPMT, CAT, UPSC or other civil/ state or government services exam, you must follow the previous year question papers to know what is being actually asked. For instance, if you see the pattern of UPSC exams for the last two years, then, you would find that you would require stressing on Current Affairs and NCERTs, more than anything else. Therefore, knowing the pattern is of utmost importance so that you can save your time and invest your energy in the right track. In today’s competitive exams, tricks and shortcuts play a crucial role. Giving thorough revisions and brushing each chapter with practice tests, helps you to fetch top scores in competitive exams.
You can purchase all your books and study materials, including those from reputed coaching centres at Amazon.com at a discounted rate.
3. Enrolling into a program
You must know that at the end of the day, it is you who have to study. No online/ offline competitive exam study classes can give 100% attention to each student. What is really important is their guidance, practice test series, reviews and doubt solving classes. Before you enrol into any coaching classes, you should keep in mind that:
• It should be of good repute and the ratio of teacher: student should be minimal.
• You must be provided with a series of practice tests every week and the scores should be compared countrywide.
• The coaching centre should conduct doubt clearing sessions for every student.
• It is always better to do self-study for at least 6 hours a day. Join a test series to weigh where you actually stand.
3. Managing Stress
It’s true that until you actually crack the exam, you would eventually be stressed! But trust us- stress can dislocate your mental peace and hamper your concentration. To combat this stressful exam fever, here is what you need to do:

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• First of all, you would need to count on how many days are left for your exam and then accordingly you should start setting your biological clock. Most competitive exams require a preparation time of 6- 8 months at the least, which means you should at least invest 7-8 hours on your studies as a daily routine.
• Though setting time tables generally turn futile, your biological clock won’t! Train your brain to get up at a specific time and never extend your working hours. Good sleep helps you to perform better and apt.
• Keep all your gadgets turned off whilst you study and most importantly, you must constantly assess yourself and strive to improve your scores to be completely stress- free on the big day.
• Spend rest of your time in leisure activity, playing sports, being active and doing ample of exercise to let the oxygen seep into your brain cells and improve your concentration power.
• Eat healthy, eat lots of vegetables and never rely on supplements and junk foods.

So are you amongst those who are participating in the India’s biggest economic revolution? While it has certainly brought about nightmares to the corrupt people, black money holders and terrorists, but, it has also boosted up the will power and hope of the unemployed, jobless, poor, middle income families and all others who are holding white money! Here are the facts that you need to know about Modi’s Demonetization Scheme of ₹ 500 and ₹ 1000 Old Series Bank Notes:

  1. Ending the Shadow Economy

Ending the Shadow Economy

One of the prime reasons for PM Modi to announce this overnight demonetization scheme on November 8th 2016 – was to drive away the Shadow Economy. Many of us don’t know about this fact, but in reality, this shadow economy has slowly accounted for a 1/5th of India’s $2.1 trillion GDP, which isn’t reaching to the hands of the state/ fund of India – thus, giving a major blow to the growth and progress of the Indian Economy.

  1. Paving ways for a Cashless Economy

Did you recently see your neighbourhood Chaiwalas and Vegetable Vendors, accepting payments via Free charge or other recharge wallets? Well, Digital Wallets, Online Payments, m-payments, or in short, being cashless – is the new fad. As a part of the revolutionary Digital India Scheme by PM Modi, this is the biggest move to push India’s spending/ saving habits into the cashless mode:

  • What?- Digital Wallets helps you to make cashless transactions and online payments for almost all category of products/ services, ranging from Grocery and Household Items to paying Insurance Premiums, Bills and Fees.
  • Why? – It’s easy, convenient and hassle free (at least you don’t have to worry for cash in this crisis season of #Noteban). And adding more to it, you can additionally get up to 70% discounts or cash backs from these digital wallets using offers like Paytm recharge coupons.
  • How? – You can add up to ₹ 10, 000 (and extend it to ₹ 1 Lac with ID Proof) in your digital wallets like Paytm, Mobikwik, Freecharge, State Bank Buddy, ICICI Pockets or Oxigen Wallet (Apps or Website). Use the money in your digital wallet to pay across all merchants in India that are affiliated to the wallet site. You can also receive and accept payments with shops and friends.
  1. 3. The collections

Did you know that within just 3 days of the announcement, all banks across India were able to receive about 3 Trillion Rupees with about a record breaking 180 million transactions! Well, all of this is certainly not black money, but, this step has at least brought the un-participatory household savings back into the economy – thus, boosting up the value of rupee in the near future.

  1. New Security Features (anti-counterfeit)

Here are some new security features that are added to the ₹500 and ₹2000 bank notes, to stop usage of counterfeit money in circulation.

Paving ways for a Cashless Economy

RBI, Government, Members of the Finance Ministry and the Bankers – all are well aware of the grave situation and the crisis. And all of these hardships are being done with a very positive hope of revolutionizing and giving a power boost to the India’s Economy in the near future.

Diwali is rightly called as the festival of lights and feasts. When we think of Diwali, we are not only reminded of lights, prayers, crackers and Rangoli, but, very much about gujiyas, namkeens and hundreds of other mouth-watering sweets and savouries. Here are the topmost Traditional Diwali Recipes 2016 to offer and welcome Lord Rama and Goddess Laxmi:

  1. Gajar Halwa

It’s the beginning of the winter season and you can find some fresh and juicy carrot in the Indian veggie market.

Gajar Halwa

  • Wash, peel and then grate about 2 kg of carrots.
  • Take a deep bottom pan and add 4 tbsp. of ghee and half fry the grated carrots for about 7-8 minutes under low sim.
  • Add about 5 cups of full cream milk plus 100 gms. of grated khoya or 100ml of condensed milk. Mix well. Add about 1 tsp. of cardamom powder.
  • Boil the milk and let it simmer, until condensed.
  • Add 1 cup of cane sugar or diet sugar (if using unsweetened khoya) and reduce the milk completely. Cool.
  • Add 1 tbsp. of ghee and garnish with crushed cashew, raisins, saffron, silver leaf and pistachio.
  1. Kaju Katli

The creaminess and the slight sugary touch of this sweet has made it India’s most favourite sweet dish and it is a popular Diwali gift option as well.

Kaju Katli

  • Powder about 500gm of cashews in a dry grinder to form a fine powder.
  • Heat the pan and add ½ cup of water and 1 cup of sugar to form fine sugar syrup and add the entire powdered cashew in it.
  • Add a few drops of kewra water and mix the mixture on low heat. Turn off the heat and cool the mixture slightly.
  • Spread the dough with the help of a rolling pin and let it set on a greased plate. Cool it. Cut barfis into diamond shape.
  • Use silver leaf and chopped pistachios to decorate.
  1. Namak Pare

Too much sugar this Diwali? Balance your taste buds with this delicious savoury recipe of Namak Pare:

Namak Pare

  • Mix 2 cups of all-purpose flour, 1 tbsp. of semolina, salt to taste, 2 tbsp. ghee and mix the flour well.
  • Thoroughly knead to make thick dough and let it set for 30 minutes.
  • Spread some flour dust and roll out the dough into a thin chapatti and cut out diamond shaped pieces from it.
  • Heat oil and deep fry these pieces until light brown.
  • Remove the namak pare on a tissue paper and let it cool to gain colour, consistency and taste.

Wish you all a very happy and delightful Diwali!

India is a diverse land of traditions, culture and a blissful sanctity of literature. With plenty of renowned and heart touching Indian novels on the count, here are the top 5 books by Indian authors that will make you feel evocative:

  1. Chitra Banerjee Divakarunis’s – “The Palace of Illusions”

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We all grew up with the teachings of the Mahabharata, but the Palace of Illusions is a revisited version of the epic, from the eyes of Draupadi (Paanchali).The novel disillusions the view of a mythical woman and summarizes the viewpoint of the former that lives in a male dominated world. The novel has a strong flavour of connection with today’s world.

  1. Kushwant Singh’s – “Train to Pakistan”

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Published in 1956, this masterpiece of literature could never be forgotten. Standing on the painful plot of the Partition of India in 1947, Singh digs deep into the rivalry of religious hatred between the Sikhs and the Muslims. The piece is a horrific showcase of reality and a sweet delight of love blossoming amidst all the odds.

  1. Suketu Mehta’s – “Maximum City: Bombay Lost and Found”

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A finalist for the prestigious Pulitzer Prize Award, the Maximum City: Bombay Lost and Found, gives a truthful insight to the glamorous looking metropolis. Touching the unexplored versions of the city like the criminal underworld, rival community gangs, life of bar dancer, abuse and everything else- the story probably paves way to the charts of Bollywood.

  1. Aravind Adiga’s – “The White Tiger”

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No, this ain’t a story about the real tiger, but it’s definitely a story of heroism. The White Tiger is the 40th Man Booker Prize Winner and the story revolves around the life of a villager, Balram Halwai. His journey from an extremely impoverished person, who often has to witness issues of casteism, corruption and loyalty, to establishing himself a successful entrepreneur, is an unspoken voice of the people of India.

  1. Kiran Desai’s – “The Inheritance of Loss”

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The Man Booker Prize Winner of 2006, the Inheritance of Loss is an extremely heart touching and claustrophobic book that reflects what is true. The plot is placed in 1986 where the two main characters, Biju and Sai shows shades of conflicts between two groups and loss of identity related to post- colonialism.

The urban Indian population is growing day by day and with it the green corners and the natural landscapes are diminishing at a much faster pace. Creating a small urban garden on the terrace or an organic kitchen garden, can help you create your own small place of leisure, rejuvenation and freshness. Here are some secrets of creating an amazing urban garden on your own:

  1. 1. For the first time gardeners

The right type of soil, nutrients, weather conditions and accurate sunlight – all matters for a plant to nurture beautifully. If you are considering creating a vegetable garden, you can start with the easier ones like tomatoes and chillies. First time gardeners should considerably begin with seedlings instead of seeds. Your plant will also regularly require – up-keeping, pruning, de- bugging and harvesting. One must remember, that a plant takes its own time to grow and reproduce and the key to a beautiful garden is just, ‘patience’.

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  1. Kitchen garden on a terrace

Why go to the vegetable vendor, when you can pick fresh veggies from your very own vegetable garden! From brinjal to tomatoes, chillies, coriander, lime, cabbage and everything else – you can easily grow all of them on a terrace. You can also grow radish, potatoes, carrots and other root veggies, but they are going to require more space than the former.

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  1. Food for your plants

Adequate water and nutrient supply is a must requirement for your plant. For all the essential nutrients, preparing your own organic compost using vegetable leftovers may be the best for your plants, unless specifically required. The garden should be open to at least 6 hours of fixed sunlight and the plants should be watered twice a day in summers and once in winters. To save water, rain water harvesting should be encouraged during the monsoons. Adding water features in your garden also helps your garden look more sophisticated and cooler.

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  1. Recycle waste or unused materials

Be creative and turn old paint tins or tires into a plant pot! This not only gives a rustic look to your garden, but also helps reduce junk in the environment.

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If you do not have a terrace, it’s a feasible idea to use hanging pots in the balcony/wall instead. You can create hanging pots using paint tins and old cycle chains. Many orchids and leafy plants can grow superbly well in these pots.

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Are you too bored of playing age old games like Candy Crush and Temple Run? It’s time for a change and the Google Play Store is now loaded with fresh and exciting new quests and challenges. Here are the 5 Best Android Games of 2016 that you need to download right on:

  1. Pokémon Go

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Remember your childhood’s favourite cartoon? Well Pokémon just got real and now all your favourite characters viz. Pikachu, Charizard, Blastoise and all others have come back to life. So, start walking around the neighbourhood, explore, locate, trade and catch Pokémon and beat all your friends.

  1. Marvel Avengers Academy

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If the Avengers Movie and the characters got you crazy, then this free Android game would surely drive you nuts. You have the supreme power of building your own superhero, reimagine them and play your favourite on the go. Iron Man, Black Widow, Hulk, Thor, Captain America and our favourite Spiderman, are all set to get your training lessons, for the sole purpose of defeating our brutal enemy, Hydra.

  1. Star Wars: Galaxy of Heroes

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After all, it’s an EA Games and that too with the concept of Star Wars – a bombastic combination that has to be out of the world! With the new improvements, this role playing game would make your adrenaline levels go high and addict you to conquer your enemies. Some your favourite star wars characters would be Han Solo, Luke Skywalker and Darth Vader, amongst others. You may also try Star Wars Uprising.

  1. FIFA 2016

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Once, we loved it on PCs, and now it is ruling the app gaming world, since a decade. But this year, it is bigger, faster and better. The amazing graphics, the realistic detailing and to top it all, the enthralling football experience, would certainly make you feel like the god of football. However, this game does require a large free phone memory space.

  1. Clash Royale

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A gift from Super Cell, if you had previously loved the Clash of the Clans, you are likely to fall in love with this one too! It’s a real time multiplayer game that clashes the royal characters of your clan. Knock down opposite royals and princes to win trophies and crown and share your triumph with your friends and the world.

All the listed games are available on iOS platform as well.