Dream 500 Million Smartphones in India is the first in a series of thought leadership conclaves organized by BGR India. It is a vision of an India where people are well informed and well connected. To achieve this dream, stakeholders like handset manufacturers, carriers, government, apps and service providers, need to align towards a common goal. Also Read - FIR filed against Twitter India again, now over child pornography content
The day-long event will witness stakeholders from the industry share their views and commitments to achieving this dream. What will it take to reach the 500 million smartphone user base in India, what will be its implications, what services can we expect first-time smartphone users to experience and most importantly, by when can we achieve this milestone. Also Read - Mi Notebook Pro X to be Xiaomi's most expensive laptop yet, launch tomorrow
Debjani Ghosh, Intel’s VP in Sales and Marketing Group and managing director for South Asia, will be speaking at the conference. BGR India spoke to Ghosh on her views about the dream and its significance for India. Also Read - Ola to offer free oxygen concentrators to the needy
What according to you would be the impact and possibilities when India has 500 million smartphone users?
For me personally, Dream 500 million has to be 500 million empowered individuals who are able to access governance and services/information on demand and able to utilize it to improve their livelihood. That is when the vision of Digital India will become a reality. I see it as being fundamental to our aspirations for achieving inclusive growth and sustainable development in the country – by being the means to take relevant information and computing power to the grass roots.
As Dream 500 becomes a reality, we will also see the evolution of a strong local ecosystem focused on solution sales as against hardware or device sales. The next phase of computing users in India will be Non-Urban and the biggest challenge in front of us is the need for innovation so that we can develop customized solutions that meet the changing demographics and lifestyle. It’s going to be less about the devices and more about what you can do with them and the focus will move from price and features to solution and user experience.
In Sum, the Smartphone or the connected device of choice will have to become the gateway for an Indian citizen to get access to government to citizen services, financial inclusion, cleanliness, healthcare, education amongst others. If done right, the impact of having 500 million technology empowered users can be tremendous in fulfilling not only the promise of Digital India, but also accelerating the Make in India ecosystem.
What is the role Intel sees itself playing in achieving this milestone?
As I said above, Dream 500 million is not just devices, but it’s about empowering almost half of India’s population with technology and realizing the Digital India vision. It’s a transformative vision and one that must be realized for India to achieve its growth ambitions.
For its successful realization, you need to think end to end solution. And that is where Intel excels. We have been powering India’s back end infrastructure from Data Centers to High Performance Computing and we will continue to invest more in that area to drive robust, secure and managed platforms that can manage the exponential growth in data. With respect to personal computing, not only will we continue to drive innovation to make devices more intuitive and easy to use, but we will also work in partnership with the Government to jointly drive innovation for India and set up an ecosystem for the same. This we believe will be key for scale in the country. And, our increasing focus on end to end solution from data management to security to analytics will help ensure India get the full benefit of having 500 million citizen connected.
Last but not the least, we have always been committed to investing to create the future market with focus on education and skill development, and as part of the Digital India charter, we have committed to work with the Gov’t to train the trainers in the first 1000 NOFN Panchayats to drive grass root Digital Literacy and also launch a Digital Skills Application in 7 languages that will train people with basic digital literacy skills as well equipping them with relevant information related to some of the important government schemes like Jan Dhan Yojana and Swacch Bharat amongst others. Our commitment is to train 5 million citizens by end 2015.
In sum, we are committed to partner with the government to enable the realization of Digital India. Not only by bringing in world class products from servers to smart phones and end to end solution, but also by building an ecosystem of innovation needed for customized products and solution and scaling Digital Literacy to ensure Indian Citizens know how to use technology for their benefit.
Debjani Ghosh will be speaking at Dream 500 Million Smartphones in India, a thought leadership conclave on December 17, 2014 in New Delhi, organized by BGR India.