Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Making Internet Products just for India

Picture Courtesy: BusinessWorld

Some Points from the article

Why are companies focusing so much on the Indian market ?

A couple of key reasons.

1. India is a big market.
India is a "valuable" market for Internet companies as there is a lot of potential for the next five to ten years.
There are products and services being made especially for India now. Yahoo has launched Yahoo Cities http://in.ourcity.yahoo.com/
and Google has a Hindi Blogger and news service.

2.Overcoming the technology barrier: India is a tough market because of is "regional and linguistic" diversity. There are challenges from a technology standpoint. If companies can break the barrier here in India they can accelerate the Internet usage in other countries where Internet is yet to take off. "If that route to Internet access is exploited well, it could become a model for regions such as Africa."

What are the challenges ahead?

1. Indian Languages are phonetic:
.To create products in different languages means converting text in various Indian languages.But Indian languages are phonetic.The text is unlike Roman script, which is the basis for most European languages. Indian languages also do not have established transliteration rules, like Japanese or Chinese. That is, one Hindi name can be spelled differerntly in English — Mansi, Manasi, Maanasi, and so on

2.No proper database:
If the products have to be made to suit local needs, there is a need for accurate mapping. The problem with India is that there is no reliable geographical data available. In most countries, such data comes from sources such as a government database. Companies have to resort to satellite images which is tough to get access to.

3.Probably, India is a market where there is a large scale mobile adoption than Internet adoption. Ggiven the large scale adoption of mobile telephony in the country, firms are devoting significant resources towards making Internet access available across platforms. “The Internet is becoming device-agnostic,” says Jaspreet Bindra, country manager, MSN India in Mumbai. MSN is looking at the mobile platform as the key to cracking India’s market.
While R&D for the Indian market has begun, it is still only a small portion of the work that the Indian centers do. About 80 per cent of the product development is still for foreign markets. But this will gradually decrease over the next few years.

So, what is happening?
Yahoo! recently made its Bangalore centre the R&D hub for emerging markets. That includes India, Latin America and other Asian markets like Vietnam and Indonesia. Last year, Yahoo! doubled its R&D workforce to 1,000.Google is hiring more engineers in India to create products specific for the Indian market.

BTW,if you use IE as your browser, you should check out this site: http://www.guruji.com/hi/
I thought it was cool !



At 10:38 AM, Blogger Zenith said...

Another interesting and one which would have a dramatic influence on the internet is definitely the exposure and access internet and communications is providing to the youngsters. At one end, 5 year olds now know how to get on to the internet... On the other hand, Internet/communications has helped increase the disposable income of graduates...

At 9:14 AM, Anonymous Dheeraj said...

This could be of help


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