Tag Archives: India

Wipro To Build Datacenters For Three States

Wipro Infotech has bagged big orders for three Indian states which involves building high end datacenters from scratch. According to a news release, Wipro will build, manage and commission State data centres (SDCs) for Maharashtra and West Bengal. The third state is Gujarat which already has a State Data Center, so here Wipro will only upgrade and commission the datacenter.

These data centres would host applications and provide Government to Government (G2G), Government-to-business (G2B) and Government-to-citizen (G2C) services. Wipro would also build a central repository for all data related to the State on citizen information, services portal and online services. SDCs are emerging as one of the key elements of the core infrastructure required for the National eGovernance Plan (NeGP). Once integrated with the other infrastructure projects such as State Wide Area Network (SWAN) and Common Service Centres (CSC), it would form the framework for roll out of various eGovernment services.



Indian Telecom Analysis (2008 – 2012): A Report

Telecom industry in India has undergone a major revolution in the recent years and no doubt we all know that looking at the latest technologies that are being introduced to customers every day. India is ranked second worldwide in terms of having the largest telecommunication network only after China.

Tele-density in India has improved significantly over the recent years. The   tele-density in India currently stands at 51%. All this has been possible owing to improving network infrastructure as a result of the ongoing investments. The launch of advanced telecom services like 3G and IPTV will also drive the growth in Indian telecom subscriber base over the forecast period. Furthermore, mobile handset market is also expected to register a robust growth in near future.

With a strong population of over 1.1 Billion, India has become one of the most dynamic and promising telecom markets of the world and has emerged as one of the fastest growing telecom markets in the world. During 2003-2007, the country witnessed the number of phones increasing more than triple and total tele-density rising from 5.1% to 18.2%.

Some major achievements of the Indian Telecom Industry:

  • The total telecom subscription in India surged at a CAGR of over 38% from fiscal 2003 to fiscal 2007, making the country the third largest telecom market in the world.
  • Mobile phones accounted for 80.2% of the total telephone subscriber base at the end of March 2007.
  • The Internet subscriber base in the country, as on March 31, 2007, stood at 9.3 Million as compared to 6.9 Million on March 31, 2006 registering a growth of 34.8%.
  • § By fiscal 2010, Indian will require around 330,000 telecom network towers. To meet this enormous need, the telecom operators are resorting to network infrastructure sharing.

More key stats and reports can be read about on the Indian Telecom Report.

Image via technogadget

HP India Slapped With Rs 1,450 Crore Tax Notice

Even the biggest of biggest enterprises do not get past the eyes of the tax collection agencies in India. This time it is computer manufacturing giant – Hewlett Packard (HP India). The government has slapped a tax notice of Rs 1,450 crore on HP India Sales Pvt. Ltd. for allegedly evading Customs duty. However this charge was refuted by the company.

The charges that have been reported are undervaluation of components and spare parts imported from countries like Singapore and the US and thus evading Customs duty. This tax demand one of the biggest in recent times and could be a major cause of concern among IT companies in India.

However, HP India has been transparent and has cooperated fully with the DRI in its investigation and they plainly refute the DRI’s position and are ready to challenge its claims through the judiciary. HP India has also voluntarily paid Rs 79 crore after the investigation

India: a Potential and Emerging Cybercrime Hub and Target

“Symantec Global Internet Security Threat Report” collects cybercrime and vulnerability data from across the globe and analyzes it to produce near-perfect cybercrime reports. The 100 page report generated from 2009 just came in and the most pressing issue according to it is that criminal activities over the Internet, termed as cybercrime has started moving to emerging countries.

Two countries in focus in these reports are Brazil and India. The Internet is a global entity and the lack of awareness has put India into that report. China, which was included in the last report has evolved and is now much more aware regarding the Internet.

Not only this, India is also a soft target in cybercrime. India serves as the best testing bed for hack attacks and more than 4/5th of hacks in India originated in other countries. There is a high broadband penetration but the awareness of safe usage is absolutely zero. People are still happy winning those lotteries and screensaver and are willingly giving away potential personal information.

India ranks #5 in cybercrime and serves 788 bots each day.  Out of these, Mumbai, India’s largest city also claimed the largest bot activity of 50% in the country. Also, there are at least 62,623 bot infected computers in India.
(Via: PCMag)

Dell Moving China Operations To India, Following The Google Bandwagon

In a severe jolt to China, Dell has announced that it will be moving almost $25 billion of operations from China to India, following Google and GoDaddy, who recently quit China this week.

Dell India

According to reports from Indian newspaper Hindustan Times, the Chairman of Dell, Michael Dell has assured Indian Prime Minister, Manmohan Singh that Dell will be moving its $25 billion operation out of China to India.

Dell reportedly told the India Prime Minister that they were looking for a safer environment with [a] climate conducive to enterprise. However, Dell will not be a new entrant into India as they already have an office there and moving there would just bring more business India’s way.

This is definitely bad for China since this is the third big company to have already walked out or are planning a walk out of an industry which is notorious for its sanctions and censoring.

I would definitely not be surprised if several more companies start to walk out of China after having enough of the monopolistic nature of the government. The coming weeks will be pretty crucial on how things pan out. However, all we can do is keep an eye to see how many companies have the itch to start packing their bags and moving onto more liberal shores.

[via Nexus404 and Gizmodo]

WCG India Will be Organized After All

Two dedicated Indian gaming event management specialists will be vying for the post of WCG India organizer this year. With the exit of Indiagames, Xtreme Gaming and Re-Inforcement have voiced their openness to organize WCG in India. This is consolidated by the fact that both of these companies have organized several gaming events in the past.

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Gamebashing reports that after a quick question to speakers from both companies, it is likely that either of the companies would like to take over this huge e-sports event and keep the fire of competitive gaming burning in India. However, it seems that Xtreme Gaming will be the one organizing WCG as Re-Inforcement has taken over the organization of the ESWC this year.

The question of ICM’s support still lingers in the air as it has not made any contact with these managers as yet. Nevertheless with enough funding, gamers from India stand a chance to visit Los Angeles for the finals of this year’s WCG. Thank you and a thousand good wishes to either of you, Xtreme Gaming and Re-Inforcement!

Nokia Will Offer Unlimited Free Music Downloads in India

Nokia will be launching its “Comes With Music” service, which is already available in some countries like Singapore and UK, in India by the end of this year. It will be available with selected high-end phones (E, N, and XpressMusic series handsets) and will offer unlimited free music downloads for a year.

Nokia-Comes-With-Music-India

Nokia plans on offering a wide selection of music from both Indian as well as international labels. It has tied up with record labels like T-Series, Venus, Tips, Big Music, Eros and Indian Music Industry (IMI) and will be supporting even regional languages. All the music files will be DRM protected, but users will be able to enjoy their downloaded music even after the subscription period is over.

Nokia does not intend on setting up a music store any time soon. However, it surely hopes that this offer will help in wooing new customers. In a country in which music is literally a part of everyday life, they may well have a winner on their hands.

World Cyber Games India in Jeopardy as Indiagames Pulls Out

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The World Cyber Games (WCG) tournament’s Indian edition might be in deep trouble; longtime organizer Indiagames has decided to back out from the event, disgruntled at the lack of support from International Cyber Marketing (ICM). The Korean ICM is the main organizer of the WCG and is responsible for the funding and marketing of the e-sports events across boundaries.

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ICM has allegedly not been funding Indiagames as much as it should, leading to the fund crisis that it apparently faces. Last year e-sports team ATE, the Counter Strike event’s finalists, did not attend the international finals in Chengdu because Indiagames had not funded their trip. How they could not is a mystery, for Indiagames is quite a prosperous mobile gaming portal with a serious developer base committed to making content for gamers across the nation.

However, Balu’s insider reports that ICM is the real culprit-

This year Indiagames put its foot down and refused to be part of the event unless proper funding to organize it at a good venue and without any delays was provided.

Nevertheless, it bodes ill for gamers in India. I remember a time when the WCG was organized in my city and I had gone to play Warcraft III, being the geeky teenager. The atmosphere of like-minded gamers, organizers and general public and the buzz of excitement whenever a great kill or strategy was executed was deliciously lapped up by my mind and have remained fresh over all these years. I do hope the WCG does occur this year as well for India one way or another.

India To Get A Stripped Down Version Of Nexus One

Google executives in India are planning to launch the Nexus One in India. However, in their words it will not be in its US avatar. This was stated by Shailesh Rao who heads Google India at an Editorial Meet. CNBC TV 18 representative at the meet tweeted the following:

Nexus One will not come to India in its US avatar, the India specific Google Phone may be a stripped down version and priced lower!

Nothing more than these supposed plans is known as of yet. While it is rather surprising that Google would plan to axe features to reduce cost since Apple did not tinker with their iPhone when it launched in India and their decision to give a unified and better experience to anyone who’s willing to pay has been a mantra for their success. There are several cheaper’ Android alternatives with lesser features available in India from HTC and as such Google might be able capitalize on their brand name but there is no sophisticated way to put this – Google’s decision is rather stupid. In an attempt to sell in numbers they’ll be diluting the Nexus One brand. However, I should point out that such moves are often made by handset manufacturers. The HTC Touch2 is available in two versions in India, one is with 3G and Wi-Fi, the other is without, and both these models have a significant price difference.

If you were to ask me, I’d rather not buy a stripped down Nexus One phone knowing that there is a version that has more features and would rather look for alternatives from HTC that will have the missing features at a price point close to that of the stripped down Nexus One.

via labnol.org

PayPal Resumes Local Bank Withdrawals in India

It seems that the folks at PayPal have been diligentlyworking for freelancers and other online merchants in India. In an email (and a related blog post) PayPal says that they will be ready to resume local bank withdrawals by March 3rd, a few days shy of Holi:-

Today, we are happy to announce that the RBI has allowed us
to continue local bank withdrawals for settlements for exports
of goods and services.   We are currently making changes to
comply with Indian regulations for settlements for exports of
goods and services, and we anticipate that, as of Wednesday,
March 3rd, customers will be able to use our
bank withdrawal service.

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It seems that once the changes are in effect, any local bank withdrawal needs to have an Export Codefield filled out before the transaction is completed. This will enable the bank to identify the cross-border transaction’s nature. The necessary details will be provided in an email again on March 1st.

However, the situation on personal payments is still bleak as talks are on between PayPal and the Reserve Bank of India.

[T]he RBI has told us that PayPal needs specific
approvals to allow personal remittances to India, which we
currently do not have.   Until we get these approvals, personal
payments into India will remain suspended.

Here’s to hoping that it will get solved within a few months!

Imported Games to be a Lot Cheaper in India

The Union Budget 2010 of India has given gamers a reason to cheer. Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee presented the budget today and though the Opposition staged a noisy walkout, it gave us gamers a reason to cheer. Why? Because it appears that the excise duty on importing games has been reduced. Under customs/excise duty on import/export, this line was seen:-

Rationalisation of customs duty on gaming software.

Huzzah! But how exactly will that help gamers like you and I? Gamebashing originally reported this, noting  that for those who are intent on playing a newly released game it would be really helpful (although for PC gamers, there’s always digital distribution). However, it will definitely help console gamers as each copy of the game is imported, as opposed to PC games where an Indian publisher imports the master CD. Although just how much it will help console gamers is yet to be seen:-

It needs to be seen what effect it’ll have on the price of games in retail as distributors in India too import the game CDs (for consoles) rather than importing just a master CD.

desi-adda-psp

Yes, the Indian gaming scene is looking up, what with the launch of a couple of games from Indian developers for the PlayStation systems and now this.

Intex Mobiles Introduces Triple SIM Phones

Intex-IN-5030

Intex Mobiles have introduced first of its kind; triple SIM (GSM+GSM+CDMA) mobile devices IN 5030, in the Indian market. It comes with dual batteries for an extended talk time. It can maintain an active CDMA connection while you receive/make a call from GSM.

Features:

  • 2″  TFT Screen Display.
  • Mobile tracker, Auto Call recording, Indian Calendar and Torch Light.
  • Support for MP3 Ringtones
  • FM Radio, MP3 Player and MP4 Video Player.
  • Dual Speakers.
  • 1000 Phonebook capacity and 400 SMS capacity.
  • 1.3 MP Camera.
  • Support for Bluetooth with A2DP, MMS and WAP Services.

Priced at just 4,700 INR, it’s a steal for those who cannot maintain three mobile devices.

Karnataka Government Uses Google Analytics From Different Site

This has to be a height of laziness. Couple of websites owned by the Karnataka Government, including Karnataka.gov.in and Karunadu.gov.in have been using Google Analytics tracking code which was originally created by a third party site.

The developers behind Karnataka Government site were lazy enough to copy the Google Analytics code from SEO Consultants along with some CSS code which was part of a tutorial on the site, this goes to show how serious the Government of Karnataka is about their online presence.

Karanataka Government Google Analytics

Karnataka Government Detailed Google Analytics

According to the blog post, the site in question started receiving lots of hits, and further verification showed that the hits were coming from the site run by Government of Karnataka.

Now, there are several problems here. First of all, the Karnataka Government is sharing all their visitor information with someone else. Secondly, the developers are so ignorant that they did not care to check what code they were copying into the site. So how can you trust the people behind this?

And another glaring fact that the post in question bought out was that this is happening since the past 45 days, and the author of the post tried to contact the Government of Karnataka several times, however, all he received were canned responses, so do they really care?

I am pretty sure that the developers are clueless about this, and they would not care as to what they put up on the website. Thank God, that they did not decide to copy content from a malware website.

I am a very big evangelist for Governments using the online channel to showcase information and interacting with people. However, such irresponsibility goes on to show how much they care about adopting to the new methods that make communication easier. What do you think?

Zynga Comes To India

If you have used Facebook even once in past six months, you must have heard about games like Farmville and Fishville. The company behind these games, Zynga, has taken the world’s most popular social network by storm with over 200 Million monthly active users. Now, it is coming to India by opening an office in Banglore. This will be company’s first office outside of the US and it plans to hire around 100 people by the end of the year for this new location.

Currently Zynga has offices in San Francisco, Los Angeles and Baltimore with over 800 employees. Zynga has raised around $220 Million in funding so far and is believed to be the #1 social game developer in the world. Zynga believed India has 81 Million internet users and will be the 3rd largest internet market by 2013, following US and China. Zynga is following a popular trend of tech companies opening offices in India to utilize the relatively economical conditions and drive down costs.

All the games offered by Zynga are free to play. The company, instead, makes money by selling virtual goods and is expected to generate around $400 Million in revenue for 2010. Here are some of the job listings related to Banglore that have already appeared on Zynga website:

1. Software Engineer (Flash)

2. Web Developer – PHP

3. Product Manager

Click here to read the detail requirements and apply for these positions.

Personal PayPal Payments in India To Be Suspended for Few Months [Official Update]

For those who have already been following the PayPal problem in India, you might already know that PayPal has stopped processing Personal payments to and from India. I did write a rant about PayPal as they did all of this without intimating it’s customers.

However, it looks like there is some clarification on the issue from the official PayPal Blog, according to the new blog post, the problem occurred because of enquiries from India regulators with questions on whether personal payments constitute remittances into India.

Personal payments to and from India are suspended for a few months until they will be able to resolved the questions with Indian regulators. However, a good news is that local bank withdrawal will be available in the next few days, so you will get a chance to empty your PayPal account for good.

If a PayPal reversal has left you with a negative balance you will have to ask the sender to use the Purchase option for sending money to you. This is again a pain and I am sure that many of you will not be able to recover the money that was reversed.

PayPal has come clean, however, I believe that it did a bit too late after it’s reputation took a huge hit. If PayPal would have been a regular bank they would have totally been taken out by the RBI, however, what can we say, we rely on it.

For more info on this, visit the Official PayPal blog post here.