Where is the telecom sector headed in India?
Aug 21 2012, 11:37 | By CNBC-TV18
Young Turks bring you another master class on what it takes to scale up, build a team, create a brand and delight customers. From a fixed landline to a smart phone, from 2G to 3G and now 4G, the telecom industry in India is on the cusp of the second wave of growth.
In the words of Sam Pitroda, the pioneer of India's telecom revolution the Indian industry is going through change, chaos and confusion, but at the end of what seems like a tumultuous spirit, we will see more networks and better connected India. But Pitroda also held out a warning. Indian telcos must not follow the single-minded obsession of merely adding subscribers. They must also build an ecosystem of developers and applications and create a value-added service network to address India's needs.
Sam Pitroda says, "First phase of telecom revolution has ended. We have 900 million phones. We are a nation of a connected billion. That whole ramping up and all the excitement is beginning to end. When that happens there is always consolidation, confusion, concerns, that's part of life. Everyone essentially focused on increasing number of subscribers, because that's how they got their valuation up. That story is over. We are going through a very interesting phase in telecom because the second part of telecom revolution is about to begin."
That hopefully will be the future of Indian telecom. Young Turks decided to team to team up with NASSCOM and put Jai Menon, the Group CIO of Bharti Enterprises, India's largest provider of mobile telephony in the hot seat.
A graduate from IIT Delhi with a PhD from Cornell University, Jai Menon, the Group CIO of Bharti Enterprises can also boast of having completed executive management programs at Harvard, Wharton and Sloan. Jai found his calling in the telecom industry and after working with AT&T in the US he joined Bharti Enterprises in 2002. Responsible for building strategic alliances with global majors like IBM, Google, Microsoft and Apple Jai is now tapping into industry trends and working on shifting the focus at Bharti from voice to data.
In this show young techinical minds interacts with Jai Menon to understand the working of the technology sector and gain an insight on the in this field.
Amit Baid, founder, Pipal Tech Ventures and DelightCircle changes the way consumers have been bombarded by promotional SMSes, e-mails and newspaper ads from local retailers and brands over the years. The app developed by his company lets consumers see all stores in the range of one kilometre and aggregates retail offers, coupons and loyalty card information.
Rahul Shetty, product manager, Global Delight Technologies asks Jai Menon that is the future of the app store model?
With the rise of social networks and mobile devices there are a large number of videos shared on the web every minute. While this is true, video editing has always been left to the tech savvy professionals. 31-year old Rahul Shetty, product manager at Global Delight helps in making video editing easy and fun with his app Game Your Video. With 1,00,000 downloads in four months Game Your Video won the Macworld Best of Show 2012 in the Macworld iWorld Expo this year.
Monish Rana, Partner, Tech Solutions discusses on the topic of business alliance between Indian telecom companies and India specific mobile developers.
Founded by Monish Ravindraray Rana and Akshay Shah, Tech Solutions' app TS Len Den Khata is a boom for the one man business. The app help solves the chronic problem of cash flow in credit sale transactions by sending automatic SMSes to customers for outstanding balance. In this way individual follow-ups of payments from customers are not required. Not just with the retail, this mobile app helps customers shop with cash via prepaid account via SMS.
Tej Pandey, co-founder, Mobiotics discusses with Jai Menon about his perspective on shift in media content consumption scenario in India from TV to other screens.
Founded in 2011 by Tej Pratap Pandey and incubated at IIM Ahmadabad Tej Mobiotics' app TV Buddy acts as a TV companion platform. TV Buddy lets TV service operators and content providers manage their subscribers in monetize their user base by offering subscriber management and an interactive telecommerce platform. This mobile and web-based app also allows viewers to discover programs and recommend shows. In that the social media savvy the app allows viewers to interact and check contents on the basis of check hits.
Mohd. Farhan, software engineer, DbyDx Software also participates in the show to broaden his knowledge base.
Developed by Mohd. Farhan, a software engineer and mobile app developer at DbyDx Software TxTLater is quite literally an ultimate all in one scheduler. Catering to busy professionals TxTLater schedules SMSs, e-mails, polls, Facebook posts and even tweets for a future date and time. Currently available for BlackBerry smart phones the app has over 1 lakh active users and will soon be available on the iPhone and Android.
Sunita Kishnani, AVP, Diaspart Infotech discusses with Jai Menon about enterprise mobility scenario in India.
Developed by Sunita Kishnani and Harish Shinde, Catalog2go gives sales representative's real-time access to their company's product catalogue. Available on tablets, Catalog2go lets employees search for products within a price range, manage to secure access permissions and allows faster order entry giving the sales force an edge over competition. The app also helps companies go green by eliminating paper catalogues.
Q: The telecom industry is on the crossroads. Though there has been a steady increase in the subscriber base we have over 900 million mobiles yesterday, there has been a steady decrease on the average revenue for user of the companies. So would you agree that the true future of the telecom industry might lie with enterprise customers?
Jai Menon, Group CIO, Bharti Enterprises: The exciting part about the telecom industry is that it appeals to all three segments of customer basis, which is a large mass of consumers, the small and medium businesses and the large enterprises.
Telecom industry is fundamentally morphing itself as we transition from voice to data, as we go all IP, we are finding that there are opportunities that will create more relevance, more stickiness and more value across all segments. It is not a linear equation, it is a multi-dimensional opportunity, which fundamentally says there is still a long way to go and boards very well for all three segments and hence our industry.
Q: According to recent reports, the enterprise mobility market in India is growing at 45% CAGR and will have 130 million smartphone equipped population, we are seeing a lot of momentum in the enterprise mobility market but the adoption is sluggish. What according to you is the reason and what needs to make this adoption faster, quicker?
Sunita Kishnani, AVP, Diaspark Infotech: We carry an enterprise mobile product, when we talk to the customers, he appreciates the concept but when it comes to implementation, it takes a long shot because the product is about cataloging. So they are not even into digital catalogues. So for them to bring on to the mobile device and then to tablet, it is a long shot.
Menon: Enterprise IT in India also took a little while to take off and now we are saying in India large enterprises having very sophisticated IT shops, no doubt about it. When it comes to enterprise mobility, there are two problems to be solved. First, on the device itself and second on the service side.
On the device, today there is a genuine need for MDM, which is about Mobile Device Management. What is needed for enterprise mobility to take off is containerization. Once containerization comes in and you are logically able to take your device and partition it into two parts, a personal part and enterprise part, effective containerization will result in greater adoption of enterprise mobility. That is on the device side.
On the service side, you have got legacy enterprise applications that are running today. What you need is an agile server technology that will talk to your existing enterprise applications, which will then convert it into a form that is consumable by MDM and devices.
So the reason why enterprise mobility adoption is a bit slow today is because both problems need to be solved. One the device side with effective MDM and two the service side with light-weight server enhancements to your legacy enterprise applications.
Q: There are talks about Indian mobile ecosystem, which stage are we really at and as compared to these start-ups, the mobile players are fairly big, so what is the kind of telco developer relationship that you see currently is in play and how do you see it evolving the future so that it benefits for both of them?
Menon: There are two forces that need to be aligned. What is the consumers and the developer looking for.
What the consumer is looking for is something very simple. First is it relevant, will they make a difference in my life? Two, does it protect my privacy, there are apps that suck out information from the device, contacts, SMSs, photos etc. So, does it protect my privacy? And third is the app transparent? In other words am I being charged spuriously, will they be another piece of software that will come in as a trojan and sit on my device, will it create a back channel data traffic for which I have to pay for?
The developers are looking for three things. First is to make it exciting for user experience. Second, discoverability of apps because there are million of apps available, how do you make sure your app is discovered? So discoverability is very relevant.
Thirdly, analytics, you want to make sure your apps are smart and you do things that are relevant at that point in time for the consumers.
Now both these two things have to align, so you cannot do analytics at the expense of privacy and transparency. So there is one force, which is getting the developer community and the user to align on their objectives then comes in the vehicle such as the operator. You will see all these forces coming together and you will see operators playing a far more open, exciting and if I may a more stimulating role to promote the whole developer community.
Watch for more....
Post Your Comment
Recent Comments (1)
Jun 19 2013, 22:20
Jun 19 2013, 14:38