Sunday, October 9, 2011

More on the Indian tablet PC market

Continuing from my previous post on the Indian Tablet Market. Two major events occurred which are related to tablet PC industry- Kapil Sibal unveiled Datawind's 'Akash' tablet at sub 2500 rupees, and within a day Steve Jobs, the man who gave a fresh life to tablets, passed away.

Many professionals today mistake Steve as the innovator of tablets - that is not true. Just like iPod was not the first mp3 player, iPad arrived a few years after tablets were first released. All the earlier devices failed miserably, and full credit to Steve to have had the guts to venture into this area, as well as make it a roaring success.

I think even other good tablet makers like samsung owe it to Steve for having revived the market and indirectly enabling their sales too.

Meanwhile I have bought my first tablet- an android 2.3 based iBall Slide - a value for money device with decent features at 14k rupees. The one reason I chose this over slightly lower priced competitors like Reliance Tab, Beetel Magiq, Mercury mTab, etc was the presence of USB Host - the ability to connect USB keyboard, mouse, pendrives, etc - which were otherwise found only in the 30k device range. Hopefully this device will meet all the needs till the products become more mature. The only one irritant in using it is that some websites still work with only Internet Explorer - which is not possible with android or iOS devices, and that's the only area where netbooks score.

Apart from Samsung Galaxy Tab, I think another device worth checking out is Asus Eee Pad, which at 29k priced bundled with keyboard dock and android honeycomb OS is hi end at much lower price than iPad.

Going at this rate, I think over a period of next 3-5 years, computing will move over to tablets entirely.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Financial Inclusion – From Compulsion to Business [post at Vortex Corporate Blog]

My article in the Vortex Corporate Blog on how Financial Inclusion can scale up from being a compulsion to a profitable business -

Monday, September 12, 2011

Social media is not radio

Many convential media folks who are used to the 'radio' mode of one way broadcast seem to miss out on the fact that to be successful in social media (especially twitter) one has to remember that this is a two way medium. Unless one engages the audience in two way conversations success will not be sustainable.

A simple metric to analyse this would be what percentage of your tweets are @replies, or the ratio followers to following. If these ratios are heavily skewed then one can be certain about long term unviability - if you don't listen and only talk you are doomed. There are some media folks who don't follow anyone at all! Need I say more?

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Indian Tablet Market looking up

Till recently there were only very limited options if one wanted a tablet computer in India - with the exception of OlivePad, the only other options were the highly expensive Apple iPad and the moderately expensive Samsung Galaxy Tab.
August has been a month of many launches- all of them in the android space. I'm sure all technologists would've by now concluded that the mobile/tablet platforms are now entirely between android and iOS platforms. And looks like the Indian market is behaving differently from the world market - Apple is far from being the market leader here. Reliance 3G tab, Beetel Magiq, Mercury mTab are new options available at sub 13k prices, with the latter two being sub 10k. This certainly would hot up the tablet market like never before.
There is also talk of amazon too coming out with a forked version of android based tablet akin to kindle- I'm yet to know the price. I'm also hearing of spice coming out with a tablet. None of these new tablets are available yet in stores for checking out. among the tech specs of OlivePad, mTab and Magiq, I liked mTab most, at par with GalaxyTab spec at a much lower price. I wish there was a chance to try out these devices for a real feel - the tech specs may not always live up to a good user experience.
Will update the blog once I get to lay my hands on these devices at a store. Do drop in a comment if anyone of you are aware of stores having the newer devices.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Social Networks and the 'cool' factor

We are now a few weeks into being introduced to yet another social network - this time from my favourite tech company, Google (I'm totally lost without their search or mail servies, and depend quite a lot on google maps).

I have pretty much liked the interface, and do well appreciate the circles concept (simpler to organise compared to lists/group of friends in facebook). The only hitch seems to be that a lot of friends active on facebook are yet to be active on google plus, and also the difficulty of managing multiple social networks. Some people are so used to facebook that they find the interface of plus intimidating. Now, is that a case of people being used to working on windows finding it difficult to work on linux? Is plus a much more geeky network? I don't know the answer.

Looking back, we have had similar transitions in the past- the first social network I ever joined was Hi5 but I hardly used it. I was then using the now almost abandoned Rediff iLand for blogging which also had a networking side to it. Then came along orkut which was such a big hit. I got back in touch with a lot of long lost friends through orkut. The party didn't last very long, and very soon using orkut was considered 'uh-so-2006-ish' and facebookingh was in vogue. The same folks who just added you on orkut without bothering to scrap/message/call now also added you to facebook without really communicating. Maybe increased friend count boosted their ego.

For some reason Google+ has not yet found that coolness factor. I wish they do something about it before it goes the google wave way.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Social Media for Marketers – Looking Beyond the Hype [blog at PaulWriter]

My take on the hype surrounding Social Media for B2B marketing at Jessie Paul's B2B Marketing blog