The number of people getting connected to internet in India through smart phones is all set to double from 300 million to 600-650 million by 2020, making it a real challenge of opportunities to come up with technological solutions to meet that scenario, said Rajan Anandan, Vice President, South East Asia & India.
He was speaking after launching Kerala’s first incubator ‘Mobile 10x Hub,’ an initiative by the Kerala Startup Mission (KSUM), to create a mobile app-based ecosystem, on the sidelines of Kerala Mobile App Conference 2018 (K-MAC 2018) at UL CyberPark here on Wednesday .
“Over 300 million of them (people) connect to the internet through their smart phones. And it will become 600 – 650 million by the year 2020, and, thus half of India will be connected,.” Anandan said. “Going by the current scenario in Kerala, by 2020 every single Keralite will be on the internet,” he said, adding that “the state is leading the way for India as it focuses on the country’s real problems. “
With 600 million Indians accessing the internet on smart phones, this will become the access device through which a whole range of solutions can be delivered to address real problems the consumers have.
“You seem to have in your state many entrepreneurs focusing on India’s real problems as opposed to looking at countries like the US, China and trying to understand what is successful and trying to replicate it. Hence, we are hoping to see the emergence of a large number of startups using technology to solve India’s problems, not forsaking the quality,” he pointed out.
“ Why mobile? For India is the mobile first consumer internet. We have 400 million consumers on the internet today”, he explained. Stating that this quantum jump also poses challenges, he noted all of India’sinnovation that it had over the last 10 years in the Indian internet had focused on the first 100 or 200 million consumers. It might have given problem of opportunities for the first 100 or 200 million.
“But when you go beyond this 100 -200 million , the type of problems these consumers will have will be very different. Major areas like education, health, sanitation have so many unmet needs. These are real consumer pain points, “ Anandan said.
“Thinking about solving these areas with technology, especially with mobile applications, you are instantly getting access to 300 million Indians today and that number will grow into 600 million Indians by 2020. And if you are building a global product, you will get access to three billion people consumers around the world,” he elaborated.
“Hence, coming up with mobile technological solutions that can actually solve problems is where the real game is and Kerala has every potential to make use of this opportunity, “he added.
Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan in his video message said authorized Government departments/agencies to directly place work orders with startups under KSUM for developing applications not exceeding Rs 5 Lakhs.
M Sivasankar, Secretary, IT, Kerala , cited the need to conduct a comprehensive study on the internet and smart phone usage in Kerala and urged the Internet and Mobile Association of India ( IMAI ) to take up that. MOU on starting Mobile 10 X hub was also handed over on the occasion.
Jitender Singh Minhas, Vice President, Internet and Mobile Association of India (IMAI) and Hrishikesh Nair, Technoparks Kerala exchanged the MOU to start the Mobile 10 X hub. Dr Subo Ray, President, Internet and Mobile Association of India Vice President Jithender Singh Minhas, Hrishikesh Nair, Technoparks Kerala CEO, Dr Saji Gopinath, CEO, Kerala Startup Mission also spoke.
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