IESA WINWire May 23 - May 29, 2015
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10th Anniversary

A year of hope
Source: The Hindu; May 24, 2015

To ensure success of ‘Make in India’, electronics manufacturing has been given a big boost. About 21 manufacturing clusters have been approved across India with incentive schemes. Proposals worth Rs. 20,000 crore have been received, of which proposals worth Rs. 9,000 crore have been approved. The success of Mr. Modi in providing a renewed vigour to Indian diplomacy and foreign policy is unprecedented. Be it India’s neighbours or the G-20 nations, India’s prestige, moral authority and extraordinary potential for growth is being recognised world over. Under the dynamic leadership of the Prime Minister, the world stands convinced about the bright prospects of India’s growth initiatives. The growing role of India as an emerging global power is being recognised. Under the leadership of Prime Minister Modi, India has become a country of hope. There is no gloom and despair, no apprehension of rent-seeking. This, certainly, is an assurance of a promising future.

India to have 70 supercomputers by 2022 for advance research at cost of 4500 crores
Source: Mobileator; May 25, 2015

The Indian government is keen on installing at least 70 computers for high-level research in various parts of the nation. All of these will be linked via a grid connecting academic and R&D centers. The cost of the supercomputers project is estimated to run into Rs 4500 crores and has received the approval of the Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs which is overseen by the Prime Minister, Narendra Modi himself. The mission is in line with the government’s Make in India and Digital India campaigns which are aimed at achieving unprecedented advancements in the manufacturing and IT sectors in the country. The Ministry of Science and Technology will sanction Rs 2800 crores out of the Rs 4500 crores, while Rs 1700 crores will come from the IT department, says Communications and IT Minister, Ravi Shankar Prasad. India has 9 supercomputers and at spot number 74, ranks far behind China which is number 1. The new machines will be able to help research in defense, biology, climate and other fields that require powerful processing muscle. The Center for Development of Advanced Computing (C-DAC), Indian Institute of Science (IISc), Department of Science and Technology as well as Department of Electronics and Information Technology (DeitY) will be involved in the mission.

ISRO to fund Ranchi scientist’s temp sensor research
Source: Times of IndiaThe; May 25, 2015

Taking Prime Minister Narendra Modi's 'Make In India' mission another step forward, Indian Space Research Organization (Isro) has decided to extend financial assistance to a Ranchi-based scientist for developing temperature sensors that will be used in missile and rocket systems for determining its location in space. Dr Vijay Nath, professor at the department of electronics and communication engineering at Birla Institute of Technology, Mesra, will work on the project to design ultra-low power complementary metal oxide semiconductor (CMOS) temperature sensor for aerospace application. Isro has sanctioned Rs 25 lakh for the project. According to the letter issued by Isro, a copy of which is with the TOI, duration of the project will be three years — two years' time for chip design and one year for fabrication at HCL, Chandigarh.

NASSCOM sets up task force to build India as cyber security hub
Source: Firstpost; May 25, 2015

NASSCOM, in partnership with Data Security Council of India, has launched 'NASSCOM Cyber Security Task Force' that aims to build India as a global hub for providing cyber security solutions, developing cyber security R&D plan and develop a skilled workforce of cyber security experts. The taskforce members include industry leaders across IT, BPM and Internet, leaders from user organizations like banks and telcos as well as representatives from the government and academia. NIIT Chairman Rajendra Pawar has been requested to chair this taskforce, NASSCOM said. "The taskforce over a 12 week period will identify the key priorities and build the detailed action plan for the sector," the software body added. "This Task Force will study the Indian cyber security ecosystem to identify issues and challenges and develop an action plan to address the priority issues. It will also identify possible intervention opportunities for the Indian IT industry in global cyber security space and bring together stakeholders from across the board to develop cutting-edge technologies and address the global market requirements. Learnings from global countries will be undertaken to understand how to catalyse the security product ecosystem in India," NASSCOM Chairman Mohan Reddy stated.

IT jobs to shift to new tech, data analytics, cloud services
Source: The Hindu Business line; May 25, 2015

The $70-billion Indian IT export services industry, which recorded a 12.6 per cent year-on-year growth in FY 2015 and employs 1.2 million people, is all set to witness shrinkage in jobs over the next three years.

Shift in demand While demand for traditional IT services will dip, demand for niche skills in next-generation technologies such as Cloud, Social, Mobility, Big Data, Analytics and Internet of Things (IoT) will result in a war for talent. “Over a three year horizon the total number of jobs in IT services will witness a 10 per cent shrinkage as the legacy business continues to evaporate and next-generation technology services are in demand by global customers” Jaideep Mehta, Managing Director, IDC India and South Asia told BusinessLine. “Low-end, low-skilled software developers and infrastructure maintenance engineers will become redundant. While IT services firms will endeavour to re-skill or re-shuffle this low-end talent and re-deploy them; those who are unable to transition into newer technologies will be no longer be relevant. “New skill sets will be in demand, such as, Cloud architects, Security specialists, IT administrators, Analytics and IoT experts, etc, resulting in a war for the same talent,” Mehta predicts.

Looking ahead: Smartphones and their place in the Internet of Things
Source: DNA; May 26, 2015

Two decades ago, Indians discovered the magic of wireless telephony, with the introduction of mobile phones and the Internet. Today, smartphones have practically become an extension of our lives. The humble mobile phone, once restricted to calls or text messages, has transformed our lives in its smart avatar. We rely on our smartphones for connectivity, productivity and various other infotainment needs. Managing a business, working on the move, shopping, healthcare – our smartphones enable us to achieve all this and much more, remotely, and in an efficient manner. In today’s fast-paced world, we are living in the age of multi-screens and connected devices. It’s not wrong to say that millennials spend more time with their devices than with other people. Every day, we go through a series of interactions with multiple digital devices, enabling us to connect, learn, buy, compare, search, navigate, and manage almost every aspect of our lives. While each device plays an important role in our numerous daily activities, their true potential can be unleashed only when they can connect with other devices. This multi-device interaction sets the foundation of a connected ecosystem. An array of innovations across the technology landscape has converged to make smart, connected products technically and economically feasible. After the internet, smartphone and app revolution, we are today at a tipping point with the Internet of Things (IoT), which simply means a world of internet-enabled wireless connected devices.

100 smart cities: A peep into the future
Source: Governance Now; May 26, 2015

Soon after assuming power, PM Narendra Modi announced a plan to build 100 smart cities by 2022. Nearly a year after the announcement and shunting of a top-ranking official, the ministry of urban development is yet to take some concrete steps. After a slow take-off, the ministry is expected to finalise the guidelines for developing smart cities “anytime soon”. It is also expected to come out with a final list of cities. At present, what we know is that the selection would happen on the basis of a ‘city challenge competition’: cities will be rated on the basis of revenues, expenditure, and availability of urban infrastructure, among others. The competition will be carried out by Bloomberg Philanthropes. The chosen cities will get a central fund of '100 crore each year for five years. Also, sources reveal that around 20 cities are likely to be selected in the first phase, followed by 40 each in the next two years. Cities like Ajmer, Allahabad, Visakhapatnam and Varanasi are expected to make it to the final list. In the run-up to releasing the final contours of the scheme, the cabinet has already approved '48,000 crore for scheme execution. The cabinet has also approved '50,000 crore for the Atal mission for rejuvenation and urban transformation (AMRUT), aimed at urban renewal of 500 cities.

Indian-origin scientist Latha Venkataraman creates first single-molecule electronic device
Source: Economic Times; May 26, 2015

A team of Columbia Engineering researchers led by an Indian-American scientist Latha Venkataraman has created a single-molecule electronic device which has a potential of real-world technological applications for nanoscale devices.

Under the direction of Venkataraman, researchers created a single-molecule diode which performs 50 times better than all prior designs.
Constructing a device where the active element is only a single molecule, has long been a tantalising dream in nanoscience.

"Our new device represents the ultimate in functional miniaturisation that can be achieved for an electronic device," said Venkataraman.

Foxconn plans 10-12 new Indian facilities by 2020, says Chairman Terry Gou
Source: Firspost; May 27, 2015

Taiwan’s Foxconn Technology, the world’s largest contract electronics manufacturer, is aiming to develop 10-12 facilities in India, including factories and data centres, by 2020, Chairman Terry Gou said. The company could spend a “few billion dollars” on developing the facilities, said Gou, whose company’s listed flagship unit is Hon Hai Precision Industry. “A lot of our customers, especially Chinese customers, need us to manufacture … in India, to make phones, tablets, TVs, as soon as possible,” Gou said in an interview on the outskirts of Guiyang in China’s southern Guizhou province, where the company already operates a manufacturing plant and data centre. The announcement makes Foxconn the latest tech powerhouse to set its sights on the world’s second-most populous nation. It follows smartphone company Xiaomi Inc, which in March announced plans to begin manufacturing in India. Foxconn’s move comes as it grapples with rising expenses at its 25 manufacturing sites in China, where wages have more than doubled since 2010.

The Indian expansion plans come soon after the company closed a mobile phone plant in southern India, prompting protests from some of the workforce of about 1,700 people. Foxconn did not elaborate on the reasons for the closure beyond citing changes in its customer base.

Rs 9,565-Cr Proposals Approved Under Electronics Manufacturing Scheme: Report
Source: NDTV Profit; May 27, 2015

The government has approved investment proposals worth over Rs 9,500 crore from companies including Tata Power SED, Continental Automotive, Samsung, Bosch and Nidec under the Modified-Special Incentive Package Scheme (MSIPS). According to sources, 40 applications with investment to the tune of Rs 9,565.08 crore have been approved till May 15, under electronics manufacturing scheme MSIPS. "We have so far received 63 applications with investment proposals worth Rs 20,825.09 crore under MSIPS. Of which 40 have been approved, while 21 are under appraisal and 2 have been recommended for approval," an official in Telecom Ministry told PTI. The companies whose applications have been approved include Samsung, Bosch, Tejas Networks, Motherson Sumi Systems, Tata Power SED, Nidec India, Nippon Audiotronix, Continental Automotive, GE BE Pvt Ltd and Wipro GE healthcare among others. The proposal of LG Electronics amounting investment of Rs 721.46 crore has been recommended for approval, the official said. He further said the government is reviewing application of Interactivity Broadband Telecommunications with investment to the tune of Rs 6,449 crore and also Lava International with investment proposal of Rs 1,117 crore.

DU's executive council likely to clear credit system
Source: The Times of India; May 27, 2015

The choice-based credit system may find administrative approval in Delhi University soon. It is on the agenda for DU's executive council meeting, scheduled for May 28 - the same day online registration for admission begins. The University Grants Commission's documents on course structure and the system for computing 'credits' and CGPAs (cumulative grade point averages) will be placed for discussion too. Absence of clearance from the councils has been holding up implementation and giving hope to detractors - entire departments have resolved against CBCS - that it's not coming to DU this year..

A memorandum of understanding between Softwar Technology Parks of India (STPI), DU and Indian Electronics and Semiconductor Association (IESA) is also part of the EC's agenda papers. The trio will set up and run what they call an "electropreneur park" at DU's South Campus. It will apparently help make India "self-reliant in EDSM sector" where "EDSM" is electronic system design and manufacturing. The park is "approved and funded by DeitY (Department of Electronics and Information Technology." The Bar Council's show-cause notice to DU, based on their inspection of the law faculty will also be tabled.

Oppo wants to begin manufacturing smartphones in India
Source: Mobiletor; May 27, 2015

Just bringing smartphones to India isn’t enough for Chinese OEMs as most of them are looking to setup their own manufacturing units in the country and Oppo has just joined the bandwagon. The company wants to have its plant up and running by August, which will be used to produce handsets not only for India, but for overseas markets as well. As you’re aware, India is one of the largest smartphone markets and a lot of companies from China and even popular brands such as LG, Samsung, HTC, Asus and Sony have been focusing on quickly bringing their devices into the country. By setting up a manufacturing unit, Oppo will be able to cut the overall costs of importing its devices from other locations. And this will be highly viable mainly since the government has doubled the taxes levied on imported electronics. As per a report from the Economic Times, Oppo’s vice president, Sky Li revealed that India is top priority for its expansion in South Asia. He also went on to say that it has sold around 400000 devices in the country so far.

Avago close to acquiring Broadcom: Sources
Source: Times of India; May 28, 2015

Avago Technologies Ltd is close to an agreement to acquire fellow chipmaker Broadcom Corp, people familiar with the matter said on May 27, in a deal that could boost Avago's clientele of top-tier smartphone companies.

A deal between Avago and Broadcom could come as early as this week, the people said, cautioning that the negotiations had not yet been finalized. The companies did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

Shares of Broadcom soared almost 20% to $56.40 while Avago's rose 9% to $143.29 on May 27 afternoon after the Wall Street Journal first reported on the news. Avago and Broadcom now have market capitalizations of $36 billion and $34 billion respectively.

Irvine, California-based Broadcom makes semiconductors for a variety of products, including set-top boxes, cell phones and network equipment. It is best known for its connectivity chips which integrate Wi-Fi and Bluetooth technology, which are used widely in top-tier smartphones made by Apple Inc and Samsung Electronics Co Ltd.

Emerging Markets Drive Global Smartphone Sales Up 19 Percent: Gartner
Source: INDOlink; May 28, 2015

Led by emerging markets like India, global smartphones sales to end users touched 336 million units in the March quarter, up 19.3 percent from the year-ago period, Gartner said on Wednesday. According to the research firm, over 281.6 million units of smartphones were shipped worldwide in the first quarter of 2015.

"This growth was led by strong smartphone sales in emerging markets (excluding China); the fastest growing regions were emerging Asia/Pacific, Eastern Europe, and the Middle-East and North Africa," Gartner said in a statement.

Due to these high-performing regions, the emerging markets achieved a 40 percent increase in sales during the quarter.

In terms of overall mobile phone market (smartphone and feature phone), sales grew 2.5 percent to 460.2 million units in the reported quarter from 448.9 million units in March 2015 quarter.

Shortage of skilled engineers threatens to ground Make in India flight
Source: One India; May 28, 2015

While launching the Drona School of Engineering Practice, spearheaded by aerospace veteran G Raj Narayan of Radel Group in Bengaluru recently, experts shared some crucial facts.

Speaking to OneIndia on the occasion, Narayan said that Drona is a logical solution to his four-decade-plus experience as an entrepreneur. "What we need today is practicing engineers. We are offering a holistic exposure to engineering. In the aerospace and defence sector, there are very few schools in India to prepare engineers to get ready for the opportunity of Make in India," Narayan said.

M N Vidyashankar, President, India Electronics & Semiconductor Association (IESA), said that India will have to create over 120 million jobs in the near future. "Make in India is the key, but adding engineers into the market without empowering them is dangerous. If we don't skill the nation, we are going to kill the nation," Vidyashankar, a retired IAS officer who had served with the Karnataka government said.

Compiled by IESA Research

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