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Vodafone picks up a 10% stake in Bharti

Submitted by Karthik on 29 October, 2005 - 20:01

UK based Vodafone has bought a 10.05% stake in Bharti Televentures Limited - owners of the brand Airtel - India's largest mobile operator. The deal worth USD 1.5 billion, is said to be the largest ever foreign investment in India, and marks Vodafone's second foray into the Indian market. The British giant had previously invested in RPG Cellular, but sold its stake to Aircel in 2003.

Incidentally, Vodafone's current CEO is an Indian - Arun Sarin.

Complete Story:

Politics poses new threat to software/BPO industry

Submitted by Dinesh on 21 October, 2005 - 11:01

Bloomberg, among others is carrying a story highlighting recent incidents where the tendrils of politicisation (the repercussions of which are well known) seem to be creeping into the Indian software and BPO industry. The article highlights the ongoing Devegowda vs. Narayana Murthy row, and recent calls for unions in the software industry.

Full story: Bloomberg.

More Sub-10k PCs hit the market

Submitted by Karthik on 16 October, 2005 - 14:00

The last week has seen HCL and Sahara Computers both announcing personal computers priced under the Rs.10000 mark.

However, just as with the Xenitis group's Aamar/Apna/Namma PC lines, these prices are all pre-tax, pre-shipping, pre-freight, pre-handling, pre-forwarding, pre-insurance, pre-installation, pre-... The final price balloons up to somewhere between the 12k and 15k mark.

The above prices include a Linux distribution, usually RHEL. Factoring in a legal Windows XP (starter editions or otherwise) installation will push the final price bracket even higher.

Intel to launch hardy rural PCs

Submitted by Karthik on 7 October, 2005 - 09:26

Intel is all set to offer PCs customised to withstand rural conditions in India. The computers are said to come with special screens and filters to handle extreme heat and dust conditions, and will also have the option of being powered using a standard car battery to ensure that the lack of power is not an issue. Coupled with Intel's interest in promoting WiMAX everywhere, it probably makes sense to assume that these PCs will be supplied Wireless-enabled.

No prices have been announced thus far, but the PCs are scheduled to be launched by the end of this year.

India pushing for semiconductor fab plants

Submitted by Karthik on 6 October, 2005 - 10:38

An interesting Reuters article on the state of the semiconductor industry outlines plans to lure AMD, Intel et. al. to set up their massive fabrication plants in India. India has a growing number of design firms, including Intel's Whitefield centre, but thus far has apparently not had the infrastructure or governmental support for setting up the massive 4 billion dollar fab units.

XP starter edition - Rs.1000 tag

Submitted by Karthik on 2 October, 2005 - 23:17

Microsoft have decided to price the localised Windows XP starter edition at Rs.1000 (minimum). This India-specific edition will (eventually) provide language support in nine Indian languages besides English.

Microsoft is of the view that the low price edition will help curb the rampant piracy in India (reported as 73%) and allow sub-10k computers to be shipped with a legal copy of Windows.

The Windows XP starter edition, while providing enhanced localisation, has not had much in the form of favourable press, due to the serious limitations placed upon it. A related story was covered on quillem last week.

Microsoft pushing XP starter edition

Submitted by Karthik on 23 September, 2005 - 01:56

Microsoft has announced the availability of its localised, low cost, stripped down version of Windows XP - Windows XP Starter Edition. The announcement came after discussions between the Redmond giant and a GOI delegation led by IT minister Dayanidhi Maran. Other points of note from the meetings included the bundling the Windows operating system along with broadband and PC packages not unlike this one.

Read more: Rediff, Economic Times.


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