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Research And Development

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Research and Development

September, 2011


The Indian Research & Development (R&D) sector is fast emerging as a major center for cutting-edge R&D projects for global multinationals. ‘India is a strong research nation in its own right and a rising scientific power’, said Senator Kim Carr, Minister for Innovation in Australia.

India’s research sector has tremendous potential for growth and development, according to Boston Consulting Group (BCG).

India is fast emerging as the global R&D hub of the world. Presence of world class institutions, a robust intellectual property regime and a rich talent pool of technical manpower available at a very competitive cost are major factors that are making India a viable destination for global researchers. An ecosystem set up with a positive policy framework and strong R&D focus is pushing India’s position in the global arena.

India-The Global R&D Hub

Given above stated factors, international players are increasingly getting keen on making India as their R&D hub. Some of them are discussed hereafter:

  • Chennai plays a vital role in the successful implementation of Indian operations of the US-based computer hardware major Dell. Chennai has the company’s manufacturing facility, services and R&D centres. Moreover, US-based networking company Force 10 Networks (which has recently been acquired by Dell) also has its R&D centre in Chennai which would be further strengthened by Dell.
  • Indian R&D set-ups have remained the mainstay for Yahoo when it was going through turbulent patch globally. The 2000-people strong Indian operations center is responsible for 20 per cent of Yahoo's total patent filings. Yahoo's vertical intent search technology has been developed by the Bengaluru centre.
  • To meet the demand for affordable housing and ‘green infrastructure’, French cement major, Lafarge, is also considering setting up an R&D facility in India that would develop solutions and products according to market requirements. The company has already tied-up with Indian Institute of Technology (IIT)-Madras, IIT-New Delhi, IIT-Bombay, Indian Institute of Science (IISc) - Bengaluru for carrying out research in concrete quality, life and durability.
  • China Wireless Technologies would confirm its plan to set up an R&D facility in India by March-April 2012 which would entail an investment of about Rs 100 crore (US$ 20.97 million) and employ 300 professionals. According to company officials, its Indian center would facilitate access to US and European markets that would be beyond China and Southeast Asia.

R&D- Key Developments

In a bid to make in-car connectivity more affordable and accessible by millions of consumers across the globe, Ford and Bug Labs have jointly developed a research platform called ‘OpenXC’. OpenXC is based on Bug Labs’ open-source Bug System that would help Ford understand unique market conditions and meet customer demands. Bug Labs’ cloud based service ‘BUGSwarm’ has facilitated this innovation as the application aggregates data from available sources and helps developers align their means with the data to build useful and intelligent applications for consumers.

Korean consumer electronics major Samsung is strengthening its Indian R&D operations to provide localised software solutions for its tablets and smartphones. Roll out of 3G services has further provided opportunity to its Indian R&D center to develop advanced applications. The company said that its Bengaluru R&D facility has devised solutions for local mobile market which includes the Mobile Tracker, Religious Apps, J2ME App Store, T9 Hinglish prediction et al.

Tata Motors has decided to cash on the acquisition of Jaguar Land Rover (JLR) wherein it would develop new vehicles for domestic and international markets using its in-house research and JLR’s expertise. The R&D centers in UK and India would align their efforts to fructify the decision.