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Soon expect to read local Indian newspapers on Made in China touchscreen tablets

June 17, 2011

Having regained each others trust, India and China are showing signs of  concrete investments in each others markets. Reciprocating confidence post Infosys’s largest investment outside India in Shanghai last month, Huawei, said it will invest US$120-150 million to set up its own R&D campus in Bangalore. The Shenzen based telecom equipment provider has planned a total US$2 billion investment in India over the next five years. The Bangalore facility marks its first company-owned research facility outside China. India will be the first country outside China where Huawei will have their own campus. The proposed facility in Bangalore will accommodate the largest number of R&D engineers outside China.

Huawei also said it would introduce 10-12 new smartphone and touchscreen tablets in the Indian market over the next year to fill the increasing demand of being constantly digital. The smartphones will all be 3G compliant and built on the Android 2.2 platform. The touchscreen tablets will complement Huawei’s smart phones which are already being sold in the Indian market under the Huawei brand-name. Further, recognizing the need to localize for the Indian market to be able to sell efficiently, Huawei also plans to customize and retail touchscreen tablets by early next year.

Price is one important factor but it is more about the utility,” Vishal Tripathi, principal research analyst at Gartner Research told Mint. “In India, it is more about utility. Till the time it does not move from secondary device to a primary device and you don’t have India-specific apps, I don’t think tablets will take off in a big way.” While the Huawei tablets will be manufactured in China, most software components for the tablets will be developed out of the Bangalore facility.

Huawei Devices, Huawei  Technology’s Indian arm sold 25 million units in mobile broadband, home convergence and smart phone segments in India since 2004. It expects 10 to 15 percent growth during the current financial year. The company’s revenues last fiscal were US$490 million. India contributes 10 percent to Huawei’s global revenues of US$28 billion. About 150 million handsets were sold in India last year while the forecast for the current year is 170 million. Huwaei aims to capture five to seven percent of the 38 percent market share owned by smartphone above the price of Rs.3,000 by 2013 and 15 percent by 2015.

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