Q: What would be the ratio of your customers w.r.t. Indian firms versus MNCs based out of India versus global clients?
A: That’s a very difficult question to answer. After globalisation, nothing is truly local. If we were to profile our clients based on this, we will have equal mix of:
1. Indian firms run by Indian businesses and catering to Indian market
2. Indian firms funded by foreign VCs or firms and catering to foreign markets
3. MNCs in India catering to global market
4. MNCs in India catering to Indian market
5. MNCs outside India catering to Indian market
6. MNCs outside India catering to global market
7. Last but not the least, Indian firms with Indian finance catering to Third world market, including India
Q: Could you elaborate on the balance of user interface design for the hardware and software part?
A: Our Key segment currently is IT firms. Having said that, till few years back, we had worked a lot with electronic firms. The global trend and movement has taken us to IT from Electronics. As such, if you see from Industrial Revolution till date, the world moved from Mechanical to Electronic to Digital. We are now in Digital revolution and most of the electronic firms will be contributing to it in some way or the other. For example, we do know Intel as a chip manufacturer, but ultimately it supports Digital aspect by not just powering consumer products, but also enhancing the user experience through solutions such as graphic accelerator. When Intel didn’t yet reach there, it was Nvidia all the way, but Intel got there with a grand vision.
Q: What are some of the customisations that a company makes when designing products especially for the Indian user?
A: Indian users and Indian conditions make sure that the market has to customise products for Indian demands to remain competitive. Let’s start with the basic customisations. Indian hands are smaller than the world average, so that oft-neglected point has to be addressed.
India is a very dusty place with high heat and humidity. It’s my personal opinion that the Mobile Market has not yet customised a model to suit Indian needs. If I were to do it, I would make sure to include adjustments for the average Indian.
In fact, on the terminal we did for Vision Tech, on the data processing terminal, we installed poly-carbonate caps on the keys. Since it’s typically used by bus drivers and in parking lots, where dust is a big issue the wordings on the keys were getting erased.
Another example is with bills and pay slips. Most of the transaction terminals use thermal printers. Thus, on hot days, the wordings on the bills get erased rather quickly leading to problems of data retention. We designed a terminal which had an impact printer. The printer is heavier but the data doesn’t get erased. In India retaining the bills is very important, but if the data on the bill is erased, what use would the paper serve?