Archive for the ‘Netcore’ Category

A few days back, Rajesh Jain, MD, Netcore Solutions Pvt. Ltd. based in Mumbai, started a discussion on Facebook on “Mass Market Internet” talking about on the options we have for getting the millions of potential users on Internet who today either don’t have a medium to access Internet or a promising application to attract their loyalty. I wrote to him about my thoughts and below is the portion of email that I wrote to him:-

Internet Users:
Talking about Internet users, from my perspective there can be two broad category of Internet users.
 
The first ones are those people who make a consicous effort to connect themselves to the Internet and use applications delivered via the web. These are the users who are the only types of Internet users existing in India today. However the second category, which form the majority, will be those users who will be consumers of applications delivered via the web, but they may or may not realize about their connectivity to the web. From my perspective they are still Internet users as they still consume applications via the web. For them its like a service through cellphone, if you have the network you can make a call, if you have the connection you can access the application. The second category of users are the users who are illiterate or lack computer knowledge. But from this vast majority a sizeable number of them do use cellphones. For these users educating them of computers is a lengthy and expensive process, probably more expensive than setting up the Internet access infrastructure in place. For these users, a computer keyboard is more complicated to use rather than the keyboard of a cellphone or the remote control of a TV.
To get the numbers of Internet users in India to a higher point, it is important that the second category of users come online and start consuming applications regardless they know about it or not.

Medium of access:
Internet penetration not only in remote places or villages, but in small and medium towns in India is still a bottle neck. In these places, the dial-up is still the primary medium of access. Also in some of the places, the telephone exchanges have very limited capacity and the lines are prone to noise and interference. In such places, better Internet experience can be achieved through satellite Internet. At least better than dial up.

Access Device:
Television and the cellphones are the devices which have the most penetration in our country and these two are the devices, which are capable of delivering applications via Internet.
 
 
Type of Application:
From my perspective, interactive and entertainment applications will be the primary driving factor for Internet usage. Today, social networking sites are the most visited websites as they let you interact with other users in a variety of way. Even though video hosting is expensive, there are many sites which provide access to entertainment videos as there is a tremendous demand for it.
 
So what would be the type of applications.

Example 1. Consider a house or community which has a satellite television and Internet delivered via satellite (the connection can be a DTH connection). Apart from the standard channels, the user can tune into Netflix Internet TV by just click of a remote.
 
Example 2. Emails has been used via Internet since a long time now, consider a service which lets users send small emails as text messages to cellphone. So I can send an email to <mydadnumber>@provider.com which actually goes to an application on the email server which in turn splits the email (if needed) and sends it as an SMS to the end user, when the end user replies (keeping the subject intact) his reply is converted back in to an email and delivered in to the inbox of the original sender.

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After a really long break from blogging, I am back with a good news for all the mobile gurus in India. India, the global IT center and the hub of innovative ideas has a reason to be proud of. We have a first Indian company to be recognized in GSMA mobile innovation awards and its none other than my previous company Netcore Solutions Pvt. Ltd. where I had a fabulous 3 and half years of my career. All credit goes to the mentor, founder and MD of Netcore Mr. Rajesh Jain, who always trusted his vision and never gave up in spite of number of challenges and problems.

A complete coverage on this story is available here.

This achievement for Netcore was not at all a cake walk for Netcore. Given the numerous unpredictable problems, especially the one created by mobile operators trying to block mytoday.mobi and forced Netcore’s service provider to shutdown the 676787 short code through which Netcore used to provide SMS services. The operators were threatened the rate at which Netcore’s services were becoming popular and tried to impose an unfair business act. They couldn’t tolerate some one offering information to users at very low rates and wanted to keep the whole pie for themselves. Still today the operators charge you as much as 6 Rs. for a piece of information, which is your right to have it. This monopolistic strategy of the operators didn’t work, Netcore came back online pretty soon and after that there was no way any one could stop it. The result … its in front of you.

Even today, my operators block http://www.mytoday.mobi on their GPRS services. If you didn’t knew about mytoday.mobi till now, then try it on your GPRS enabled handset and if its blocked, then ask your operator to unblock it. Trust me there are loads of content and services which you always wanted to keep handy.

Disclaimer: The views expressed here are solely my views and are not that of Netcore. I don’t represent the company. Any news or information about the company are available through company press release.