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Thursday, 13 July 2006 18:06

Texas Instruments to set up new R&D centre in India

ImageAfter the success of its R&D centre in Bangalore, semiconductor leader Texas Instruments has announced a new R&D centre in Chennai.

TI was the first multinational to enter India in 1985 and set up its development centre in Bangalore.  That was a time when remote software development was unheard of in India and when the country was still under a regulatory license rule.

The Chennai centre was announced after a meeting between Dayanidhi Maran, Union Minister for IT and Communications and Gilles Delfassy, senior vice-president, wireless terminals business unit, Texas Instruments.

Maran pointed out how the continued support of open technology standards will enable India to reach its goal of 500 million mobile phone subscribers by 2010.

“The Indian government has been pursuing with the handset manufacturers to develop low-cost phones (sub-$20 phones). The initiative taken by Texas Instruments and other manufacturers like Motorola and Nokia is very important, as our Indian Department of Telecommunications (DoT) is now focusing to increase the teledensity in rural India. An entry-level phone at $20 (Rs 1,000) will make a big difference," Maran said.

Today, TI is betting big on its mobile single chip solution on the LoCosto platform, which is expected to bring down mobile handset prices to sub $20. Low-cost handsets based on this platform are expected to be launched in the Indian market this year.

The mobile phone growth in India is nothing short of a phenomenon, and the wireless industry waits for India's next move and the semiconductor policy for hardware manufacture because of the impact it will have on the future of mobile phones.

"Today, there is a huge opportunity to connect the unconnected, as the majority of Indians do not have access to communications services. TI has been committed to India for over 20 years, and I'm pleased to say that we are escalating our existing wireless design presence in recognition of the importance of India to the global wireless market,” Delfassy said.

Choosing efficient, cost-effective mobile technology and the ability to stay at the forefront of innovation will be critical to meet India's burgeoning wireless growth. Two open technologies that offer great promise for India are GSM and DVB-H.

"Open standards such as GSM and DVB-H technologies for mobile phones will provide the market with greater choice,better value and more opportunities for innovation,” Delfassy explained.

According to market analyst iSuppli, GSM is the predominant technology in India. This year, the GSM growth rate in India is outpacing all other competing technologies. With a natural 3G migration path to GPRS/EDGE/UMTS, GSM offers an inherent advantage in driving this growth.

“GSM has proven to be a great fit for India because it offers choice in terms of products and services available. GSM not only offers entry-level phones for those who have never owned a mobile phone, it also provides mid-range feature phones and smartphones for the growing middle class. GSM stimulates innovation and open competition and ensures that consumers have easy access to a broad choice of operators, seamless roaming and billing across networks and the most cost-efficient handsets on the market," said Delfassy.

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