The Indian Tech Story
I was in the office cafe having coffee with my colleagues. They were discussing a TV show. I had just read a post on the Microsoft blog that they have made the .NET platform open source.
I felt excited by the possibilities for the future. I told them this news animatedly. They were people working on the same platform. Their reaction was, “Who cares?”. I was surprised and disappointed as they went back to discussing the TV show.
Telling a story and making people take notice about tech has been a problem in India. People are generally not interested unless they want to install Candy Crush on their phones.
People are mildly interested these days because smartphone is almost a utility now. More and more people are using tech products. Which is very good but the range of use is fairly limited.
I like how more and more apps are services are being made available in the market. The questions is, are people using them? You would find a definitive set of apps on every phone. The urban population is using many social apps.
But when I talk to people about apps or technology, the general response has been pretty dull. “Why would I want to know this?” or “I don’t want to use it.” is a general response before even I start explaining.
I tried starting a website or forum where people can write their experiences. But people were not in favor of writing. Most of them asked questions like, “But what would I write?”, “I don’t have the technical knowledge”.
Podcast is not yet a viable Medium in India. Number of people who’d like listening to a podcast and that too about tech wouldn’t be a large one.
I work in the software industry and I have seen many many people being disinterested in general tech. I can understand the desire to finish to workday Still, the overall desire to know is pretty less.
People outside the industry see the insiders as tech expert. Well, you might not know everything but, some basic tips and tricks might spur some interest in others. Of course, the work software engineers do is different than consumer tech. Though, the wires get entangled somewhere. Word of mouth would help a lot. Some discussions, debates and information are always helpful.
I have to say media has improved the situation a lot. Back in the day in my town there would be one tiny news about technology in a week. That too didn’t feature many times. But I see the tech news more frequently occur in the local newspaper. They even have the tech column in the Sunday edition.
Many English newspapers have a dedicated page on tech every alternate day. E-commerce has changed the way shopping was used to be here. So I see many informative articles on different kind of companies.
There are separate technology sections in the websites like Times Of India, NDTV, Hindustan Times, etc. And luckily the number of pure tech websites or blogs have been increasing. TechTree, Tech2, BGR, Medianama are to name a few. I have seen plenty of TV shows who review the phones or different gadgets.
To get tech out of just the nerd community, more ways of information supply is needed. YouTube has been a good way for tutorial videos. Involvement of celebrities beyond the brand ambassadors would definitely help in people taking notice. Number of articles and shows in regional languages would boost up a lot of awareness.
Apart from traditional media there can be on road shows or exhibitions of technology for non-geek community is a very good option. Also, India’s internet community is growing fast and large, there are options like Twitter, Facebook campaigns to have more apps and services reach people.
The Indian Tech story is half-told yet, many haven’t paid the attention. But then like many movies, things change in the second half.