HP re-ignites WiFi spark

By : |August 29, 2003 0

NEW DELHI: Hewlett Packard (HP) India has announced that it would be working with other industry majors to create awareness and expand the ‘hotspot’ base in India.

According to HP’s VP for Personal Systems Group, Ravi Swaminathan, the company is in dialogue with several partners–including Intel, Microsoft and Cisco–to create a WiFi environment and infrastructure in the country. “India can expect a lot of industry action on this front over the next three months,” he said. However, he declined to give any further details of the initiative. He was addressing the media during the launch of nx9000, HP’s WiFi ready notebook.

Talking to Cyber News Service during the occasion, Swaminathan said that the decision to launch a notebook integrated with the 802.11b PCI card is aimed at breaking out of the vicious ‘chicken and the egg’ situation. “The country has already moved towards the direction of creating hotspots, what one needs is the right tool to go completely mobile,” he added.

According to him, while HP already had WiFi offerings–the N610 and N620 with multi-port options, Centrino-based NX700 and the Tablet PC TC100–most of these were premium products and had a price tag of a lakh plus. “With the price tag of Rs 96,000, nx9000 has been optimized both for mobility and value,” Swaminathan explained adding that, “Beside helping increase productivity and improve performance, the price point at which we are launching nx9000 would make staying connected both professionally and personally a very attractive value proposition.”

Talking about the target client base and the go to market strategy, Swaminathan said that the product has been designed to cater to the needs of executives and professionals across businesses and industries–international Indians to be precise. “These are the people who travel extensively across the globe and are highly exposed to IT-enabled environment. These are also the people who need information anytime anywhere in real time and hence this is the segment we would be initially be targeting,” he said.

The company aims at leveraging the wins with this “highly mobile international Indians” segment to broad base its customer base in future. No wonder it had roped in actor-director, Rahul Bose to represent the segment during the launch.

Swaminathan and his team, however, declined to talk about the volume they would be targeting during this fiscal. “The desktop to notebook ratio in India is 40:1 as against 6:1 average in Asia pacific and 3:1 average of world. This offers us a huge opportunity more so because, unlike three years back, notebooks have actually posted very good sales growth,” he said.


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