Qualcomm has expanded its ‘Design in India’ initiative by supporting developments in the areas of rural technology, biometric devices, payment terminals, agriculture, medical and smart infrastructure. The new programme is constructed on the model of the first challenge that brought three winner companies, namely Carnot Technologies, iFuture Robotics and Uncanny Vision.
“Qualcomm is passionate about innovation,” said John Han, senior vice president and general manager, Qualcomm Technology Licensing. “With Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s vision to transform India into a digitally empowered society, Qualcomm is committed to offering support to help India’s ecosystem to grow and cater to increasing consumer choices.”
Originally launched in December 2015, the ‘Design in India’ programme shortlisted ten startups in June 2016 and brought the three most talented ones from its first edition. For 2017, the San Diego-based company is planning to have 16 participants.
“After seeing the overpowering response during the 2016 edition, we decided to go ahead with the second year, as well as expanding the number of participants Qualcomm nurtures through this programme from 10 to 16 participants in 2017,” said Jim Cathey, senior vice president and president, Asia-Pacific and India, Qualcomm.
The participants were so far majorly using proprietary technologies. However, with the increase in open source developments in the country, the next phase is likely to bring some community-based solutions as well.
New Innovation Lab in Hyderabad
In addition to expanding the initiative, Qualcomm has established a new Innovation Lab in Hyderabad and planned to broaden the existing unit in Bengaluru. The company is set to support Indian mobile phone and IoT vendors through the Innovation Labs by providing localised technologies such as advanced camera, audio and RF designs.
Qualcomm has been working with the government bodies in India to offer localisation support to engineers. Furthermore, the company is participating in the Digital India initiatives to bolster digital adoption in the country.