Touchscreen market to reach $14 billion in 2012
Research services provider Idtechex expects the touchscreen market to reach $14 billion this year, with over 40 per cent mobile phones to be touchenabled. It projects touch penetration in mobile phones to rise to almost total coverage in the next decade. Shipment of tablets with touchscreen technology is expected to reach a hundred million units in 2012. The touchscreen market is expected to triple in the next decade.
Apart from adding touch functionality to more and more commercial consumer devices, the next big topic and opportunity will be the replacement of indium-tin-oxide (ITO), especially in projected capacitive and resistive touchscreens.
Budget disappoints electronics industry
The electronics industry is disappointed with the present Union Budget. Going by the allocations made under various heads for the telecommunications and electronics industry, the industry is doubtful that the promises of the constitution of a National Electronics Mission and National Electronics Board will be kept.
For year 2012-13, the budgetary allocation for telecommunications and electronics industries is Rs 30.51 billion—a marginal increase from the allocation of Rs 30.49 billion in 201112. The allocation for promotion of electronics and IT hardware manufacturing, on the other hand, has been increased from Rs 28.3 million in 2011-12 to Rs 50 million in 2012-13.
The Ministry of Communications and Information Technology spent 33 per cent less than what was budgeted for telecommunications and electronics industries during the current year. In fact, allocations for 2012-13 are lower than the actual expenditure made by the government in 2010-11 under this head.
India will not pursue protectionism policy: Sibal
Allaying the fears of foreign electronics manufacturers, India has said it will not pursue protectionism policy and will give level-playing field to all participants.
“Look at the policies of world around; we are far less protectionist than any other country in the world. There is no question of India becoming protectionist,” Indian telecom minister Kapil Sibal said at Mobile World Congress held in Barcelona, Spain, last month.
The government is in the process of finalising an electronics manufacturing policy that would encourage the use of indigenous equipment and curtail India’s import bill. Sibal said the government is looking to ensure that India’s dependency on imports is reduced over a period to cut trade deficit. If India does not build manufacturing capacity, the import bill in this area alone will swell to $300 billion by 2020, he added.
Upgraded Aakash set for April launch
HRD Minister Kapil Sibal has declared that an upgraded and enhanced version of Aakash tablet will be launched in April. Despite the upgrades, the new version will cost a little over Rs 2000—the price of the original version.
Marketed as Ubislate by Datawind, the tablet will feature a capacitive touchscreen instead of a resistive one. The processor is a Cortex A8 clocked at 700 MHZ. The RAM would also be increased to 512 MB. The tablet will feature a 3200mah battery with a threehour life. The OS for the new Aakash will be Android 2.2 (Froyo). It is specu-