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As I read this article, I lost myself with Steve Jobs. I, still, remember when I first read about Steve Jobs in iCon. I had heard about Steve earlier but the book made me fall in live with his leadership style. I always hoped that someday I could have made to one Apple Conference and meet this iconic personality, who has so much to offer with his individual presence: management, presentation, leadership, perseverance and many more. As Steve Jobs announced his second indefinite medical leave, Apple shares were bound to take a beating and I feel it should not have surprised many other like me. This post is about analyzing few points that the article tries to address about Steve Jobs and the POWER. As I have consistently mentioned in my earlier posts, we, Indians, are little bad with powers and History has proved it again and again. Most of us have a bad notion of POWER and for us, POWER is just another way to utter sentences like ” Do you know who I am or I am your —————- (You fill in the blanks and bang you are that) and mark your presence without any personal significance. Individuals find ways to stamp their authority everytime.

But lets come back to the article, I am referring to. The first power lesson the article points to is :

“power can result from sheer drive, persistence, resilience, and the ability to tolerate conflict”

Steve Jobs is definitely an inspirational figure for the above lesson. I agree with the author when he mentions that Jobs persisted, sticking with his same focus on the user interface, his fundamental vision of ease of use and cool design, but also learned from the setbacks. People who would have seen “Pirates of Silicon Valley” would know the history that Apple was once written off the radar and so does Jobs. But he held on to his dream and vision only to come back strongly later. Remember his last turnaround, he was sick. The whole world wrote him off, media said Jobs is gone but he again came back only to introduce another killer product – iPad. So hold on and hold tight to your dreams.

The second power lesson the article points to is:

power can come through the projection of an image of strength that may not yet be the reality”

Remember, what apple store has done to various software developers. It has given a platform for enthusiastic software developers to pursue tehir passion yet not only make money but also become famous. Stanford did not think at all to introduce a course in its computer science curriculum that promotes students to develop apple software application as part of its course. Pulse, an iPad application, is the recent success and latest sensation resulting from it. Android and Nokia followed the store concept of success with their own stores. But Apple did it first. So, powerful people project an image of strength and sustainability.

The third power lesson the article points to is:

“likeability is not a prerequisite to power”

Great and the one thing that I personally love the most. It is not necessary that all powerful people are likeable but as a matter of fact, very few are. It is a very well known fact that Steve Jobs is sometimes heavily criticized for his attitude and actions. One of the example that the article cites is a prime example: “Being Steved”. Being Steved is the official term for Apple employees getting fired by Steve Jobs. In the incident mentioned in the article, when the employee was packing up his things after getting fired by Steve Jobs, Steve Jobs comes by and inquires. And says, you are re-hired. I have personally heard of stories about people who were fired by Steve Jobs only to leverage on the opportunity of getting fired by Steve Jobs to make it big in their life.

Bottom line is: Apple is a success and a lot of its credit goes to Steve Jobs. He is a visionary person, may not be liked by all but he is a successful figure who knew how to make his own ways. Not to forget, his charismatic presence only puts the tagline that we see on Apple products. Personally, I feel this time the medical leave might last a little bit longer and may be a good strategy for Apple to prepare its successor while the market accepts the change and accepts the new Apple as we love today.

Source Article: http://blogs.hbr.org/cs/2011/01/steve_jobs_a_study_in_power.html

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Ohh yes guys, the IPO of Micromax might hit the Indian market soon. Do you know Micromax? Honestly, I was not aware of this brand unless some of my friends and colleagues bought the mobiles of Micromax. Very few people know and in fact, even I was surprised to know that Micromax is the largest selling mobile handset in India. And the most amazing story of its success is: it has done so in a very short period of 3 years. Today, it is valued at $1 Bn. As far as I have heard about the Micromax from my friends, they say one prefers Micromax because it provided dual SIM support, qwerty interface at an amazingly low cost. Yes, low cost was its selling point and as I have discussed earlier on this blog, no matter what technology you provide and what features you give, we, Indians have just one first question: What is the price? And here is where I feel Micromax is a winner. I was not surprised to know that Micromax has gained its popularity in such a short period of time and captured 5% of the Indian mobile market, as reports suggest.

So, what does it mean to us?

  • Don’t stop dreaming and dreaming big. Remember 3 years back Nokia, Motorola, Samsung and few others were household names. Introducing itself at that time and emerging as the leading player is one of the greatest example of living a life of dreams for Micromax. kudos to all the whole team.
  • Entrepreneurs don’t fear. The believe in themselves more than anyone does. And Micromax proved it with its valuation.
  • Hard work, Focus and Determination are the key to success. Its the combination of all these factors that today Micromax is going for an IPO.
  • Ideas with customers in mind matter the most. I believe what clicked for Micromax is their approach to the Indian market. They just combined the idea of iPhone, cost factor plus the Indian attitude of shifting telecom providers to suit to the cheapest calling rates at that instant of time. Apple did not lunch iPhone in India and when it did, the cost was too high that it could even be anywhere near to success. Blackberry was not in market. And Micromax launched itself at just the right time with the correct attitude.

So, guys keep dreaming and believe in them. You never know when your Idea could be the IPO of the Indian Economy!!!

Sources: http://trak.in/tags/business/2011/01/10/micromax-ipo-stock-markets/

http://micromaxinfo.com/

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US Holidays recorded a record sales in the holidays: a whooping $32.6 bn. It is a great news especially when the economy has been struggling a lot. So, it’s definitely a great news for the business.

I visited US in 2207 just after Thanksgiving and during the New Year. I must tell that the deals during Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year were definitely very appealing. So, I almost returned from US in a bankrupt state. but I need to blame myself and that time. First I was fairly new in my job and had hardly any savings. But what is defining the sales today is ONLINE and that is what is more exciting than anything else. Consumers don’t fear to spend money online and trust the products deliver online. There are definitely few benefits of online buying: we save a lot of money by not driving to and fro to the store, we save a lot of time by not going on a shopping. Rather I feel it takes less time to buy something online. Moreover, it is easy to view the feedbacks and reviews of products online, which is easily searchable. So, with a right kind of research, one can almost snatch a great deal of his own and no other time can beat the price than the holiday season.

On the contrast, I feel that Indian consumers are yet to embrace the online buying system. There is still so much resistance among people to buy online. I don’t have the data but if anyone can start looking for it, I am quite confident that it would not much different. Why? First, Indian consumers don’t trust the online shopping. secondly, we are too emotional people that we believe that we do better deals when we are in front of another person. And by dealing I mean the power of bargaining. I will not be surprised if any survey could affirm this. We believe in relationships more. Third and most important thing, we believe in buying things at the cheapest price possible. I would really hope that some consultancy or some MBA students could do this study. Bring a same product (lets say a car) and show it to people in different countries. I cannot comment on the psychology of people of other countries but I can definitely say that the first question that an Indian might ask is: how much it would cost me? So, it is not surprising that why small cars are so popular in India. Basically, it is not that Indians are environment friendly, it is just that we are way too price-conscious. Therefore, one can see all products having small variants available in India: shampoo and soaps to cars and houses.

I believe that the future is going to belong to the online sales. There is no denying that companies like Google and Facebook (don’t forget speculations on recent Facebook’s valuation of $50 bn) are generating such huge revenues from online advertising only. But the question would be to build credibility and confidence in the minds of the consumer. And I also believe that there could not be any better medium to do so than social networking sites like twitter and Quora. Secondly, understanding the psychology of the consumer would go a long way in the pricing and positioning the product in the a country’s market.

Source: http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2011/01/07/BUQS1H5C84.DTL

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Today marks the day when Motorola officially splits into two independent companies: Motorola Mobility and Motorola Solutions. Personally, I worked with Motorola in its research team during my internship way back in 2007. As a company, I have always admired it but deep inside me felt during my short tenure of 6 months that there was something wrong. After Moto Razr, none of the mobile phones did well and it lost the battle to smartphone such as iPhone.

I have always admired Motorola for its innovation. They were the pioneers of mobile technology. I remember the classic case study during my graduate studies: the classic case of failure of brick-size Motorola phones. I feel Motorola failed to learn from its mistakes. Constant innovation is the only change that every technology company has to embrace in order to stay in the market. Todays market is only for the fittest but the fit does not sustain for long. So keep innovating.

Coming back to the split, here are the key take-aways:

  • Motorola shareholders of record on Dec. 21 will receive one share of Mobility for every eight shares of Motorola Inc. they already held. Motorola Inc. shares will then go through a 1-for-7 reverse split and become Motorola Solutions shares.
  • Motorola is also selling off a division that makes network equipment for cell phone companies to Nokia Siemens Networks.
  • After the split, Motorola Mobility had $2.9 billion in sales in the most recent quarter, compared with $1.9 billion for the Motorola Solutions segments. However, the $321 million in operating earnings at Solutions was stronger than the $3 million that Mobility made.
  • Solutions will continue to be based in Schaumburg, I’ll., while Mobility will take up a temporary home in nearby Libertyville, Ill. Motorola officials have said that it may later move its headquarters team to San Diego, the San Francisco area or Austin, Texas.

I wish both the babies a very happy birthday and we will try to revisit them again on their birthdays to see their growth.

Source: http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/n/a/2011/01/03/financial/f122752S81.DTL

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This year, I would like to devote one article every alternate day to discuss about an interesting article. I hope to stick to the idea and am going to give my best for the same. We begin the tradition with today’s Wall Street article on Verizon.

Verizon announced to launch a set of Android powered 4G mobile phones later this year. With AT&T, claimed to be the largest and fastest network available in US, expected to launch the 4G in the mid of the year. I feel this year is going to be the year of Android. Tablets and mobile phones are going to rule the market and most of them can adopt the Android software as their operating systems. I wouldn’t be amazed if the year 2011 is named after the “Android Year”. So, do watch out for more trendy smartphones, tablets. With more smartphones and tablets, the war of network is going to get bitter. In US, we expect the war to be between AT&T and Verizon, but with the emergence of new players such as Spring and T-mobile. I feel we need to take a very close look at the upcoming Las Vegas Electronics show.

As the world gears up for the 4G network, the definition of 4G network remains kind of fuzzy. Initially, when we were expecting that the 4G technology is with us, the technology was renamed to Long Term Evolution (Basic LTE and LTE Advanced). Market and technology has struggled to define the 4G technology perfectly.

But lets not get into that debate. I will tell you couple of things that excites me in the 4G:

  • Smartphones are really going to get SMART. How SMART – We have to wait and watch. But definitely a lot of research and new gadgets are going to be with us.
  • With tablets and smartphone wars getting fierce, will other companies like Apple join the approach of Google to compete with Android. Would be interesting to watch but I would like to bet on Android now.
  • Speeds are going to KILLER. 100Mbits/s for trains and cars and 1Gbits/s for stationary.
  • Gaming and Entertainment will reach a new level of experience. Users are going to help irrespective of what they pay for.
  • Secure all-IP based mobile broadband solution for mobile phones, laptops and tablets.
  • Streamlined Multimedia is going to be the buzzword. May be a beginning of a great era of YouTube like companies.

No matter if it is 3G or 4G, I believe that the year 2011 is going to be the year of smartphones and tablets.

Source: http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748703820904576057983626926892.html

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/4G

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