Jag Venugopal's Blog

February 21, 2011

Smartphones for the masses

Filed under: Project Management — Jag @ 8:00 pm

Back when Palm was in its death throes, I had suggested that they should attempt to corner the market for affordable smartphones by producing one that could be sold without a contract for somewhere around $200. Unfortunately, Palm’s honchos don’t read my blog and didn’t take my advice. The result is that Palm was purchased for salvage value, primarily its WebOS platform.

There is at least one company that did what I was hoping. Virgin Mobile now sells an LG Optimus V smartphone with a recent Android version (2.2/Froyo) for $150, without a contract. A monthly plan with ‘unlimited’ data and 300 voice minutes is $25. The phone itself is well built and and feature-rich. It may not have the fastest CPU, the most memory or the latest screen technology, but the software is fairly recent, and performance across the board is just fine. In my testing, about the only negative I could find was abysmal battery life. But from what I could find out from the Internets through the Google, that is a problem endemic to all Android phones.

India’s national language

Filed under: India — Jag @ 6:30 am
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Quick… what’s India’s national language? The one that people from the “untouchable classes” aspire to learn, to move themselves up the social ladder? How about the language that is the medium of instruction for the children of almost every nativist politician, be he in Maharashtra or Uttar Pradesh? In which language is most of Bollywood’s business conducted?

The answer is…. English.

About 5-6 years ago, I had subscribed to Zee TV USA. There used to be an ad for an Indian clairvoyant that ran thus… “Are you phacing diphiculty in your carrier…”, intending to direct such individuals to a certain “Pundit Maharaj”. In today’s India, most Indians’ “carrier diphiculties” are solved by proficiency in English. Faith in the Queen’s language appears to be a better path to success than trusting Indian shamans.

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