Microsoft India chairman Bhaskar Pramanik says Nokia will make us stronger

Bhaskar Pramanik (chairman of Microsoft India), desires to change the perception that Microsoft is all about Office & Windows. In an interview with J Srikant, Pramanik said they expects the company to speed up growth on the back of mobile devices, greater penetration of touchscreens & services around the company’s application. Here are the edited excerpts:
Regrettably, they are typecast as someone who does spell check, creates a PowerPoint presentation. It is much more beyond that. Excel for example has also evolved over time & I think most users only use 20-30 % of its capabilities. When people think of Office, they think about Word or simple spreadsheet or PowerPoint. But the fact is today Office is about content creation. & when you have a share option, it becomes a collaborative device.

Windows 8 & Windows 8.1 work best on a touchscreen surroundings. But the penetration of such devices is still low in India?
In case you look at Diwali sales this year, 26% of the devices in the retail stores were touchscreens, that is up from 5% to 10%. In case you look at January to March, it is going to be that much higher, including tablets. What they saw in Diwali, it was more convertibles. Going forward, it is going to be a plethora of tablets of 8-inch & 10-inch screens. You will also see convertibles, ultrabooks, desktop PCs also moving to touch. & one time you have done touch, you don’t need a non-touch device anymore . So it is a query of adoption & trying it out.

Apart from application development & operating systems, are there any other platforms, Microsoft will focus on in India like cloud? In case you think about the application market, devices & cloud, they address everything, that is, hardware, application & services.

As for the consumer, they have only touched a tip of the iceberg. They are trying to grow muscle here & with Nokia’s acquisition, they will be even stronger. They are excellent in PCs but in tablets they have a small & insignificant market share. They must grow that.

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