It has been a remarkable year for the country, a year of renewed momentum in transforming India’s growth trajectory. The journey toward a digitally empowered and inclusive economy has begun and I am excited to see how this unfolds and takes shape in the New Year.
As we look forward to exciting times, it is important to take a moment to reflect on the year gone by. India embarked upon an ambitious odyssey to boost economic growth and find solutions to the bottlenecks. In line with Prime Minister Modi’s vision of a Digital India, the government set course to create a conducive environment in the country, giving the much-needed fillip to manufacturing, start-ups and innovation spheres. With technology’s undisputed role in unlocking the limitless possibilities, we, at Microsoft, are proud to be an integral part of this growth path.
In the era of connected devices and infinite computing power, technology’s crucial role remains undisputed. However, what will ensure that technology is defining and shaping the future is unbridled innovation combined with digital inclusion. The true measure of success will only be achieved when technology’s prowess reaches each one of us in the country and covering the last mile is no more a distant dream.
As we move into 2016, there are a few key areas that I believe will define the future for all of us.
Mobility of experience
This is an era where computing has become much more ubiquitous and across the world, customers seek computing devices and apps which are natural, personal and predictive. As we move ahead, computing will be everywhere. And, what is going to be key will be the mobility of the human experience through all of this computing in our lives. There are going to be no digital boundaries at all with the computing fabric that surrounds us. That is really where technology will go in the coming times. At Microsoft, we are building the best place to experience these cloud-connected services, with a device platform that delights people at work, at play and beyond. Windows is that platform that will radically simplify the act of interacting with any computing device or application and it will help bring our services, Xbox Live and our first-party gaming efforts across PC, console, mobile and new categories like HoloLens, to billions of people.
Moving to the cloud
An organisation is only as agile as its platform. And, around the world, organisations big and small, have realised this and are rapidly moving to the cloud to achieve more, faster. Similarly in India, a significant shift is about to begin as enterprises realise that cloud computing provides a secure, efficient and cost-effective alternative to traditional on-premises systems. As we move forward, we expect the power of the cloud to manifest in many more broad ways across the entire fabric of Indian businesses and organisations. And to put the infinite power of cloud computing to work for India’s development, Microsoft has launched services from local datacentres which use the next-generation infrastructure, data and developer services, in the most secure and safe environment.We are the only company building out a hyper-scale public cloud while also meeting customer needs for private cloud and hybrid solutions. We are confident that local datacentres will accelerate adoption of public cloud services by government departments, state-owned agencies, banks and financial institutions in India, enabling them to do more and achieve more in today’s mobile-first, cloud-first world.
Unleashing the power of data
With the proliferation of data in today’s connected world, organisations need a way to transform data into action. This is perhaps one of the most unique advantages of Microsoft Cloud. It helps businesses take advantage of one of their core assets—data. And the only way for an organisation to attain competitive advantage and differentiation is by converting this data into business decisions so they can be more agile and responsive. Capturing the world’s imagination are Microsoft’s Power BI and Machine Learning that are helping businesses worldwide reimagine possibilities and fuel innovation. This is very relevant in India, where we can leverage this technology across industries including healthcare, education, e-commerce, automobiles and BFSI, to enable large scale knowledge acquisition, model user intention, optimise the ecosystem as well as solve real, societal issues.
Cybersecurity against modern, real-life risks
With an explosion of Internet-connected devices today, what we see is that services and data have to be accessible from nearly everywhere on any device. Simultaneously, cyber threats will continue to grow rapidly and evolve in both scope and sophistication. As per Microsoft’s Digital Crime Unit data, India is among top 3 countries in malware infections across the globe. Hence, security becomes pivotal to customers who seek stronger data protection from modern security risks. And so, we will continue to witness a global, collaborative effort that meets today’s needs and prepares us for the future; both imagined and unforeseen. At Microsoft, security is a core focus and strengthening this further, we are setting up a Cyber Security Engagement Centre (CSEC) in India to bolster our enterprise security offering in line with our commitment to create a safe digital world for our customers.
As we look towards the future, we stand in awe of what humans dare to achieve and what technology can help them achieve. We stay motivated every day to empower everyone to do more and achieve more through our technology and innovation, in 2016, and beyond.
BHASKAR PRAMANIK IS CHAIRMAN, MICROSOFT INDIA