Microsoft increases prices by up to eleven percent in India • The Register

Asia in brief Microsoft has quietly announced big price increases for its software and services in India.

“Due to currency fluctuations, Microsoft India announces Indian Rupee Price List changes to harmonize its pricing for commercial on-premises software and online services between India and the Asian region effective February 1, 2023,” read an undated announcement . A Microsoft spokesman responded to this announcement The registry‘s requests for advice from Microsoft partners, mentioning but not specifying upcoming price increases.

As of February 1, 2023, on-premises commercial software prices will increase by 4.5 percent in Indian rupees, online services by nine percent and Get Genuine Windows Agreements by 11 percent.

According to Microsoft, the price hikes bring fees in India “close to prevailing USD price levels in the Asian region.”

“Microsoft regularly evaluates the impact of its local pricing for software products and online services to ensure there is appropriate alignment across regions, and this change is a result of that evaluation,” the company’s announcement said.

Orders placed at current prices will not be affected.

“Customers across India who purchase online services in Indian rupees will continue to find Microsoft’s cloud offerings extremely competitive,” the company said.

But the statement says nothing similar about on-prem software or Windows.

The price hikes in India come after Microsoft announced but didn’t respond to a price review in Japan and South Korea The registryRequest for information from .

– Simon Sharwood

Eight million more outsourced jobs are coming to India, the minister predicts

India’s Minister of Communications, Electronics, Information Technology and Railways Ashwini Vaishnaw has predicted that in just two years the country can attract eight million additional jobs to its business process outsourcing sector.

Speaking at the launch of an initiative to boost startups, Vainshaw added the prediction that India’s bid to establish itself as an electronics manufacturing power will create between 2 and 3 million jobs over the next two years.

The minister did not explain exactly how India will create eight million jobs through business process outsourcing in such a short time. But India’s National Association of Software and Service Companies (NASSCOM) — the country’s cutting-edge technology trade association and lobby group — recently released a forecast that the nation will attract 500 more global service centers by 2026, many of which focus on work from the front and middle offices instead of the back office work that the industry is known for. US-based companies continue to be the largest operators and/or consumers of Indian business process outsourcing facilities, most of which are located in the cities of Bengaluru or Hyderabad. – Simon Sharwood

APAC companies are redesigning offices to lure employees back to their desks

Businesses in Asia Pacific want their employees to be local, and 70 percent of them are planning office makeovers in the next 18 months to lure them there, according to IDC. The analyst firm reports that 25 percent of companies are already engaged in a redesign and the redesigns take up about 11 to 30 percent of the company budget. “Hybrid work is no longer discussed. About 60 percent of employees prefer to work remotely, so the office needs to offer them a comparable or even better experience when they come back in person,” said IDC’s research director, Dr. Lily Phan.

India is becoming the world’s largest smartwatch market

According to analyst firm Counterpoint, India has overtaken China as the largest and fastest growing smartwatch market in the world.

The company’s Global Smartwatch Model Tracker for Q3 2022 revealed that the Indian market grew 171 percent year-on-year and more than doubled its global market share – from 14 percent in 2022 to 30 percent this year.

Local brands Noise and FireBoltt dominate the Indian market with devices priced to suit local buyers. During Christmas shopping, both providers experienced sales jumps that propelled India to the top of the global sales and growth charts.

Counterpoint describes the two Indian companies as providers of “simple” smartwatches — devices that can’t install apps — and ranked Noise as the global leader with a 25.2 percent market share, ahead of Fire Boltt at 24.6 percent.

In the market for high-level operating systems (HLOS) – for smartwatches that can install apps and have more bells and whistles – Apple has a 50.6 market share. This puts it well ahead of Samsung’s 22.3 percent.

– Simon Sharwood

Australia warns of IoT footwear risks

Australia has ordered a warning about the dangers of Bluetooth-powered athletic shoes.

Product Safety Australia said last week that 11 Under Armor shoe styles were sold “without warning that the right shoe contains a button battery that is sealed in a case and embedded in the shoe.”

The presence of the battery poses a hazard to small children, who sometimes mistake the shiny energy sources for a snack and then risk choking or suffering internal burns.

UA’s HOVR and FLOW shoes contain a sensor that tracks movement and shares data with online services so owners can track their workouts and performance.

Product Safety Australia has advised owners of the shoes to contact UA for a copy of an alert regarding the button battery included in the shoes. – Simon Sharwood

Equinix expands into Malaysia

Equinix has announced it will enter the Malaysian market with a data center in Johor called the JH1.

Construction costs for a facility with 1960 square meters of colocation space and 500 closets are expected to reach $40 million. The facility is expected to be operational in the first quarter of 2024.

The two-storey facility is located in the Nusajaya Tech Park (NTP) in Iskandar, Johor – just 15 km from Singapore.

Equinix believes the location ideally positions the data center to run workloads for Singaporean organizations and domestic customers in Malaysia. – Simon Sharwood

In other news

Our regional coverage last week included coverage of Singapore’s use of LiDAR, AI and sensors to track the majority of its seven million trees in a sophisticated IoT monitoring program.

The Japanese printer manufacturer Epson does without laser printers and names sustainability problems. Japanese messaging app Line announced that it will shut down its US cryptocurrency exchange business, Bitfront, and instead focus on its blockchain-related business. According to a report by the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA), space explorers in Japan have been caught fabricating data from an experiment on the effects of limited life on the International Space Station (ISS).

The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) announced that its first retail digital rupee pilot will begin on December 1, 2022. The governor of South Dakota issued an executive order prohibiting employees from using TikTok on state-owned devices, citing national security. India’s telecoms regulator is using artificial intelligence to tackle TXT spam after a failed attempt to tackle the nuisance with blockchain. China’s Tiangong space station will host six taikonauts this week as a new crew will overlap with the old crew before packing up and departing.

Japanese convenience store chain Lawson opened a store staffed almost entirely with avatars. A segment of a major undersea cable connecting Africa to Asia was severed, causing poor internet performance in several areas. NTT Data is deploying data center inspection robots at 15 of its facilities with the intention of eventually offering the robots as a service to customers. ® Microsoft increases prices by up to eleven percent in India • The Register

Rick Schindler

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