Google executive chairman Eric Schmidt made a short trip to India as part of his South Asia tour. During his visit to the subcontinent, he aired his views on various issues including absence of Nexus devices in India, country's low internet penetration and its competitiveness vis a vis China.
On the absence of the Nexus range of smartphones and tablets from the country, Google chairman Eric Schmidt said, "I apologise for the lack of Nexus devices in India. But we are working on it. Part of the problem is that our products are more expensive than what they should be here in India. Then there are certification issues. We want a fully serviced market."
In an interview with a TV channel, Eric Schmidt said, India "is well behind in the web services model that the rest of the world is adopting." Comparing India's internet infrastructure with that of the US at BigTent event in New Delhi, Schmidt said the internet infrastructure in India today is reminiscent of the infrastructure that US had in 1994.
On poor internet penetration in India, Schmidt said in an interview, "My guess would be that having been satisfied with the great success of IT, the Indian government and the leadership has made the same mistake that companies do, they rested on their own laurels."
The India now, Eric Schmidt said, looked to be brimming with opportunity. "Its youth and its problems and the solutions to these problems are huge opportunities."
When asked which country has more potential, India or China, Schmidt replied, "In the short term, focus is on China but math favours India and I'm a mathematician."
On India replicating the Silicon Valley model, Schmidt said, "India has good reason for it. Some 40% of Silicon Valley start ups are by Indians, who got skilled and educated in India. You have top universities here like the IITs. What is needed is money. VCs and other investors are there, but unwilling to take risk, unless it's strategic, portfolio investments.''
Schmidt also wrote, "We know that India's internet infrastructure allows Indian engineers to solve the problems of small businesses in other countries. If India plays its cards right, we'll soon see Indian engineers and Indian small businesses tackling Indian problems first, then exporting the solutions that work best."