Weekly Review January 29-February 4

Image from Simpa Networks

The technology sector in India, including all players from $5 billion USD Facebook to tiny startups in Bangalore, is growing and changing everyday. If investors can support continuous innovation, the sector will keep booming despite the many obstacles that exist for entrepreneurs in India.

Indian court cancels telecom licenses after corruption scandal” on the Guardian
Bringing closure to a political scandal, the Indian government overturned 122 telecom second-generation (2G) licenses that had been sold unfairly in 2008. This largely disrupts the telecom sector and presents a challenge for the newcomers in the market. Telecom analysts claim that this will force a consolidation in the industry and a rise in prices. This could pose a challenge for mobile tech startups that had been looking to partner with smaller telecoms.

Facebook users in India have doubled in last one year” on The Economic Times of India
While Facebook’s upcoming IPO is capturing most Facebook-related media headlines, this one caught our eye. Facebook’s user count in India doubled last year. At the end of 2011, there were 46 million monthly active users in India, a 132% increase from the prior year. High-growth markets like India are actually a significant driver of the company’s ability to file for an IPO.

Amazon rolls out shopping service in India” on The Paypers
Amazon is entering the Indian e-commerce market with a newly launched website: Junglee.com. The high-growth market doubled to almost 10 billion USD in 2011, powered by the country’s rising GDP both in aggregate and per capita. However, Junglee.com does not take payments directly, but rather redirects them to other seller websites or Amazon. In order for Junglee.com to be successful, it should integrate a mobile payments solution. This would allow customers without bank accounts or credit cards to take advantage of the service.

Bangalore’s tech startup culture: Seven barriers that stand in the way of success” by Saritha Rai on Silicon.com
Bangalore, home to Simpa Networks and many other tech startups, is the innovation hub of southern India. As a result, many members of the entrepreneurship ecosystem – investors and talent – are attracted to the city. This seemingly ideal situation actually presents some challenges including the need to be a competitive and resourceful employer and investment. Read Rai’s article for the complete list of challenges that make Bangalore seem like Silicon Valley, in both the good and bad respects.