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March - 2008 - issue > Editor's Desk
Lessons for Innovation
Pradeep Shankar
Friday, March 7, 2008
Mobile phones continue to get hooked up at a rate of more than 1,000 a minute. Google CEO Eric Schmidt had once predicted that eventually there would be more cell phone users than people who read and write. In less than 30 years, we have 3.3 billion active cell phones on a planet of some 6.6 billion humans. This is the fastest global diffusion of any technology in human history.

There are several thousands of companies trying to build applications around the cell phone so that consumers can communicate in a better way. In this issue we feature one such company—Kirusa—which is a dominant player in the voice sms segment.

Kirusa initially built a strong platform for multi modal applications and then chose to build voice sms application. Building an application over a robust platform allows Kirusa to add features, sophistication and scale much easily. This advantage will begin to realize as and when they spend more time with the carriers across the world.

Kirusa is way ahead of the curve in building applications that other people have not anticipated. Kirusa’s strategy to build a suite of products around voice messaging in order to fuel the ecosystem will help them roll out solutions in an effective manner around the world.

Having built a chunk of the product in the U.S., Kirusa first rolled out its product in Bangladesh. Over the years it has increased its footprint in the emerging economies like India, Pakistan, Malaysia, where language is a barrier to send text messages.

Kirusa teaches an important lesson to the Indian IT services companies who claim that to built products you have to be close to customers and there is no market for products in India. To do real innovation you need not be near customers, you just have to understand their requirements. Sitting miles away from their customers, in India, the engineers of Kirusa shakes the claim.

Please do share with us your thoughts.

Pradeep Shankar
Managing Editor

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