Ravinder Pal Singh, Director, Solutions Business Development, IoT-Smart Cities & Digitisation, Dell International Services India Pvt Ltd, talks about Dell’s positioning for India’s prestigious projects – Digital India and Smart City – in an exclusive interview with Dr Ravi Gupta, Editor-in-Chief, eGov magazine
What is Dell’s vision for Smart Cities?
The Smart Cities project is a tremendous opportunity. We come with experience of having implemented several projects globally, thereby being able to bring global best practices to India. In the US, we have been working with Federal, State and Local Governments on various initiatives.
The ‘Smart Cities Mission’ is aimed at addressing the infrastructure gap to make cities more livable, besides enhancing the business and investment climate. The concept of a smart city as a means to improve the quality of life for people has been recognised by government leaders and policy makers. This level of interest and engagement by the government is something that we have never seen before.
At Dell, we are working towards creation of what we call a ‘Future Ready Economy,’ defined as an economy that provides robust infrastructure to its citizens, offers its people a chance to grow, and lets the community develop into a thriving business ecosystem. In this framework, we have outlined the three pillars of Future Ready Economy – Infrastructure, Human capital and Commerce (the operational part of it). India’s Smart Cities Mission falls under the Infrastructure pillar.
We can play a dual role in the development of a smart city – one, of a technology provider, and the second, a digital architect for planning. With our extensive product portfolio, ranging from the desk- top to the data centre, we are well placed and equipped to partner the government in its ambitious smart city programme.
How are you linking Digital India and Smart Cities Mission?
I think it is natural progression – to create a digitally-enabled nation, our cities need to become smarter to manage complexities, reduce expenses, increase efficiency and improve the quality of life.
Dell has been in India for close to two decades, and we understand the challenges, having worked with the government across various project implementations. We study the architecture, ideate possible solutions and map this to design the best possible solution. It is the same case with a smart city rollout.
How is Dell’s progression to Internet of Things (IoT)?
IoT is a big umbrella. There are some pockets where adoption is much faster – for e.g., Smart Cities, Manufacturing, Utilities, etc. The Indian Government’s focus on Smart Cities will boost the growth of IoT in India. At Dell, we provide a practical approach that helps our customers leverage existing equipment and data to make the most of
At Dell, we provide a practical approach that helps our customers leverage existing equipment and data to make the most of current technology investments. We have clients across verticals and I strongly believe that each one of them have the opportunity to leverage IoT for growth. A great example of our IoT capabilities is the implementation at Chitale Dairy. Here, the feeding and breeding of cows is monitored through computing, automation and data collection, resulting in improved animal health and increased yield. This is a simple yet powerful example of IoT implementation.
RAVINDER PAL SINGH
|We would like to be a major player in all the projects in the government space… We have the required infrastructure, solutions and tech offerings; we will also continue to partner with the required stakeholders (such as system integrators, OEMs, software providers, etc.) to provide end-to-end solutions|
How are you looking at Education and Health segments?
When we talk of e-education and e-health, both are driven by technology. Being an industry leader, Dell is present in the Education and Healthcare domains. When you look at the end-user consuming information, it is done through devices such as workstations, PCs, laptops. You need a lot of applications to run these devices. For instance, schooling needs a distance learning application. While we do not have all the products, what we have is an ecosystem of partners who can work with us to provide the entire solution.
Dell is the right partner to work with across Education, Healthcare, Manufacturing, Mining, Ports, Retail, etc. We are already working with a couple of state governments on transformation projects. We have given a proposal to the Government of Andhra Pradesh for Skill Development Programme and Dell has already partnered with the e-Kranti project in Gujarat.
The Government of India is planning Digital Banking as part of financial inclusion. What is your stand on this?
A key component of a digitally-enabled nation is financial inclusion. The convenience of online banking, mobile banking, etc., are currently benefitting only urban India. Technology has given us the power to take banking to the last mile. The advantage is that we have power in our hands now. The Digital India programme aims to link all villages through broadband under Bharat Broadband. The government is taking broadband to 2,50,000 villages. Once that is executed, you will have broadband and mobiles in every village. Having broadband and mobile at your doorstep will enable the rural population to access best of services banking.
Dell has a big play in the digital banking space. We have partnered with all major Core Banking Solution providers and they are using our core infrastructure solutions for selling to most of the banks now.
How do you work with the Government of India aligning with its vision?
We would like to be a major player in all the projects in the government space and gain a fair share of the business. We have the required infrastructure, solutions and tech offerings; we will also continue to partner with the required stakeholders (such as system integrators, OEMs, software providers, etc.) to provide end-to-end solutions. We are working with all the stakeholders – the government, large integrators and solution providers, etc. We are also in dialogue with policy making bodies, such as TRAI, which creates standards for Smart Cities and IoT from a communication point of view. The government has rolled out ambitious programmes to take India to next level of economic growth. We are excited and eager to partner with the government to provide our technology and services to enable these initiatives.