INTERVIEWS

‘India Inside’ stamp on Dell global products

–Brian Pereira, Digital Creed

Responding to Prime Minister Modi’s invitation, Apple, OnePlus and other smartphone brands are seriously considering making products in India. Some like Xiaomi and Gionee have already commenced local manufacturing. While most IT product companies do not yet ‘Make in India’ end-to-end, there’s a good chance that the ‘brains’ in their cutting-edge products were harvested at an R&D centre in Bengaluru, Chennai or Hyderabad. Every year, there are hundreds of patents filed from India, and attributed to Indian engineers. So the ‘Made in India’ stamp might as well be there on these products — or it could be ‘India Inside’ if you will!

Take Dell for example. Its manufacturing facility at Sriperumbudur, near Chennai in Tamil Nadu, produces the full product range – desktops, notebooks and servers — and caters to almost 85% of the Indian market. But these are products that are commercialized and mainstream.

Dell invested USD $30 million in 2007 to set up its manufacturing facility. This is Dell’s third such facility in the Asia-Pacific/Japan region. With a capacity of 3 million units per annum (Desktops, Notebooks & Servers), the Chennai (Sriperumbudur) manufacturing facility primarily caters to the Indian market.

A less known fact is that Dell’s engineers in India are also working on the next generation of cutting edge products. In fact, a lot of the innovation in Dell’s 13 generation PowerEdge servers comes from its R&D centres in India. Dell has filed 300+ patents from India.

Speaking to Digital Creed on the sidelines of the Dell Annual Analyst Conference 2015, in Bengaluru, Alok Ohrie, Managing Director and President of Dell India said, “India plays a very critical role in the contributions that it makes to our global product rollout, through innovation and R&D work. We are proud of the fact that the 13th generation of Dell servers had a huge contribution from the India team. A good part of the systems software development took place in Bangalore.”

The Dell R&D team in India has quickly grown to a strength of 2,500. This includes both software and hardware R&D. And the number of patents filed from India by Indian engineers has also grown.

“We have seen a year-on-year growth of 28 percent in the number of patents registered, and we have 300+ patents filed from India,” informed Ohrie.

When we asked Ohrie what Dell’s engineers in India are currently working on, he did not respond specifically, for obvious reasons! But there’s a very good chance that the latest technology in the next generation of server, storage or networking technology is now being tested at one of Dell’s three centres of excellence in India.

“Our networking R&D based in Chennai is working on cutting-edge technology that is becoming a part of global networking product rollouts. The software teams in Hyderabad and Bangalore are working on the next generation of software products. So we have a comprehensive R&D presence in India that is contributing to global product rollouts,” said Ohrie.

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Dell India Patents

  • On an average, Dell India has been filing 200 invention disclosures per year and has published 200+ whitepapers and customer-facing collaterals, for various enterprise technologies.
  • In 2014, the patent ideas (which are authorized disclosures) are 50+ from Bangalore alone and 120+ from Bangalore and Chennai put together.
  • In FY15, globally 500+ patents (authorized disclosures) have been filed, out of which 60+ patents have been filed by India R&D (Bangalore and Chennai Design centers). In FY15, the major areas the patents filed from India is towards technologies related to Next Generation Data Centers, Cloud Computing, Advanced Systems Management, Networking and Converged Infrastructure Solutions.

 

Key facts about Dell India R&D centres

  • Dell India’s R&D centre, with its pool of 2,500 engineers, has played a big part in the development of the Dell PowerEdge 13th generation server portfolio. 80% of the workforce sitting out of Bangalore Design Center has contributed to 13G engineering and design.
  • A team of over 300, Dell Global Analytics based out of Bangalore does Analytics for our internal teams across the world – marketing, pricing, predictive analytics.
  • Technology Innovation Center (TIC), located in Bangalore under the Dell Services business is collaborating with global teams to provide consulting and implementation services for VIS, Cloud and developing Mobile Human Machine Interface (HMI).
  • Dell Services Cloud Centre of Excellence in Bangalore has designed a Cloud Decision Tree tool.
  • The Dell Force10 centre in Chennai has an end-to-end engineering ecosystem to develop networking products, with capabilities across development, design, sustenance, quality assurance, product management & support. Established in 2005, it is a centre of engineering innovation and excellence.

 

Major accomplishments

  • Open Automation: support for Citrix and Vmware, Smartscripts based on Perl/Python and plug-ins for Dell, Oracle and HP
  • DFM 1.1
  • S4820T: FTOS for S4810 variant
  • FTOS 9.0

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Brian Pereira

Brian Pereira is an Indian journalist based in Mumbai. He has 25 years of technology journalism experience, and he's well known in the Indian IT industry. He is the former Editor of CHIP and InformationWeek magazines in India and has written technology articles for India's leading newspapers groups such as The Times of India and Indian Express Newspapers. Brian also writes on Aviation, startups and covers topics directed at small and medium businesses. He also has event experience and once put together the conference program for CeBIT and INTEROP events in India. Email: brian9p@gmail.com Twitter: @brian9p Linkedin: https://in.linkedin.com/in/pereirabrian

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