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|July 21, 1998||
Nokia shelves cell phone plant projectNokia, the cell phone technology major, has put on hold its cellular phone manufacturing project in India.
However, it is going ahead with plans to open its first-ever software development centre in the country, a senior company officer has been quoted as saying.
"The software development would meet Nokia's global requirements, mainly for the GSM cellular test platform and the built-in GSM cell phones," Karavirta said, adding that the project site would be Bangalore, Hyderabad or Gurgaon.
Nokia's decision to set up the centre in India was influenced by advantages like easy availability of qualified software professionals and its volume requirements, he said.
The company, which started operations in India in 1994, has been outsourcing software from two Indian companies for a year-and-a-half, and the final decision to open the centre would depend on the performance of these business partners.
Nokia does not have a software development centre anywhere in the world, and the proposed centre would be its first foray into the software industry.
Karavirta said the company would invest more in India to upgrade the GSM cellular test bed it had set up in Delhi a few years ago. This was necessitated because of the planned introduction of the next generation of cellular phones in the country.
The various cell phone models of the company would continue to come from the Singapore plant until a production plant is set up in the country, he said.
Nokia has signed three more research and development projects with the Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore, with which it already has two projects on GSM technology.
All projects have been funded by Nokia under a three-year agreement in areas of mutual interests, enabling exchange of scientists between the two and offer of advanced training in telecom to IISc students.
Since its entry four years ago, Nokia has established its presence in eight major centres of the country. The first GSM call in India was made in a Nokia-supplied network in 1995.
Nokia has built GSM networks for Indian operators such as SkyCell Communications, Modi Telstra, Fascel, Tata Communications, BPL US West Cellular and Evergrowth Telecom, he said.
- Compiled from the Indian media
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