For decades, the United States has been considered throughout the world as the "Land of Opportunities." The majority of the products built to date have addressed the customer needs of the US market, and this trend is set to continue.
In the last decade or even prior to that, global product companies had set up their subsidiaries with significant investments to leverage India as a key sourcing hub for IT R&D. Many companies started their R&D centers and used India talent as coding factories for their global products. The mantra for these companies will be and continue to be "Made from India."
However, in the last 12 months, there have been subtle changes in the mindset of these MNC companies. India is being seriously considered as a market for IT products. India Inc. is shaping itself to be the next big market not only in Asia but also globally. Companies are evaluating options of localizing the products for Indian customer needs. What began as coding factories are now looked at more from a strategic point of view. Senior management teams are now taking initiatives to understand the Indian market needs and potential. For the first time in history, the 1.1 billion population of India is looked upon as a billion potential customers waiting to make their lives better with IT products.
One great example of product localization that comes to my mind is the "Yuvraj Singh International Cricket 2007," the Indianized version of "Brian Lara International Cricket 2007." Microsoft has taken a good initiative to touch a billion Indian sentiments. India being a cricket crazy nation, the product would definitely play on a million minds as the gaming market matures. The other example of product localization is the Hindi version of Google News, which was launched recently.
With consumer internet companies leading the pack in localization, it will be interesting to see how the market will shape up in the next few years. So will our dream of "Made from India" take a 360 degree shift and become "Made for India"? Let us wait and watch.