Will India produce an Apple?

Apple yesterday has become the most valuable company in the world, over-taking even the oil-rich Exxon. This is a first for Apple. Apple came into news last week when it reported having more cash than even the US government! While there is all-round admiration for the company and Steve Jobs, design has to get its due as well.

Apple is the most, design-savvy company in the world. Whether is the iPod or the the iPhone; or the more recent iPad2, their products have managed to become game-changers, simply because of their design. That Jonathan Ive has as much role in the success of these products and therefore the company valuation, makes every designer’s heart swell with pride.

India, on its 64th independence day is on an introspective mood. Lots of questions are being raised about living conditions, about getting global and about improving life in the country and the state of the economy.

I am adding one more here : ‘ Can India produce an Apple?”

It will take a lot before businesses in India realised the value of design. They need to get convinced that design, not only improves products and systems but also the bottom line of the company. They need to understand that products of any business need to be designed for the discerning customer, before its released. That good design makes good business sense. That design is not a peripheral activity but one that is intrinsically related to exciting the market and increasing the company’s valuation.

If APPLE can do it, so can TATA. It is all about conviction and drive.

Designers need to move from R&D labs to the board rooms. We need to get into newer roles of driving the thought process in a business. Design itself has to emerge from being form-giving to value-building. We need designer stars like Ive who will be taken seriously by the engineer as well as the managing director of a business.

Till that happens, the only apples we produce will be coming from Himachal Pradesh or Kashmir!

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One Comment

  1. Bala, the crux seems to be- how do we as designers move ourselves from form givers to value builders. Any client who gets value will surely get converted. So, the question you posed could be ‘How can we as designers in India add value and create Apples?’

    Reply

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