TomTom, the navigation and location-based products and services company, has launched a global innovation hub in Pune, reports the Economic Times. The company mentions that the 1000 sq ft center will be open to all its Indian employees, enabling them to upgrade their skills.
The hub will enable employees to develop new software, technology, applications, services, consumer products in wearables, mapmaking and data services space. It has 3 areas – demo, experimentation and break areas. The break area will enable employees to tinker with TomTom products as well as other devices, by making modifications to the software or adding sensors etc.
Other than this, employees can also lease devices for up to a week’s use, to come up with ideas around it. The innovation hub will be headed by Barbara Belpaire, General Manager – India. As of now, TomTom has 800 employees in India, which it plans to increase to over 1,000 in the next few months.
Innovation hubs in India:
– In March this year, Cisco signed an MoU with the Andhra Pradesh government to set up an Internet of Everything (IoE) Innovation center in Visakhapatnam.
– In the same month, the Andhra Pradesh government’s cabinet approved the Internet of Things (IoT) policy for the state for 2016- 2020, including funding for Center of Excellence.
– In April, IAMAI & the Telangana Government launched an app development centre in Hyderabad called Mobile 10X Hub.
– In February, Apple stated its plans to setup a Research & Development centre in Hyderabad. The tech giant planned to invest $25million (Rs 170 crore) in the new R&D centre, which could employ about 4,500 people.
– Similarly, Google also plans to hire more engineers in India, opening a new campus in Hyderabad, and train 2 million Android developers and bring more people in India online through initiatives such as Project Loon.
– In August last year, Intel India launched Maker Lab to support startups in IoT, devices etc.
– In February last year, following its acquisition of Bangalore-based ZipDial, Twitter confirmed that it would be opening an R&D facility in India. The company had said then that the R&D centre was an outcome of the deal but declined to give further details about the same.