Innovation – Driving the Growth of New India
Over the last 75 years, Independent India’s remarkable journey has inspired the world to believe in the impossible. From an agrarian economy to the creation of large public sector undertakings, becoming the back-office of the world in the 1990s and now, establishing a reputation as one of the world’s leading innovation hubs, India has surged to being the world’s fifth-largest economy by nominal GDP and the third largest by purchasing power parity (PPP).
On the Global Innovation Index (GII), India has been on a rapidly-rising trajectory, from being ranked No.81 in 2015 to No.46 in 2021. With innovation-enabling initiatives such as Atma Nirbhar Bharat, Digital India, Startup India and others, India’s stature is only expected to rise further.
In its brief history (since its formation in 2014), Telangana has undertaken a slew of innovation- and entrepreneur-friendly initiatives to be ranked No.2 in Niti Aayog’s India Innovation Index 2021. T-Hub, as the state’s central innovation hub & ecosystem enabler, is spearheading Telangana’s innovation agenda.
Here’s how India’s journey on some of the world’s emerging technologies is shaping up.
- Electric Vehicles & Mobility: India is the world’s largest untapped EV market. As per a recent study, by 2030, the EV industry will cross sales of 10 million vehicles and the penetration of electric two-wheelers is projected to reach up to 30%. India has the potential to be a global EV powerhouse and play a role in the reduction of harmful fossil fuels. T-Hub startups Gayam Motor Works and Hala Mobility are making giant strides on this front.
- Drone Tech: Drones have a role in many aspects that could have far-reaching impact – delivery of food and medicines to remote locations, spraying of insecticides, disaster relief operations, risky tasks currently being done by humans, etc. India now boasts of 220 drone startups. According to a civil aviation ministry estimate, India’s drone sector will achieve a turnover of Rs.12,000-15,000 crore by 2026, from about Rs.80 crore now. Marut Drones is the first company to introduce Data Analytics, IoT, AI and ML to the nascent drone industry in India.
- Metaverse: As per Gartner, about 25% of people will be spending at least one hour a day on the metaverse by 2026. The metaverse is expected to be a preferred medium for sports, entertainment, work, shopping, socialising and much more. Moreover, it is likely to have an enabling impact on virtual healthcare, training and education, travel and content creation.
- HealthTech: India is home to 4,000+ start-ups which are developing capabilities for design and manufacturing of high-tech products and leveraging technologies such as 3D printing, artificial intelligence, smart sensors and others to manufacture medical devices and provide digital healthcare solutions. From US$ 10.36 bn. in 2020, this sector is expected to record a five-fold rise at a CAGR of 37% to reach US$ 50 billion in 2025.
- DefenceTech: The use of cutting-edge technologies like cognitive radar, 5G cellular networks, microchips, semiconductors, and large-scale analytic engines strengthens India’s defence and security landscape, making it the fourth most-powerful military. Government of India’s iDEX (Innovations for Defence Excellence) initiative seeks to create an ecosystem to foster innovation and technology development in defence and aerospace by engaging MSMEs, startups, individual innovators, research and development institutes and academia.
- SpaceTech: India’s space technology focuses on rapid development in communication, broadcasting, telemedicine and education, using satellite-based quantum communication, quantum radar, self-eating-rocket, etc. Since opening the space sector to private sector players two years ago, 55+ spacetech startups have registered with ISRO and the Department of Space, Union Minister of State for Science and Technology.
- AgriTech: Remote sensing, soil sensors, aerial surveying, and market insights permit farmers to gather, visualise and assess crop and soil health conveniently and cost-effectively. Overall, the agritech ecosystem has attracted a surge of startups in India offering technology-based solutions like offtake marketplaces, storage and transportation services, and agronomy advisory services while large traditional players seek to reduce operational costs and manage scale more efficiently.
- FinTech: Unified Payments Interface (UPI) ensures seamless and instant remote transactions, helping India go cashless. With the release of its “Payments Vision 2025” document in 2022, RBI is pushing for internationalization of UPI with nations using United States Dollar, Pound Sterling and Euro under bilateral treaties.
- EdTech: AI for proctoring, AR and VR is increasing student engagement and helping bridge the digital divide and democratise education in India. According to Statista estimates, the present market valuation of the Indian Edtech industry is US$ 2.8 billion and is expected to reach US$ 10.4 billion by 2025. At present, there are 9,000+ EdTech startups in India.
Over the last 75 years, India has become a bedrock for innovation and technology. We celebrate the freedom to foster new and robust technologies that lead us towards a strong, independent and a self-reliant India.