Kochi: Tech behemoth Cisco is set for a collaboration with Maker Village to help acquaint India’s largest hardware electronic incubator with its ecosystem and also provide equipment worth Rs 1 crore in this regard. Kochi-based Maker Village is an Electronics Incubator set up as a joint initiative between the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY), Indian Institute of Information Technology and Management Kerala (IIITM-K), Kerala Startup Mission, and Government of Kerala to promote consumer electronics-based innovation and set up labs and innovation centers that focus on the current trend and emerging technologies of disruptive nature to bring India to the forefront of innovation in the electronics space.

The global leader in IT and networking collaborating with a Kerala system is expected to come as a big boost to the large number of hardware start-ups and the 150-odd SMEs in Kerala working in the hardware sector, said M Sivasankar, IT Secretary, Kerala. He was speaking on the sidelines of Kerala’s first ever two-day Global Digital Summit #FUTURE. “The collaboration will help small networking hardware firms as well,” he added.

The decision came after Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan’s meeting with the Cisco’s Managing Director Harish Krishnan, said Sivasankar.

In connection with #FUTURE, the Chief Minister also held talks with the elite of the knowledge industry, including Infosys Chairman Nandan Nilekani. The primary focus of the talks was to use their expertise in the state, in view of the substantial investment being made in IT infrastructure by the Government including KFon, and public Wifi hotspots.

The Chief Minister’s first meeting was with Jim Chabir, President US-based Advance Image Society (AIS)  and Jake Black, Director, AR/VR, Sony who pointed out that the Kerala’s creative sector can flourish if there is an amalgamation of Kerala’s rich creative streak and technology. “For that, Augmented Reality (AR) and Virtual Reality (VR) have to be made use of in the creative sector,” he said. Besides, the company also expressed keenness in mentoring and providing exposure to those startups which contribute immensely to the new technologies in their American firms through exchange programmes.

The second meeting was with the experts in the healthcare sector — Anu Acharya, Founder and CEO, Mapmygenome, and Prashanth Warier, CEO, Qure.ai. They discussed topics like how technology can be effectively used in the health sector and what are the explicit changes that can happen because of technology.

By Manoj

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