NEW DELHI: US-based technology major Microsoft said that its commercial Surface device business has more than doubled in the last one year, driven by strong growth in the use of collaboration and productivity apps by enterprises across verticals.
“India is an important market for Surface, and we are seeing rising momentum in the country, across different business verticals…there is a whole wave of digital transformation, which is core and center of commercial growth,” Amrita Sapre, Devices Head, Microsoft India told ET.
Microsoft launched its first Surface device in 2016 in India. Sapre said that India used to get new Surface devices almost five months after the global launch, but the timeframe has now been reduced to just two weeks. “It shows India’s importance and the growing market.”
The company’s Surface laptop and two-in-one portfolio now has eight devices available in the market with prices starting at Rs 38,000-Rs 40,000.
“…the demand is being bolstered by companies investing in building their own digital capability to drive resilience and growth. Businesses are modernizing in new ways that enable a remote workforce. This transition requires modern devices, security infrastructure, and software that enables their workforce to maintain consistent levels of productivity and collaboration,” Sapre said.
She added that the uptake is being driven by manufacturing, healthcare, banking and insurance verticals.
“We are expecting more growth this year. Earlier Surface was considered a premium device…now the portfolio has increased and we have devices that can suit all segments in India,” Sapre added.
Microsoft has also grown its partner network for distribution with over 1000 partners. “…because the partner network increased, we are able to serve customers we were not able to reach previously especially in non metro markets.
On competition in the market, Sapre said that the days of unhealthy competition are over and the market has space for all players, including Apple and other Windows-based PC and notebook makers.
Globally, Surface revenue increased 3%, surpassing $2 billion in FY21 Q2. This follows two strong quarters in which Microsoft had witnessed 37% and 28% increase in revenue, driven primarily by remote collaboration.
Sapre said that the hybrid PC market is growing globally and in India. “All OEMs are seeing growth in the market. The growth will continue. Work from home has become the norm as it does not reduce productivity…there are more positives, hence business leaders are realising that it is imperative to enable employees with best devices,” She added.