Swipe unit to ship smartphones, tablets in 6 weeks

Pune-based tablet and smartphone manufacturer Swipe Technologies said on Wednesday would start shipping phones and tablets from its Maharasthra facility within six weeks.

“We are looking at six to eight assembly lines in the facility which will have a high monthly production capacity,” Shripal Gandhi, founder and chief executive officer of Swipe Technologies, told IANS.

The firm, which secured a Series A investment of Rs 30 crore from Kaalari Capital in 2014, had around six percent market share in the tablet market that year when the market had contracted by 15 percent according to analytics firm International Data Corporation (IDC).

“We saw 250 percent growth in fiscal year 2015 and saw our tablet segment grow 3.5 percent taking our market share up to 9.5 percent,” Gandhi said.

“We are also looking at another $25 million for our Series B investment round and are targeting a 200 percent growth in our business by the end of fiscal year 2016. By 2018, we are lookiing to be a Rs.1,000 crore company,” he added.

The company also launched a new Android-forked operating system (OS) named Freedom on Wednesday alongside a phablet (smartphone) named Elite at Rs.5,999 exclusively on Flikpkart.

Android-forking is the process of breaking into two of the three layers of Android called the UI and the UX to personalise the experience of the stock Android operating system.

“The new OS will offer more customisations to the user and will help Swipe build an ecosystem for itself in the already heated-up market. We at Swipe believe in innovating software and hardware at the same time to give an unique experience to the consumer,” Gandhi said.

As a part of the OS, users will be able to access an exclusive OS-dedicated app store along with all the other Android apps.

“Currently there are about 1,000 apps in the store which are mostly related to entertainment, music and gaming.

The company is looking to get 200 developers on board “along with other partners to make the store more localised, regionalised and personalised. We are also launching a forum to attract more developers. The advertisement is already live on the website,” he said.

The OS will come with a 100GB of free cloud storage space called Swipe Box and the user will also have the option of choosing a vendor like Dropbox and Google Drive.

Asked about the strategy of launching the phablet online, Gandhi said the company has seen most traction from semi-urban areas and “online is the best strategy to go about it.”

The Elite smartphone is expected to come with a 16GB ROM and a 2GB RAM.

Anirban Ghoshal / IANS