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HCL forays into laptops, starts manufacturing unit in Pondicherry

Written by: Staff

New Delhi, Feb 23 (UNI) HCL Infosystems, market leader in desktop computers, today forayed into the mobile computing space with the launch of 'HCL Leaptops' -- India's first 'segment specific range' of notebooks, while announcing the start of its laptop manufacturing unit in Pondicherry.

''The new range notebooks are designed as per the requirements of various target groups like architects, engineers, doctors, info-kiosks (for jewellers, opticians, banks), women and Defence and include a wide range including multimedia, ruggedised, ultra thin, and light notebooks with Intel and AMD platforms,'' HCL Executive Vice President George Paul told reporters here.

Explaining the personalised attributes of the new range, HCL National Marketing Manager Consumer PC Rajan Rahi said, ''Security features like data encryption, biometric and two-factor authentication, and anti-theft lock are introduced for executives in the Government, Corporate, IT and ITES and PSU sectors.'' He further added that the ''notebook for students has a special carry bag to support their usage pattern while the one for women is ultra thin and light.'' The ruggedised notebooks, which can be used by personnel in defence, construction sites or oil rigs are made for extreme conditions like temperatures ranging from minus 15 degree Centigrade to 65 degree Centigrade, rain, snow, extreme vibration, Mr Paul informed.

''The prices range from Rs 27,490 on the low-end to Rs 1 lakh on the high-end side and are also easily available through Easy Monthly Installments (EMIs) starting at Rs 699 per month, available across 186 towns in India.'' He added that ''We already have tie-ups with the State Bank of India, UBI and ICICI for the finance part of our desktops, and are hoping to continue with them for the laptops as well. Talks are still on.'' He added that Bajaj Finance was at present offering finance to the consumer.'' Talking about the capacity of the laptop manufacturing unit in Pondicherry, Mr Paul said, ''At present we are making one million units per year in Pondicherry and we plan to make more than enough than what the market demands.'' On the investment for the notebook, Mr Paul said ''for the desk tops we had put in Rs 600,000 to Rs one lakh. I cannot divulge the amount of investment for notebooks but we have kept two lines for laptops.'' Speaking about the relationship HCL shares with partner Toshiba, and how HCL's foray into manufacturing will affect the latter, Mr Paul said, ''We have to co-exist,'' adding that ''we share a good relationship and have done some good work.'' HCL Leaptops come with a comprehensive insurance coverage ranging from theft, accidental damage, breakage and liquid spill.

The notebook market has already witnessed exponential growth for the last two years and is expected to grow at more than 50 per cent year-on-year.


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