Bihar Government has decided to use ‘Android’ phones to monitor road construction from district headquarters.
In the first phase, the phones would be given to eight executive/assistant engineers for inspection of three state highways — 68, 69 and 70 — in Naxal-hit Gaya and Aurangabad, which are being constructed or augmented with an Asian Development Bank (ADB) loan.
The usage is very simple- an executive engineer will visit construction sites every two days to take pictures of under-construction roads and upload them on the RCD site (Bihar State Road Development Corporation). Photos taken using these phones would verify that the pictures have actually been taken at the site of the construction work.
To ensure double-compliance, the RCD Secretary will monitor the location of the engineers using Google Maps, another application available on the phone. Once this pilot is successful, the government will give 200 Android phones to its engineers.[HT]
Question: When was the last time you saw a government talking/publicizing their usage of an OS brand, say “Symbian” [which too is open sourced]. You don’t buy an OS brand, you buy the packaged deal. But the fact that government chose to talk about Android signifies what Android means to a non-geeky population.
If you notice, all of the above requirements (good camera + Google maps+ GPS) can be easily met with any smartphone (basic Nokia smartphone can do it too). The government could have announced using Android based devices like Samsung etc, but it probably won’t make news – as much as using an Android device did.
So Android – you are an aspirational brand among Indians (by the way, Micromax is foraying aggresively into Android devices).
What’s your take?