For Flipkart (Walmart) and India: English is not enough

Earlier this month, I wrote about Amazon and India.

Now let’s look at Walmart and India, via Flipkart, the leading online marketplace in India. Walmart acquired 77 percent of the company last year.

According to TechCrunch, Flipkart is (finally) adding support for Hindi:

Only 10% of India’s 1.3 billion people speak English. Flipkart said it has been working to customize its entire platform for several months to add support for Hindi. More than 500 million people in India speak Hindi.

This language support is, as far as I can tell, unique to the mobile app, which greets you with a choice between English as Hindi, shown below:

As readers of the Web Globalization Report Card know well, I’ve been making the case for supporting India’s many languages for many years. But, until recently, very few large companies had gone the extra step toward actually supporting some of these languages.

But this year I’m seeing a level of acceptance I have not seen for some time. Perhaps it’s because China has proven so troublesome for so many companies. Or perhaps it’s simply because India is where the growth is. And because companies are realizing that English is no longer good enough.

PS: One country; many IDNs.

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John Yunker
John is co-founder of Byte Level Research and author of Think Outside the Country as well as 14 annual editions of The Web Globalization Report Card. He is also co-founder of Ashland Creek Press.
John Yunker
John Yunker

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