The four year old, US-based online education startup Udacity has joined hands with Google and Tata Trusts to expand beyond its current market US and enter its second best market India.
Under the partnership, Udacity will offer its nano degree courses to Indian students accepting fees in rupees and will also set up its offices in India. There are seven nano degree programs of Udacity namely front-end Web developer, Android developer, data analyst, iOS developer, intro to programming, full stack developer and tech entrepreneur.
These will be offered in India at $135 per month (approx ₹9,800) of which 50% will be refunded by Udacity after graduation. Each of these programs roughly take 6-9 months to complete and are developed and taught by expert Google instructors from the Google Developer Relations team and will include project reviews, mentorship and career services from Udacity along with the certificate of course completion.
A major focus will be on training the students as Android Developers and for this purpose Google and Tata Trusts will be providing 500 scholarships each to the students enrolled in Android developer program. At the end of the year, Google will host a career summit for 30 top graduates passed out of this course.
The reason for this is pretty simple as due to the high population of young people in India and partly due to an over emphasis of engineering education in India, India is currently home to the second largest population of software developers with about 3 million developers in the country and is expected to become the largest developer base by 2018.
However despite these numbers, the output is not that great with none of the app among top 100 apps of Google Play Store being developed by Indian developers and only 2% of the top 1000 apps in the global market are developed by Indian developers.
Google aims to bridge this gap with its partnership with Udacity and Tata and expects to raise this number to 10% by 2018 by providing high quality training to the developers in India. Moreover the demand of developers to develop apps for increasing smartphone users in India is also on a continuous rise and is still short of people actually needed.
Udacity was started in 2011 by an ex-Google employee Sebastian Thrun who was the head of Google X program. It provides online open courses especially focused on technology education and claims to have trained about 25,000 users worldwide.
It currently has about 10,000 active users and is said to be witnessing a monthly growth of 32% in users with student traffic from India being the second largest. It witnessed a two times growth in the enrollments in its free courses and with its renewed focus on India now, it expects to achieve an even greater growth in coming months.