Say Namaste, a video conferencing service by Mumbai-based Inscripts is being pegged as an official Indian government-backed video calling solution. However, that’s not the case as the company has clarified that it’s video calling service has been developed in-house without any consultation from the government. That said, many popular video-calling apps and services such as Google Duo, Zoom, among others are seeing increased sign-ups owing to folks working from home due to the Coronavirus outbreak in various parts of the world.
While the Indian government has issued an advisory asking people not to use Zoom video conferencing service as its not a safe platform and was widely scrutinized for its security lapses, Say Namaste comes at a time when more businesses and people are resorting to video calls for necessary work. In an interview to News18 tech, Anuj Garg, CEO of Inscripts clarifies the company’s stance saying that its video service Say Namaste was built in-house with a team of 50+ developers in just a matter of two days.
“It’s a positive thing, and we are happy that so many people are actually talking about us right now. We would, of course, be happy to work more closely with the government, but all of that is in the future,” Garg added.
Say Namaste is in the beta stage currently which means that the service is not fully stable to be used widely. There could be bugs and issues while using the web-based video conferencing solution which is why the company has decided to go for a security audit to fix several issues. While an official launch is weeks away, the company has submitted builds of the app to Google and Apple to be listed on the respective app stores.
The company is also looking to make its video calling service more secure by adding features like two-factor authentication and email indexing for businesses to prevent unauthorized access to a company-call. Garg doesn’t see Say Namaste as a viable Zoom competitor yet as the company is focusing on ease of use factors primarily. Currently, starting a video call on Say Namaste is fairly easy with support for up to 25 participants simultaneously and the developers are working on increasing that limit to 100 users.
Say Namaste will also be participating in the Indian government’s “Innovation Challenge for Development of Video Conferencing Solution” that’s been announced by the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY) under its Startup Hub initiative. The government is looking for a home-grown video conferencing service that can be deployed on a wider-scale for all official work for 4 years. To this end, the government is offering a five-lakh INR grant to top 10 qualifiers of its challenge, with the final winner being awarded a 1-crore INR prize money. The deadline for submissions of a Made-in-India video calling app is April 30.