>>India's Labor Pains
For job seekers in India's booming tech sector, which is expected to hire up to 100,000 people this year, it's the best of times--and the worst of times. Hundreds of thousands of starry-eyed young software engineers are eager to work for as little as $4,500 a year. Yet there are not nearly enough experienced managers (who can pull in 10 times as much) to oversee the influx of raw recruits. At the same time, as multinationals like Accenture and IBM poach midlevel executives, some observers are worried that fast-rising wages could erode India's competitiveness--and price the country out of the outsourcing business, which has fueled most of the country's IT growth. --By Aravind Adiga/New Delhi
Verizon-loving road warriors can start packing a little lighter this fall. No need to take a second cell phone to stay connected in Europe--or, for that matter, a SIM card to plug into rented handsets--because in September Verizon Wireless began selling its first global phone, which can roam between CDMA networks (used in North America and parts of Asia and Latin America) and GSM networks (used everywhere else). Verizon is offering the Samsung a790 for $350 with a two-year contract, with international calling rates starting at $1.29 a minute in the most-developed countries. Samsung is using semiconductors from CDMA pioneer Qualcomm, which was the first to integrate the competing network technologies on one set of chips. Qualcomm has also licensed the dual chips to LG and Motorola, which plans to roll out its first global phone in the fourth quarter but has yet to announce a carrier.
Who would have thought that Monaco, the crown jewel of the Cote d'Azur, needed polishing? Apparently the land of Monte Carlo and the Grimaldi royal family felt a makeover was in order. To capitalize on the popularity of cruises, the principality, which covers about 1 sq. mi., completed a $200 million 1,155-ft.-long breakwater earlier this summer, doubling the capacity of its harbor. Now large cruise ships can dock there. Three upscale hotels have also undergone renovations this year, a brand-new harbor-front hotel has opened, and by 2006 the tiny country will have 33% more rooms. Will the sought-after travelers fill them? Says spokeswoman Lisa Friedman: "Monaco's philosophy has been, If we build [them], they will come." --By Dody Tsiantar
Big Tobacco in China