Technology to Fight Poverty

“Voice is still the killer app in many developing countries”
– Carl-Henric Svanberg, CEO of Ericsson

BBC news has an interesting story about a UN program to provide cell phones and cellular access to some of the poorest areas of the world. The goal is to take a holistic approach to providing health care, infrastructure, and education to some of the poorest of the poor in the world.

“We also see this as crucial for education where the kids will not only learn IT skills but will also have access to a world of information,” said Dr Jeffery Sachs, Special Advisor to the United Nations Secretary-General.

These networks will have 2G and 3G data access where allowed by regulations. It makes you wonder – will this some how link up (eventually) with the $100 laptop program? Could be an interesting connection.

Ericsson is the company providing the infrastructure, as well as solar chargers for the phones, for this project free of charge.

And yet, cell phones are still not seen as an educational tool in most universities in America. Amazing.

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