The mobile revolution in Africa

The Mobile Revolution in Africa

Post do Masters of Media comenta a conferência “Mobile revolution, hope or hype?”, em Amsterdã, mostrando as carcateróisticas e problemas para o desenvolvimento de tecnologias móveis na África


“Last friday de balie in Amsterdam was host to the fill the gap conference: Mobile revolution, hope or hype? The 5th annual fill the gap conference started of with a short introduction about where the mobile phone is at the moment in Africa. The focus in this introduction was on new ways of use for the mobile phone that are especially created for african use. A good example of this new use can be seen in the possibility to send family or friends money via sms. By sending an sms to a certain number and attaching a certain amount of money to it, the person who receives the sms can go to a local telephone-cash point and collect the money. More on this specific subject can be read on the African Matrix blog.

After this short introduction of where mobile telephones are at the moment in Africa the first speaker was Christoph Stork. Stork is senior researcher for the LINK researchcentre ICT Africa (RIA) in Johannesburg. He talked about the research network of universities and think tanks from 18 African countries from where he did research into the use of mobile phones in SME. One of his conclusions was that; for the mobile to be sustained in Africa one of the most important things is creating bussiness climate. He also found that acces and use have a positive impact on profit in both small, middle and ‘big’ SME’s. This looked quite obvious to most of the people in the room butt Stork defended himself by stating that an important piece of scientific research is showing and proofing the obvious. He closed of his argument that was filled with a lot of different numbers, percentages and calculations by naming the problems that mobile phone users are having at the moment. He talked about problems with the high prices and the low capacity of the networks.(…)