Mobile impact

Last week I quoted from Robert Fabricant’s contribution to a Fast Company discussion roundtable on the impact of the mobile phone.

Robert has meanwhile posted the full text of his response to the questions. Here another quote:

“Density and connectivity are the keys drivers of social transformation and mobile technologies are the medium. There may be a scarcity of financial resources in the the developing world but their is an abundance of social resources. This is no longer about leapfrogging the wired telecommunications infrastructure. The effects are far more profound in terms of economic development and social transformation.

I spend a great deal of time working with social impact initiatives in health, agriculture and conservation and in almost every case the key point of leverage is mobile technologies. And what most designers don’t realize or want to realize is the degree to which the most basic platforms like SMS, USSD and Voicemail can support rich services that create social value way beyond what we experience in the US market. Services that are far more profound than Urban Spoon. We are blinded by the iPhone and the Blackberry into thinking that these sophisticated gadgets are necessary to build rich applications. Just look at what Unicef is doing with rapidSMS and rapidAndroid to transform healthcare delivery and respond to global emergencies like famine, disease and warfare.”

Read full story

Leave a Reply