News From The Web

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Five Kenyan IT millionaires to watch - How We Made It In Africa
Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg rose from an ordinary student to a multi-billionaire. Kenya too is by the day producing tech tycoons. Here are five Kenyan entrepreneurs who have built major technology companies and made some serious money while at it. These entrepreneurs are not only clinching awards but also making deals across the world and are highly respected at home.

MTN, Western Union take mobile money international - PC Advisor
Western Union and MTN Group, Africa's largest mobile phone company, Wednesday unveiled an international mobile money transfer service in Uganda that will be rolled out to all of telecom provider's 16 operations on the continent as well as five in other regions.In October 2010, the two companies announced they had signed an agreement to offer international mobile remittance services in the 21 countries in which MTN operates.The five countries which this agreement covers but are not on the African content include Afghanistan, Cyprus, Syria, Iran and Yemen. The service, announced Wednesday at a press conference in Kampala, marks the debut of an offering from Western Union that allows the more than 2 million customers of MTN's mobile money transfer service in Uganda to add funds to their accounts that were sent through Western Union's system.

Noor Dubai signs MoU on mobile eye camps - The Gulf Today
Noor Dubai Foundation (NDF) and Dubai Islamic Bank Foundation (DIB) have signed an MoU on the last day of the ongoing DIHAD 2012 to hold ‘mobile eye camps’. Dr Manal Taryam, CEO of Noor Dubai Foundation, stressed the importance of sustaining the foundation’s programmes through strategic partnerships with banks and other corporate bodies in the UAE. Funding Prevention of Blindness programmes and campaigns is a great opportunity for corporate social responsibility and use of zakat funding. “Last year, with the support of DIB, Noor Dubai successfully conducted four camps — two in Pakistan, one in Burkina Faso and one in Ghana — reaching out to over 22,800 individuals. We look forward to conducting eight camps this year thanks to the generous support of DIB,” stated Dr Taryam.

Lessons learned in the use of ICT for rural economic development - e-Agriculture
ICTs can help farmers, workers and entrepreneurs access market information, improve quality and productivity and strengthen business skills and employment opportunities. IICD recently published a document that summarizes the main lessons they have learned about the use of ICTs to boost (rural) economic development between 2006 and 2010.

5 Global Areas Where Mobile Is Transforming Lives - Communications Technology
As members of the mobile ecosystem continue to transform communications with the latest technology, services and applications, we can all recognize that mobile continues to be a catalyst for societal benefit and change by enabling real-time communications and linkages between communities of interest. Let’s take a look at five areas where mobile is having some of the most significant impact: Philanthropy, Politics, Education, Economics, and Healthcare.

 

Tunisia: World Bank Charts ICT-Driven Roadmap - Maaket.com
In highlighting possible opportunities for successful investment as well as the needs, aspirations, and reflections of the Tunisian people, the study titled 'Tunisia: From Revolutions to Institutions' provides a holistic and citizen-driven roadmap for the international community to tailor its support of the evolving Tunisian society. Published one year after the ouster and exile of long-term President Zine el-Abidine Ben Ali, the study finds that information and communication technologies (ICTs), which played a central role in the lead-up to the revolution as well as the revolution itself, have continued to influence rapid changes in the past year.

Fibre-optic cable to turn Tanzania into ICT hub - The Citizen
Tanzania is geared towards becoming an Information and Communications Technology (ICT) hub when the reliability of the international infrastructural connectivity is assured. Currently the country continues to address the enabling factors which include expansion of the national ICT backbone infrastructure, more landing points for the submarine fibre-optic cables, human resource development and pro-ICT policies. The project is a bold step taken by the government to connect all regions and districts so that they have access to the 10,000 kilometre national and regional broadband infrastructure as well as sea cables.

Mobile Health Africa Will Launch in Johannesburg in May to Discuss How Mobile Health Services Will Change Healthcare - PR.com
South Africa is leading the way in launching mobile health (mHealth) services with some of the most successful and best known mHealth initiatives having been developed in this country. This is according to Andrea Monteiro, director of Mobile Health Africa, which will gather the leading minds in the industry in Johannesburg in May. She says the evolution of mHealth services in Africa is enabling the drastic improvement of the healthcare infrastructure: “In its most basic form it will provide access to healthcare advice and information even in the most remote parts Africa.”

Mobile Banking in Cameroon Increases Access to Financial Services - Global Press Institute
Mobile phone companies and banks are teaming up to provide mobile financial services to the citizens of Cameroon, enabling them to use their cell phones to transfer money and pay bills. In addition to increasing convenience, financial experts say that the growing phenomenon of mobile banking has the potential to erode poverty by connecting citizens without bank accounts to financial opportunities. The development of these services faces challenges though, such as poor network connections, power outages and low awareness.

Nokia To Exit Mobile Money Business - Wall Street Journal
Finland-based Nokia Corp. (NOK), the world's largest handset maker by unit shipments, said Monday it is planning to shut down its Mobile Financial Services business, including a Nokia Money service launched recently in India, as part of its strategy to move out of non-core business areas. Nokia didn't say when the unit will close. "It's not going to happen overnight and consumers already using the service are not at risk," Nokia spokesman Mark Durrant told Dow Jones Newswires. Nokia established the business in 2009 aimed at bringing secure electronic payments to people without a bank account, with a focus on emerging markets.

Fujitsu ICT Revitalizes Agriculture in Yamanashi - SYS-CON Media
Fujitsu today announced the start of a field trial for sweet-corn cultivation using a farm-information sensing network. The trial will use the "Yamanashi Cooperative Farming System" promoted by Yamanashi Prefecture, and is intended to revitalize agriculture in the prefecture. Sensing boxes that integrate temperature and humidity sensors with a simple camera are placed in the sweet-corn fields. These sensors collect temperature and humidity data on the interior of vinyl row covers and also indicate, with the aid of cameras, whether the vinyl row covers are open or closed. Analysis of this data can be used to optimize temperature and humidity management in the vinyl-covered row.

International Development and Aid Expert Chris Blattman's Views on the KONY2012 phenomenon - ChrisBlattman.com
"For starters, my faith in humanity and the media has been partly restored today. The big story has shifted from viral video to the oversimplification of complicated issues, the accuracy of advocacy, and the white savior complex in aid. Really. Newspapers are taking a nuanced view of aid and advocacy. This is big."

How are Women Who are Making Less Than $2 a Day Using Mobile Technology? - MobileActive.org
March 8th is International Women's Day and to mark the occasion, the GSMA mWomen Programme has released a study called "Striving and Surviving – Exploring the Lives of Women at the Base of the Pyramid." Drawn from 2,500 interviews with women (aged 16-64 in both rural and urban areas) living on less that $2 a day in Egypt, India, Papua New Guinea, and Uganda, the report looks at how mobile technology influences the way women approach health, economic development, and family relationships, and what mobile operators can do to reach more low-income women.

Understanding Mobiles and Livelihoods - ICTs for development Blog
How can we understand the impact that mobiles are having on the livelihoods of the poor? We all know that mobile phone use has grown exponentially in developing countries.  And that phones are having an increasing impact on the livelihoods of the poor by providing market prices, by supplying health information, by enabling financial transfers, etc. But we know a lot less about how to conceptualise all this.  Can we just pull some development studies ideas off-the-shelf?  Or do we need to do more than this?

NCC, NBC Merger Will Transform ICT Industry in Nigeria - allAfrica.com
For the Information and Communications Technology (ICT) industry to contribute to the nation's GDP growth, the Federal Government must ensure that merger talks between the country's telecommunication regulator, the National Communication Commission (NCC) and the National Broadcasting Corporation (NBC), which oversees radio and television broadcasts, are finalised soon, experts have said. Efforts to bring the two together stalled under President Olusegun Obasanjo, but ICT Minister, Omobola Johnson, recently declared that streamlining the regulators would be a requisite to achieving the country's target of fully migrating to digital transmission by 2015.

Russia: 11 Areas of Election-Related ICT Innovation - Global Voices
Сrisis can be a fruitful time for innovation. In Kenya for example, the 2007-08 post-election crisis [en] led to the creation of the Ushahidi [en] mapping platform. In Russia, post-election protests have given birth to dozens of new web platforms and mobile applications. In most cases, innovations are created by the oppressed (in Russia's case, the opposition), who try to challenge the existing balance of power by using new tools and technologies. But the state can also adapt and adopt some of these technologies, in order to protect the status quo.

Etisalat sets out vision for enabling ICT to drive economic growth - Arab News
Speaking at the ITU Connect Arab Summit in Doha, organized by the International Telecommunication Union (ITU), Etisalat Chairman Mohammed Omran said: “The mobile industry’s contribution to socioeconomic growth can be amplified with appropriate regulations that support a multiplier effect in ICT investment.” He added: “Despite having some of the highest mobile penetration rates anywhere in the world, Middle East & Africa (MEA) is still in the first wave evolution of telecommunications as it moves from voice mobility to broadband connectivity.” Omran said the emerging markets of the MEA must create an appropriate policy ecosystem that encourages innovation and entrepreneurship to unlock the economic value of mobile broadband connectivity.

ICT makes arrangements for anti-polio drive - Pakistan Observer
Deputy Commissioner, Islamabad Amer Ali Ahmed has said that ICT Administration, in co-ordination with all related departments, has made comprehensive arrangements  for upcoming 4-day anti-polio drive starting from March, 12, in the rural and urban areas of Islamabad. During anti drive as many as 2, 27,000 children  would be administered anti-polio drops. Social mobilization drive was also under way in the urban and rural areas to ensure active participation of notables of the area including students, parents and teachers.

Mobile Health News Weekly - SYS-Con Media
The Mobile Health News Weekly is an online newsletter made up of the most interesting news and articles related to mobile health that is updated each week.  It is specifically targeting information that reflects market data and trends.

Airtel, Ver se' Innovation develops mHealth platform - BizCommunity.com
Airtel Africa on Friday, 2 March 2012, announced a key partnership with Ver se' Innovation, taking a step towards the development of its mobile health (mHealth) platform. The partnership, marked by the launch of the teleco's 'Mobile Health Tips' feature, sees the two companies come together to provide low cost, easily accessible mobile health services to consumers across Africa.

Africa’s ICT Entrepreneurs – On the Brink of the Long Summer of Love - The Zimbabwean
For over a decade, Africa’s ICT entrepreneurs have struggled to make sense of how to innovate and make money on a continent that was largely connected to the outside world by satellite and extremely expensive fibre. Now with cheaper wholesale bandwidth and falling retail prices, the season is going from an unforgiving winter to perhaps a long Summer of Love. Russell Southwood looks at the changes afoot that are helping Africa’s ICT entrepreneurs stand a better chance of success.

First mobile phone cash transfers facilitate UN-backed home rebuilding in Haiti - UN News Centre
Survivors of the 2010 devastating earthquake in Haiti have this week started receiving cash subsidies through the first-ever mobile money transfer system in support of post-disaster housing reconstruction, the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) reported today. More than 2,000 mobile money transfers are planned in the next three months to 1,000 low-income families receiving subsidies totalling $500 to purchase construction materials such as cement, iron and wood at selected project-certified stores. The initiative is part of the ‘Community Support Centres for House Repairs,’ a partnership between UNDP and the Government of Haiti.

Broadband For Nigeria - Next ICT Development Frontier - allAfrica.com
This paper makes the case for a National Software and Broadband Policy in support of the recently published draft National ICT Policy of January 2012 by the Ministry of Communications Technology's Ministerial Committee on ICT Policy Harmonization which includes in its objectives, "To encourage the development of Broadband services that will enable Nigerians enjoy the benefits of globalization and convergence". Specifically, the paper builds on the Broadband Section of the policy which states that "It is widely acknowledged that broadband infrastructure is an enabler for economic and social growth in the digital economy.

Taiwan ICT Industry Backgrounder - ElectroIQ
Taiwan's tech firms are stepping up their innovation and launching their own brands to ride the global ICT boom.Taiwan forms an indispensable part of the global Information and Communications Technology (ICT) industry. The high-tech island stands at the forefront of industries including notebook computers, wafer contract foundries, IC encapsulation testing and IC design. In addition, a growing number of local ICT companies are ramping up their ability to innovate and promote their own brands. This is helping transform a manufacturing economy into a knowledge-based one as Taiwanese companies realize the value of marketing and design.

ITU Chief wants some ICT/Telecoms taxes abolished around the world - Adom News
International Telecommunications Union (ITU) Secretary-General, Dr Hamadoun Touré has urged governments to slash or even abolish onerous taxes on ICT equipment and services that could stifle the future growth of the mobile telecom sector. Dr Touré warned against unfair taxes levied on ICT goods and services by governments hoping to take advantage of the buoyant state of the technology sector.
 

New study: The world is ready for mobile healthcare - Reuters
Based on the explosive growth in global mobile phone penetration, a technology revolution is quickly gaining pace in healthcare. Around the world, healthcare systems are overburdened, costly and incapable of meeting the needs of a growing population. According to a new study from The Boston Consulting Group and Telenor Group, mobile health technology can offer sizeable benefits to all countries, lead to economic growth and promise a better life for individuals.

Making the Connection Between Mobile Health and Mobile Finance - PR Web
The mHealth Alliance published a white paper today about the impact of linking mobile health with mobile finance. This paper identifies countries where this connection between mobile technology applications has had a positive impact, including Ghana, Haiti, Kenya, and the Philippines. The paper, titled Advancing the Dialogue on Mobile Finance and Mobile Health: Country Case Studies, follows an initial report about the intersection between mobile finance and mobile health, which was published by the mHealth Alliance and World Economic Forum in 2011.

CGAP, Grameen Foundation, and MTN to Invest in Mobile Money Products for the Unbanked - PR Newswire
Today at the Mobile World Congress 2012 in Barcelona, CGAP, Grameen Foundation, and MTN Uganda announced plans to introduce a new initiative to research and develop mobile financial products for the poor. CGAP, an independent policy and research center dedicated to advancing financial access for the world's poor, together with MTN and Grameen Foundation will provide US$1 million in financing to this initiative. The aim is to build upon the extensive research already conducted through Grameen Foundation's Application Laboratory (AppLab) in Uganda and to leverage MTN's successful Mobile Money service.

eServGlobal to bring mobile money to Somalia with Asgsm.Mobi - TelecomPaper
eServGlobal will work with Dubai-based mobile network operator Asgsm.Mobi to bring mobile money services to Asgsm.Mobi subscribers both in Somalia and abroad. Asgsm.Mobi holds a GSM and 3G license for Somalia and has been operating in the country since 2009. Asgsm.Mobi will use eServGlobal's PayMobile platform to offer a platform including a mobile wallet system, mobile money and mobile commerce services such as cash-in and cash-out at mobile-money agents, money transfer, bill payment services, airtime top-up from mobile wallet and payment at a merchant.

Mace Foods' use of M-Pesa in Kenya - "ICT and AG Profile" from USAID - e-Agriculture
This paper provides a brief overview of mobile money and mobile banking services. It is one of a series of briefing papers to help USAID missions and their implementing partners in sub-Saharan Africa use information and communications technology (ICT) more successfully —via sustainable and scalable approaches—to improve the impact of their agriculture related development projects including Feed the Future projects.

Ericsson and MTN partnership boosts m-wallet - IT News Africa
Ericsson, leading mobile phone company, and MTN, Africa’s largest telecom operator, announced a strategic new partnership to boost the m-wallet services in Africa and the Middle East. Announced at the Mobile World Conference in Barcelona, Spain on Monday, MTN will become the first operator to officially deploy the Ericsson’s Converged Wallet platform. Both companies said the service is “a new complementary service to the integrated pre-paid charging system and mobile financial services solution for MTN consumers in those regions”.

How mobile broadband can transform Africa - CNN
Mobile broadband can help Africa reach Millennium Development Goals, says Hamadoun Touré. He argues that broadband can teach children information technology skills and that Mobile technology is transforming healthcare and banking.

Using Radio to Improve Local Responses to Climate Variability: The Case of Alpaca Farmers in the Peruvian Andes - e-Agriculture
Livelihoods in high mountain areas are precarious at the best of times, and made more so by climate vulnerability. This case study focuses on radio's contribution to sustainable mountain livelihoods in the Peruvian Andes. CAMELTEC was broadranging in its remit; aiming to address technological, social, political and institutional issues that affected these communities. There was a strong informational component based mainly around radio and offering meteorological warnings but also advice on husbandry to reduce the impact of climate variability on animal disease and death. Such advice was provided both in preparation for cold spells or other weather events, and during those events themselves. The project also addressed itself to factors such as markets and market pricing for alpaca wool, and the organisation of the alpaca farmers and the institutional support provided by local government and others.

Phone journalism gives a voice to India's rural poor - CNN
Citizen journalism project is using mobile phone technology to reach India's tribal communities. The state where the service operates has been the center of a violent Maoist insurgency. CGNet Swara allows people in remote areas to file and listen to reports from their mobile, and founders say it has given a voice to an excluded community.

Monitoring and Mapping the Election in Senegal - MobileActive
The election in Senegal has been contentious with election monitors reporting numerous violations at the polling stations but also noting where the process went well.  A new online system, SeneVote2012, developed by One World, maps incidences and poll reports by the accredited election reporters of the Coalition of Civil Society Organizations for Elections (COSCE).

Global Research Alliance ICT4D project for rural Zambia launched - Fraunhofer
Under the auspices of the Global Research Alliance (GRA), Fraunhofer Portugal AICOS together with several partners from Europe, Africa and Australia has launched a new project: the GRA ICT4D for rural Zambia. In this project the Global Research Alliance (GRA) has initiated cooperation between major research institutes worldwide with the objective of challenging the lack of access to the world-wide communication infrastructure in rural areas of developing countries.

Comviva, Mastercard in Mobile Money Partnership Program in Kenya - allAfrica
Building upon its leadership in technology, Comviva has deployed a large number of Mobile commerce solutions across the globe. Latin America, Middle East, Africa and Asia will be the key geographies to benefit. Comviva to lead and support the worldwide operation. Comviva, the global provider of mobile solutions has announced a strategic partnership with MasterCard to launch a first-of-its-kind open loop Mobile Money Partnership Program. Through this partnership, Comviva and MasterCard aim to help mobile network operators and financial institutions to accelerate the development of their financial services offerings to their customers.

Airtel launches mobile money service across India - The Mobile Indian
It allows its users to load cash on their mobile devices and spend it to pay utility bills and shop. Bharti Airtel has launched Airtel Money, a mobile wallet service, across India. The Airtel Money service, is now available across 300 key cities in India, and will allows its users to load cash on their mobile devices and spend it to pay utility bills and recharges, shop at 7,000+ merchant outlets, transact online etc. Apart from serving as an easy alternative to cash / card payment options, Airtel Money also offers customers the convenience of instant money transfer from an Airtel Money wallet to another Airtel Money wallet and bank accounts. With this, customers can now use Airtel Money to make payments and transfer money across the country.

Mobile technology boosts health care in Bangladesh - GantDaily
Recent mobile phone initiatives in Bangladesh are allowing patients to reach a health worker for advice at no cost 24 hours a day, receive prenatal care reminders and even send complaints about patient care. Close to 60 percent of the population – some 85 million people – use mobile phones in Bangladesh, according to a December 2011 report from the country’s telecommunications regulatory commission. Cut off from formal medical care, some patients turn to untrained or “fake” doctors, leading to fatal remedies, said Azad, who wants to counter this trend with sound health advice. Since 2009, the government has provided cell phones to 482 sub-district and district government hospitals, which are used as round-the-clock hotlines staffed by health workers.

Orange and Qualcomm agree mobile-health partnership - Mobile Entertainment
Deal will connect Orange's machine-to-machine systems with Qualcomm's 2net m-health platform. The race is on to establish a foothold in a mobile healthcare space that many believe will be worth billions in a few years. Qualcomm is a well-known innovator here through its Qualcomm Life division, but it needs operator support to get its systems in front of medical professionals. Hence this deal with Orange Business Services, whose M2M systems are evolving to connect the devices and the cloud-based monitoring systems that will manage many of the m-health apps and services in years to come.

MTN and Banc ABC launches mobile money service in Zambia - Lusakatimes.com
Mobile Telecommunication Company (MTN) says it has acquired over 170, 000 mobile money customers and 340 agents since the mobile money service was launched as a pilot project in July last year. MTN Chief Executive Officer Abdul Ismail said the feat resulted in the Central Bank giving the mobile telecommunication company a full operating license in January this year for offering the service to the Zambia people.

Partnership to upskill women in ICT - The Skills Portal
The start of the End User Computing learnership programme which will equip 34 young women in Ekurhuleni Metropolitan Municipality was celebrated by the Progressive Women’s Movement of South Africa (PWMSA) and Bytes People Solutions (BPS). This follows the signing of an MoU between the three primary partners PWMSA, Bytes People Solutions and the Media, Advertising, Information and Communication Technologies Sector Training Authority (MICT Seta) to train 180 young women in ICT in six municipalities. The municipalities are Tshwane, Ekurhuleni, Metsweding, Sedibeng, Wesrand and Johannesburg Central.

ICT accelerates Tanzania`s giant leap in development, prosperity - IPP Media
The advancement of information communication technology (ICT) has facilitated service delivery in the public and private sectors and things are done more efficiently than it used to be in the past. Tanzania is rapidly changing because of ICT advancement and people can now communicate and get things done faster.

ICT and the future of Nigeria: A case for Tinapa - Vanguard
Where lies the future of Cross River State within the context of national and global competitiveness and who is capable of delivering that future? This question may look complex to engage, evaluate and provide a responsively proactive solution. However, on a closer look, we begin to understand that, though, it is a food for thought at this particular time in the history of the State, the answer to the above question comes handy and indeed very simple!

Utilizing Mobile Money in Healthcare - USAID
According to article released this week by Uganda Online, hospitals in Uganda are now accepting mobile money to pay for health expenses. While there are eight mobile providers in Uganda, four are providing mobile money services to their customers – MTN’s MobileMoney, Airtel’s ZAP, UTL’s M-Sente and Warid Pesa – with Orange Uganda planning on releasing their version of the service soon. In the article, a picture clearly shows that the hospital (Case Clinic) allows for mobile payments from MTN and Airtel. Other companies in Uganda are allowing for mobile payments – DStv (satellite TV provider), NWSC (water and sewerage) and Umeme (energy provider).

Wikipedia to Be Free On Mobiles in Africa, Middle East - Balancing Act
Millions of people in Africa and the Middle East will be able to benefit from free, unlimited access to the online encyclopaedia Wikipedia through their mobile phone, starting later this year. The scheme targets the region's 70 million customers of the mobile network provider Orange, who will be given free access to Wikipedia on their internet-enabled 'smart' phones. The deal struck between Orange and the Wikimedia Foundation, a non-profit organisation that operates Wikipedia, will allow Orange customers to read and download information from Wikipedia without the usual data usage charges.

Mobile money slowly turning East Africa into cashless society - The East African
Ali Ndiwalana, an IT specialist, had just finished an interview with The EastAfrican at Dormans Coffee House in Kampala, just across where he works, when he handed the waiter a Ush50,000 ($20.80) note in payment for a forest cake and two sodas taken in the course of the conversation. The waiter could not easily get change, which amounted to Ush38,000 ($16). So, for nearly 10 minutes we stood around waiting until Mr Ndiwalana asked if he could pay by mobile money. The waiter, his back towards us, did not hear him. Mr Ndiwalana was, of course, joking. Although, he said, he would have paid through mobile money were it possible. “Convenience,” he replied, a short and straightforward answer to the question as to why he would prefer to pay by mobile money compared with cash.

Telecom University Helps 150 Students To Acquire ICT Skills - Ghana Government Portal
One hundred and fifty students selected from all over the country have begun a two month’s training course in Information Technology in Accra.It is being jointly organized by the Ghana Telecom University College (GTUC), the Ministry of Communications and the Rockefeller Foundation. The students, who are from senior high schools and diploma awarding institutions, are pioneers of a model project aimed at providing them with the requisite skills to give them competitive edge to compete in the ever increasing industry of business processing outsourcing (BPO).

Wyse Cloud Client Computing Advances African Education and Government Sectors, and Delivers Sustainable ICT for All at eLearning Africa - MarketWatch
As Lead Sponsor of Africa's Premier ICT for Education & Training Congress, Students Reach for the Clouds and Rely on Wyse's Affordable, Secure, Mobile and Green IT Solutions. Wyse, the global leader in cloud client computing, today announced its platinum sponsorship of the eLearning Africa conference and exhibition for the second year in a row. Wyse is committed to helping educational institutions in Africa use advanced cloud client computing solutions to enable schools and colleges to deliver teaching and learning based on reliable, affordable and greener classroom ICT.

In Mali child mortality rates are amongst the highest in the world, and Pesinetis using mobile techonology to change that - MobileActive.com
Mali has one of the highest infant mortality rates in the world. There are roughly 111 deaths for every 1000 live births in the country and the under-5 mortality rate is 191 out of every 1000 children. The need for early detection of diseases and stronger local health structures led to the creation of Pesinet, a non-profit that uses mobile technology to provide regular health checkups and affordable health insurance for young children in Mali's capital, Bamako.

Cow Collar Texts Ranchers When Animals Are Sick, In Heat - Mashable
Even cows can benefit from having a mobile device. A new collar being developed for cattle ranchers could send cow health updates to farmers’ cellphones. The device could help ranchers save money in the long run, monitoring the health of their animals and prevent accidental deaths.

India to help develop Trinidad as ICT hub - Cyber Media
According to Minister of Foreign Affairs and Communications Surujrattan Rambachan, India's Technical and Economic Cooperation (ITEC) programme will facilitate the advancement of Trinidad and Tobago' s objective of becoming the ICT hub of the Caribbean and Latin America.

Nigerian ICT looks to mobile money - IT News Africa
Nigeria’s $25 billion mobile money market is set to top the agenda at the 66th Telecom Consumer Parliament (TCP) meeting on Friday. The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) and telecom operators hope the conference will address challenges the industry faces.

At the forefront of development - Financial Chronicle
The hardware is rudimentary. An ordinary mobile phone connected to a laptop with a cable. But who would have thought that this simple set up could actually be turned into a central communication hub, and in the hands of civil society, become a powerful communication tool for people’s empowerment? Ken Banks’ FrontlineSMS, a free and open-source software, is allowing groups at the frontline of development to do some extraordinary things. And yet, all that FrontlineSMS does, is that it “enables users to send and receive text messages with groups of people through mobile phones”. Perhaps, the power of FrontlineSMS can be grasped best by the stories of its use in the hands of others.

'Mobile Money' Transfers Hit Rwf 45 Billion Mark in Rwanda - allAfrica.com
About Rwf45 billion has been moved through the 'Mobile Money transfer facility since MTN Rwanda introduced the services. Albert Kinuma, the Head of Mobile Money at MTN, told the Sunday Times that the telecommunication company had made a tremendous step in mobile money services. Kinuma's remarks follow the ongoing campaign to sensitise the general public about the potential offered by the use of mobile money transfers and mobile banking services. The Ministry in charge of ICT, together with Rwanda Development Board (RDB), telecom companies, Energy Water and Sanitation Authority (EWSA), financial institutions and local government leaders, are behind the National ICT campaign.

The Number Of Mobile Devices Will Exceed World’s Population By 2012 - Tech Crunch
Despite its long and boring name, Cisco’s “Visual Networking Index (VNI) Global Mobile Data Traffic Forecast Update” is one of the more fascinating data-filled reports you’ll read this year. The report examines the dramatic growth we’re seeing in the mobile Internet space, including the massive demands for mobile data, the growth of mobile video, and the rise of the smartphone as new gateway to the web itself. Globally, mobile data traffic grew 2.3-fold over 2011, more than doubling for the fourth year in a row.

How to Get Funding for Your Africa-Focused Tech Start-Up - allAfrica.com
Impact investors are also showing interest in Africa but they don't seem to be taking any real risk with early stage tech start-ups. Yet technology probably offers the most impactful and scalable change in Africa. But let's face it folks, raising seed funding is hard enough for any type of start-up, and I would add it's twice as hard in Africa, even though the continent is uniquely positioned with many international investors recognising the real growth investment opportunities. I see both sides: Africa-originated start-ups coming to Silicon Valley to find tech-savvy angel investors, and foreigners (mostly Americans) trying to raise money for a new market in Africa.

Help poor harness connectivity - Business Daily
Entrepreneurs, businesses, NGOs, and governments exalt mobile technology as a game-changing tool to fight global poverty.But what if our eagerness to connect the world is inadvertently exacerbating the global economic divide? Mobile penetration has reached 79 percent of the developing world. Multiple studies on information and communication technologies for development (ICT4D) have linked increased cellphone adoption with positive trends in economic and human development indicators, from gross domestic product to the Grameen Bank’s Progress Out of Poverty Index.

Paytoo Mobile Wallet Brings the Fiesta to Mexico - San Francisco Chronicle
Paymotech, a global leader in telecommunication and mobile payment solutions has entered into an agreement with Boundless Payment Solutions and Mi Adelanto Corporativo, a Mexican consumer credit company, to deploy its Paytoo mobile payment service into the Mexican market.

Are mobile solutions overhyped? - CNN
There are now over 5 billion mobile phone subscriptions worldwide, according to the International Telecommunications Union, with global mobile penetration at 87 percent. In the developing world, where landlines are especially scarce in rural areas, mobiles have been used for governance, banking, agriculture, education, health, commerce, reporting news, political participation, and reducing corruption. But the ubiquity of the mobile phone - and its application to a diverse and growing set of development goals - doesn’t guarantee economic or social progress. Are mobiles just another high-tech solution to what are essentially systemic and deeply rooted problems? Are mobile solutions for combating global poverty overhyped?

Eric Tyler (Program Associate at the New America Foundation), Katrin Verclas (Co-Founder and Editor of MobileActive), Maura O’Neill, (Chief Innovation Officer at USAID), Kentaro Toyama (Researcher at the School of Information at the University of California, Berkeley) weigh in on the discussion.

North Korea Bans Use of Mobile Phones - Tech Wire Asia
The use of mobile phones is currently banned in North Korea, due in part to the death of North Korea’s leader, Kim Jong-il, December 7 last year. There is concern from his successors and the coutnry’s officials that the nation is in unsteady state, which is predictably getting worse. Said ban on the use of cellular phones will last through the departed dictator’s 100-day mourning period. Those caught will be branded as “war criminals“ and get punished accordingly. Citizens caught using mobile phones or attempting to flee from the country will be punished by being sent to a hard-labor camp or being executed. Both threats are “infinite wisdom” issues by existing government run by Kim Jong-il’s son, Kim Jong-un.

E-services to help cut health costs in the Middle East - Khaleej Times
Developing electronic and mobile healthcare services will help reduce costs in a post-recession era, said experts at the Arab Health Congress 2012 that opened on Monday. Healthcare experts discussed strategies to align resources to deliver and operate successful electronic systems across the region. The systems, they said, would offer patients greater freedom of choice by facilitating ‘seamless’ patient movement.

 

‘Use ICT to advance economic growth’ - The Nation
The Nigeria Computer Society (NCS) has called on stakeholders in the Information and Communications Technology (ICT) sector to invest in the nation’s ICT future, in order to boost economic growth, social inclusion and overall national development. As part of the society’s roadmap for employment of ICT to drive national growth and prosperity, NCS said it is focused on ensuring ICT adds value in education, employment generation, business improvement, health care and public safety.

Leading the technology challenge in Africa - IOL
CEO of Huawei Technologies Africa, Peng Song says that the traditional telecommunication industry now stands at the crossroads and is redefining itself where its focus is shifting from voice to data, from communications pipe to content development, from human-to-human to machine-to-machine communication, and from communication technology to Information Communication Technology.

Tech Firm supports ICT Hub in Africa - Women in Techonology
British technology firm Ensoft has donated funds to bring computing solutions to three rural communities in Africa. Three ZubaBoxes, a solar-powered ICT hub fitted into a shipping container, will be deployed by Computer Aid International in Zambia, Zimbabwe and Nigeria. They will provide access to ICT to people with no access to mains electricity or computers.

Fujitsu's ICT Helps to Solve Environmental Issues in Thailand - MarketWatch
Fujitsu today announced that it is using ICT to provide support in resolving environmental problems in the Map Ta Phut industrial estate in Thailand. Sponsored by Japan's New Energy and Industrial Technology Development Organization (NEDO), the project is a government-subsidized collaborative research effort in environmental technologies. It was taken up by NEDO in December 2011 based on a request received from the Government of Thailand. In this project, Fujitsu will construct an environmental monitoring system that will gather, monitor, and analyze data on environmental pollutants, such as volatile organic compounds (VOCs), noxious odors, and ozone gas, in the Map Ta Phut industrial estate. The measurement data provided by this system will then be used to support research on the VOC diffusion prediction model of Chulalongkorn University, a national public university in Thailand, in partnership with the Asia Center for Air Pollution Research (ACAP). Moreover, Fujitsu's environmental technology, which has a track record in Japan for environmental solutions, will be transferred to Thailand to help cultivate environmental engineers in Thailand.

Learning from Kenya: Mobile money transfer and co-working spaces - The Next Web
In Kenya, you’ll find M-Pesa. It’s not a banking system for mobile phones, but a technology that facilitates money transfers. This is a major difference, since M-Pesa doesn’t require users to have a bank account, a necessity its Kenyan innovators were responding to. Launched as a pilot project in March 2007 (with help from a Vodafone investment and aid from the Danish government), the service already has more than 15 million users, 80% of Safaricom’s customers. The company now controls 75% of Kenya’s mobile phone market.

Arab ICT Officials Roundtable with IJMA3-USA and U.S. Department of State - PRWeb
The U.S. State Department and IJMA3-USA hosted an “Arab Telecommunications Officials’ Roundtable” discussion. The roundtable took place at the State Department and included both high-level U.S. Government officials and members of the IJMA3-USA Arab ICT Delegation to the U.S., examining IT policy and Internet freedom issues in the wake of the Arab Spring. The Arab ICT Delegation was the largest of its kind since the unfolding of the Arab Spring last year, a seismic shift in the region that made apparent the impact of information and communications technology (ICT)as a fundamental tool for political freedom and economic development. Discussion between a delegation of this kind, consisting of Arab policy-makers and private sector leaders, and U.S. policy experts was a unique opportunity to advance the current momentum in trade, investment and public policy for the U.S. and the Arab world.

ICT Working Group Identifies Strategic Projects For Brunei Darussalam-Indonesia-Malaysia-Philippines-East Asean Growth Area - Bernama
They are the ICT Rural Outreach Programme (iROP), BIMP-EAGA Rink (Submarine Cable) and Intelligent Clearance Identification (iClid), a statement issued by the Mindanao Development Authority (MinDA) said.The iROP and iCLID secured funding support and have qualified to be listed for the two-year rolling plan for 2012-2013. BIMP-EAGA Rink will be carried forward to the next rolling plan for 2013-2014. The iROP is a BIMP-EAGA outreach programme to improve ICT literacy among the rural communities through construction of computer telecentres, with e-Learning models and mobile applications. The Philippines has identified 30 pilot sites for the computer telecentres in the Autonomous Region for Muslim Mindanao (ARMM).

French Agency Sign ICT Devt Grant in Nigeria- AllAfrica
The New Partnership for Africa Development (NEPAD) has signed a Grant Facility Agreement (GFA) with the French Development Agency (AFD), towards investing in the development of an Information, Communication Technology (ICT) back bone.According to NEPAD, the grant of Euros 1,350,000 is made available to it by the European Union Infrastructure Trust Fund (EU-ITF) a European donor coordinated fund, through the AFD, towards the financing of the NEPAD ICT broadband infrastructure network for West, Central and North Africa project.

ICT experts: Time to focus on social policies - The Daily Star
The Middle East's regional Information and Communication Technolgy (ICT ) leaders voiced optimism Thursday about the future of the sector but noted that gains from foreign direct investment in the industry have failed to translate into sound social policies. Panelists speaking at the first session of the conference, titled “Arab Telecom and Internet Forum,” noted that the huge investment in the ICT sector in the region did not reflect more economic development.They called on governments to better coordinate social and economic policies, warning that “sound economic policies and good forecasts can be easily eroded by fragile social conditions.”

Uganda’s Airtel launches mobile money - IT News Africa
Uganda’s Airtel officially launched its mobile money scheme on Tuesday with Prime Minister Amama Mbabazi making the first transaction to a local journalist. The new platform should enable Ugandans to access their real money and convert it to e-money in order to pay bills and accounts, top up mobile credit and receive money across the country’s telecom networks.

World Bank approves additional US$ 11 million for ICT enhancement project in Sri Lanka - ColomboPage
The grant would help Sri Lanka to gain a considerable competitive advantage in the region post becoming a Middle Income Country. With the additional funding for the E-Sri Lanka Development Project, the Information and Communication Technology Agency (ICTA) of Sri Lanka will further improve the efficiency, capacity and expansion of information and technology services needed for both in the private sector and government

Nigeria's Federal Government to Inject N1 Billion in ICT Incubation Centre - All Africa
Setting up the centre would help to accelerate the development of commercial software in the industry. The ministry would partner with private investors to create an enabling environment for youths that have passion for software development. A committee has been set up to ensure that the incubation centre would provide the necessary funding towards empowering the youth and the Minister of Communications Techonology urged Nigerian youths to be self-empowered in the ICT world in order to compete favourably with the rest of the world.

Young leaders use mobile platform to tackle poverty - Newsbytes
A group of young global leaders will pilot a non-profit initiative to give 1 billion mobile phone users living in poverty access to educational phone apps. Currently under development, AppBridge is an online platform to encourage talented software developers to link up with non-governmental organizations (NGOs) and community organizations to produce apps that will tackle poverty among the “bottom billion”. Thus, the platform will allow an ecosystem of people and organizations – NGOs, local partners, software developers and telecommunications companies – to engage and communicate directly with one another in identifying community needs, creating apps to address these needs and distributing apps to the target communities.

ICT Growth in Indonesia Looks Rosy as the Nation Reaches a Transformative Phase of its Economic Development - IEWY News
Global market volatility and economic uncertainly have led investors to seek shelter in emerging nations where opportunities for growth still exists. With Indonesia’s plans to transform itself into an economic powerhouse coupled with its appeal in the international arena for foreign direct investments, International Data Corporation (IDC) believes that information and communication technology (ICT) growth in the nation looks promising.

ICT job market shaky but hopeful in Austrailia - CIO
The ICT job market will slow down in the next 12 months, according to the Information Technology Contract and Recruitment Association’s (ITCRA) SkillsMatch data for 2011 and industry data from Longhaus and the Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations. However, the situation isn’t entirely bleak because there will always be a need for a skilled and mobile IT workforce despite the economic outlook.

 Internet access in Philippines still belongs to 'privileged few' - PhilStar
Despite having almost 30 million Internet users, access to cyber space is still said to belong to a “privileged few” in the Philippines  with the major blame being placed on high Internet rates. Some critics say the government can address the problem by giving special Internet rates among public schools or by urging private  telecommunications firms to give internet connection incentives to consumers.

How Can the Diaspora Boost ICT Development in the Arab World? - Wamda
Arab-American heavyweights from Google, Cisco, Kiva, CMEA, and the U.S. State Department, as well as the Ministers of Telecom from Egypt, Iraq, and Jordan, and the CEO of the IT authority in Oman were present to discuss how Arab countries can move away from being resource dependent and towards IT and knowledge-based economies. Looking to entrepreneurship and youth as a solution for job creation is a theme of 2011 that will continue to build in 2012.

Digital Communication and Political Change in China - International Journal of Communication
The popularization of digital media technologies in the People’s Republic of China has led to the liberalization of public discourse and provided the citizenry with new opportunities for political advocacy. This article employs content analysis of newspapers and blogs to test information regime theory and finds considerable evidence of a transformation in the properties of political communication. Chinese Communist Party-led institutions, however, have responded to new challenges with legal and technological measures designed to control and guide political expression. The authors consider evidence that suggests new media have empowered China’s “netizens” and diminished the state’s ability to set the public agenda and shape political preferences.

Mobile Money Services Make a Mark - Botswanna Gazette
Six months after the concurrent launches of Mobile money services in Botswana by both Mascom and Orange, the network operators are happy about the prospective opportunities that are provided by this new market that enables them to tap into the unbanked population.

Mobile Penetration and IPTV Services Fuel Brazil's Market through 2016 - PR Newswire
Brazil is undergoing a cultural and economic transformation that will cause mobile penetration to grow from 118 percent in 2011 to 153 percent in 2016 and IPTV services to increase from 21,000 subscriptions in 2011 to 1.5 million in 2016, according to a new report from Pyramid Research.

Mobile Financial Services and the Emerging Global Middle Class - Lydian Journal
Many economists, public policy analysts and philanthropic institutions have come to the common conclusion that lack of financial access for this large segment of the planet’s population is a major barrier to further economic development in emerging markets. At the same time, growth of the global middle class in Africa, Asia and Latin America has accelerated, making it even more critical to identify opportunities to close the financial services access gap. With better access to basic financial service capabilities to make payments, save and access credit, this growing global middle class population will be able to play a more powerful role in shaping the future of economic growth over the next 10 years.

Kenya Trailblazes in Mobile Money Transfer Services - All Africa
The success of mobile money transfer by telecoms in Kenya has excited investors in Nigeria and Columbia to start rolling out similar services. Kenya prides itself in the global pedestal as the world's largest mobile services financial hub, with almost 18 million people using their handsets to transact.

How Refugees Use Mobile Phones to Locate and Communicate with Family - Mobile Active
Refugees often experience a compound trauma: The situation that caused them to flee in the first place, as well as the fact that many families become separated during migration. For refugee's health and well-being and ability to resettle, it is vital to know the whereabouts of relatives, their safety, and their ability to remain in contact. Today, mobile phones are the most important technology for refugees to find relatives and remain in contact.    

Ghana: ICT Textbooks Launched for Students and Teachers - Modern Ghana
An ICT textbook with solutions and instructional methodologies designed basically for students of Senior High Schools (SHS), tertiary and ICT teachers was on Tuesday launched in Accra to serve as useful information for students to build “solid foundation for computing”.

Environmental Impact of Information and Communication Technology - Decoded Science
Information and Communications Technology (ICT) has changed our society remarkably in the last few years. Although its effects on our everyday lives are obvious, the effects that this technology may have on the environment are much less clear and seldom talked about. A recent article published in Nature, however, covers this topic in detail. 

Ten Facts about Mobile Broadband - The Brookings Institution
Mobile broadband is reshaping society, communications, and the global economy. With smart phone usage surpassing that of personal computers, there has been a sea change in the way consumers access and share information. Powerful mobile devices and sophisticated digital applications enable users to build businesses, access financial and health care records, conduct research, and complete transactions anywhere.  The Brookings Institution looks at 10 facts about mobile phones and broadband.

From Smart Phones to Smart Farming: Indigenous Knowledge Sharing in Tanzania - National Geographic
Many people believe communications technology helps the developing world by allowing people to link up with the ‘West’ and be given information and knowledge. It is often people in the developing world with the knowledge, and what technology can instead do is help them unlock that knowledge and share it with one another.  Using Tanzania as an example.

Syrian Authorities Ban the Use of iPhones - The Next Web
Syrian authorities have banned the use of iPhones in the country, restricting the use of the device by activists to document government violence, Lebanese website Al Nashara reports.

Blog: Learning from a Kenyan Revolution - The World Bank
Who would have thought, 20 years ago, that a poor African country would become a powerhouse of global innovation in Information and Communication Technology (ICT)? Wolfgang Fengler discusses the transformations he has seen over the past 10 to 15 years in Kenya.

ICT Quickly Reducing Cost of Education and Health Care - Bangkok Post
A famous claim in economics is that the cost of services (such as health care and education) tends to increase relative to the cost of goods (such as food, oil, and machinery).  This seems right: people around the world can barely afford the rising health-care and school-tuition costs they currently face _ costs that seem to increase each year faster than overall inflation. But a sharp decline in the costs of health care, education, and other services is now possible, thanks to the ongoing information and communications technology (ICT) revolution.

Research: ICT Governance vs. Community Empowerment: Grassroots Evidence from Bangladesh - University for Peace and Conflict
Mizanur Rahman analyzes the assertion that Information and Communication Technology (ICT) is the catalyst to enhance community empowerment, reporting on research study, “Community Empowerment through ICTs: Evidence from the Grassroots in Bangladesh and India”. His analysis of evidence from Bangladesh shows that ICT penetration alone is not proportionately related to community empowerment; but rather that ICT penetration combined with the precise application of ICT governance strengthen community empowerment. The evidence also shows that if ICT penetration is high but ICT governance is low, ICT does not remain a high catalytic factor for community empowerment.

Ericsson Index Ranks ICT-Savvy Cities by Benefit for Citizens - Reuters
Ericsson and Arthur D. Little's latest Networked Society City Index ranks cities in terms of their ability to use ICT to benefit their citizens.  Top-ranking cities Seoul, Singapore and Stockholm show the benefits of engaging a society as a whole.

 Users Spend up to 38 Days a Year on Smartphones and Tablets - The Malta Independent
Smartphone and tablet users have adapted their recreational time into ‘Mobile Economic Time’, which is equivalent to 38 days or nearly five and a half weeks per year. This study, conducted on behalf of CA Technologies revealed how consumers use Mobile Economic Time to connect with brands, and their zero tolerance attitudes to online brands and apps which fail to deliver secure online mobile experience.

 How Refugees Use Mobile Phones to Locate and Communicate with Family - Mobile Active
Refugees often experience a compound trauma: The situation that caused them to flee in the first place, as well as the fact that many families become separated during migration. For refugee's health and well-being and ability to resettle, it is vital to know the whereabouts of relatives, their safety, and their ability to remain in contact. Today, mobile phones are the most important technology for refugees to find relatives and remain in contact.  

Clinton Hails Oman's eGovernment, ICT Initiatives - Times of Oman
Former US President Bill Clinton has hailed the Sultanate for promoting excellent e-Services and for making sterling progress in the ICT sector.  The 42nd President of the US was the keynote speaker at the much anticipated awards ceremony held to present the Sultan Qaboos Award for Excellence in eGovernment, at the Sultan Qaboos University Cultural Centre here, yesterday.

Blog: SMS for Violence Prevention: PeaceTXT International Launches in Kenya - iRevolution
The purpose of PeaceTXT is to leverage mobile messaging to catalyze behavior change around peace and conflict issues. In the context of Chicago, the joint project with CeaseFire aims to leverage SMS reminders to interrupt gun violence in marginalized neighborhoods. Several studies in other fields of public health have already shown the massive impact that SMS reminders can have on behavior change, e.g., improving drug adherence behavior among AIDS and TB patients in Africa, Asia and South America.      

Ghana: ICT Textbooks Launched for Students and Teachers - Modern Ghana
An ICT textbook with solutions and instructional methodologies designed basically for students of Senior High Schools (SHS), tertiary and ICT teachers was on Tuesday launched in Accra to serve as useful information for students to build “solid foundation for computing”.

United Nations Calls for More ICT to Fight Climate Change - eWeek Europe
The UN’s technology body has highlighted how Ghana is mitigating global warming effects through ICT.  The United Nations’ technology body, the International Telecommunication Union (ITU), is calling for a wider use of technology projects in helping countries adapt to climate change.    

Environmental Impact of Information and Communication Technology - Decoded Science
Information and Communications Technology (ICT) has changed our society remarkably in the last few years. Although its effects on our everyday lives are obvious, the effects that this technology may have on the environment are much less clear and seldom talked about. A recent article published in Nature, however, covers this topic in detail.  

m-Money Allowed Developing World to Skip a Step as a Do-it-All Phone is Set to Release Soon - The Telegraph
Maybe it’s time to ditch your keys, wallets, debit cards and passports as the smartphone revolutions gathers momentum.   A combination of increased security, surging smartphone usage and the advent of Near Field Communication (NFC) technology – which allows users to “swipe” mobiles as they would an Oyster Card – will soon turn the phone in your pocket into a device that gains you entry to your house, doubles as your debit card and probably your passport, your driving license and medical records as well.

Access to Web, Phones Key to Helping the Poor - Reuters
Governments worldwide must boost internet accessibility in order to nurture democracy and economic development, entrepreneur Loic Le Meur said at the prestigious LeWeb technology conference in Paris which he founded.      

Malaysia: Technopreneurship, A Promising Call for the Unemployed - The Borneo Post
The call for the Malaysian society to be a highly-technocratic one is not a new notion. In his Vision 2020 working paper in 1991, former premier Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad highlighted the need to establish ‘a scientific and progressive society’ as the sixth challenge out of nine outlined in the national agenda.  As futuristic as it may sound, a technopreneur is basically an entrepreneur with both business and technical training background; or one who applies technology and innovation as the business’ core operating model

Why are Mobile Phones an Effective Tool Against Corruption? - The Swedish Program for ICT in Developing Regions
This year, the number of ICT related initiatives and projects that address corruption (defined in its widest sense) have doubled if not tripled. The most visible development is the use of crowdsourcing methods by civil society organizations, making it possible for citizens to voice their concerns, demand improved service delivery and report corruption.  Spider, The Swedish Program for ICT in Developing Regions, looks at whether or not mobile phones have been effective in the fight against corruption.    

Study Shows Many Governments in Asia Pacific Delaying Online Interaction with their Citizens - Computer Business Review
DC Government Insights report, Asia/Pacific Government Insights 2012 Top 10 Predictions, says that citizens today are actively seeking engagements on social networks with brands, products and companies and they are looking to engage with government representatives in a similar fashion.  The report states that many governments across Asia/Pacific, however, are delaying online interaction with their citizens until protective policies for security guidelines are spelt out clearly.  

Ten Facts about Mobile Broadband - The Brookings Institution
Mobile broadband is reshaping society, communications, and the global economy. With smart phone usage surpassing that of personal computers, there has been a sea change in the way consumers access and share information. Powerful mobile devices and sophisticated digital applications enable users to build businesses, access financial and health care records, conduct research, and complete transactions anywhere.  The Brookings Institution looks at 10 facts about mobile phones and broadband…

Caribbean: ICT Gaining Momentum in the Region - MENA FN
Minister in the Office of the Prime Minister in Barbados, Darcy Boyce, notes that ICTs gaining momentum with youth in the Caribbean and as a result, countries must revaluate what is considered basic telecoms services.      

Nigeria: Nation Must Start Using ICT in Health - All Africa
Health minister Onybeuchi Chukwu says Nigeria must begin deploying information and communication technology (ICT) in health delivery but insists it must be driven by "a policy that's coherent, but more importantly implementable."

From Smart Phones to Smart Farming: Indigenous Knowledge Sharing in Tanzania - National Geographic
Many people believe communications technology helps the developing world by allowing people to link up with the ‘West’ and be given information and knowledge. It is often people in the developing world with the knowledge, and what technology can instead do is help them unlock that knowledge and share it with one another.  Using Tanzania as an example…    

mHealth Executive Director Patty Mechael: Leverage Existing Tech in the Developing World - Mobihealth News
The mHealth Alliance, a project of the United Nations Foundation, the Rockefeller Foundation and the Vodafone Foundation, is probably the most global of all the groups out there promoting mobile health. And the mHealth Summit, which the mHealth Alliance and the Foundation for the National Institutes of Health are staging this week, likely is the most international of mobile health events held in the U.S.  

Syrian Authorities Ban the Use of iPhones - The Next Web
Syrian authorities have banned the use of iPhones in the country, restricting the use of the device by activists to document government violence, Lebanese website Al Nashara reports.

Will the Internet Generation "Take China Down"? - The China Digital Times
The China Digital Times looks at a variety of sources discussing the United States’ right-leaning Republican Party presidential candidates’ stances on China in the upcoming elections.  It pays particular attention to responses to candidate John Huntsman’s remarks that the United States needs to “be reaching out to our allies and constituencies within China. They’re called the young people. They’re called the internet generation.”      

Blog: Learning from a Kenyan Revolution - The World Bank
Who would have thought, 20 years ago, that a poor African country would become a powerhouse of global innovation in Information and Communication Technology (ICT)? Wolfgang Fengler discusses the transformations he has seen over the past 10 to 15 years in Kenya.

India Vows Crackdown on Offensive Internet Content - British Broadcasting Corporation
India has vowed to crack down on offensive internet content, accusing web firms of failing to cooperate.  Communications Minister Kapil Sibal met officials from Google, Facebook and other websites on Monday.    

Digital Innovations for the Greater Good - Live Mint
Winners of the Manthan Award, South Asia, which seeks to encourage start-ups using information and communication technology (ICT) for social development, were announced on Friday.  This year, the competition received 510 nominations from India and neighbours such as Afghanistan, Nepal, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka. Of these, 110 projects were selected to compete in categories such as governance, health, education and learning, inclusion, infrastructure, travel and tourism, environment, community broadcasting, entertainment, agriculture and livelihood, localization, news and media, science and business and enterprise.  

Malaysia: ICT Competitions Heating Up in Push for Creating an ICT-Literate Generation - The Star
The private sector plays an important role when it comes to training trainers in the field of information-communication technology (ICT).  Unimas Deputy Vice-Chancellor Prof Mohd Fadzil Abdul Rahman said competition like this (the 19th Dynabook National ICT Competition) should be held frequently since not only does it promote ICT, it would even unearth talented individuals.

In a Few Years, ICT Will Render Workers, Workplace Obsolete - The Gleaner
Rapid advancement in technology will, within a couple of years, eliminate the need for some workers and render the contemporary workplace obsolete, according to Professor Anthony Clayton of the Institute of Sustainable Development at the University of the West Indies.      

Farming by Phone in Kenya - Africa Good News
Francis Mburu used to keep indigenous cattle in Entasopia village in the semi- arid Kajiado region, 160 kilometres southwest of Nairobi. However, increasing temperatures and frequent droughts in Kenya have made this difficult in recent years.  But now, in an area that has never had electricity, where education is not a priority or sometimes not an option at all, residents of Entasopia are using a solar-powered internet facility to adapt to the changing climatic conditions.  The Nguruman community, largely composed of the Maasai ethnic group, now has access to an ICT facility locally known as Maarifa ("knowledge" in Swahili) Centre. Here they are able to access climate adaptation information via the internet, videos and books. The Arid Land Information Network (ALIN), in collaboration with the Kenyan government, founded the project

ICT Can Democratize Development - The Guardian
Decades after the World Bank and the IMF came into being, we have the technology to ensure that countries can hold their governments to account.    

Increased Mobile Broadband Spectrum Vital for Africa's Development - IT News Africa
Greater allocation of spectrum for Mobile Broadband is vital for the economic and social development of sub-Saharan Africa, commented the GSMA.  New findings from a report by the GSMA and Plum Consulting reveal that, across the region, the release of Mobile Broadband spectrum in the Digital Dividend and the 2.6GHz bands by 2015 in sub-Saharan Africa could create up to 27 million new jobs, increase GDP per capita by 5.2 per cent, and increase GDP and government tax revenues by US$82 billion and US$18 billion per year respectively by 2025. 

ICT Quickly Reducing Cost of Education and Health Care - Bangkok Post
A famous claim in economics is that the cost of services (such as health care and education) tends to increase relative to the cost of goods (such as food, oil, and machinery).  This seems right: people around the world can barely afford the rising health-care and school-tuition costs they currently face _ costs that seem to increase each year faster than overall inflation. But a sharp decline in the costs of health care, education, and other services is now possible, thanks to the ongoing information and communications technology (ICT) revolution.

Research: ICT Governance vs. Community Empowerment: Grassroots Evidence from Bangladesh - University for Peace and Conflict
Mizanur Rahman analyzes the assertion that Information and Communication Technology (ICT) is the catalyst to enhance community empowerment, reporting on research study, “Community Empowerment through ICTs: Evidence from the Grassroots in Bangladesh and India”. His analysis of evidence from Bangladesh shows that ICT penetration alone is not proportionately related to community empowerment; but rather that ICT penetration combined with the precise application of ICT governance strengthen community empowerment. The evidence also shows that if ICT penetration is high but ICT governance is low, ICT does not remain a high catalytic factor for community empowerment.      

African Lessons in Mobile Commerce - The Wall Street Journal
There is a frequent assumption that, with technology, Africa always has to learn from more developed countries. But what if it is actually leading the way? Perhaps it has lessons to give rather than to receive.  Two newly-published reports on electronic cash, one from Forrester sponsored by PayPal, and another from A.B.I. are outlined in The Register. While in developed countries companies continue to debate when or whether people will use cell phones instead of cash for everyday transactions, in Africa it is already happening. How are they making it work?