Cellphones Changing African Lives At All Levels
Friday, April 1, 2005
Neither a lack of money nor a lack of electricity denies entrepreneurial Africans access to a cellphone, according to a recent study.
People at all income levels are using mobile services, either by owning or sharing a phone, while a lack of mains electricity is circumvented by recharging phones with a generator or a car battery.
The effort is worth it because in the poorest rural areas cellphones have reduced the need to travel, helped people hunt for jobs, given them more access to business information, and improved their relationships with family and friends by keeping them in contact.
The research was inspired by Vodacom CEO Alan Knott-Craig, who told Vodacom’s 35% shareholder Vodafone of the effect cellphones were having on African lives.
The study showed that phones had become an essential tool for small businesses. Research in SA, Egypt and Tanzania found many entrepreneurs had no other means of communicating, particularly SA’s black-owned businesses.
Story found here.
Source: Business Day (Johannesburg)