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Charity Information and Communication Technology (ICT)

5 Ways Mobile Technology Is Helping the Poor

When it comes to helping the poor, more eyebrows are raised. Oddly, one of the greatest ways in which the poor are being aided in the 21st Century is through mobile technology. Yes, there are foundations and societies that offer relief to local communities, and even some that have national programs available in all 50 states, but it is through mobile technology that advances are being made on a large scale. Government programs that offer free phones to those qualified within a certain bracket of poverty give them access to communications that would otherwise be inaccessible. Not only is mobile technology offering relief to the poor but it is that same technology that enables relief efforts to reach the desired portion of the population.

Heping the poor from FoodForThePoor

Is technology truly helping the poor? Here’s why we think it does:

1. Demographic Analysis

It would be virtually impossible to serve the needs of the poor without being able to analyze needs and areas where those needs are greatest. Through mobile technology it is easier than ever before to conduct surveys and polls in an effort to identify demographics in need of assistance in any given city, rural region or state. With free cell phones sponsored by the federal government, agencies can conduct polls via SMS messages and get results in real time to keep current on demographic analysis.

2. Access to Education

Some of the poorest of the population live in outlying rural areas too far from colleges and technical schools to even think about secondary education. With the advent of mobile technology, more students than ever before are able to access online classes even in areas where cable isn’t available for high speed connections. Mobile devices are able to connect to the internet so that these students can study and also, parents of younger children can stay apprised of their children’s progress through SMS messaging from teachers and school administrators.

3. Access to Market Data in Agriculture

Where once farmers had to actually make the trip to market to stay informed of market prices, they can now access that data via mobile devices. There are also apps that warn of inclement weather and offer such things as reminders for feeding. There are so many applications available for agricultural uses that a farmer need never leave the field to access the information needed at any given moment for a multitude of reasons.

4. Access to Mobile Health & Self-Assessment

Within the past few years, mobile health technology has been advancing at such a rate that many people no longer need to take a trip to the local clinic for routine assessments. There are now health apps for keeping track of meds, recording levels of glucose in the bloodstream and monitoring heart rates and rhythms in patients suffering from cardiovascular disease. If something is amiss, the mobile device sends information to the doctor or clinic where immediate action can be taken in real time. If the medical practitioner deems it necessary to see the patient, a quick call can be made to schedule an appointment. At other times the information is simply placed in the patient’s file.

5. Access to Banking

There are so many people around the world who live in areas void of banking services that mobile banking is quickly banking the unbanked. One area that is particularly served by mobile banking is Africa where it could be literally hundreds of miles between brick-and-mortar financial institutions. With the availability of mobile banking, there is no longer a need to go without a bank account to pay bills and transfer money as needed.

And number 6!

6. Access to charity organizations across the world

Helping the poor children in our community to have social amenities and good education.

Fundraising has never been much easier these days without the advent of mobile technology. With the responsiveness in most mobile websites, poor people can easily get access to fundraising organizations across the world. Website like FoodForPoor has certain feature that enable poor people to have their say-and yet-get instant food and social amenities support within a short period. This wouldn’t have been easier if there’s no such system in place to make room for that. Mobile technology has really touched all and sundry, helping the poor is among them.

These are just a few of the ways in which mobile technology is helping the poor. However, by these few examples it is clear just how much of an impact this technology has made for the less fortunate within our society. There are many other ways technology is helping the poor and less privileged people lead a better life in our society and we’d be glad if you can add your own voice.

Which way do you think technology is helping the poor around you that worth mentioning? Use the box below.

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Featured Information and Communication Technology (ICT)

VoIP and the Future of Mobile Technologies: How to Unlock Unlimited Minutes and Ditch your Cell Provider

According to tech blogger Stuart Zipper at Phone.com, the soon-to-be-released Blackberry Z10 may be setting new standards in mobile VoIP capabilities and the shape of mobile technologies.

VoIP, or Voice over Internet Protocol, refers to Internet telephony, the technology by which phone calls can be sent via wireless Internet Protocol routes, rather than through traditional copper wire routes. VoIP is far cheaper than traditional phone service, and offers more calling features like unlimited nationwide calling and cheap international minutes.  Blackberry z10 smartphone

The Cheat Sheet to Making Unlimited Calls with VoIP technology, and what the future holds!

According to Zipper, the BlackBerry Z10 will likely be VoIP-enabled such that customers can use their cell phones as virtual extensions through VoIP. There are already some providers that offer service in virtual extensions whereby a company could set up their employees with cell phones as their primary work extension through their hosted PBX, so it isn’t new that people can use cell phones as a primary VoIP line. However, if this BlackBerry Z10 rumor turns out to be true, this could have significant implications for VoIP networks, the cell phone industry, and the shape of national Internet services.

Most of the time, when people buy cell phones, they also buy a regular minute, text, and data plan for a cellular provider. And with legislation that makes cell phone unlocking illegal, it will only get harder to get a cell phone with no strings attached. A smartphone that allows a user to solely use their cheap Internet-based VoIP service plan without having to buy a traditional phone package would be a radical shift in the favor of the customer.

VoIP reduces cellular rates

In order for a cell phone to function as a cell phone, customers need to buy cellular plans. Customers can use VoIP on their cell phones whenever they have access to the Internet. Customers can access the Internet any time they have access to private or public Wi-Fi, but when there is no WiFi, customers need to be able to get online, which usually requires a data plan with a cellular provider.

So, for now, even when customers want to use mobile VoIP for the majority of their cell calling, they still need at least a small data plan.Voip technology

Mobile phone with VoIP facility on the way

However, if there were a popular shift towards using VoIP for the majority of mobile calling, as enabled by a VoIP-reliant mobile phone like the rumored BlackBerry, customers would have access to much cheaper mobile phone service for all calling.

An expansion into full VoIP access also has implications for the state of nationwide Internet access capabilities. Just the suggestion of all-VoIP cell phones reflects that national interest in improved public WiFi networks. It is generally easier to access a cellular network than it is to access WiFi in many places. All-VoIP mobile technologies would require improvements in nationwide Internet systems.

Industries now investing in Wi-Fi networks

There has been a push in recent years to make free WiFi access more widespread. Several big food chains like Starbucks and McDonalds now offer free WiFi, and several airlines offer WiFi during flights (though not for free).

WiFi is also starting to appear more and more with public transportation. San Francisco has WiFi on their BART train system, and New York City launched WiFi in 6 of their underground stations in August, 2012 with plans to reach all 277 stations by 2017.Wi-Fi network for internet access

Wherever there is an Internet connection, there is the ability for VoIP users to use their unlimited free calls anywhere in the country. VoIP smartphone users are going to want more access to WiFi or 4G wherever they travel with their smartphone.

Free WiFi still isn’t available in a lot of everyday places, and 4G can be expensive, but demand by VoIP users could very well change that. Baby steps made to include WiFi in public transportation locations could become the new standard, and WiFi might be made available in public spaces like parks and beaches as well.

VoIP users will have to wait and see what the future holds, but it is certainly promising. This could be mean freedom from those expensive traditional phone plans and definitely the freedom to make calls anywhere in the world with more WiFi access.

Do you reasoned with the writer in one way or the other? I personally did reasoned in the opposite way, and here’s what I reasoned about. “What if those big ISP or Cellular companies make move to stop this technology advancement,” do you think the writer’s point of view can be easily accepted by everyone?

Please reason with me and let’s communicate and learn new things.

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Android Fans Apple iOS Information and Communication Technology (ICT)

4 Mobile Technology Developments to Expect in 2012

With the end of 2011 upon us, it’s time to consider what might happen “mobile-wise” in the upcoming year.

The possibilities are endless. 2011 saw the introduction of several new mobile technologies, some of which could have sweeping effects on the mobile industry at large. The arrival of these technologies to the marketplace – not to mention some recent announcements from big players in the tech sphere – may even offer a little taste of what we can expect in the months to come.

mobile technology wonders in 2012So without further adieu, here are four mobile technology developments to expect in 2012 and beyond:

Mobile Technology Developments for 2012 Upward

1. More people buying more tablets

When Apple quietly discontinued its popular white Macbook earlier this year, it signaled the end of an era in consumer-grade personal computers. In place of its simplest laptop, the company will just sell the iPad – and only the iPad.

Not in addition to the Macbook, but instead of it.

Apple apparently believes that tablets will effectively replace less expensive laptops in the years to come. And they’re not the only ones who feel this way.

With this year’s introduction of Amazon’s Kindle Fire with its super low price point, it’s clear that both of these industry leaders envision more tablets in the hands of more consumers in the near future. Those who otherwise might purchase laptops strictly for personal use will likely be purchasing tablets instead.

2. All HTML5

Adobe’s announcement that it will no longer pursue Flash development means we can all get ready for more HTML5 just about everywhere we look.

What does this mean for the casual, non-techie mobile user? Not much. HTML5 is simply the latest evolutionary stage of user interface development. However, it’s big news for developers. Having confirmation that HTML5 is, in fact, the future of consumer UI means more creative professionals will be able to get their apps and software to market without worrying as much about differences among platforms.

Expect a more “app-like” experience when accessing the Web on all your devices – not just your phones and tablets.

3. Heavier social media integration

Now that Facebook has finally admitted that it’s planning to enter the mobile device market, look forward to even eater integration between mobile devices and social media platforms than ever before.

If you’re wondering what exactly Facebook has “up its sleeve,” so to speak, the answer is that nobody really knows. At least not for sure.

What’s certain is that other big players in the mobile technologies sector will have to evolve and adapt depending on what Facebook comes up with.

4. Emphasis on voice-recognition technology

With the iPhone 4s’s introduction of Siri, its smart and sassy voice recognition app, expect competitors to start releasing similar applications of their own.

Early reviews of Siri have been largely positive. While there are certainly some kinks in the technology for Apple and others work out, the overall warm reception of Siri means that things like voice search and recitation of emails will become less the exception and more the norm.

And that goes for 2012 and beyond.

I’ve just mentioned some of the upcoming technology trends for 2012, what are other mobile technology developments that you think will surface in 2013 and beyond? Please share them with us.