The Triumph of the Ordinary Cellphone

#Future

Fri, Apr 9th, 2010 21:00 by capnasty NEWS

Great article on the New York Times on the favourite technology from emerging economies. It's not the iPad or fancy tablets. It's actually just a simple cellphone--a device which more human beings today have access to than the United Nations says have access to a clean toilet.

What if, globally speaking, the iPad is not the next big thing? What if the next big thing is small, cheap and not American?

America went into a frenzy last weekend with the iPad?s release. But even as hundreds of thousands here unwrap their iPads, another future entirely may be unfolding overseas on the cellphone.

Forgotten in the American tumult is a global flowering of innovation on the simple cellphone. From Brazil to India to South Korea and even Afghanistan, people are seeking work via text message; borrowing, lending, and receiving salaries on cellphones; employing their phones as flashlights, televisions and radios.

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