GSM's 20th anniversary Fueling a future full of promise


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GSM's 20th anniversary Fueling a future full of promise

  1. 1. expanding horizons Brought to you by Nokia 2/2007 Mobile data collection helps medical research ICT and the challenge of climate change Regulator interview: International Tele- communications Union GSM’s 20th anniversary Fueling a future full of promise
  2. 2. expanding horizons Published quarterly Brought to you by Nokia Photo: Nathan Eagle/EPROM 3 New horizons Mobile communications in action around the world 5 Regulator interview: ITU Mr. Hamadoun Touré, secretary-general of the International Telecommunications Union, talks about what the future holds 6 More than technology Sustainable solutions use technology appropriate to the local culture, environment and economy 8 Big world, bright future for GSM The GSM standard, which turns 20 this year, con- tinues to expand strongly and play social and eco- 12 Mobile medical data collection in Kenya nomic roles in new growth markets and elsewhere 11 Accessibility unlimited Making mobility accessible to people with disabili- ties is a mainstream issue for the mobile industry 12 Mobilizing against malaria Field researchers in Kenya are using mobile phones to collect medical data more efficiently 14 ICT responds to the climate challenge Climate change affects everyone. The ICT industry can play an important role in helping reduce global warming Photo: Pasi Kemmo 15 Intuitive balance 14 Six new mobile phone models offer stylish, resilient Making an impact options to consumers in new growth markets on global warming EDITORIAL WORLDWIDE, GSM is utilized more than any other Many mobile phone features that numerous cus- mobile communications standard, with more than 700 tomers find useful started as adaptations to make the operators and more than 2.3 billion subscribers. This devices more accessible to people with disabilities. issue of Expanding Horizons looks at the philosophy Vibrating and flashing alerts for incoming calls are two and the technology behind GSM, as well as the promis- of the most prominent examples. In this issue we show ing future ahead. that ensuring the accessibility of mobile devices not Rauno Granath Head of New Growth Another article highlights the importance of decid- only helps spread the benefits of mobility, but is also Markets, Nokia Siemens Networks ing what the most appropriate technology is, in addi- good for business in general. tion to considering the newest technological advances, These and other information-packed articles offer when a technological solution is being selected. This you a useful and enjoyable reading experience! ensures that the solution will fit local cultural and eco- nomic conditions. We also see how ICT can contribute to meeting the challenge posed by climate change, and how mobile Søren Petersen phones are helping African researchers collect data SVP, Entry Business that will help people analyze the causes and spread of Unit, Mobile Phones, Nokia Corporation malaria. Rauno Granath Søren Petersen 2 Expanding Horizons 2/2007
  3. 3. new horizons Photo: Peter Marten Areeba maintains its position as Ghana’s top operator with more than 2.6 million subscribers. Growth in Ghana I f you leave Accra, the capital of Ghana, and take a trip along the coast, you regularly see billboards that inform you how many kilo- meters it is to the next town or city. The signs are sponsored by various mobile communications operators and also advertise that you are within signal range if you wish to make a call. More and more of these signs will be needed; the Commonwealth Telecommunications Organization reports that in 2006 Ghana scored the highest growth rate in all of Africa in telecommunications penetration. Mobile phone subscribers accounted for the vast majority of the increase. Mobile penetration now stands at 25 percent, says Ghana’s deputy minis- ter of communications, Mr. Benjamin Aggrey Ntim. GSM glossary GSM (originally ”Groupe spécial mobile,” later changed 8 GSM expanding dynamically to ”global system for mobile communications”) The most popular mobile communications standard in the world, with a market share of 84 percent. Includes the following solutions and technologies: Expanding Horizons is published quarterly for operators, regulators and • GPRS (general packet radio service) The first generation government policy-makers who are advancing mobile communications of a GSM packet data connectivity solution based on Copyright © 2007 Nokia. All rights reserved. ISSN: 1795-7168 Nokia Code: 11743 in new growth markets. Presenting best practices from around the world, the magazine shows how to create a favorable environment for internet protocols. market growth. Editor-in-chief Jussi Siltanen Managing editor Johanna Liukkonen, • EDGE (enhanced data rates for global evolution) Production Content produced by An enhancement to GPRS speed and capacity. Sanoma Magazines Finland, Custom Publishing: Peter Marten, producer,; Niina Behm, graphic designer; Hanne Huotari, graphic designer. Contributor to this issue: Michael Larkin • 3G (third generation) A generation of networks with Cover photo by Pasi Kemmo enhanced data rates and the ability to transfer voice and data in parallel. We value your feedback! Please send your comments and suggestions to, or use the feedback link at • WCDMA (wideband code division multiple access) One You can use the same addresses to subscribe to Expanding Horizons or change your contact details. of the main technologies for the implementation of 3G. Views expressed in this magazine are those of the authors and interview- • HSPA (high-speed packet access) Enables a smooth, ees and they may deviate from the official view of Nokia or the companies referred to. Our objective has been to produce as accurate content as cost-efficient upgrade to WCDMA at minimal cost; possible, but we cannot assume liability for any eventual errors sometimes called 3.5G. Consists of HSDPA (downlink) or inaccuracies. and HSUPA (uplink). Nokia and Nokia Connecting People are trademarks or registered trademarks of Nokia Corporation. Other • LTE (long-term evolution), also called 4G (fourth product and company names mentioned herein may be generation) The next generation of GSM technology, trademarks or tradenames of their respective owners. still being researched and developed. Printed by Hansaprint in Finland. 2/2007 Expanding Horizons 3
  4. 4. new horizons Mobile development in India O ne out of every five citizens in India will own a mobile phone by the end of 2007, according to a new study published as the Mobile development report by the Center for Knowledge Societies. By the end of 2008, 75 percent of India’s population will be covered by a mobile network. The study looks at how mobility could be used to bridge the growing economic and social digital divide between rural and urban areas. The document identifies seven service areas that could be transformed in rural communities by mobile communications: trans- port, microcommerce, finance, healthcare, governance, education and infotainment. The study encourages governments, the mobile industry and nongovernmental organizations to cooperate to help develop these services by increasing access to, and use of, mobile communications The Mobile development report, commissioned by Nokia, in rural communities. is available at Quick growth stats Reaching the next 50 million A new GSM Association study of Pakistan’s mobile market finds Bangladesh had more than 20 million mobile phone that the country is benefiting economically and socially from subscriptions by the end of 2006, almost double the increasing mobile phone usage and low tariffs. With 50 mil- amount it had a year earlier. Pyramid Research predicts lion subscribers and 30 percent penetration, Pakistan is a regional that the figure will reach 40 million in 2009. leader in mobile usage. The nation’s mobile industry accounts for Source: The New Nation and Pyramid Research 5 percent of its gross domestic product and 6 percent of total taxes collected. Asia surpassed one billion mobile subscribers in Decem- The study suggests that a beneficial next step for Pakistani policy- ber 2006, according to a study released by Wireless makers would be to eliminate the activation tax of 500 rupees (8.25 Intelligence. Both China and India are adding about six million subscriptions each month, while they boast total US dollars). The government’s total tax revenues would actually subscriber figures of approximately 450 million and 150 increase, as mobile usage and economic growth would increase. In million, respectively. the ten years after the activation tax was dropped, an additional 132 Source: SDA Asia billion rupees (2.17 billion US dollars) in other taxes would be re- ceived because of the positive impact on the mobile industry and its Out of the 101 million mobile subscriptions in Brazil spillover effect on the rest of the economy. in early 2007, 64.7 percent are now GSM, says Brazilian regulator Anatel. Source: Business News Americas ▲ Latin America finished 2006 with 208 million GSM sub- The number of GSM subscribers in scribers, an increase of 81 million for the year. In Latin Latin America is rising strongly. America GSM outnumbers CDMA by almost 2.5 to one. Source: 3G Americas Bluetooth technology continues to grow in popularity worldwide, a survey conducted by research firm Millward Brown indicates. In China, 93 percent of respondents – 12 Photo: Pasi Kemmo percentage points more than the survey’s global average – showed awareness of Bluetooth and its uses, such as data transfer and headset-to-mobile-phone connection. Source: Bluetooth Special Interest Group 4 Expanding Horizons 2/2007
  5. 5. regulator interview Photo: Jean-Marc Ferré/ITU International Telecommunications Union (ITU) secretary-general Mr. Hamadoun Touré, who took office in January 2007, talks about his vision of the future. Creating optimal connections What are your plans for significantly to developing a harmonized in partnership with the private sector the future of ITU? family of standards for third-generation to extend infrastructure and services in I see ITU as a forward-looking, dynamic (3G) mobile systems, and is now working rural and isolated communities. We need organization that contributes to ICT on interface specifications for services to look at creative solutions, including growth and development by promoting beyond 3G. shared infrastructure between operators. an enabling environment, connecting Another issue is the use of ICT for dis- ITU’s Telecommunication Development everyone to the benefits of ICT, develop- aster preparedness, mitigation and relief. Sector is strengthening the regulatory ing technical standards, facilitating the Mobile solutions are often the most practi- environment through mechanisms such as efficient use of radio-frequency spectrum cal in emergency situations, and ITU will the Global Symposium for Regulators. and establishing dialogue between the work with its partner organizations in the private sector and governments and UN and elsewhere to improve coordination What are ITU’s messages to between innovators and policy-makers. and provide rapid response capability. operators, regulators and My priority will be to work with the policy-makers for the future? membership towards bridging the digital How will ITU help achieve the The ITU constitution promotes extending divide. Before the end of 2007, there will connectivity and development the benefits of new telecommunications be three billion mobile phone users, and goals outlined at the World Summit technologies to all the world’s inhabit- most of the newest billion come from the on the Information Society (WSIS)? ants. Operators can extend coverage to developing world. We may be well on the Mobile technology is essential for con- rural areas and provide affordable access. way to solving the quantity dimension necting the unconnected, especially in They can leverage their success in provid- of the digital divide, but an urgent need rural and remote areas. Governments, of ing mobile voice services to ensure access now is to tackle the quality dimension, in course, play a major role in achieving the to high-speed internet access and the rich making broadband and 3G mobile more WSIS connectivity targets, through both applications it can offer to developing widely available. national programs and participation in countries. multistakeholder efforts such as ITU’s Regulators and policy-makers can What mobile communications Connect the World initiative, which optimize their roles as ICT access facilita- issues are the most pressing for encourages partnerships and projects tors. They can ensure that regulatory you as ITU secretary-general? that bridge the digital divide. frameworks leverage advances in new The private sector and the market form One of government’s major roles is to technologies and business practices to the driving forces. However, there are establish a transparent, effective policy increase access. Regulators and policy- areas where an intergovernmental agency and regulatory environment so the pri- makers play a catalytic role in providing like ITU plays a significant role, such as vate sector can invest in infrastructure incentives and flexibility to operators helping member states agree on how and services. In addition, governments while protecting the interests of consum- to use the spectrum most effectively. should have a targeted approach to capac- ers by ensuring availability of low-cost In standardization, ITU has contributed ity building. Governments can also work services. ■ In brief: What will the future bring? “The mobile industry has been good at delivering high-speed exciting current technical development. Combining mobile commu- capacity over short distances, as with WiFi, and low-speed capacity nications with other technologies, such as location-based services, over large distances, as with GSM,” says Hamadoun Touré. “On the radio frequency identification (RFID) readers and music and video horizon are new technologies such as 3G mobile and worldwide devices, will also lead to the mobile phone becoming a universal, interoperability for microwave access (WiMAX), which promise to multipurpose device.” deliver high capacity over long distances. This is probably the most 2/2007 Expanding Horizons 5
  6. 6. Applying appropriate technology helps create sustainable solutions. In new growth markets especially, “appropriate technology” signifies much more than just the technology itself. More than technology P olicy-makers, regulators and scholar at Stanford University in the projects revolves around the application operators pondering possible Reuters Digital Vision Program, has of appropriate technologies that are solutions for expanding the spent the past 15 years dealing with ICT primarily needs-driven or people-driven, scope, efficiency and useful- solutions for nongovernmental organiza- rather than technology-driven. Banks ness of mobile communications can tions and other groups involved in explains, “Appropriate technology find insights in the work of nonprofit new growth market social and environ- means the technology most appropriate organizations. Mr. Ken Banks, an anthro- mental development initiatives. He to the environmental, cultural and eco- pologist and technologist and visiting believes that a key principle of ICT nomic situation.” 6 Expanding Horizons 2/2007
  7. 7. Choosing appropriate Success stories technology includes consideration of not just technical aspects, but also • Kazi650 Kenyan job-brokering service notifies subscribers of employment opportu- environmental, cultural nities via SMS. People see value in paying for the service, which has filled more than and economic factors. 60,000 jobs since its launch. • FrontlineSMS Standalone SMS hub developed by requiring a PC and a GSM phone. Meant for new growth market conditions, it allows organizations in areas with sparse infrastructure to communicate with users, staff and communities. • Entrepreneurial Programming and Research on Mobiles (EPROM) In Kenya, computer science students are taught to create applications for mobile phones, not just PCs – prime example of a project that builds future capacity. and who we are ultimately doing it for,” without continuing financial support or Banks continues. Local context – cultural, subsidy. “One World’s Kazi560 job alert social and physical – needs to form an service in Kenya has found the balance important aspect of mobile communica- perfectly,” he says. “Users get economic tions projects. value – jobs and income – so it is a cost “Developing tailored products and they are willing to take.” services for new growth markets is now Financial stability, whether in the seen as the best way forward,” says nonprofit, private or public sector, is Photo: Nathan Eagle/EPROM Banks. “We can expect to see more of not always easily achieved. To ensure this as the bottom of the economic pyr- that local context is taken into account, amid increasingly becomes a focus.” He Banks “sense-checks” potential solu- cites an example of a service designed tions against grassroots reality. Are specifically for new growth markets: the assumptions that form the basis of “Vodacom’s ‘Call me!’ service in South the project proposal or business plan Africa allows users to send a free SMS consistent with the onsite situation? requesting to be called back.” Engineers, programmers and planners In some mature markets, customers have not necessarily had exposure to “Needs-driven” refers to a techno- are charged to both send and receive the prevailing conditions. For example, logical product or service responding calls and text messages – a business will local traditions make citizens wary to real needs of the target community model that Banks says would likely of giving their phone numbers to field or customers. Development of these falter in new growth markets for lack workers, even if it is for a good cause technologies should also be people- of compatibility with local conditions. such as disaster warnings via SMS? driven. “People are different all over the “If this model had been replicated en “Internet access via wireless devices world,” says Banks, “so local customs, masse in new growth markets,” he com- is still a long way off for rural com- social context and infrastructure need ments, “then we would not be having munities in new growth markets,” says to be considered.” By contrast, a tech- this conversation right now, because Banks. He hopes that dialogue will nology-driven solution would be more mobiles would not have become the result in the “appropriate, relevant about simply implementing the latest engine of this amazing revolution we applications” that hold so much impor- technology rather than specifically aim- are experiencing today.” tance. Technology, he notes, “will not ing to meet people’s needs. bridge the digital divide alone.” ■ Sustaining solutions Communications in local context In his work, Banks lists economic value For more info about the work of Ken Banks, “We should not just march on and on as part of his recipe for a sustainable see, where “technology with technological advancement, with- mobile communications project – one meets anthropology, conservation and out reflecting on what we are doing that will someday be able to carry on development.” 2/2007 Expanding Horizons 7
  8. 8. lead story Photo: Pasi Kemmo In new growth markets including Laos (left and bottom right) and Ghana, GSM forms a significant ingredient in economic growth. Big world, bright future for GSM Twenty years after its creation, GSM is by far the world’s most popular mobile communications standard. With an underlying philosophy of openness and the capacity to evolve, it looks set to continue its success far into the future. Photo: Pasi Kemmo 8 Expanding Horizons 2/2007
  9. 9. A s the GSM mobile communi- volumes at very cost-effective prices,” roadblocks and bottlenecks in the way cations standard celebrates says Mr. Rob Conway, CEO of the GSM of GSM progress. its 20th birthday in 2007, Association (GSMA). The basic idea of openness and it accounts for more than Mr. Alan Hadden, president of the agreement supplements healthy com- 2.3 billion subscriptions, Global mobile Suppliers Association petition and allows GSM technology to nearly 84 percent of the world’s mobile (GSA), agrees: “The scale gets bigger grow rapidly and effectively, which in phone users. The key factors supporting every year, and it is at the forefront of turn attracts innovators and investment its market dominance include its ability anything you do because it drives the that fuel more growth. to evolve technologically and its con- economics. GSM’s market share grew GSM began with governments, opera- tinuously increasing economies of 3.5 percentage points in 2006, when tors and manufacturers who believed in scale, as well as an underlying philoso- it added half a billion subscriptions.” a vision of a harmonized international phy of cooperation between industry In fact, this GSM one-year total equals network and reached agreement about players. more than all other mobile communica- the initial specifications. This year marks It is common to speak of GSM evolu- tions standards put together – for all the 20th anniversary of the 1987 GSM tion. The standard covers a succession of time, going back to analog and includ- Memorandum of Understanding, in interoperable innovations, so progress ing GSM’s competitors, code division continues without making earlier GSM multiple access (CDMA) and personal equipment incompatible. The terms digital cellular (PDC). general packet radio service (GPRS), “The new growth markets of Africa, The explosion of GSM enhanced data rates for global evolu- Asia, India and Latin America are driv- usage in new growth tion (EDGE), wideband code division ing scale today, because these are the multiple access (WCDMA), high-speed engines of growth in subscriptions,” markets is fueling packet access (HSPA) and long-term says Hadden. social and economic evolution (LTE) simply denote technolo- “The explosion of GSM usage in development gies that enhance and extend the initial developing countries has been the most GSM system in multiple ways, always exciting phenomenon of recent years,” including fully compatible fallback to adds Conway. “It is fueling social and which government representatives and GSM. Each evolutional step represents economic development in many coun- cellular operators from 13 countries an improvement to network equipment tries.” committed to procuring GSM networks and handsets, each leading to greater and introducing them by 1991. The speed, capacity and efficiency, as well as Success factors underlying philosophy remains, reflect- the introduction of new services. The present GSM success factors, includ- ed for consumers in an advantageous Economies of scale encourage com- ing economies of scale, can be traced TCO, a large choice of products and serv- petition and innovation, and mean that back 25 years to the early days of ices, uncompromised compatibility and a large choice of suppliers is available. mobile phones. In 1982, European regu- also easy roaming between networks. Developers want to put their resources lators and operators decided that full into the big, global volumes offered by interoperability should be a goal. A Extending flexibility GSM. All of this results in ever greater small network holds value for the com- For the more than 700 GSM operators flexibility and better total cost of own- munity, but in a large network or a worldwide, GSM offers excellent scalabil- ership (TCO) for operators and consum- network of networks, the value for the ity, meaning network capacity can be ers alike. community is exponentially multiplied. increased quickly if necessary. “Whether “That starting point is what makes an operator wants to start small and Grand scale GSM so different from any other compet- expand or start big and grow bigger, When you ask industry insiders to ing networks,” says Mr. Timo Ali-Vehmas, GSM is flexible enough,” says Hadden. describe why GSM enjoys such success vice president of standardization and He is talking not only about high-qual- and continues to increase its dominant industry relations at Nokia. “GSM is a ity, cost-efficient network equipment, market share, the huge economies of philosophy. It is a way people behave, but also about the range of technolo- scale are the first thing they mention. building networks and making them all gies within the GSM family. “Serving a market of more than two compatible.” This spirit has also been EDGE forms one step in GSM evolution billion users worldwide and one that is reflected as a collective will among and exemplifies the way GSM fosters growing by a million users a day, ven- regulators, GSM operators and other innovative growth. A solution that can dors can produce GSM handsets, infra- industry players to ensure that infor- be added to an existing GSM network to structure and other equipment in large mation is shared and to avoid placing increase capacity for voice and allow for 2/2007 Expanding Horizons 9
  10. 10. more data-intensive services such as in- undeniable advantage over other and additional technologies are “con- ternet access, EDGE has become so wide- systems with more limited areas of stantly evolving and improving,” says spread that it can now be considered influence. Hadden. “The roadmap is there; every- mainstream in new growth markets. body can see it.” It forms part of GSM technology’s third Clear path Conway follows up by putting it generation (3G), which also includes For all involved, GSM represents not only in terms of statistics. “You can make WCDMA and HSPA – all of them enhance an emphasis on the lowest TCO today, and receive GSM phone calls across the data rates and make possible parallel but also a clear path for the future, with world in 218 countries and territories,” transfer of voice and data. a progression of advancements up to he says. “GSM networks now cover more In new growth markets progress can the fourth generation (4G), known as than 80 percent of the world’s popula- be rapid from entry level to increased long-term evolution (LTE) technology, tion, and we expect that figure to rise to demand for internet and large data and beyond. GSM handsets, networks more than 90 percent by 2010.” ■ capacity. Both levels can exist side by side, as well. Operators benefit from GSM’s flexibility in adapting to all these A growing number situations. of operators in South America International ecosystem and elsewhere are Conway refers to GSM and its surround- changing to GSM. ing technologies and operations as “the GSM ecosystem.” The ecosystem is developing in many directions. “Across Africa, Asia and Latin America, operators and entrepreneurs are using mobile phones to plug gaps in the infrastructure countries need for social and economic development,” says Conway. “According to the World Bank, the capital cost of providing mobile coverage to an individual is one-tenth Photo: Pasi Kemmo of the cost of installing a new fixed-line connection, so it makes financial sense for most of the world’s population to access the internet over the air rather than through wires.” Banking can also be accomplished over the air. “In Kenya, the Philip- Making the switch pines, South Africa and other countries, millions are using their handsets to According to research published by the Global mobile Suppliers Association, transfer money or pay for goods and some 30 mobile network operators are replacing CDMA with GSM or overlay- services,” he says. “The GSMA is working ing CDMA with GSM. There have been no changes from GSM to CDMA. with the financial services industry to Operators seeking to make the switch can learn from each other by com- link national mobile payment services paring notes with companies that are not direct competitors. Many experi- together so that people can use their ences point toward a switchover phase during which the two networks run mobile phones to send and receive parallel for a period, as opposed to trying to bundle two widely different money internationally. That would systems together in the same package. make it more cost-effective for migrant Customers then migrate gradually to the GSM network. This method workers to get money to their families requires some spare spectrum, so the process has to be started before the back home and could dramatically spectrum available to the operator becomes fully occupied. From an opera- boost this vital income in many devel- tor’s perspective, GSM’s advantage consists of its ability to save them money. oping countries.” It simply represents the most efficient way of using capital and keeping total In international contexts, GSM’s cost of ownership down. global market dominance forms an 10 Expanding Horizons 2/2007
  11. 11. Accessibility unlimited Mobile devices tailored for people with disabilities help spread the benefits of mobility. The products also make good business sense. A s mobile communications let users record and send audio mes- continues to revolutionize the sages in a similar way to text messages. way we communicate, access to mobile communications Greater interaction will soon be regarded as a basic human The number of people over 65 years old right. People with disabilities or limita- is set to double by 2025. In many new tions in hearing, speech, vision, mobility growth market countries, particularly in or cognition form about 18 percent of Latin America and Asia, the older popu- the world’s population, if disabilities lation is expected to increase by up to related to aging are included. Mobile 300 percent in the same period. industry players can make the benefits Whether a disability is age-related of mobility accessible to people with or not, certain benefits of mobile disabilities by creating innovative fea- communications apply to all users tures and design adaptations. with disabilities. It facilitates inter- Speaking clocks and iconic contact lists increase accessibility. The Nokia More than 600 million people have action with government, businesses loopset (top) makes mobile use easi- life-altering disabilities; two-thirds of and even banks without trips to their er for people with T-coil hearing aids. these citizens inhabit new growth premises. Mobile communications also markets. Accessibility for people with improves the ability of people with dis- disabilities represents a mainstream abilities to find employment. People issue for the mobile industry. who are deaf can run businesses by facturers, advocacy groups and opera- interacting with suppliers and buyers tors work together to identify the most Features and functions via text messaging, for example. pressing needs and provide communica- Vibrating and flashing signals help peo- New solutions are continuously tion tools and services for people with ple who are deaf, but are also widely being developed. Governments, manu- disabilities. ■ used by others when they wish to keep their phones from ringing audibly. Voice-controlled functions help users Business angle who are blind or have trouble pressing buttons; they also benefit motorists and • Ensuring accessibility for users with disabilities makes good business others who need to keep their hands sense. It often reaches an untapped market. It provides socioeconomic free while operating a handset. benefits, especially in new growth markets: communication with family, Other accessibility-enabling features friends, caregivers, employers and customers. The companies providing include a talking clock, graphic menu these opportunities improve their brand loyalty and corporate image. icons, adjustable font sizes, applications • Features that enhance accessibility for people with disabilities often that read messages aloud and Nokia become popular among other users, which translates into a greater Xpress Audio Messaging, a service that number of customers utilizing a wider range of services. utilizes multimedia messages (MMS) to 2/2007 Expanding Horizons 11
  12. 12. Kenyan researchers team up with leading universities to create a mobile-phone–based system that helps gather field data crucial to understanding and fighting malaria. Mobilizing against malaria F or more than a decade, the Kenya changes during the same period?” Medical Research Institute (KEMRI) For data collection, KEMRI relies on has been conducting demographic field workers who visit villages and surveys in the nation’s eastern homesteads at four-month intervals to district of Kilifi to research and combat conduct interviews. In the paper-based the region’s unusually high malaria system, they record the responses on infection rate. By monitoring the health paper forms and the data – births, and demographic factors of the approx- deaths, illnesses, building activity and imately 200,000 citizens in the area, movement of people – is later entered researchers can better comprehend in KEMRI’s electronic medical database the spread of the disease and develop for future comparison and research. responses. Efficient information: Field To improve the efficiency and accu- Mobile advantages workers use mobile phones racy of data collection and input, KEMRI The paper-based system contains many to transmit data over the has been collaborating with University sources of error. Before visiting a loca- air to the Kenya Medical Research Institute server. of Nairobi (UON) and Massachusetts tion, field workers print out records of Institute of Technology (MIT) to replace the previous visit. They return to KEMRI the paper-based data collection system with updated data. Other employees with innovative, mobile-phone–based input the information. Anything from methods. The project forms part of untidy handwriting to data-entry errors on the device. They are inherently more MIT’s Entrepreneurial Programming and can interfere with reliability. comfortable with a phone, and do not Research on Mobiles (EPROM) program, The mobile-based solution Eagle and need much instruction in navigating the which fosters education, research and his team are implementing addresses menus or inputting text. entrepreneurship related to mobile these issues, while keeping the techno- “Second is the connectivity. Mobile phones. logical interface simple by utilizing a phones have connectivity lacking in “By tracking the dynamics of what device familiar to field workers. “There other devices, such as PDAs. Because is happening in this community over a are a variety of survey tools that people mobile phones allow field workers long period of time, KEMRI researchers are using in the field for surveys and to receive and send data while in the have a better shot at inferring percent- data collection,” says Eagle, but “phones field, they can stay out longer and ages and possibilities of outbreak,” says have two real advantages” over other collect more data” without returning Mr. Nathan Eagle, a visiting lecturer at options such as personal digital assist- to KEMRI to print out or hand in papers UON and research scientist at MIT, who ants (PDAs). or connect a PDA. Background informa- is leading the mobile data collection “First, most of the field workers have tion can be uploaded to the phone and project. “How do changes in disease their own personal mobile phones, so the new data is pushed directly to outbreak correlate with demographic they are very familiar with text entry KEMRI’s database over the air. 12 Expanding Horizons 2/2007
  13. 13. Photo: Nathan Eagle/EPROM “Cell tower information and built-in “Three fourth-year students at UON “Our application should work for any or Bluetooth-enabled GPS connectivity developed this in less than a year using type of survey in rural areas, and there allow us to record latitude, longitude the Python programming language on are many reasons to do surveys in these and time for each visit,” says Eagle. Series 60 devices,” says Eagle. “Python new growth markets,” says Eagle. Real- This encourages greater field-worker is something you can pick up relatively life benefits are on offer if data can be accountability while also helping to fast.” collected and organized conveniently reduce errors. EPROM’s goals include incorporating and efficiently. “One of the major re- mobile phone programming into com- search goals of the KEMRI is to uncover Attracting interest puter science departments in Ethiopia, the fundamental mysteries that underlie Field tests and evaluations of the project Kenya, Rwanda and South Africa, malaria, a disease extraordinarily preva- are returning encouraging results. Other paving the way for future innovations lent in the Kilifi district,” says Eagle. nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) and enterprises. The KEMRI project “Hopefully increased understanding of have already taken note of the project shows the opportunities offered by this population will lead to increased – Eagle has received inquiries about mobile phones, which are cheaper and understanding of the disease.” ■ how to switch PDA-based projects to more widespread than other options, mobile devices. such as PDAs and computers. For more about EPROM: 2/2007 Expanding Horizons 13
  14. 14. Photo: iStockphoto environment ICT responds to the climate challenge The ICT industry can play an important role in introducing new technologies and solutions to help reduce global warming. Many actions taken now will have a significant effect on future generations. C limate change is a major chal- efficiency of production and planning, lenge to mankind, affecting make transport systems more intelli- everyone and urgently requir- gent and increase energy saving in ing a long-term global solution. buildings. ICT-based services and work- The Stern Review on the Economics of ing methods such as electronic com- Climate Change, published in October merce, substitution of products with 2006 by the UK government, states that services and everyday solutions like climate change is the greatest market remote work and videoconferencing can failure the world has ever seen, and also mitigate climate change by reduc- may lead to unexpected migration ing the need to travel.” trends; disruption of distribution and workforce; and disruption in global Making a difference supply chains. A further environmental benefit can be The report also highlights that in- gained through dematerialization – Although new technologies may creases in carbon dioxide emissions and reducing the consumption of materials make things possible, there are still greenhouse gases caused by human used in a product or replacing a physical choices to be made. ICT does not pro- activities are strongly related to global product with a nonphysical solution. “As vide a magic wand to make all business digital products converge into multi- processes sustainable, any more than it functional devices and many continue to necessarily makes them more efficient. Mobile technology miniaturize, the amounts of materials If the full potential of ICT is utilized, and electronic waste are also reduced. it can make a major difference in com- can enable sustainable This helps improve the mobile telecom- bating climate change, while at the behavior and practices munication sector’s own environmental same time contributing to economic performance,” says Louhi. growth through accelerated technology warming. The appropriate use of ICT can Even though Nokia does not oper- development, business innovation and contribute in addressing the challenge ate in a very energy-intensive industry, structural change. But this will mean of climate change. its environmental strategy includes an that we need to challenge the way we “While the ICT industry only accounts action plan to address climate change think and make decisions, and start for a little over 1 percent of global by improving energy efficiency in all implementing innovative ICT-based energy consumption, the real benefit relevant areas contributing to its direct solutions to replace more energy- and ICT and mobile technology offer is that and indirect carbon footprint. These in- material-intensive activities. they enable sustainable behavior and clude using energy efficiency targets in “Nokia has committed to 25 percent practices,” explains Mr. Jyrki Louhi, its products, supply chains, offices and green energy sourcing for its electricity senior environmental manager at Radio manufacturing sites, as well as leverag- needs globally,” says Louhi. “Energy ef- Networks in Nokia Networks. ing mobile and virtual tools in working ficiency will also be a key strategic focus “ICT can, for example, improve the methods and management practices. area of Nokia Siemens Networks.” ■ 14 Expanding Horizons 2/2007
  15. 15. new entry phones Intuitive balance A fresh range of entry-level handsets combines style and practicality, offering the innovative features that consumers in new growth markets desire at affordable prices. W hen it comes to mobile devices, one size – or in this case one model – does not fit all. Each indi- vidual consumer is different. Based on this insight, Nokia is expanding its entry-level phone portfolio with six new phones. The popular styles, useful features and affordable prices represent chances for operators to diversify and differentiate their range of services via handsets that appeal to various groups of consumers. Three of the new phones – the Nokia 1200, Nokia 1208 and Nokia 1650 – contain functions that make shared-phone situa- tions easy to manage and lower barriers for first-time purchas- ers. The multi-phonebook feature allows separate phonebooks to be created for different users of the same phone. Also, whether selling mobile phone services as an entrepreneur or sharing a personal handset with friends or family, a consumer can set duration and cost limits on calls with prepaid-tracker, time-tracker and cost-tracker features. The Nokia 1200 is extremely durable and includes a built- in flashlight. Its intuitive ease of use, complete with a demo mode, helps all customers get the most out of its features and overcomes the access barrier for people who are illiterate. The Nokia 1208 offers the same features as the Nokia 1200, with the added appeal of a color screen. The Nokia 1650 attracts customers with its metallic-looking design details, FM radio and local language support, as well as similar features to the Nokia 1208. All three phones use improved power-efficient software to ensure long talk times and standby times. Advantages for operators The Nokia 2630 and Nokia 2760 place emphasis on design while still achieving a balance between style and practicality. The slim Nokia 2630 offers a camera; GPRS email and internet; Bluetooth; FM radio; multimedia messaging and audio messag- ing. The colorful, folding Nokia 2760 conveys a greater sense of status and includes the same features, plus video camera capability. For perfect balance between work and leisure, the Nokia 2660 contains a 500-entry phonebook, an organizer and a long battery life within its contemporary fold design. It also offers a feature set similar to that of the Nokia 2630. The six new phone models offer choice for everyone and will Six new handsets are geared toward new growth markets encourage customers to increase their use of voice, messaging (top to bottom and left to right): Nokia 1200, Nokia 1208, and data services, bringing new traffic to operators’ networks. ■ Nokia 1650, Nokia 2630, Nokia 2660 and Nokia 2760. 2/2007 Expanding Horizons 15
  16. 16. Photo: Pasi Kemmo Inside this issue GSM technology continues to expand in new growth markets. Its global market share is currently about 84 percent. The success of this mobile communications standard is based on more than technology – throughout its 20-year history, industry players have shown a spirit of openness and cooperation that has allowed GSM to grow and develop. Global warming, mobile medical data collection and device accessibility for people with disabilities form the subjects of other articles. Read about these and other current topics inside Expanding Horizons magazine!