Champions of Financial Inclusion

Friday, November 26, 2010

Changing Dimensions of Information Accessibility

Knowledge is power. It was true when brain, which is believed to have a storage capacity of 4Tb, was the only storage device with man for 24 hrs. With the constantly changing world and changing habits, man came to know about his new best friend-the mobile and thus changed the saying to ‘Information is Power’.

When Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam openly dreamed of bridging the digital divide among Indians, little had it occurred to anybody that mobile holds the potential to fulfill this dream. Mobile being the only device known to be with their owners for almost 24 hrs a day has changed the definition of information accessibility for human history. Information is now available on the fingertips.
According to India Telecommunications Q3 Report published by Business Monitor International, mobile customer base reached 584.3 millions in March 2010 and which is close to 50% growth over last year. Mobiles are now the most commonly used means to connect to the digital community. For a common user, a mobile is affordable, has a strong battery system, needs no huge and continuous supply of power and is easy to carry around when compared to a PC.

 Browsing internet is a rapidly growing trend in many developing countries. For many, their first internet browsing has come through a mobile. Juniper Research quotes that ‘in 2008, 90% of the internet users in India used a mobile to access internet.’  Mobile network operators offering a range of data plans enable users even from far off lands to connect to the world without any hurdles. While email was most common form of communication some times ago, social network and other forms of networking are drastically changing the messaging habits of people. People are now more connected to each other around the world through a small mobile than anything else.

Today, it is era of business gadgets. Gadgets like Androids, Blackberry mobiles, Nokia E-series and many more brands are doing quite well in market. They have totally changed the way companies operate, especially in case of small and medium businesses. It is now easier to put advertisements, check for orders and tenders, stay connected to certain communities of interest and much more. Business owners across the globe are now thankful to this explosion of mobile growth which allows them to do more things in less time and less cost. Also, advanced network services like 3G lined up to roll out soon, the chances of using networking services though PC still might go down.

FINO has been quite active in exploiting this explosion in number of mobile phone users to benefit the society. One of the services- FINO Seva is a mobile application which simplifies all kinds of ticketing, recharging and bill payment requirements without going to the service provider's offices/outlets, is a revolutionary product in the arena of mobile applications. This reduces the requirement of consumers to stand in long lines or travelling to the needed stations for availing any above mentioned services. Moreover, people in remote areas can now avail these services by just visiting the nearest BC without having to travel far off places for any recharging, ticketing or billing requirements etc.  

The dimension of accessing information has been truly and completely changed by mobiles.

-By Chitra Nayak

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