Canadian Consulting Engineer

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Pick up the phone … any phone

Poor people - mostly women - in areas of Africa and South Asia are going to be able to make cell phone calls easily.


Poor people – mostly women – in areas of Africa and South Asia are going to be able to make cell phone calls easily.

The United Nations is backing a private company called Movirtu, which will give people a private “cloud” phone number. With this number the people will be able to use any telephone to make a call. Today, if they can’t afford their own phone, they have to access community phones or pay to borrow one.

The service will enable the users to access “critical information and services such as banking or agricultural support,” says the UN.

The private UK company has been piloting the service in Madagascar and hopes to bring the technology to 50 million people in 12 markets in Africa and South Asia by early 2011.