Did You Know Ghana can watch the World Cup on their mobiles phones?

Did You Know Ghana can watch the World Cup on their mobiles phones?

When the foot step steps of internet access first got to be felt by many of us in Africa, the process of adding videos to a website was a long complicated one. One had to add the video first as a link. Any visitor who went on to the web had to then download the link to watch the video, and it could take a lot of time to fully have access to the video. Advancements in technology nowadays has allowed us to stream videos online and has transformed video downloading completely. From youtube, Periscope or Spotify the list is endless and they give users amazing options, with clear guidelines and updates.

 

image.png

StarTimes is a huge media company that has been deeply rooted in many African countries for a long time, offering both digital and satellite terrestrial television to many African consumers. From Kenya, Tanzania and South Africa to most sub-saharan countries, StarTimes has been working with governments to promote digitalisation on different grounds which have been received well by consumers primarily because it was providing affordable needed technical solutions for the African people. A hustle for some countries which invest in Africa. As a result, it managed to enter into various joint digital ventures with African countries even in addressing concerning challenges for some. A good example to be drawn is a joint venture on digital migration with Tanzania which took place in 2015, which gave rise to the implementation Satellite TV projects  a number of villages-transforming them from the analogue digital signal television provision which was in use.

 

image.png⇒⇒⇒⇒image.png

Throughout the years, it has managed to grow in African development seminars, sports broadcasting, corporate social responsibilities, solar systems and phones. It comes as no Continue reading “Did You Know Ghana can watch the World Cup on their mobiles phones?”

Advertisements

Did You Know cashless payments in Africa can stop bullying?

Did You Know cashless payments in Africa can stop bullying?

Cashless payment is the trend that customers from young to old are fast getting aquatinted with across the globe. From banishing long tiring queues to securely walking in the streets, cashless payment speed up the whole checkout process for customers with less cost and time like never before. Cashless payments come with different forms-from mobile payments through various apps that have turned smartphones into digital wallets in paying for goods and services to contactless credit cards. The field of options for customers is huge and they are all preferred by consumers due to the satisfaction they give and the technological advancement they provide.

 

Poor understanding of financial basics and planning are contributors to a sense of vulnerability which lead people into making decisions they later regret or into debts they did not anticipate. The implementation of cashless payments has transformed peoples vulnerability of ignorance when dealing with finances while improving their technical skills at the same time. Between parents and their children who are still at school, it is a reliable stress free way of transacting cash. South Africa is vastly growing in the world of digitisation and offering the nation more options and more solutions. Fundi is South Africa’s leading education finance and education fund management solution specialist. Its introduction of a cashless system in a form of a bracelet to digitalise payments for primary schools is yet another innovation worth looking into. It is a game changer because once people get used to using it, it provides the retailer with the means to modify the experience according to the specific customer demands.

image.png

Fundi’s bracelet, (made of rubber) by Fundi pay is a RFID (radio frequency identification) app which allows parents to load pocket money into  student’s account using any mobile phone. RFID belongs to a group of  well known technologies called Automatic Identification and Data Capture (AIDC) which operate by electronically identifying, collecting and analyse data about objects straight into computer systems. Radio waves  are used to track tags containing electronic information. Tiny RFID tags can be attached to wristbands or badges, and can be scanned using dedicated scanners or modern smartphones. Many schools transact money on daily basis, either to pay for school fees, school trips or pocket money hence a suitable target group for such mobile options.

 

image.png

Fundi pay offers parents an e-mail which offers a platform for registration to take place. Once the registration process is done, parents have the capacity to allocate money into their children’s accounts and they in turn can easily make money transactions anywhere with their wrist rubber bands. The rubber bands are very user friendly  and are made of a hard plastic with a chip enclosed in order to protect the chip inside from being easily damaged. The chips have a tag within which is made up of a transmitter, receiver, and a circuit that stores large amounts of trackable information from bank card identification credentials, purchasing credits, to credit card numbers. This feature eliminates theft of money that is normally experienced at schools, giving students time to enjoy  their school activities peacefully knowing that their credit cards remain safely tucked away at home or in their school lockers. Bullying at tuck shops can also subside once parents and learners use Fundi pay.

Bullying is one of the major concerning issues in both primary and high schools in South Africa and many parts of the world and it manifests itself in so many forms and shapes at school in class-rooms and tuck shops during short breaks especially. Anti bullying steps have been taken by many schools and the department of education but it is still a concern. The vulnerability of young people who either due to poverty, unstable living conditions or unemployed parents develop aggressive behaviour and criminal patterns, which later lead to bullying is a complex reality that makes solving such cases very stressful. Culprits engaging in bullying normally end up getting away with it, leaving the victims with serious effects which are challenging for both parents and the teachers to assist learners affected in dealing with. Effects vary in degrees of complexity from missing classes, having unexplained bruising to committing suicide. Either way- the effects leave  detrimental stigmas and trauma. Implementation of digital solutions such as Fundi pay  has potential to bring more ease to the bullying crises for schools, parents and students as the wrist bands can be used to show solidarity while sticking up for the cause. They can be utilised to raise awareness to stand up to bullying. Money stealing from wallets and school bags can decline and a more healthier environment for learning can be experienced.

If you know of any innovations in Africa, an innovation that is changing lives, or you also want to be a guest blogger, get in contact with us on Twitter @inventiveAfrica or via email. Please share the blog with your network on Twitter and Facebook.

Also, don’t forget to check out and like our Facebook pageFor more interesting blogs about African Innovation, check out our homepage.

If you enjoy reading Inventive Africa and want to support the upkeep of the blog you can donate at  You-can-now-accept-PayPal-through-eMerchantPay.png

 

 

Did You Know drones can make the African construction industry safer?

Did You Know drones can make the African construction industry safer?

What would Wilber and Orville Wright think about the current aviation situation, 115 years after they first flew in their aeroplane. It is likely they would look to the sky in shock to see the amount of people being transported throughout the world in metal birds, and the super sonic military jets flying into action. Another marvel is drone technology, which is getting ever more smaller, more powerful and affordable. Even amateur photographers are able to pick up easy to fly drones fairly easily and take wonderful pictures of scenery around the world. It is this drone technology that is showing great promise in other sectors across Africa, such as security and construction.

A major problem always arises when it comes to the implementation of construction projects in many countries. South Africa is no exception when dealing with such issues, but innovative steps have been taken when addressing such issues, which are worth looking into and supporting. The implementation of  a fleet of drones as an  innovative efficiency tool by the Gauteng province’s Department of Infrastructure Development gives hope for change for South Africa. The implementation signifies that in both the public and private sectors, there is a vital need for efficient and effective changes within the department as a whole. Massive rise and opportunities provided by drones has given platform for companies and organisations to enhance their operations systems across all spheres of development.

image.png

Many of the lined up projects by the Department of infrastructure will be monitored by floating drones to ensure that assigned work is done as scheduled. Construction work involves very dangerous tasks and conditions that require proper and safe construction sites if occupational fatalities are to be avoided. The implementation of drones is hoped to assess and intervene in order to promote efficiency through out the value chain of project management value chain. Many people have lost their lives while on duty on construction sites without any clear accountability and investigations of what really happened in South Africa. The implementation of drones is expected to bring new light and solutions to such issues as well as tracking and speeding up of projects that are ready for implementation.

image.png

Working on the daily routines and working on projects requires different approaches. Due to the growing importance of projects in South Africa, it is important to develop policies to ensure that they are well prepared for project challenges. We can only anticipate better results, less marches by unhappy construction workers and sustainable improvements with the implementation of drones within the Department of infrastructure in South Africa. The history of drones and their success stories can be drawn from many African countries despite fear of their security by policy makers in Africa. This blog has covered a number of them. From fighting  Malaria mosquitoesMalaria mosquitoes, improvements in agriculture to construction. Their value and impact in changing lives in Africa is phenomenal.

If you know of any innovations in Africa, an innovation that is changing lives, or you also want to be a guest blogger, get in contact with us on Twitter @inventiveAfrica or via email. Please she the blog with your network on Twitter and Facebook.

Also, don’t forget to check out and like out Facebook pageFor more interesting blogs about African Innovation, check out our homepage.

If you enjoy reading Inventive Africa and want to support the upkeep of the blog you can donate at  You-can-now-accept-PayPal-through-eMerchantPay.png. Thank you for your support!

Did You Know patients in Africa don’t need to queue for medical attention?

Did You Know patients in Africa don’t need to queue for medical attention?

Health care across the world relies upon trust between health care professionals and their patients. Patients must trust that their doctors and nurses in working to the highest possible standard, and that if they are not, their worries, concerns and complaints will be listened to. If they are not taken into consideration, then it could lead to a hospital, or even the health sector as a whole, stagnating or falling behind required standards of treatment. This is the case across the world, but in Africa, often there are situations in which health care is sub standard. This can be down to a lack of resources, but there are times when it is incompetence, and lack of care and attention.

Nevertheless, complaint receiving from a patient can be extremely worrying and stressful. Complaints can come in different forms. Either directly from the patients themselves, via a co-worker or from your work place staff members in other departments, but the effect is the same. Many reasons can be argued as to why there are complaints from patients, but the reality is that if people are not happy, something needs to be done. A complaint can be made as a result of either your personal, professional, or even colleague’s behaviour. The manner in which you deal with a patient’s complaint is very crucial as a result because it determines many factors that can affect your job negatively. From deciding whether the matter goes  to senior management, or to patient’s lawyers, the uneasiness it causes is disturbing and unhealthy.

PharmAccess_mHealth_1.jpg

Health care across Africa is a complex theme, with each region, country and even local area dealing with their own contextual issues. Nigeria is no exception, when it comes to the issue of patients and their complaints in the health sector. Over the years, medical practice in Nigeria has taken baby steps and evolved in capacity building and practice of doctors, in terms of patients’ needs and relationships of the various factors determining the frequency and distribution of diseases in a human community.  The transition towards finding solutions to arising problems continues to grow. Nigeria plays a significant role as a user of mHealth solutions for instance, which is an innovative mobile program that distribute calls on weekly basis to pregnant women concerning fetal health care. This program does not only improve service delivery in the health sector but it also saves money for most pregnant women to travel to clinics. A March 2015 article by Darren M. west further states that mHealth gives mobile efficiency to physicians access as they are able to respond more punctually to patient needs as well as less mistakes in medication preparations and hospital discharging sheets.

 

It is undeniable that there are still many problems yet to be addressed in the health sector in Nigeria but the fact that solutions are coming up shows the extent to which the country is willing to take responsibility for its own people. This does not, however, mean that patients voice must be ignored because it would be nonsensical for the Department of Health to claim to be delivering quality health care service to the patients while patients remain unhappy with the service delivery they are given. As mobile intelligence and smartphone growth continues to massively blaze and technologically transform in Africa, its inheritors are fast developing beyond imagination and the fruits more fulfilling. The number of health solutions who have become part of these growth or venturing into it are also on the rise.

 

KompleteCare.png

A group of Nigerian doctors have joined and become part of these growth with their launching of an app that is aimed at reducing the amount to time patients  have to wait in order to get medical attendance. The app which is known as KompleteCare has played a significant goal in revolutionising African health as it allows its users to magnify timely access to medical care and health facilities. Consultations are freely done on a mobile phone, tablets or any other electronic device, cutting out the excessive amount of time one would have spent on long queues.

Due to the high population in Nigeria, it still a challenge to get access to clinics by most rural villagers. KompleteCare, which is available on the Play store, has bridged that gap by allowing even the remotest people to have access via video and audio online consultation giving doctors access in responding effectively to the needs at hand. Access to the web and communicating via mobile phones has also promoted the functionality of home based care services since people can easily ask questions freely and immediately which eliminates taboos and myths about certain diseases while empowering people with knowledge at the same time.

kompletecare1.png

If you know of any innovations in Africa, an innovation that is changing lives, or you also want to be a guest blogger, get in contact with us on Twitter @inventiveAfrica or via email. Please share the blog with your network on Twitter and Facebook.

Also, don’t forget to check out and like our Facebook pageFor more interesting blogs about African Innovation, check out our homepage.

If you enjoy reading Inventive Africa and want to support the upkeep of the blog you can donate at  You-can-now-accept-PayPal-through-eMerchantPay.png

Did You Know mobile business cards are the future of networking in Africa?

The business card is one of the most compact business marketing tools in use today. It is sits quietly in the back pack  our pocket or wallets where it is normally placed and may be regarded as a small insignificant piece of paper that is part of our interconnection and collaboration with people, but in reality  its  value is far more powerful and opens doors no one would.  As much as we have evolved into the world of digitalisation, but this old school strategy is still the best if you want to make real networking and real relationships-for it is  in engaging in real eye contact and actual conversations that meaningful relationships are built. As one of the best marketing tools, they ease making valuable business than typed e-mails which are impersonal.

These cards have a long history and an evolution which reflect their significance in our lives than we can anticipate. According to a 2011 article by Designer-daily, business cards began in the 17th century in Europe, where they were used for social interaction, which was the only way interactive form of communication. Centuries down the line, aristocrats and royalty began to appreciate them as well. Servants were the major messengers during the time who were sent to deliver cards to other servants of intended hosts. Ordinary people and the working class had to no access to them as they were regarded as having no class value and hence strictly used by those in higher powers to show respect and to politely make requisitions. Rules to their usage evolved as well, from how they were folded to serving as evidence of meeting attendance where visitors had to put them in trays of hosts. The more fancier and stylish they looked, the more noticeable they became which late a powerful base for future customs of exchanges in trade, Christmas and Valentine’s Day cards.

image.png

 

It is undeniable therefore after evolving from several different predecessors that ultimately merged into today’s familiar appearance, the business card still has a fascinating impact in peoples lives. Business cards used to be printed in black and white for many centuries. Technology has advanced and revived their appearance in recent times where the world is over crowded with advertising messages. Due to innovation playing a vital part, it is still easy to distinguish oneself from others. One problem has how ever been outstanding with business cards- keeping them organised. The small cards find their way almost every where: into handbags, jackets , desk drawers, little buckets by the computer and many other places. The trouble is, you can’t find the one you want when you need it.

imagelimage.png

Two school students from Feza International school based in Dar es Salam Tanzania realised this problem like most of us but unlike some of us, they came up with a digital solution. They developed an e-business card app called VCARDIN which permits all business cards to be handled on a mobile phone. The initial drive that encouraged them to be so innovative was an encounter they came across with one of their teachers who was  struggling like many others to keep business cards organised. The app has amazing features which allows  users  to exchange their details between devices by simply “Swapping” finger on the phone while the app is on. Access to this feature gives room for historical background check of how, when and why people met, with additional information issues discussed inclusive. Not only does this feature save time but it also saves business people from loosing important clients. Through tapping the device together and selecting messages to transmit, the app gives users a bigger platform of sharing important  information, from  calendar events  to LinkedIn accounts. The app will be officially launched in November this year.

image.png

The impact of youth on the technology scene is undeniable. If you want to stay “young” and innovative, there is no other alternative but to immerse yourself in the emerging tools of the current and next generation which our blog  advocates for. Dar es Salaam is the fastest growing city in Africa, according to the African Development Bank (pdf). It has attracted a host of startup companies and NGOs but it has also become a fast field for emerging technology, such as drones and smartphone apps, as it expands and develops its urbanisation process. It should come as no surprise therefore for us to see more emerging technological solutions to some of its problems. We can draw examples  from the implementation what3words, an app that records GPS coordinates to nine square metres and simplifies them into a three-word combination. what3words is doing in transforming Tanzania’s  informal settlement is amazing. Many people without formal addresses did not have access to services and a legal identity but now they do. With more innovative ideas coming up, there is no doubt that many citizens are yet to continue enjoying the fruits technology.

If you know of any innovations in Africa, an innovation that is changing lives, or you also want to be a guest blogger, get in contact with us on Twitter @inventiveAfrica or via email. Please share the blog with your network on Twitter and Facebook.

Also, don’t forget to check out and like our Facebook pageFor more interesting blogs about African Innovation, check out our homepage.

If you enjoy reading Inventive Africa and want to support the upkeep of the blog you can donate at  You-can-now-accept-PayPal-through-eMerchantPay.png

Did You Know maths in Africa is not so boring?

Did You Know maths in Africa is not so boring?

Senegal like most African history has its our story to tell about historic education systems and their revolutions. Left with little choice Senegal was bound to use software made in France called “Geogebra”. Its practicality in assisting with daily needs and problem solving solutions seems to a large extent  to be questionable in addressing mathematical problems hence Michel Seck`s new innovation ,“Simula”  an uprising mathematics alternative never before done by anyone in Senegal or Africa.

Solving problems is one challenge in life we all face, but through massive growth in technology and innovation, human beings have managed to come with up with real life changing solutions. In this modern world where our capabilities are massively controlled by machines together with the amount of problems and their varying degrees of complexity, Programming has become a tool for problem solving. Thousands of Universities, Colleges and students learning in this faculty are living testimony to its importance and significance.

A Senegal academician legend who teaches mathematics at a University in Dakar also realised this when he created a software program called Simula Math that simplifies Mathematics for his students. Mathematics is a cut across concerning issue in most developing countries. It  is perceived as a tricky and boring subject by many from the beginning of their school life. The reasons for these difficulties and the lack of interest stem from the specific type of subject and the ways of teaching. According to the commission for Developing countries International Mathematical Union Report (2014) , low numbers of secondary school teachers in maths at masters and Phd levels together with few professors to train the next generation of leaders, countries cannot meet the growing demand for mathematicians with advanced, up-to-date training. Further more deficient and outdated infrastructures, instrumentation, and teaching materials coupled with geographical isolation, are still major contributing factors.

None of these limiting factors stopped this young Senegal legend Michel Seck in becoming part of the change he wanted to see in the field of Mathematics. He bridges a massive missing gap in Mathematics with his creativity and all the features it has. One of them is the function of coding. A massively growing literacy of the 21st century which empowers our digital world. Every website, smartphone app, computer programme, calculator and even microwave relies on code in order to operate. This makes coders the architects and builders of the digital age. Organisations like Coderdojo are practical examples of what Michel is also advocating for. According to the author, Simula has nearly 120,000 lines of code. “It allows to do directly exercises of statistics, calculation of the limits and computations of great powers”.

Cryptology , also Michel’s specialisation is a classical subject which traditionally is supposed to guarantee confidentiality and integrity of messages also offered by this software. Algebra applications inclusive as well. Such features  enable graduate students to gain experience on important real-world problems, and understand the applicability of mathematical concepts in solving problems based in different scenarios. Based on his own personal experience, Michel wishes this feature within the soft ware will widen the scope of teaching mathematics in many schools and promote accessibility in ICT to both teachers and students, a problem the country could not solve for centuries.

Linear algebra — the branch of mathematics concerning vector spaces and linear mappings between such spaces which includes  study of lines, planes, and subspaces is yet another feature of the software. It is a very broad field which can allow learners to choose their specific personal specialisations such as machine operations for example. One of the important application of Matrices is to solve system linear equations which are required by physicists, engineers & scientists to solve physical systems in the areas of electronics networks, space craft and many others. What this therefore signifies is that not only does the software equip students with skills needed for majority of  essential job opportunities in the real world but it also improves the quality  of mathematics teaching in Senegal. Maximising student chances of obtaining /creating better jobs as a result. The fact that it is free and will probably be used from high school to University, Michel would have overcome various challenges faced by the Mathematics department in Senegal. Any child equipped with all this skills from Michael’s software can be declared as ready to conquer the world and all the pre-requisites needed to enter into faculties of engineering sciences which require quality maths methodologies.

Creativity in education deals with  new connections, and imaginative ways of thinking. Creativity not only  enables the learner to make connections between unfamiliar elements but also identification of important problems and their connectedness. Curiosity building and openness to new ideas  give rise to new innovators never seen nor expected. Solutions to problems arising are thus continuously found. Michel is a living proof. If many can follow in his footsteps, a new revolutionised Africa may soon be a living reality to many.

If you know of any innovations in Africa, an innovation that is changing lives, or you also want to be a guest blogger, get in contact with us on Twitter @inventiveAfrica or via email. Please share the blog with your network on Twitter and Facebook.

Also, don’t forget to check out and like our Facebook pageFor more interesting blogs about African Innovation, check out our homepage.

If you enjoy reading Inventive Africa and want to support the upkeep of the blog you can donate at  You-can-now-accept-PayPal-through-eMerchantPay.png

 

 

Did You Know one innovation has transformed Rwandan education?

Did You Know one innovation has transformed Rwandan education?

The level of education is often seen as a form of capital accumulation, which helps in countries development. In Rwanda, the government implemented policies over the years to ensure there is a high literacy rate among the population. After the crisis in 1994, Rwanda focused on human capital rebuilding and increasing enrolment rates. 1996 saw the introduction of 6-year primary, 3-year lower secondary, and 3-year upper secondary education, where Kinyarwanda was the language of teaching up to lower secondary, which changed to French and English in upper secondary. Rwanda education sector analysis report

The Rwandan government has formed a national strategy for information and communications technology (ICT). This is co-ordinated by the Rwanda Information Technology Authority (RITA)  which was designed to serve as the national body to support the development and the implementation of the National Information and Communications Infrastructure in the public and private sectors.

There is still room for improvement in the Rwandan education sector, despite implementation of the policies such as free mandatory education for primary school (6 years) and lower secondary schooling (3 years) that is run by state schools. It has achieved significant success in increasing access to education in partnership with  organisations like USAID in order to meet its 2020 vision. Education is key and transitions into technology are visible. We are witnesses to some of its technology success of transfer of land tittle going online for instance. None of this would be impossible if the education system was not evolving.

It comes as no surprise therefore for Rwandans to have a legend like Mariam Muganga a 27-year-old  holder of a Bachelor of Applied Science (B.A.Sc.) in Computer and Information Sciences from University of Rwanda’s College of Science and Technology. This woman put Rwanda on the world map with her startling educational innovation. According to Muganga, her innovation, Academic Bridge, offers a “solution for schools that want to jump into the digital age”. Academic Bridge (the enterprise) has transformed the behaviour patterns and performance of learners as recording and sending of messages of child behaviour can easily be received via sms or e-mail. Attendance to such matters have become much quicker and timely mannered.

 

 

The norm, which is common in most African schools is that children are sent to school by parents but daily communication on the child`s performance and behaviour only being attended to at the end of a term, during report collection. Challenges such as long distances, lack of transportation and little/ no technology being contributing factors to efficient parenting. Thus the teacher is the only accountable person to ensure education and monitoring for every child occurs. Having seen this gap between parents and their children education, Mariam found a solution to ensure that a parent is not only updated all the times with his/ her Childs education but also becomes involved all the way, leading to improvements in overall performance of the child in class .  The rate of drop outs which is normally experienced due to lack of  sufficient follow up is likely to reduce with the use of this application.

Furthermore the application has created a platform for each child to have an account from which reflection of correct allocated marks recorded is visible – a time consuming exercise for most teachers and schools. The application has eliminated potential errors in reports which are normally realised after printing in most schools. It has given teachers the opportunity to technologically advance in daily routines such as attendance list taking and entering of data through their smart phones. No more will teachers stay long hours after school, manually capturing data in this regard. The information the teacher enters is directly accessed by the school administrators online leading to Improvements in communications, which for centuries were not realised. Since the implementation if Miriam’s Academic Bridge application, financial transactions and invoices can be received paperless online by parents. There seems to be high chances for the quality of education to improve  with potential to attract more schools not only locally but across borders eventually.