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PCMag claims One Cell Phone Per Child has edge over OLPC

SUREN on April 04, 2009

At Mobicip, we have been involved in education pilot projects that use smartphones for mobile learning in the classroom. At the International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE) conference last fall, we had a chance to interview several US education technology experts about the use of mobile devices in the classroom. There seemed to be quite a mixed reaction to the concept, with the majority feedback from US education technology leaders being lukewarm. Notably, the buzz from experts outside the US was anything but.

Dan Costa's column in PC magazine argues for why "One Cell Phone Per Child" is more likely to win over OLPC. An excerpt below:

The buzz at CTIA 09 this week is all about the BlackBerry App World, the iPhone 3.0, and the imminent arrival of the Palm Pre, but those are all primarily U.S.-focused stories. There is a bigger story unfolding, however—one that has been largely overlooked by the tech press. That story is the phenomenal effect that widespread cell-phone proliferation is having on the developing world. Once upon a time, PCs were the primary tools for connecting to the Internet, with programs like One Laptop Per Child being conceived to harness their power. Globally, the mobile phone is now the primary communication tool. This shift has had a stunning impact on developing nations, the wireless industry, and even the Internet itself.

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