Third world wired

In the developing world, people use mobile phones to do business and stay in touch with the world. To power those phones, many are turning to solar off-the-grid power

The study by computer firm Cisco found that the explosion in mobile phone use is a prime factor driving tens of millions people in the developing world to set up off grid power, says the study.

Meanwhile UK technology consultancy Mobile Experts says in a separate report that mobile telephony is driving the growth of a new microgeneration industry in the developing world -based on renewable energy.

The Cisco report examines the factors affecting global demand for mobile phones. It says that the demand for mobile telephone services has outstripped grid-bound electricity supply in 32 countries.

It predicts that by the end of 2015 the “off-grid, on net” population will reach 138 million. The trend will be visible at regional level for the first time this year when the total number of mobile users in Sub-Saharan Africa and Southeast Asia exceeds the total on-grid population.

And by the end of 2013, it predicts that the number of mobile users in the Middle East will exceed the Middle Eastern on-grid population, with the same phenomenon occurring in South Asia by 2015.

Cisco describes the explosion of mobile telephony in the developing world as “astonishing”.


About marypmadigan

Writer/photographer (profession), foreign policy wonk (hobby).
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