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Can Smartphone and Tablet be used to Educate the Poor in Indonesia?

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  • Can Smartphone and Tablet be used to Educate the Poor in Indonesia?

    Can Smartphone and Tablet be used to Educate the Poor in Indonesia?

    The key for access to learning is by providing abundance of education contents
    By Santoso Suratso BSc MBA / mahoni.com



    Real photo of Indonesian user of mahoni bse ebook for school – over 15 millions ebooks downloaded in first year from bse.mahoni.com

    With some recent studies showing that the poor getting access to mobile phones (as big as three quarters), this raise a question whether there are opportunities to use that statistic for delivering education content for the poor?

    There are plenty of argument from some side saying that its too early to talk about educating the poor via smarphone and digital gadgets, some people say its a waste of time and money. But the fact of matter Indonesia now rank the top 4 largest facebook users in the world, and probably top 3 largest twitter users as well.

    Could it be the poor already using smarphones to look for information now? From the statistic above it is clear many already using mobile devices to access information and sharing. Indonesia is a unique country where the telecom companies sell the mobile bandwith in very cheap monthly package, this liberate almost anyone and anylevel to have access to information.

    Arguing whether or not to use smartphone and tablet to educate the poor is may be irrelevant now as it does not add any value. We must restructure our thinking now, as facebook, instagram, twitter, path and other apps have shown to be very popular in Indonesia.

    So the real issue now is that there is not much local education content that can be found for smartphone and tablet ecosystem in Indonesia. It is very important now that all local player from government to private sectors to create more education digital contents that will really add value to the poor. They are already using the mobile technology, it’s just there isn’t much local contents and apps that they can find of value.

    Via one of our app ‘Mahoni Buku BSE – electronic school ebook’ we have proven that the users are large and so hungry for education information, in just eight months after launch and without any advertisement efford this server has served over 15 million ebooks download, yes that is 15 millions ebooks download in just eight months. This phenomenal growth force us to split the server to 4 instead of just one to make sure the speed and smooth download.

    We provide a library over 2000 ebooks now and the content is key for access to learning for the poor to happen. Every day more and more contents will be added to bse.mahoni.com from various government sectors (KPK, Bank Indonesia) and private companies.

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