The Digital Divide
When reading tech media it’s easy to forget that 72% of the global population does not own a smartphone (as of 2013). That percentage will decline as adoption increases, and it is expected that half of the world’s population will own a smartphone by 2017. However, the next 1.5 billion new smartphone users are expected to come from only 12 countries.
First-world technology solves first-world problems. Last week I wrote about the convenience economy, and questioned whether innovations like apps and wearables are really improving quality of life for those us who can afford them. With any technological advancement it’s important to consider who may be left behind, and whether the benefits of innovation are serving the right people.
Technology makes it easier for me to get a cab or have food delivered, but in some parts of the world it is changing lives. The Arab Spring protests were organized largely through Twitter. The recent Hong Kong protests relied on FireChat to communicate outside of government-restricted networks. These apps weren’t developed as tools of revolution, but when people have access to technology, amazing things can happen.
Investing in Health Tracking
The Quantified Self movement is infiltrating the mainstream, but even before the proliferation of health tracking tech, people were investing time and money into tracking some aspects of their health. Most often, they were trying to lose weight, train for an … Read MoreRead More