Highlights

17 April 2014

The Business Models of mLabs and mHubs

An Evaluation of infoDev’s Mobile Innovation Support Pilots

infoDev releases a new report detailing lessons learned through its support of Mobile Application Laboratories (mLabs) and Mobile Social Networking Hubs (mHubs). 

We currently have four mLabs and eight mHubs in eleven countries across East Asia, Sub-Saharan Africa, Eastern Europe, Central Asia, and the Caucasus (ECA). The findings in this report will be useful primarily to current and future managers, consortium organizations, and funders of mLabs and mHubs.

18 April 2014

Top 2014 ‘Digital Jammers’ Survive Caribbean Mobile App Bootcamps

Thirty advanced-stage mobile app developers from across the Caribbean participated in person and via web in a 3-day bootcamp on April 11-13. The Mona School of Business & Management at the University of West Indies (UWI), Jamaica, hosted the event.

 
15 March 2014

Two women are making a name for themselves in Senegal

This article is also available in French.

Last week was International Women’s Day, a day to celebrate the economic, political and social achievements of women past, present and future. Each year, the World Bank recognizes women who have made an impact in their communities. This year two of our young Senegalese entreprenuer women caught the World Bank’s attention for their innovative thinking.

Resources

Learning from infoDev’s Mobile Microwork Innovation Competition

A new report by infoDev extracts the lessons from the m2Work idea challenge and hackathon, which together served as the pilot for infoDev’s “From Mind to Market” approach to fostering mobile entrepreneurship.

With 6 billion mobile phones around the world, of which 75% in developing countries, telephones reach most corners of the African continent. Mobile phones have improved the lives of the poor. Two new infoDev-led studies, focusing on South Africa and Kenya, provide insights on how useful mobile phones are for economic and social empowerment of people living off less than $2.50 a day.

Summary of key data in the IC4D 2012 report

Mobile phones are perhaps the fastest-spreading technology in all of history, with profound implications for global interconnectedness, trade, inclusivity, and growth. A new report by infoDev and the World Bank charts the new development opportunities of the mobile era; this infographic presents salient facts and figures from the report.

This report analyzes the growth and evolution of applications for mobile phones, focusing on their use in agriculture, health and financial services, as well as their impact on employment and government. It also explores the consequences for development of the emerging app economy, summarizing current thinking and seeking to inform the debate on the use of mobile phones for development. It's no longer about the phone itself, but about how it is used, and the content and applications that mobile phones open.

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About

infoDev's Mobile Innovation Program

Mobile access has been linked with economic growth, and the industry itself boosts local economies by creating high-value jobs. Mobile software applications are becoming increasingly important in areas like healthcare, education, governance and banking. The Creating Sustainable Businesses in the Knowledge Economy Program, funded by the government of Finland, and in partnership with Nokia, laid the foundation for the Mobile Innovation program, which piloted a network of mLabs and mobile hubs with full stakeholder engagement. Over 100 mobile applications have been developed as a result. Since 2013, the Swedish International Development Agency also supports activities gearing toward female entrepreneurs and developers in the mobile sector.

The Mobile Innovation Program supports growth-oriented mobile apps businesses, by;

  1. Enabling entrepreneurship in the mobile industry, through venture incubation and acceleration;
  2. Building mobile innovation communities of entrepreneurs, investors, partners and mentors; and
  3. Researching the app economy of emerging and frontier markets.

Our network of mobile labs (mLabs) and mobile hubs (mHubs) in 15 countries acts as the backbone for our work.

For a deeper look at our Mobile Innovation Program, check out its chapter in our Work Program.