June 15, 2009


by Michael de Souza, Executive Producer, South Africa

As a native South African – and someone who has spent the last 8 years working in marketing here – I've seen a dramatic transformation in how people communicate and access information.  South Africa has one of the world's highest rates of mobile internet penetration and I believe that the lessons from my homeland can guide marketers worldwide.

The cellphone has become ubiquitous in South Africa. From affluent urban shopping malls to poverty-stricken rural communities where they are often the sole means of communication, you'll find mobile phones in every nook and cranny of the country. A few statistics: 

  • South Africa has a population of 50 million people
  • But of these 50 million, 10 million are under the age of nine.
  • There are over 30 million active cellphone lines in the country. That's 75 percent of all South Africans, aged 10 or older.
  • More than 10 million people – one-third of all active cellphone users – connect regularly to the mobile internet.

June 03, 2009


By Wandrille Pruvot, Regional Director, Europe

IMAGINE for a moment that you are travelling to a new place. You've just arrived and you know nothing about it.
You subscribe to a mobile service that's like a travel guide. It provides information about historical facts, places to see, things to do, good restaurants, maps, safety tips and more – all tailored to meet your personal interests.Even better, take a photo of a nearby building, submit via your phone and the application knows exactly where you are, so it can target the information you desire even better.

This is one of the not-so-far-off scenarios that we considered at a recent workshop in Spain sponsored by the European Union.