“When you need a doctor, you phone someone, when you are in trouble, you phone someone. If you want to find out the prices for your crops in the nearest market, you phone someone.”
Mobile phones are increasing their penetration, but it’s common for farmers in rural India or Africa to travel for hours to reach the nearest town to charge them or get connectivity. So, how do you get power to the people who need it most, to those who can’t afford it?
That’s the challenge award-winning designer Daniel Becerra and his team have set out to solve. “Design can make the world a better place,” he explains. In the case of BuffaloGrid, it’s bringing power to those living off-grid.
BuffaloGrid provides solar-powered phone charging and internet to people in developing countries via a small portable power station that charges many phones quickly. GPS located hubs are handed out to trusted entrepreneurs in villages across rural India for free, who then run the service of providing connectivity to their communities. No cash changes hands, just texts. “The agents are a sort of human cashpoint.”
Watch ► Daniel delivers power where the streets have no names.
Daniel Becerra, CEO and Daniel Fogg, COO