Talking about giving the poor access to data and ICT, RIA’s executive director, Alison Gillwald, told eTV News that 50% of South Africans or not online and the majority of those people simply cannot afford the devices. This is a cost part of the access cost model that we have with the GSM mobile operators and we’ve got to find alternative ways to bring down those costs, she said.
Responding to a question from news anchor, Naledi Moleo, about smart cities,
Gillwald argued that this is part of the technologically deterministic hype that we’ve got into around the Fourth Industrial Revolution. With respect to advanced technologies, the existing digital divide beyond connectivity is part of a bigger problem of bringing advanced services and opportunities online. “It’s actually about the inability of people to harness the technologies once they have them,” Gillwald said.
To watch the interview on the eTV News website, please click here.