I'd much rather see India Programs arrange such deals than waste time doing
things that normal editors can do themselves.
2012/4/11 Frederick FN Noronha फ्रेड्रिक नोरोन्या *فريدريك نورونيا <
> Wikipedia to be free on mobiles in Africa, Middle East
> Maina Waruru
> 13 February 2012 | EN
> [image: A mobile phone]
> Millions in Africa and the Middle East will get free access to Wikipedia
> via mobile phones
> [NAIROBI] Millions of people in Africa and the Middle
> East<http://www.scidev.net/en/middle-east-and-north-africa/>will be able to
> benefit from free, unlimited
> access <http://www.scidev.net/en/science-communication/open-access/> to
> the online encyclopaedia Wikipedia through their mobile phone, starting
> later this year.
> The scheme targets the region's 70 million customers of the mobile network
> provider Orange, who will be given free access to Wikipedia on their
> internet-enabled 'smart' phones.
> The deal struck between Orange and the Wikimedia Foundation, a non-profit
> organisation that operates Wikipedia, will allow Orange customers to read
> and download information from Wikipedia without the usual data usage
> "Price is a strong barrier to people accessing the Internet, particularly
> in Africa," said Vanessa Clarke, spokesperson for Orange.
> But the project will face several challenges, according to local experts.
> Catherine Ngahu, chair of the Kenya
> ICT<http://www.scidev.net/en/new-technologies/icts/>Board, said few people in
> the region own a 'smart' phone that can connect
> to the internet.
> "Although there is increasing ownership of smart phones, there is still a
> large number of people who cannot afford them," she told *SciDev.Net*.
> "In order to widen reach, Orange should consider marketing lower cost smart
> Michael Njuku of the Kenya Revenue Authority said obstacles will range
> from low quality mobile handsets people own to a network provider's ability
> to handle the increased Internet traffic as customers try to access
> Wikipedia, sometimes millions at a time.
> "Governments in Africa must also do more to ensure that poor quality
> counterfeit gadgets are not imported into their countries," he said.
> Clarke said the scheme will be rolled out in mid-2012, initially in about
> eight countries, and by December some 20 countries will benefit.
> She said between seven and 15 per cent of Orange customers in Africa and
> the Middle East currently have phones that access the Internet, but the
> company plans to increase the proportion to 50 per cent by 2015.
> Kul Wadhwa, head of Mobile and Business Development at the Wikimedia
> Foundation, said he expects the scheme to encourage more people in Africa
> to read, contribute and download information from Wikipedia.
> Wikipedia is the world's largest online encyclopaedia, maintained by a
> global community of volunteers. It contains explanations of many scientific
> terms and issues, and some have suggested it could be used to share
> More mobile network operators are expected to follow suit in the coming
> months, according to Wadhwa.
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