Wednesday, December 17, 2014

The Illiterate web

India has a very peculiar situation. With a population of 1.2 billion (2011 census), the population above the age of 7 is around 1billion, of which 74.03% are literate, this means a yawning 273mn people who are illiterate. This is close to the total population of The United States of America.

Population 1,210,193,422
Popln above age 7 1,051,404,135
Literacy Rate 74.03%
Literate population      778,354,481
Illiterate population      273,049,654

On the other hand we have situation where there are 930mn+ mobile phones (TRAI Sep 2014) in India where people are comfortable using a phone and dialing numbers.

With Smart Android phones available at less than $100 in the Indian market; we have anecdotal evidence to show that Mobile phone users across board are quite savvy using Multimedia content both Audio and Video which is rampantly available through piracy. Auto Drivers and maids are seen watching movies and listening to music which is available for a few cents at mobile recharge kiosks.

We can already see how comfortable children are with Smart phones and even before they know how to read and write they are comfortable navigating through various apps.

Is there now a case for creating usability for the Illiterates to access the Internet? Can the browser now evolve to have search on the basis of voice which then provides visual results in the form of pictures and videos.

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