Eric Schmidt spoke this week at MWC about the growth of the mobile world, focusing on the developing world, the “digital oasis,” where access to the internet is still a rarity, but where technology will bring it to them at an exponential rate. “Smartphones do not have to talk to a central hub,” he said, “they can just talk to each other.” Using Bluetooth and other technologies you can use Mesh Networks to connect – “Mesh is a stepping stone for connectivity.” Schmidt continued hoever that “Noone is suggesting that technology will suddenly transform the social political and economic situations of peoples lives. But it certainly can improve them.”
“It will redefine the relationship these people have with the world.” Schmidt spoke of Syria and the images coming out of war zones, the collapse of dictatorships, and the mobilizing (in a political sense) of communities around the world. “Smarter and more resourceful citizens are going to start demanding a better deal.” Schmidt began to speak philosophically, almost foretelling a biblical future: “The weak will be made strong, and those that have nothing will be given something.”
Google’s products are blocked in about 25 of 125 countries that Google’s products are available in currently, so said Schmidt, and this number will fall. “We need to act now to avoid this digital caste system.” We should commit ourselves to a world where everybody has the chance to be connected, so he hoped and sounded the siren call to developers and manufacturers alike. Mobile World Congress 2012 is certainly the superior place to do such a thing, let’s have at it!