“An iPod for Development”: Lifeplayer

Satisfied Lifeplayer owner.

This is so cool and I think I want one.

South Africa based Lifeline Energy announced the launch of the Lifeplayer. You might want to consider trading in your iPod. The Lifeplayer seemingly does it all: It’s a cellphone, a radio, Mp3 and internet enabled-device all in one. Power comes from the sun, with a secondary energy source in the form of a hand-crank.

The main focus for Lifeline with the Lifeplayer is education. Podcasts, mp3s, and information on weather, agriculture, or anything else are accessible on the device. It’s loud enough that 100 people can gather around and listen to it at a time.

Fast Company talked with the creator of this device and she mentioned a concern for delivery and proper implementation for the device. That’s why, whenever they can, Lifeline teams up with Ministries of Education to spread the word and make the device effective for the people it was meant for.

Lifeplayer is meant to educate groups of people at one time.

This thing is like a swiss-army iPod for the developing world. It can even record radio content, discussions or live voice and an SD card allows for transferable data. For now, the Lifeplayer is targeted at Africa, but Pearson says Afghanistan and Pakistan are definitely on her mind for the near future. Pearson also mentions they’re working on their model for how to effectively allow individuals purchase the device, but for now it’s being bought for distribution by schools, NGOs, businesses and other institutions.

The cost runs around $80, depending on the memory option you choose, and can come preloaded with media so it’s ready to use off the bat. Apparently, the radio in Africa generally caters to men, so allowing mp3s to be uploaded to the device allows women and children to get some attention and education as well.

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2 responses to ““An iPod for Development”: Lifeplayer”

  1. Merry says :

    You’re right- i want one!!

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