Textbooks on sim cards boost learning

Cool idea: Recycle surplus SIM cards, fill them with textbook content, and give them to kids who can’t afford a tablet or e-reader for use on their plain vanilla cell phones.

TXTBKS (even the name is great) is the brainchild of SMART Communications, a Philippines telco, and it’s working. The school that piloted the program reports that attendance went up 95 percent, and average test performance rose 90 percent (!?) during the test. It is now being implemented across the whole country.

The developer felt so good about their idea that they submitted it to the 2013 Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity.  From their submission: “In developed countries, tablets and e-readers have become the solution to large, heavy textbooks. But for Philippine public school students, even the cheapest model is worth more than what their families make in an entire month. In fact, the only gadgets most of them own are one to two old analog mobile phones, used mainly for texting.” They won the Grand Prix in the Mobile category.

The medium is the message, indeed.

Marketing Unwired has a good blog post on TXTBKS. MobiThinking has another.

Here’s the official video:

(Image lifted from www.thekooza.com)

Leave a Comment