Triple SIM Phone Curbs Mobile Costs in Africa

Mobile Africa

This is truly an amazing insight inspired product.

Sourced from an article posted by prepaidafrica:

A triple SIM phone, most likely a no name Chinese model mimicking the basic Nokia feature phone. Why would anyone have such a phone?

As you can see, they have two SIMs installed – one from Tigo, the most popular mobile operator in Rwanda and the other from MTN. Each operator offers different schemes and bundles for text, data, voice and value added services such as mobile money.

When you are on a prepaid (pay as you go) payment plan, you’re looking to maximize the return on your investment i.e. stretch that Franc or shilling or dollar, getting as much use out of it before needing to buy more airtime. Your calls on the same network are cheaper so having both major service provider’s SIM you can choose which one to use for your call to get the best rate.  Also, MTN has a mobile money service that many use to send money to their folks back in the countryside.

These are some of the ways people in the “prepaid economy” manage their expenses against income, particularly since the majority in the informal sector don’t have a predictable salary.

This photo was taken by my intern Maarja Motus during user research on mobile phone use in Rwanda in September 2012.