May 10, 2012 – CTIA - The Wireless Association released their report “Socioeconomic Impacts of Wireless Technology: A Review of Opportunities and Challenges in Health Care, Finance, Education and Community Empowerment,” examining the current and future impact of wireless technologies. The report reviews many wireless technology innovations and examines their role to increase accessibility for socioeconomically disadvantaged populations within the fields of health care, finance, education and community empowerment. The report considers that many wireless technologies are avenues of social change due to their ubiquity, remote capabilities, and ability to close information gaps. With approximately “6 billion mobile phone connections worldwide,” wireless technologies have the potential to bridge socioeconomic gaps. For example, the report highlights that mobile health technology can help both the elderly and rural populations connect with doctors with “wireless devices that immediately contact emergency care workers” or apps that “connect rural patients with urban doctors.” In addition, wireless technology has the potential help the under-banked and unbanked by allowing them easier access to a potential bank account outside of bank hours; assist students by providing an interactive learning experience through eBooks; and empower citizens by giving them access to government actions. However, the report also highlights that new technologies also carry challenges, such as privacy risks. [Source: CITA SmartBrief]
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The Rehabilitation Engineering Research Center for Wireless Technologies is sponsored by the National Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation Research (NIDRR) of the U.S. Department of Education under grant number H133E110002. The opinions contained in this website are those of the Wireless RERC and do not necessarily reflect those of the U.S. Department of Education or NIDRR.