Nigerians develop SIMless operator, digital walking stick
Researchers at the Federal University of Technology [FUT] in Minna, Niger state have developed prototypes of SIMless multiple operator and mobile communications-enable walking stick, thanks to grant by the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC).
The two innovations demonstrated at the NCC headquarters in Abuja, are expected to solve problem of drop calls associated with bad quality network among the telecom operating companies in the country, and could reduce domestic accidents among the aged people who often live alone, according to the researchers.
Prof. Abiodun Musa Abinu, lead researcher, said the SIMless data and voice connection over multiple operator-enabled SIM card will enable Nigerians to have just one SIM card that can automatically have access to all the telecom operators’ networks.
‘’We are talking about you having one SIM card for all networks or having one mobile phone with one SIM card for all networks we are talking about applying this thing to all available network.
‘’We are talking about disrupting the eco-system in the telecommunication industry in the sense that with just one SIM card you can access the available network without porting or buying multiple SIMS’’, Prof Abinu who is a mechatronics engineer said.
According to him, the walking stick is about having a walking stick that has anything you can imagine – your mobile phone is embedded in it, obstacle avoidance and then it has means of communicating with your healthcare givers.
He said, ‘’People carry a lot of phones or SIMs as a result of quality of service and you are not certain of the network strength of an area.
So using basic engineering and the technology behind Mobile phone we infused in it artificial intelligence system to be able to take intelligent decision on behalf of the user to switch from the network with poor quality of service to another with better quality service what this means is that subscribers are now the king and can enjoy quality of service even without having more than one phone and the product will soon hit the market.’’
Prof Umar Garuba Danbatta, executive vice chairman of NCC, said the SIMless card innovation is in keeping with the consideration for national roaming that is being promoted now by the commission.