By Arvind Sridharan, Rang De Team
For an organisation like Rang De, any advance in technology (software or hardware) is always a boon to us because we will then be able to incorporate the technology in order to make our processes quicker and more efficient. However, the technology must be widespread and affordable for an end user to adapt so that our stakeholders feel that some value has been added by the technology.
Using the example of social networking, the advent of mobile internet, Wi-Fi and EDGE technologies has helped end users (or consumers of the content) produce and consume content in real time (as content is produced). This has only been possible because of the penetration of smart phones in urban areas.
The stakeholders of Rang De are the Rang De Team, our social investors, field partners and borrowers. One of Rang De’s primary focus areas is to use technology in order to give loans to borrowers when they need it. Currently, a borrower gets a Rang De loan one month after our field partners provide the borrower’s details for us (of which we raise the loan amount over a period of 20 days).
Once our social investor community grows such that loans can be raised in real time, we will be able to make use of technology by building applications suited for platforms that are widely used (i.e. Android, I-phone) to allow loan information to be uploaded in real time also. This will only be possible when a technology like 3G has is widespread in rural areas of India (where our borrowers are located) and 3G equipped devices are affordable for our field partners so that they can upload information about borrowers where they are following which our editors publish the loan information, the loan is raised through our investors and the transfer and disbursal of the loan takes place.
If and when 3G technology can be used to its full potential (by Rang De and our field partners), a borrower could be able to receive their loan within 24 our 48 hours of loan application.
This blogpost has been submitted to the 3G life contest by Tata DoCoMo