Rwandan student Deodate Mugenzi has developed a network prototype that will enable WhatsApp users to make internal and international calls without the internet. The 26-years-old Mugenzi is a third-year student pursuing Information and Communication Technology at Polytechnic Regional Centre in Kigali Rwanda.
The idea generation began in 2017, and with his laptop and library books on physics, Deodate Mugenzi started doing his research. His prototype development was driven by the fact that internet connection is expensive in most areas of Africa, with many not able to access the internet at all.
The innovation requires registration of both receiver and caller numbers on WhatsApp. The computer system operates using optic physics, mobile gadget communication techniques, and networking principles. It enables users of WhatsApp to directly call mobile phone numbers.
Despite the existence of a large number of telecommunication providers, only WhatsApp can connect two users at the same time. The program does not allow multiple calls simultaneously.“ This means one person can call home and after his call, another one can call again. It is a system that is under construction”.
More financial, technical and mechanical support is needed to hasten the innovation for commercialization. The system has attracted several telecommunication firms who expressed their interest in buying the idea for further development.
“Currently, Mugenzi is partnering with the American embassy in Rwanda to train young students who are passionate about technology. The idea is to inspire and motivate more young people to pursue technology.”