August 26, 2008
For a long time kajeet has supported education on our cell phones through “edutainment” applications. Games like Bookworm, My Happy Planet, Monopoly, Sudoku, etc. are all educational – and they are inherently appealing to kids.
We are now hosting an interesting application on kajeet phones that is bit more overtly educational. The idea is to teach math and science in small snippets through the mobile phone – a device kids have around them all the time and that is used by more people globally than use computers. The app – called “Sports Bytes” – is designed to teach math and science through baseball, soccer, and cycling. On the kajeet mobileweb browser (the Navigator), Sports Bytes can be found on the home page under “Test Your Sports IQ”. You can see more in this utube video.
kajeet is supporting the initiative by hosting it for free and by donating giveaways of kajeet phones at ballparks, soccer stadiums, and other forums as incentives to get kids to try Sports Bytes. On the kajeet phone, customers get free wallpapers after successfully finishing a series of Sports Bytes. The project is sponsored by the Kauffman Foundation and the application has been built by Hot Lava Software.
I’ll be interested in how this approach to mobile learning takes off. It has the potential to reach many millions of kids (and adults) worldwide. And at kajeet we will continue to support new initiatives in education like these as they are created.
August 19, 2008
No, kajeet is not launching a new broccoliphone. We’re just thinking more about our own relationship to the environment, about how we can be ever more green.
One major thing we’re doing is focusing more of our sales efforts on the Web, and less on stores. This is better for the environment in three ways. First, there’s less shipping involved when a customer purchases kajeet from our web site. This is because we can ship it to you directly. If it is sold through a retail outlet, we have to ship it to a retail distribution center, and then it has to be shipped – again – to the retail store. That’s a lot of extra shipping for the package that hangs from a hook on a retail shelf.
Second, marketing efforts on the Web simply use less paper. We don’t have to print huge quantities of four-color brochures or “header-cards” that are needed to catch the attention of customers in a retail store.
And, finally, we don’t have to drive around from retail store to retail store making sure our packages are in stock and properly displayed. That saves driving no small number of miles in this enormous country of ours.
Another thing we’re doing is making it easier for customers (or anyone, for that matter) to recycle their old cell phones. We help you do this at www.kajeetrecycles.com. And we pay the postage for you to send in your phone. I think there’s much more we can do to promote cell phone recycling, which has many benefits. I’ll have more to say about our cell phone recycling efforts soon.
If you think about it, cell phones in general can help us all be more efficient with our scarce resources. Have you ever used your cell phone to save time, or save a trip, by coordinating with a family member or friend when and where to meet? If you did, you did something green, something that made more efficient use of your car and your increasingly expensive gasoline (and probably your time, as well).
Can we do even more? No doubt. We’re thinking about how. Please let me know if you have ideas about how kajeet can be even greener. We’re listening.
August 11, 2008
Jacque Wilson wrote an interesting piece for CNN highlighting some things to know about getting your kid a cell phone. This is one of those topics that will never really go away – a new crop of parents faces this question every year. Why get your kid a cell phone, and at what age? Based on feedback at kajeet, safety and convenience seem to be the key drivers.
Our customers are often first time phone users heading to their first sleepovers, going to movies at the mall, taking class ski trips on Friday nights, and traveling with sports teams on the weekend. We see phone purchases peak during the life-stage events – graduation and back to school – and at Christmas when parents often give a gift reflective of their kid’s growing maturity. Regardless of age, and whether for security or a ride home, phones have clearly become essential for many families. And while the drivers for getting a phone may vary broadly, what is constant is the desire for the controls and limits that allow families to tailor the cell phone service for their kids.
The most popular tools are those that support budgeting and allowances, and those that allow parents to monitor calls and text messages for safety purposes. Close behind are the calendar function that makes sure the phone can’t be used during school, and access control to shut off services that don’t make sense for a particular family or kid. Kids often like these tools just as much as parents – what kid does not want to block text messages coming from a bully?
What tools are the most essential for your family? We would love to hear your feedback – it will help us make sure the kajeet service is right for even more kids.