A remote device control tool that can temporarily or permanently lock the Android phone if the person who bought it on credit does not pay on time, South African company Thinkadam invented, Business Insider reported on October 23.
The technology can be implemented on all Android phones at a competitive price, and Thinkadam is already looking for use cases in South Africa and other parts of the continent. While Thinkadam has yet to release a similar product that works on Apple devices, the company says that if there is demand, the company says there is potential to incorporate similar technology into iPhones.
Unlike an app or third-party software, Thinkadam cannot be uninstalled by the user of the device.
Thinkadam CEO Hildecke Schreuders believes the system could be a response to emerging markets’ digital integration needs.
In some high-risk markets, she said, the ability to rent high-end smartphones for one or two years, as is usually the case in South Africa, is not the norm. In some countries, such as Nigeria, these leases are often only for three months due to high non-payment rates.
At the same time, Schroeders noted that the industry has long matured a demand for such control technologies. “In our industry, everyone is looking for a competitively priced remote device management system — a smartphone or a technology solution to unlock and unlock devices — that is easy to implement, easy to manage, and connect to a billing system,” she said.
Schreuders lamented that many remote management solutions are either “limited to a few models, easy to remove and difficult to implement, or too expensive to make viable. The latter is especially important in the market where it is most needed: in price-sensitive entry-level smartphones.”