TV White Spaces Impact
In late 2013, a series of typhoons devastated parts of the Philippines leaving thousands of citizens injured, displaced and without basic necessities. As part of emergency responses, the re-establishment of telecom and IT is increasingly as important as other parts of the public health infrastructure. To help with this, Microsoft has increasingly become able to respond almost immediately to crises similar to the Philippine’s typhoons.
As part of the emergency relief efforts in the Philippines, Microsoft worked with a variety of partners to deploy four emergency.lu kits which provide almost turnkey and instant connectivity that then accelerate the delivery of other critical humanitarian operations. Emergency.lu is a communications solution for global disaster relief and humanitarian missions, developed and implemented as a partnership between the Luxembourg Government and a consortium of Luxembourg companies and organizations.
In addition to the near immediate emergency.lu deployments, Microsoft quickly followed later with many partners in industry and government to create a TV White Space solution that provided Internet connections and Skype calling to help affected citizens communicate with their families within the Philippines and around the world.
Together with the Philippines Department of Science and Technology Information and Communications Technology Office (DOST – ICTO), Microsoft has also placed devices at evacuation centers where citizens can access Skype and conduct a video call with their loved ones.
In support of continued relief efforts, Microsoft has contributed approximately $1.1 million in monetary and in-kind donations, including employee giving and the company’s match program.
Microsoft extends thanks to all those who have collaborated with us in supporting the Philippines during the weeks following the typhoon, and we would like to share a personal account from Karrie Ilagan, Country Manager for Microsoft Philippines.