The on demand service provides information on various topics to anyone with a mobile phone regardless of location and literacy levels.
The global development organization has partnered with telecommunications network Airtel to provide news as well as other public service information via voice or text, in English, Yoruba, Hausa, Igbo, and Pidgin English.
The announcement of this new service was made at a formal launch at the Airtel Headquarters in Lagos on November 10, 2016.
The service which is available to everyone with a phone is targeted at people in the rural areas, and those without Internet accessibility.
HNI Program Manager, Harriet Blest explained the technology as a pool service to empower people to pull information in their time of need.
“It’s a free, on-demand information service and it’s accessible to everyone with a mobile phone,” Blest said.
“Think of it like a search engine for those who don’t have access to the Internet.”
The program manager explained the simplicity and easy accessibility of the service: “The caller is the decision maker, by dialing 321, they can listen and choose to a range of options - each message is designed to be easy to understand and as actionable as possible.”
Other topics to be made available on the service include Agriculture, Commodity Prices, Family Planning, Health, Nutrition, Water, Sanitation and Hygiene, Financial Inclusion, Good Governance and Weather.
Gbemiga Owolabi, HR Director, Airtel Nigeria, who represented the CEO said they were confident the service would change the lives of it's users.
“As a major stakeholder, we are excited to partner with HNI to create a huge platform that offers a plethora of opportunities to enable millions of Nigerians across various communities to lead better and healthier lives. We are confident that the 321 initiative will help transform lives in many locations across the country,” Owolabi said.
HNI is a global development organization dedicated to bringing the benefits of technology to individuals and organizations working in the developing world.
In April, 2016, Pulse Nigeria partnered with the organization to distribute Pulse news and entertainment content via the service.