A toiling wait of year after year for a land telephone line is now just a couple of minutes for a mobile connection. Change of need paved the new way of doing things. By embedding mobile to our daily life, we have shifted our lifestyle to next gear. The very device – ‘Mobile’ has become the center of our activities. But, the moment COVID-19 pandemic stepped into our life, Mobile connectivity surfaced with its sheer importance and unfathomable capability during this stagnancy. It turned out not to be a mere device for communication, rather lifeline of business, education, and entertainment. For a country like Bangladesh, its significance cannot be limited within pandemic scenario.
Since the introduction of mobile in Bangladesh, the industry has taken new hue with every phase of its evolution. During the 2G era, it overrode the primitive practice of land phone-based communication with greater agility. With the introduction of 3G and 4G, it started transforming the society towards data centricity and the effort got farther boost with Govt’s visionary policy formulation of ‘Digital Bangladesh’. Now mobile connectivity penetration is over 100% while Mobile internet penetration is nearly 65%. With more than 80 million MFS accounts, mobile is now the prime lifeline for more than 300 thousand Facebook stores, 60% of them are founded by women. Bangladesh is among the top 10 f-commerce countries with market size BDT 3500 million. During pandemic, the f-commerce platform delivered vegetable to grocery, medicine to clothes; let alone all disseminating all form of top emergency information.
The transformation due to pandemic, termed as ‘New Normal’, taught us how the same task could be done in different way, efficiently. However, ‘New Normal’ demands new mind set too. We can assume that ‘globalization’ will intensify in the outset of COVID-19 situation; ‘nourishment of people’ will be one of the most crucial dynamics with top priority. SDG, too, listed human development as one of its goals. With an aim to bring in all under this effort, connected society is a must. Every single opportunity of innovation demands to be globalized; thus, human competency level also needs to be at global standard. Technology acquaint human resource has already appeared to be the blessing for any nation and it will keep increasing in coming days.
On the verge of 4th Industrial Revolution (Industry 4.0), no nation can afford being reluctant in the technological domain. For a country like Bangladesh, with more than 65% tech savvy people aged under 30, we have huge potential ensuring a sizeable stake in the world economy. The robust foundation of communication infrastructure can provide a solid platform to leapfrog. Now, the responsibility of the Govt and the Private sector is to capitalize the platform and nourish the soft skill of the workforce. In addition, we also need to gain adaptability with the ever-changing business model and reengineer our way of doing things, be it people management, technological rollout or whatever it needs. Above all, to get fit-in in the new change scenario, we need to have a well-coordinated all-out effort.