mTech for San Health uses mobile technology powered by web applications and USSD for tracking and maintaining sanitation facilities in developing countries. Its Key objectives are;
-To build a mobile enabled application to support and improve the status of communal sanitation facilities.
-To track and collect data for latrine maintenance and installation for better and efficient sanitation facilities
-To gather evidence based data, follow a consumer driven and community led approach to engage the government, key stakeholders and investors towards better sanitation facilities and increased services

Scalability of the model: This demonstration project will be initially piloted in Mumbai city, India. This will be a free to use downloadable application. The initial role will target the Mumbai city population for purposes of assessing the applicability of the App. This however will not stop other users in India from accessing and using the App. The App restriction will mainly focus on data management for Mumbai City authorities. Depending on the outcomes, then proposals for adaptability for other cities will be made for scalability. The success of this model will be replicated in other metropolitan area in India, i.e. Delhi, Kolkata, Bangalore, Chennai and Gujarat. The goal is to make the App a self-propagating scalability model.
The Mobile Technology: {APP challenge}
“mSanitation” – is a mobile enabled web App that will be complimented with a USSD version. The focus of the App is to empower users of communal or public toilets to share information about the status of the public facilities on a number of issues from cleanliness to infrastructure related ones.
Although the adoption of smartphones (Android, iPhones, Blackberry, Windows Phone) is rapidly growing in third world countries like India, majority of the population still own older feature phones. To support as many people as possible, we will be creating two mobile solutions. One is an SMS application that allows users to report issues as well as report issues fixed via SMS. The second solution will feature a rich mapping feature to show locations of nearby toilets, their conditions, as well as the ability to report issues and report fixed issues. Both solutions will be reporting to the same backend infrastructure that will store and manage the data for all of the toilets as well as their conditions.

Solution 1: Smart phone App product design description:
For the smart phone app, a map of public toilet facilities, backed by an open, scalable and secure database (Geo mapping) will be used. Upon starting the app, the user will be presented with a list of toilets (see screenshot) that are nearby. The pins can also be color-coded based on the type of toilet (pit v/s latrine). The user can click on the pins on the map to see more details, like ratings and location. In addition to this feature the Geo mapping will allow smartphone users to pin point unique locations, which have not yet been tracked and a unique id will automatically assigned to the location. Additionally, a cross-platform mobile phone app for reporting problems with the current sanitation system will be used. Here, the user can further click on the map to report a problem ( see screenshot), or even report a fix. The “Report Issue” page or the “Report Fix” page will layout a few option for the user. The user can select one or more options and click submit to report the issue. The report options will be designed in both English and Hindi (local Indian language).

Solution 2: Feature phone product design (Ticketing system model)
The “mobile application” tool will collect actionable data through a toilet ID mechanism to identify, track and resolve problems around maintenance and installation needs. A toilet ID number assigned to every public toilet facility (previously mapped), that a user would text to report the problem associated with the facility (crowd source reporting). Thus once the user reports a text message, the SMS will be automatically logged in the central database. This will also be then re-routed to the concerned maintenance group, based on the toilet id or respective location id. On receiving the text, the maintenance team will read the text and address the issue and then reports completion of tasks to the central database accordingly. The website will be built for the app and will serve as a database where simple HTML text reports and fixes will be logged (to support feature phones). Note: Both smart phone and feature phone users will be able to use this service.

Communication goals: Report problem -> Record problem -> Dispatch service provider Report fix -> Record fix.
Technology flow: Cell Phone (Reporter) ->Twilio (SMS) -> Database -> mTech dispatcher -> twilio(SMS) -> Cell Phone(maintenance crew)
Tools for SMS platform: Twilio – web app used to communicate between the mobile device and website using SMS, data management platform, website hosting, data storage (iCloud)

Icon source: akvopedia
Android, BlackBerry, iOS (iPhone, iPad, iPod Touch), HTML5, SMS
  • Free version available
Stop open defecation!, Poor access to data, Make sanitation affordable, Governance and sanitation, Facilities not for girls!, Empower citizens, Children are at risk...
  • REPORT ISSUE REPORT FIX No Water Water available Not Clean Toilet cleaned Flush Broken Flush fixed Toilet Broken New toilet Installed Empty Pit Pit empty
Target Users
  • Urban city and slum dwellers, school and college going students, blue collar workers commuting to work
Available in the following app stores
Google Play, AppUp Center, Blackberry App World, AppShup, iTunes, LG Application Store, Opera Mobile Store, OpenAppMkt, Samsung Applications Store, Windows Phone Apps
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