isabelo is a smart bench that is Wi-Fi enabled and aims to bridge the technology divide by providing free Wi-Fi in public spaces in African cities. It also brings clients closer to their consumer markets through tailored research which is conducted off the Wi-Fi hotspot. By Gugu Lourie
A first for the continent, the bench launched at The Grove Square in Braamfontein, is designed as a stand-alone entirely solar powered, free Wi-Fi hotspot, complete with USB charging points and easy seating that can help attract and bring life back into public spaces.
The innovative bench is already proving a popular meeting place as users can simply sit down, connect to the “Isabelo free Wi-Fi” network with their smart phones. Those carrying their own USB cables can also charge up their phone batteries while enjoying the free service.
“We are excited to be partnering with the team from Isabelo, as its Smart Bench concept dovetails with our strategy to rebuild Braamfontein as an inclusive, multi-dimensional and student-friendly live-work-play destination district,” said Mr Ndumiso Davidson, CEO, of South Point, the largest property developers in student housing outside universities.
A prototype of the smart bench was launched earlier this year in the famed Maboneng Precinct, Johannesburg, which is also well known as a playground for urban innovation in the inner city.