Pop-up "Network in a Suitcase" Brings Mobile Connections to Typhoon Haiyan Survivors and Rescuers

By Gary Cutlack on at

Two portable mobile networks said to fit inside a few suitcases are now up and running in the devastated parts of the Philippines, with the Vodafone-developed portable masts helping locals and rescuers coordinate attempts to patch up the smashed region.

The portable GSM network fits into the space of three suitcases (although they weigh a whopping 100kg), and once unpacked pop out an antenna, a folding mast, computer and base station, which are all powered by a portable generator. One portable site has been set up in the Palo region and another in Borongan, where they're apparently seeing traffic as high as 1,000 text messages a minute and are letting those out there communicate with the outside world.

If you're feeling kind, and perhaps a bit guilty about blowing £300 on a new mobile phone you don't even really need this week, you could bung some money in the direction of the Disasters Emergency Commission.

Image credit: Vodafone Foundation