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153 Goa Post Offices May Soon Compete With Amazon and Flipkart?

Hi-tech hand-held devices in Goa Post Offices

Goa is the 1st state to implement solar powered, hi-tech hand-held devices in post offices

Remember Mario Miranda’s cartoons of the village postman? His boss, the postmaster, and his office, just went hi-tech. He or she (Goa has quite a few women in the post offices these days) will now carry a very snazzy hi-tech hand-held device (better than what the bus conductors carry). In fact, this is also very eco-friendly because it actually runs on solar cells. To be more precise, out of the 153 rural post offices in Goa, 138 now have this hi-tech piece of equipment.

It’s a notable feat, especially because Goa has a network of 257 post offices out of which 153 are in rural areas. As you know, rural usually means limited digital network connectivity. But not anymore.
Guess how Hi-tech these devices are? They’re as good as the ones carried by the e-commerce delivery guys (Amazon, Flipkart, Myntra…whatever)

Goa Post Offices
Pic Credit: Navhind times

These devices have a sim card, 1GB RAM, a 3.5-megapixel camera(wow), a magnetic card reader and a thermal printer. Each device is connected to the data center of the postal department. Each is powered by the solar panels that have been installed at the respective post offices. Don’t worry about the Post Office networks going down when a tree falls on the power lines nearby. Hey, that’s cool. I wonder if Flipkart and Amazon’s Delivery Hubs are that cool?

What can you do on these hi-tech devices at a Goa Post Office?

A lot. For starters, you can deposit and withdraw money faster and more accurately in all of your post office accounts. The next time your NRI relatives want to send money home, tell them to use their trusty old Post Office. Actually, even the e-commerce giants like Amazon, e Bay, and Alibaba would be envious of such a robust Last-Mile-Digital-Hub. Its potential for e-commerce is mind-boggling. Imagine sending money and parcels to all your relatives back home, in “Rural Goa” with the accuracy and swiftness of an Amazon, Flipkart or Alibaba! Wow. Believe it or not, the government is spending a whopping Rs 5000 crores on a nationwide mega IT project to computerize the postal network and offer better online services. International e-commerce giants, beware. This sleeping giant in India called the trusty old Post Office, has awoken and come of age.

When did this happen? Yesterday – Oct 9th – World Post Day. That’s the day Universal Postal Union (UPU) began, in the year 1874. What an auspicious day to launch such a momentous piece of technology in so many Post Offices of Goa. In fact, October 9 to October 17 is National Postal Week.

Naturally, N Vinodkumar, the Postmaster General, Goa region, was very happy. Here’s what he had to say:

Goa in fact, is the first state in the country to have successfully implemented the three major silos of the IT project that is core banking solutions, core system integration and rural information communication technology, which includes the use of these portable, hand-held devices,”

He also added:

In Goa, we have 104 major post offices doing core business transactions

Finally, this was his Knock -Out piece of information. It seems they’ll soon launch a special product called the International Tracked Packet (ITP). With this, customers can send shipments to Asia-Pacific countries with additional facilities. For example, you can send an up to 2 kg parcel with impressive track and trace facility. When that happens e-commerce companies and customers can have the option of pick up from their doorsteps, with volume-based discounts.

Remember the Song by the Carpenters “Hey there wait a minute Mr. Postman!” Have you got something for me?

Pic credit: Navhind Times
Information source: Navhind Times

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