The team behind Nairobi's collaborative technology work space called the iHub, and Open Source publishing group Ushahidi, have just started selling a revolutionary new technology called the Brck - a rugged self-powered wifi device.
Essentially the Brck doesn't contain any new technology but its uniqueness comes from how it has been context-sensitively designed for Africa. This mobile router allows 20 wifi devices to share a single SIM card's Internet connection and can be charged from main power or directly from solar panels. The device is surge resistent and packs an 8 hour battery life plus a web based management dashboard which is cloud hosted - so Brck routers can be remotely managed from anywhere in the world.
Ultimately one could simply use a smartphone that allows tethering with a solar charger/battery with similar effect but at $199 the Brck offers a versatle single solution that's rugged enough to charge up and take anywhere - its somewhat waterproof and doesn't have a screen, so it should take a licking and keep on ticking far beyond a regular touchscreen smartphone.