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Tribute to A Tech Innovator who Revolutionized Communication in Rural Areas Vanu Bose passionately followed the development of wireless technology to achieve his aim of connecting the far off rural parts of the world

By Nidhi Singh

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Throughout his life he passionately followed the development of wireless technology to achieve his aim of connecting the far off rural parts of the world, including areas like Vermont and Rwanda.

Though technology is continuously influencing the world we live in, but there is still a great need for innovation in rural areas. It pained Vanu Bose, Founder and CEO of Vanu, Inc. to find that millions of rural citizens are still deprived of benefits of the Internet boom.

He apparently just wanted one thing more than anything else in his life — to bring the unconnected people under the network coverage.

This distinguished software engineer unexpectedly died from pulmonary embolism on November 11. He was 52 years old.

Founded in 1998, Vanu, Inc. pioneered in the commercialization of software-defined radio and was the first company to receive Federal Communications Commission (FCC) certification for this in 2004 for this.

The technology was licensed from Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in 1999 after several rounds of negotiation.

Entrepreneur India charts four key lessons from the life of Boston-born Vanu Bose.

Taking Technology To the Next Level

Shortly before his death, he donated durable solar-powered cell towers to devastated Puerto Rico when it was grappling with crisis after hurricane Maria lashed the island this year. The network helped people locate their lost family members.

Bose knew that post disaster, restoring communication in the affected areas is one of the toughest challenges and the work always takes a lot more time than usual. So, he started exploring ways on how his company could get involved in more charitable efforts.

A Humanitarian At Heart

He was a true learner throughout his life and also helped others through teaching and mentoring. He had a vision that everyone can and should have economically sustainable wireless coverage. He once said, "To be unconnected is to be left behind and we don't want anyone to be left behind."

Like Father Like Son

Vanu is the son of Dr. Amar G. Bose, Founder of the Bose Corporation that designs, develops and sells audio equipment. The company is based in Framingham.

Dr. Amar G. Bose was a professor in MIT's Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science (EECS) for nearly a half-century. He first displayed his entrepreneurial skills and interest in electronics at the age of 13, when during World War II, he involved his school friends as co-workers in his small venture, repairing model trains and home radios. This was made in earnest to supplement his family's income.

Leaping Out of Family Business

Quitting any job requires a bit of sensitivity and planning, but leaving a family business is a hard decision. Instead of following his father's footsteps, Bose started his own company Vanu Inc. that comes up with solutions for places that do not have a good coverage today.

Today, almost everything in our surroundings is technology-driven and Vanu Inc's operations are attuned to the need of the times.

Nidhi Singh

Former Correspondent, Entrepreneur Asia-Pacific

A self confessed Bollywood Lover, Travel junkie and Food Evangelist.I like travelling and I believe it is very important to take ones mind off the daily monotony .

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