How Doubtnut is democratising education for the next half billion users just coming online

The founders of edtech startup Doubtnut share their journey of working towards bridging the gap between tutors and students through easily accessible technology and quality content in vernacular languages in their episode of ‘The Bold Ones - Innovating for the Next Half Billion’.
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“It is not every day that we get a chance to directly impact somebody’s life… Social impact is something which will not come easy in a country like ours. Right things have to be built. People like us have to build it,” says Aditya Shankar, Co-founder, Doubtnut as he sheds light on what it means to make education accessible for all.

Aditya along with his co-founder and wife Tanushree Nagori are among the entrepreneurs whose stories are captured in Omidyar Network India’s newly launched video series titled ‘The Bold Ones - Innovating for the Next Half Billion’. A compilation of 11 short videos, the series captures power-packed stories of entrepreneurs who are building for the 500 million-plus Indians coming online for the first time via their mobile phones, a segment often referred to as the ‘Next Half Billion’ or NHB.

A ‘bold’ mission

“We are solving for the next half billion. The scale is massive. There’s no way we can solve it without using technology,” says Aditya in the video.

Since its inception in 2017, Doubtnut is leveraging technology to help every student with instant answers and explanations to all their study questions. With 2 million questions answered daily in various languages, Doubtnut promises to bring education to each and every kid in every city, village, town irrespective of their demographics and economic conditions. Three million students ask two million questions and watch six million videos on Doubtnut every day, making it one of India’s largest education apps in terms of number of daily users.

“The biggest hook is doubt solving. Students click the picture of a question and get a video solution immediately,” adds Tanushree.

The video captures Aditya and Tanushree’s journey of building a “student-first, vernacular-first, mobile-first, and tech-first education company”, putting spotlight on their personal and professional story, struggles, vision and success they have faced with their venture.

Education for all

Once digitisation enabled people from various parts of the country to access the internet, a lot of students had a chance to get their hands on content that was never available to them earlier, however, these students were looking to consume content in their own vernacular language.

Doubtnut not only gauged that the majority of apps are focusing on imparting lessons in English but also decided to create content in conversational Hindi, eventually diving into various languages such as Tamil, Telugu, Kannada, Gujarati and more.

“Until two years back, the percentage of girls on our app was just 10 percent… this has now improved to 30 percent,” says Tanushree, mentioning the importance of giving the access of education to girls, and the role Doubtnut has played in enabling this.

Tanushree and Aditya’s inspiring journey can be seen here.

The 11-part series is live on theboldones.in. Additionally, the series is also available on Omidyar Network India’s official website and social media handles.


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