WinSenga Bulletin/Update 1.0 – Field Testing

Some time last week, Team Cipher 256 had the humbling opportunity of presenting WinSenga to the UNICEF chief and Section Heads. Also present  were specialists from the medical and technology fields.

The UNICEF top brass echoed the importance such affordable devices as WinSenga, and the enormous impact they can have in reducing maternal morbidity and mortality.

In light of the wonderful presentation, WinSenga will be undergoing field testing/trials under the auspices of UNICEF. We will be observing the impact of WinSenga in the communities, how it is used and how to further improve it to enhance the user experience, among others. The programme will start between early and mid-June, this year.


WinSenga in the Media and Press

There’s been a lot of media attention about WinSenga since the Nairobi win. It affirms not only the potential WinSenga poses but also indirectly mirrors the enormity of the gap it will be filling.

So, here’s what has been said about WinSenga, albeit not all of it is entirely accurate (but if you are here, then those inaccuracies have been cleared)- go have a read:

KTN News after the win –

Capital FM website (Lifestyle Magazine)-

On the Makerere University, College of  Computing and Information Sciences –

In the New Vision Newspaper –

Venture Africa website –

On the Forbes website –

On the Imagine Cup Website –

Then this

And this


Introducing WinSenga


Developed by Team Cipher 256 as an entry into Microsoft Imagine Cup 2012, WinSenga is a Windows Phone solution that aims to help meet  United Nations’ Millennium Development Goal number 5: To improve Maternal Health. This is through availing Timely, Effective and Affordable (T.E.A) antenatal diagnosis and care to mothers in developing countries in which many die due to pregnancy and childbirth-related complications.

The entire WinSenga solution, still under development and continuous improvement, comprises a Pinnard horn to which a a specially designed microphone is attached and then plugged into a Windows Phone.

Central to Team Cipher 256’s ideology, as indeed applied in the WinSenga Project, is NOT to re-invent the wheel. Many of the problems and challenges we face today are old and have “old” solutions to them. Instead of thinking of and creating new ways of solving the problem, the team focused on improving the “old” technology, consequently taking a fresh and new vantage point on the issue of maternal mortality resulting from lack of or poor antenatal care. We figure that if the technology has served us with some efficiency through the years, its potential remains still, and need only be rethought, improved, extended and repackaged, as we have done with the Senga(Pinnard) Horn.

The solution continually will “learn” via a Web Service feeding directly into the core of the application.

Target Audience/Market:

WinSenga targets medical personnel as well as expectant mothers who are keen on and aware of the importance of antenatal diagnosis and care. Furthermore,there’s a huge gap in health service delivery especially in rural areas, stemming both from lack of personnel and necessary expertise to delivery these services. WinSenga will be the bridge to remedy the problem.

As such, the solution offers two options for diagnosis: quick diagnosis for the curious individual (read mother, father – the lay person) and advanced diagnosis for the medical personnel.

Progress report:

Presently, the following modules are complete and fully functional:

  • Sound Recording and Playback Module
  • Position Simulation Module

Complete but under testing:

  • Sound Analysis and Visualization Module
  • Web Service

Under active development:

  • Real-time Partograph Display Module
  • Learning Module



The entire solution including the hardware (Senga Horn and Windows Phone) will cost between US$100 and US$500. However, this pricing plan is an estimation and may, at the time of release, change. We plan to bundle the solution with cheaper Windows Phones (which should be on the market in at most a year’s time) .