Google has rolled out a new service in Ghana, Nigeria and Kenya that lets Gmail users send and receive emails using the built-in SMS feature on their mobile phones. (Thanks again to Alex – the pokemeister this week!)

The new service has some pretty important implications – namely that mobile access is no longer required, and users don’t need fancy smartphones with 3G or WiFI capabilities. In an emerging market where technology is limited and web access isn’t reliable, Gmail SMS could be a lifeline for thousands of people.