May 31, 2012

Young people and the underbanked (or both): The real market for mobile wallets?

Anybody involved in mobile wallets needs to become really clear about the issues raised in this article, "Why Mobile Wallets Are Bogus."

I do believe that there is lots of future in mobile wallets, but the industry is generally focusing on trying to fix something that's not broken.

The writer describes how Kenya is the largest market for mobile wallets, where half of Kenya’s population uses M-Pesa, the mobile payments partnership between Vodaphone and Safaricom. Why? Because in Kenya, where most people are poor or unbanked (or both), "paying for goods with phones actually has a value proposition for users, and not for marketers".

The theme is very close to what I was describing yesterday, on how mobile payments could help people deal more easily with inflation. See Inflation, the next big opportunity in payments?

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