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Mobile Banking In The Emerging World

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In Tanzania, a hospital sends money by text message to women in remote areas so they can pay for bus fare to travel for critically needed surgery. In Afghanistan, the government pays its police officers by text message to skirt corrupt middlemen. In Pakistan, the biggest financial network is not a bank, but a unit of Telenor, the Norwegian mobile phone operator.

While storefront bank branches and online banking are ubiquitous in the United States and most developed countries, in less-developed countries only a small fraction of the population is served by banking services.

Mobile banking first appeared in the Philippines in 2001, when two operators, Globe and Smart, introduced their own domestic payment plan. In most mobile banking models, the person sending a payment sends the amount by text to the recipient’s phone number.

The person receiving the payment goes to an authorized local agent, typically a mom-and-pop retailer that also sells prepaid mobile phone cards, and withdraws the cash.

In parts of Latin America, Africa, the Middle East and Asia, more than 90 percent of people typically carry at least one mobile phone, a technological tether that mobile operators are exploiting to become retail bankers to the emerging world.

“Five years ago, there was hype around mobile banking but no real numbers in terms of customers,” said Mung Ki Woo, vice president of electronic payments and transactions at Orange, the wireless unit of France Télécom. “Now we are starting to see significant numbers. I think the potential of mobile banking is huge, going forward.”

Since December 2008, Orange has signed up one million people for its Orange Money mobile banking service in six African countries: Mali, Senegal, Ivory Coast, Madagascar, Kenya and Niger. In Kenya and Tanzania, subsidiaries of the British mobile operator Vodafone now process more international wire transfers than Western Union.

So the bankers might get squeezed out of this, I'm surprised that they haven't started buying mobile phone networks.

I'm sure it's secure but can you imagine how hard criminals will be trying to work out how to hack the system and send money txts. This could be QE on an immense scale.

I love how the mobile phone VI is trumpeting that the potential of mobile banking is huge :)

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Interesting .... no replies to this interesting post yet.

There are loads of techies on here. What are you waiting for?

There are shops where you can cash cheques in every 'poor' area - why not implement this here? Hit the banksters where it hurts.

This is well-known. Surprised to see no mention of Nokia in the quoted text.

I look forward to the UK catching up, to a point where payment joins all the other functions on my little electronic device alongside phone, camera, GPS/maps, radio, and all the general computer and internet functions of a pocket-puter.

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All the "money" that passes through such networks has previously been borrowed into existence at interest from the banks.

The root problem is having a debt-based, commercially issued means of exchange.

How some users of that means of exchange then move it around amongst themselves is of relatively little consequence to the rent-a-currency issuer-lenders.

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  • 439 Brexit, House prices and Summer 2020

    1. 1. Including the effects Brexit, where do you think average UK house prices will be relative to now in June 2020?

      • down 5% +
      • down 2.5%
      • Even
      • up 2.5%
      • up 5%

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