Essay: Mobile Technology as a Payment Tool
Mobile phones are relatively affordable in Kenya as well as the services they offer hence the reason why they widely spread in the country. The literacy levels in the country are taken in to consideration by this technology since it needs only basic know how of how to operate a phone in order for one to be in a position to do a transaction. Since mobile phones do not require physical features such as wires to operate, it makes the accessible to those living in areas where there are no such facilities. The time it takes to transfer money through mobile phones is minimal and this is a convenience to the business people. Mobile service providers have agents all over the country who provide the support needed by the customers as well as the businesses. The fact that one has access to his or her account t any time makes it easier for the business proprietors to manage their accounts. (Njenga 2009)
With a population of about 40 million people, Kenya has an estimated 20 million active mobile phone users. Safaricom has the highest number of subscribers in Kenya and this is attributed to the fact that it was the one to start business in the country. (Government of Kenya 2010) Its main competitor is Zain Kenya, which has a market share of about 20% as compared to Safaricom’s 50%. There are about 9 million Safaricom subscribers who are actively using the M-pesa service whereas Zain has almost 4 million customers on its Zap service. The number of people registering for thee services is steadily increasing with some people having subscribed to the two services. Studies conducted in developed countries showed that there is potential in the use of mobile technology as a payment tool. (Annual report 2009)
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