Vodafone Kenya has 175,000 mobile payment users

What started out as a mobile microfinance project has taken off phenomenally well as a mobile payments service. Nice one Vodafone.

Link: Cellphones may take banking to the rural poor in the third world - International Herald Tribune

When Vodafone began a pilot microfinance project in Kenya in 2003 using mobile phones, said Nick Hughes, head of international payment services for Vodafone, “the idea was to reduce the cost of loan disbursal and recovery.”

“But what we found was that customers were using it for person-to-person transfers” of money in addition to making loan payments.

As a result, three months ago, the company introduced a commercial program in Kenya to make payments possible by cellphone. Customer use has grown. “We’ve passed the 175,000 mark,” Hughes said, “and they’re signing up at about 2,500 a day.”

If it’s working well in Kenya, I’d imagine it would work really, really well in the UK too. I’d like to be able to do this along the lines of how Anam’s service works.

Submitted by KatrinVerclas on Mon, 2007-07-09 09:30.

Mobile payments will reach $22bn by 2011

P2P fund transfers and mobile payments will generate transactions worth $22bn by 2011, predicts Juniper Research. In addition, they reckon 204m mobile phone users will be paying for services with their handsets by then. Interestingly this figure includes payments made using Near Field Communications (NFC) technology - already in daily use with London’s Oyster Card and the Octopus service in Hong Kong.

Greater availability of NFC devices, for physical mobile payments, coupled with secure and easy-to-use applications, backed by the large credit card organisations and financial institutions, will create the foundation for a healthy alternative to cash and other mainstream payment applications.

Report author Alan Goode said: “The technology is available now to enable secure and fast payments to be initiated on the mobile phone. The business model stills needs some work but there are positive signals emanating  from the industry  that will create considerable revenue for all parts of the ecosystem. I am cautiously optimistic for the future success of mPayments.”

Submitted by KatrinVerclas on Mon, 2007-07-09 09:21.

In Poorer Nations, Cellphones Help Open Up Microfinancing

In many developing countries, where bank branches and A.T.M.’s are few or nonexistent in rural areas, cellphones may finally make financial services practical such places, fitting in the palm of one’s hand. The New York Times reports.

"Mobile devices have the potential to take financial markets outside urban areas, allowing banks to provide services like loans and savings accounts in rural regions, according to a report by Vodafone and Nokia, published last week."

Add this this entry to your bookmarks.
Submitted by KatrinVerclas on Mon, 2007-07-09 08:21.

Mobile Knowledge for Social Change

The above phrase is the subtitle for a project called The project website offers “how to’s” and themes. It also has a growing collection of case studies — which may be a very clear glimpse of the very near future. There are lots of ideas already in the case studies. is a way for these ideas to be spread. Who could have imagined a farmer on a distant continent making a suggestion that could reach very far? Yet six may seem a lot of degrees of separation soon. Here is the About for the project: is an online community and a wiki for sharing ideas on how to use mobile communications for social and environmental benefits. was created with support from Nokia and Vodafone, but belongs to the growing global network of individuals and organizations that use this virtual gathering place to communicate - and collaborate.

Submitted by KatrinVerclas on Fri, 2007-07-06 19:34.

Text Messaging a major communication tool for Teens

If you want to talk to Teens - make sure they can send you a text message.

A recent Harris Interactive survey completed for Disney Mobile Cell and Tell Service found that text messaging is the "primary form of communication" for 44 percent of cell-phone users age 10 to 17. Fifty-eight percent said they have used text messaging in school during class. They also use it:

• At movies (52 percent);
• At the dinner table (28 percent);
• To ask someone out on a date (14 percent);
• To break up with someone (7 percent);
• Within 10 minutes of waking up in the morning (26 percent).

This same group is also the most likely to own mobile  phones that can browse the internet.  If you are targeting this age group, your communication should definitely include a way for your audience to text you AND to browse your information via a mobile phone. Setting up a teen-friendly program is easy with qtags text - lease a keyword by the month and add dot-mobi pages to embed inside your keyword's text-replies.  You can also build a permission-based group using qtags keywords.   

Submitted by KatrinVerclas on Thu, 2007-07-05 19:35.

Citizen Mobile Videos to save the Earth

story9faba8bbec80e11bc34c7acef7af2e33_240x180.jpg Friends of the Earth is asking members of the public to record videos with their mobile phones to pledge support for a new campaign, The Big Ask, to help push for tough new climate change laws.

Friends of the Earth will send a copy of each video message to each sender’s local MP. The campaign has attracted celebrity support from the likes of Jude Law, James Blunt, Johnny Borrel and KT Tunstall.

[From Pocket-Picks]

Submitted by KatrinVerclas on Thu, 2007-07-05 16:25.

M-banking could help millions in developing countries

Rating: the best of luck By Annie Turner A new regulatory framework is needed to encourage financial transactions via mobile phones and transform access to financial services in developing countries,...

Get Edgy...
Submitted by KatrinVerclas on Wed, 2007-07-04 09:29.

Clean Air Messages

Mobile phone users in the USA can find out about the quality of the air around them by SMS.
Submitted by KatrinVerclas on Tue, 2007-07-03 15:28.

LG to develop mobile for YouTube

Rating: turn the binoculars round South Korea's LG Electronics has signed an agreement with YouTube, the world's biggest video-sharing website, to develop a mobile phone optimised for YouTube freaks....

Get Edgy...
Submitted by KatrinVerclas on Tue, 2007-07-03 10:26.

Kenya. Wind Powered Cell Phone Base Stations


Spotted on Afrigadget, winafrique's hybrid wind and diesel turbine systems for powering cell phone base stations.

Submitted by KatrinVerclas on Tue, 2007-07-03 06:52.