Sacrifices Kenyans make to use mobile phones

1

For phone users in Kenya: To bank, or to eat? In Kenya, two-thirds of people, mostly the poor, use phone-based money-transfers. A new report from iHub, a Kenyan tech incubator, is beginning to show that Kenyans are willing to forgo public transit for the day, or skip a meal to be able to use their phone for economic purposes later.

 

The mobile money service, called M-Pesa, has moved $8.6 billion so far this year, mostly between the country’s poor. In areas where public transit is decrepit or unavailable, this financial self-servicing is an incredible amount of grease for the country’s commerce and a gateway to economic mobility for the poor. Consider the farmer whose customers may not be able to reach a bank some miles away. Or the worker in the city, who needs a reliable and safe way to send money home.

M-Pesa’s penetration does have its costs. iHub’s report shows that the sacrifices Kenyans make in order to use their mobile phones average out to about 84 cents a week. This is far from chump change for poor Kenyans. For some, it is a whole day’s wages.

- Advertisement -

There is no doubt that M-Pesa is the most successful mobile payment scheme in the world. Consider how few Americans use mobile payments as compared to the two-thirds of Kenyans that do. The trend of forgoing meals in favor of more mobile data could be set to worsen. The Kenyan government is eyeing M-Pesa for revenue, a reportedly 10% tax on M-Pesa’s end-user fees. People have to eat, but do they need to bank.

Source:dvice.com

1 Comment
  1. […] partnership follows April’s collaboration with PayPal, enabling customers to seamlessly transfer money between M-Pesa wallet and the US online payments […]

Comment on the article

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

This website uses cookies to improve your experience. We'll assume you're ok with this, but you can opt-out if you wish. Accept Read More

%d bloggers like this: