Mobile payments in Africa: 7 facts you should know

mobile payments in africa
(CREDITS: The Star - Kenya)

Mobile payments as of now are widespread across Ghana and the whole of Africa. It could be a mobile wallet installed as apps on the phone making use of Near Field Communication technology. It could also be the use of simple USSD codes. We will show you a couple of things you should know about mobile payments in Ghana and Africa as a whole.

Just an add-up: With the two ways of mobile payments, the installed wallet style seems to be more accessible, since it is reasonably easy to operate. Let’s learn something new!

Seven facts you should know about mobile payments in Africa

1. Mobiles phones sparked popularity and continue to

As cliché as it may sound, it is a fact that mobile payments are triggered by mobile phones. The growth of mobile phones has definitely ensured the success of mobile payments in Africa.

In Africa, mobile phones are a major way to access the internet. As a result of a growing number of mobile users, mobile payments has found its way into the remote parts of Africa.

2. It is a great benefit for the remote areas

Remote areas in Africa, usually do not have immediate access to financial services and institutions. So the advent the mobile money platforms has come as great relief for such areas.

There is no need to travel long distances away to neighbouring big towns before accessing a bank. They can make payments, and receive money through mobile money service vendor without a hassle.

Michael Joseph, Managing Director for Vodafone in Kenya, says the mobile payment M-Pesa has empowered many impoverished people all around.

3. Physical cash is still predominant

Sure, we’re dealing with e-money most of the time but physical cash doesn’t seem to be vanishing anytime soon. Amidst the prevalence mobile payments, you’d think exchange of physical cash will reduce, but that doesn’t seem to be the case. A lot of people still depend on physical cash transactions.

For some people that keep money on their mobile wallets, they do it just to be safe during emergencies. Thus, they mainly continue to use physical cash for transactions.

4. Kenya is the leader in mobile payments

The East African country is Kenya is in the frontline of mobile payments in Africa. Over 16million transactions take place every day on the M-Pesa mobile money platform. With this, Kenya is taking the lead in mobile money payments and is threatening to take a leading global position.

According to IT News Africa, 93% of the Kenyan adult population utilise mobile money services. It’s not just the highest in Africa, but in many parts of the third world countries across the globe.

Also, over 36million mobile money accounts are registered in various mobile transaction platforms in Kenya. Coming closely behind is Zimbabwe.

5. It is boosting free insurance for life

Through mobile money platforms free insurance is gradually gaining grounds. Ghana’s own Tigo opened the way to free insurance policy linked to mobile phones in Africa. This initiative by Tigo was embraced by a lot of companies. It went viral across the continent moving through different markets in the business sector.

Telecom companies have coupled this insurance policy with their various mobile products which is tied to the mobile wallet.

6. Airtime purchases and bills tops money payment chart

Since almost every individual uses the prepaid means to get airtime for calls and mobile internet, purchasing airtime via mobile money platforms. It really saves the time and hassle of getting out of your comfort zone to get airtime top-ups.

For instance, I don’t go out to top-ups anymore. All I do is sit in my room and purchase it straight from my MTN Mobile Money wallet.

When it comes to using paying bills with mobile payments, East Africa alone holds a sizable portion. It is estimated that 6% of statistics of customers globally who use mobile payments for bills come emanates from East Africa.

This is not so surprising telecom companies like MTN, Vodafone, etc. boast of millions of subscribers across Africa.

7. Africa is leading globally

Africa tops the chart of one of the most valuable mobile technologies in finance and business.

African countries that can be mentioned as the leading countries include Kenya, Zimbabwe, and Uganda. In these countries, the mobile payment method of conducting financial transactions is king.

Developed nations would have been the frontliners as they usually are in most technologies, but surprisingly Africa has taken over this one. This helps to change the perception of Africa as a Dark Continent.

Drawing the curtains

Mobile payments in Ghana and Africa a whole is a booming business and helps grow other businesses. There is less hassle in financial transactions ever before. And top of it all it is a secure avenue to conduct your financial transactions. Since it is a great technology, it has given life to Fintech startups like Mazzuma, Expreesspay, KudiGO, etc.

This article was culled from IT News Africa, click here to read the original article.

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