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Airtime to Cash: Unlocking the Potential of Africa's Mobile Phones for Banking the Unbanked
ResearchICTafrica.net.
ResearchICTafrica.net.
Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Science, Technology and Media, Department of Information Technology and Media.
ResearchICTafrica.net.
2009 (English)In: IST-Africa 2009 Conference Proceedings / [ed] Paul Cunningham and Miriam Cunningham, Ireland: International Information Management Corporation Limited, 2009Conference paper, Published paper (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

This paper discusses how mobile phones may be used to extend banking services to the ‘unbanked’. Generally, many more people possess mobile phones than bank accounts across Africa. Mobile banking services are already offered as an addition to existing bank accounts. Instead of adding a mobile phone as a complementary channel, why not add a bank account to an existing mobile phone number? This would narrow the access gap considerably, allowing mobile phones to be used to provide financial services to those without bank accounts. Two models are discussed that may help narrow the access gap: first—airtime cash convertibility, already a defacto practice in many parts of Africa, and second—the mobile wallet, which would allow full banking services to be performed on the basis of a virtual wallet linked to a SIM card. Results from Research ICT Africa’s 2007/8 e-Access & Usage household Survey are used to investigate the current usage of airtime as a means of payment as well as the potential demand for m- banking. Regulatory challenges to the adoption of m-banking as well as potential business models and possible models of cooperation between banks and mobile operators are also explored.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Ireland: International Information Management Corporation Limited, 2009.
Keyword [en]
Mobile banking, remittances, mobile payments, mobile money, airtime, mobile wallet
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:miun:diva-12156ISBN: 978-1-905824-11-3 (print)OAI: oai:DiVA.org:miun-12156DiVA: diva2:358905
Conference
IST-Africa 2009
Available from: 2010-12-13 Created: 2010-10-25 Last updated: 2013-03-21Bibliographically approved

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Comninos et al: Airtime to Cash: Unlocking the Potential of Africa's Mobile Phones for Banking the Unbanked 2010(510 kB)1403 downloads
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CiteExportLink to record
Permanent link

Direct link
Cite
Citation style
  • apa
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
  • vancouver
  • Other style
More styles
Language
  • de-DE
  • en-GB
  • en-US
  • fi-FI
  • nn-NO
  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
  • html
  • text
  • asciidoc
  • rtf