Archive for the ‘Feature Phones’ Category

Ilan Oosting urges mobile money platforms to remember the important role feature phones play—a song SlimTrader has been singing since our inception:

The current scenario has solutions aimed at smartphone users, who frankly are the minority by far. Yes, there are reports that close to 50 percent or more of the mobile subscribers in countries like the United States, Singapore, Canada and Hong Kong are now using smartphones. But if you start looking at a global scale, only 12 percent of the world’s mobile subscribers use a smartphone.

Yes, folks, no matter what the latest Android, iOS or Windows Phone sales figures tell you, we still live pretty much in a feature phone world! At the rate we are going, we are leaving out almost 90 percent of mobile users, not a good start when you are trying to drive consumer adoption on something as huge and important as payments.

The world’s developing nations will be where mobile payments will make the largest impact. The lack of infrastructure, financial services and regulatory hurdles in these nations make them an ideal springboard for mobile payments. These countries also have very low smartphone penetration rates, some going far below 10 percent of the mobile subscriber base.

Oosting goes on to praise one of our mobile money partners, M-PESA, which has achieved tremendous market penetration due its innovations in the feature phone arena.

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