Tuesday, October 25, 2011

What I think about the use mobile phones and M-Pesa in kenya as asked by Chriss Hess

Why is M-Pesa so popular in Kenya?
M-Pesa's popularity is attributed to the following;
  1. Banks are seen by many as expensive to operate in terms of fees they charge their customers for the storage and withdrawal services, Their services can only be accessed in major towns or even only in Nairobi for some. Given that through M-Pesa one can cheaply have these services and conveniently withdraw or deposit cash from that village M-Pesa kiosk, the service has become so popular.
  2. A higher percentage of Kenyans are poor and these are the people to whom it will be uneconomical to save 500 shillings in a bank when the bank's minimum balance is 200 shillings and it cost 50 shillings to withdraw it. This popularity is therefore attributed to the high numbers of people in this class.
  3. A phone can cost from as little as 999 to over 50, 000 shillings depending on the type of phone and who's buying. This affordability of phones and the fact that they all have the same M-Pesa features has contributed to the popularity of M-Pesa too.
  4. It is easy to open and operate an M-Pesa account  
 Do Kenyans think that it’s expensive or complicated to use a mobile phone?
It is a yes and a no depending on the type of phone and who's using it. Some illiterate and old people who are not technologically savvy have just mustered to art of calling and receiving calls - the green and red buttons and they don't bother about other applications. In this context, it's not complicated but when they think of other applications it is. Expensive or not? It depends on the person buying and the type of phone also.
 What might happen if more and more people have mobile phones with internet connection?
I can do emailing and even search for information from the internet anytime from anywhere. This' the kind of empowerment people will get by this and accrue all benefits that come with it. It is usually said here information is power.

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