How is mobile commerce different from mobile banking?

Wednesday Jun 29, 2011

Let us begin by defining mobile banking:
Mobile banking is essentially a service that enables bank customers to access their bank accounts and associated services provided, over a mobile handset. Other than the mode of access it is not very different from Internet banking but more limited in terms of scope and usability.

In contrast mobile commerce can be defined as a service that allows users to make and accept payments using a mobile phone, which may or may not be linked to a bank account. This freedom from a bank account is what distinguishes mobile commerce from mobile banking and takes it to another level of financial service provisioning.

Today, something around 40% of the worlds adult population have access to financial systems (or banks) whereas mobile telephony has penetrated almost 70% of the total population. This mismatch gets even more skewed in developing economies where banking penetration may go as low as 15-20%. Today the mobile phone has the potential to extend the reach of governments, financial service providers to remote areas and create an all inclusive economy.

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