Friday, October 23, 2009

Financial services for mobile devices: new trends from the Philippines

Trust the clever people in the Philippines to lead the way with Mobile Financial services. Any person studying the industry would know that it was the people from Smart Communications that deployed the first commercially successful mobile-based person to person payment system. Mobile banking the way that the rest of the world deploy them has been available in Manila for ten years and they invented mobile remittances. It therefore does make sense to look at what they are working on now.

I picked up on a number of interesting articles published during the past few weeks that all seem to point in the direction of a new generation of mobile financial services. "We are looking at it..." says Napoleon Nazareno, president of Smart about Micro Finance in one article (Read here). In another article (quoted from the Philippine Star) John Owens says: “It has to do with smart money and mobile phone technology,” (Read here). John heads up and organisation called the Micro-enterprise Access to Banking Services (MABS) program in the Philippines. In this article mention is made of ".. several mobile banking products already being pilot tested with several rural banks."

Could it be that we are seeing the emergence of a new generation of banking products based on the proven mobile payment capability in the Philippines? How would this be translated into other markets? I think it is worthwhile to keep tabs on these activities.


Simon said...

Interesting to compare the relative openess and innovation in the Philippines with the state dominated bureaucracy in India regarding access to mobile financial services....

John said...

Hopefully you and others can all join us in the Philippines to attend the MMT event!