On Device Research recently released a report looking at the mobile finance activities of mobile Internet users in emerging markets, and found that 53 percent of mobile Internet users in India, Kenya, Indonesia, Ghana and Nigeria have engaged in mobile banking and payment activities.
However, according to DNA, less than one percent of mobile phone users in India actually use their mobile devices for conducting banking transactions despite the technology being widely available.
Depsite the push to bank on-the-go, the adoption rate for mobile banking is not matching up with the efforts to make it more common.
“The high levels of mobile finance interaction we found in the research demonstrates there is fantastic M-Commerce opportunities for local entrepreneurs and western companies looking to move into emerging markets," said Alistair Hill, CEO of On Device Research in their report.
The issue is the technology. Through a technology called USSD, menu-based banking on a mobile handset, meaning users can recall a menu and dial a number, has a better chance at acceptability, which could lead to more mobile banking transactions.
What it comes down to is that India doesn’t need one solution across the board. There is a sort of domino-effect that will have the desired results that DNA writes about. Because RBI has eased up on the limit of mobile banking transactions, it becomes a more attractive option than worrying about reaching a limit. From that, mobile banking payment solutions can happen along with all of its nifty technologies, like near field communications, barcode and even soundwave technology.
“With these technologies in place, banking on mobile handsets should lead to more transactions on the move as increased reach,” writes DNA.
At the end of the day, it comes down to banks needing to invest in mobile banking technology better and not approach it as a “one size fits all” situation. With a myriad of platforms being used, from Android (News - Alert) to iOS to Windows, making it all fit into one packaged deal is counterproductive at best.
Growth is slower than expected, but with time and more resources to educate customers on usage and security, mobile banking growth is a possibility. Despite the nascent stage of mobile banking in India, increase of use shows promise.
Edited by Carrie Schmelkin