They say necessity is the mama of all inventions. As we radically move towards ‘cashlessness’, a move we saw coming but just didn’t anticipate it to be this fast, there’s a constant need to further improve the ‘cashlessness’ experience.
Apart from the ‘already existing structures’ like banks and mobile money platforms, a lot of startups and individuals are constantly trying to provide convenient and cheaper ways of making transactions. In February of this year, Techzim wrote about a Zimbabwean Zapper franchise, which is an e-payment solution that allows merchants to provide a QR code payment option for funds.
We’ve also covered some startups (or individuals) whose innovations are simply leveraging on the mobile money platforms – makes sense since over 80% of electronic transactions are on mobile money. It also seems that these startups aren’t really focused on all mmoney platforms, but on EcoCash rather. It also makes sense given that EcoCash has a 99% market share of mmoney.
Today, we’ll cover another EcoCash leveraging app – Pay Easy.
Pay Easy is aimed at saving you from going through the process of entering the *151*### payment code. Ever noticed how long it takes to get to the till when in an EcoCash payments queue at a supermarket? Apart from the fact that given the figure of EcoCash dependant customers, it’s only natural for the queues to be long; there’s always one, two, three, four or even five people including yourself that keep making a mistake when entering the EcoCash short code. And often at times, the moment they (or you) get it right, the network decides not to cooperate. At the end of the day you’ll realise that lots of valuable time is lost in just a queue.
It even gets worse when you initially thought you’d quickly grab one or two things from the shop, but because you don’t have cash, you’re forced to use EcoCash and therefore stand a good proportion of your life in a queue just so you buy goods worth $10 or less.
I know now there’s a facility that allows you to just tell the cashier your number then confirm the payment using your pin on the pop up that appears on your phone, but question is how many shops support that facility? So at the end of the day we realise we are stuck on those long queues or short but just takes forever. Nonetheless…this is where Pay Easy comes in.
Pay Easy is an Android app that dials the USSD on your behalf thus at the end of the day all you’d need to do is enter the merchant code/subscriber’s number and your pin. It doesn’t require any internet connection, which is a serious plus in the Zimbabwean context. Also, given its simplicity, the app is lighter than the original EcoCash app and is quite simpler to use. Since the app is basically just dialing the USSD for you, it doesn’t attract any extra charges for itself.
The app also comes with a QR code scanning facility. In Zimbabwe QR code payments aren’t much of a big thing… yet. However, you still can use Pay Easy to make your payments on EcoCash in some pharmacies, hotels or in any other place that supports the facility.
To download the app click on this link and tell us what you think about it.