Zimbabwe and regional technology news and updates

Econet, here’s our Eco-Cash wish list

Eco-Cash is likely to change a lot of things for a lot of people. Whether you are mobile operator, a payment services provider, a traditional bank or a more modern bank just starting to offer mobile money services to the millions of unbanked Zimbabweans, Econet will in some way disrupt your business. Econet has almost half of the country’s population on its mobile network. That about says it all.

But it’s not just disruption. It’s opportunity as well. Without over-generalising, there’s a myriad of issues with payments right now and Econet has enormous potential to introduce some needed convenience. If they do it right of-course.

Using airtime as currency

Given our country’s limitations in payment systems, especially web based ones, I have encountered a number of entrepreneurs that have talked about developing solutions that enable users to pay for goods and services using their mobile phone airtime.

CABS, POSB to use Telecel mobile banking platform through Zimswitch Mobile

Telecel Zimbabwe has just revealed to Techzim that it’s working with Zimswitch Mobile to include more banks on its mobile banking platform.

Telecel launched the Skwama mobile banking services in January this year but only provided the service to subscribers banking with Zimbabwe’s Kingdom Bank.

NetOne’s OneWallet running on Gemalto’s mobile money transfer solution

Gemalto, an international digital security company, announced today that NetOne is deploying a Gemalto mobile money transfer solution called LinqUs for the OneWallet service.

The OneWallet service was launched by NetOne to stakeholders in January this year becoming the second mobile money transfer service in Zimbabwe. Zimbabwe’s second largest mobile operator, Telecel, launched the first mobile wallet service in December last year.

NetOne’s free airtime promotion extended to lower denominations

In December 2010 NetOne introduced a promotion where prepaid subscribers buying a US $15 airtime recharge would get 107 free minutes. This was all grand and fine except that it’s really just a few prepaid subscribers who can afford buying a $15 recharge at once.