Mobile payments technology is arguably one of the most exciting spaces in the tech sector right now as its influence is gaining ground around the world, improving lifestyles, economies, and providing financial freedom to individuals from all walks of life. While we all might love the idea of getting $0.25 off of our latte, mobile payments has had a significant impact on improving the lives of the world’s unbanked, breaking down barriers of financial injustice.
Our founder Michael Liberty recently wrote an article featured in Re/Code titled, ‘A Day in the Life of the Unbanked Consumer – And How Mobile Can Help,’ which highlights the tremendous opportunity mobile payments has to take off around the world and bring the financially excluded into the economic mainstream:
“In the U.S., there are 68 million Americans without access to a bank account or debit card — roughly 22 percent. But when it comes to mobile phones, there is no shortage in the U.S., with nearly 90 percent of American adults in possession of a mobile device. Worldwide, there are 2.5 billion unbanked individuals. However, nearly 85 percent of the global population, about 6.8 billion people, has access to a mobile phone.
…[That means that] more than one third of the human race are considered unbanked, by choice or out of necessity; yet, at the same time, there are just about as many cellphones on the planet as there are people.”
The article goes on to discuss what a day in the life looks like for the unbanked consumer in three distinctly different regions: the United States, Kenya and Brazil. In closing, Michael offers up four practical ways that mobile payment technology can extend to the unbanked around the world.
Stop by Re/Code to read his article in depth. Of the four ways Michael outlines, which one do you think is and will be the most significant factor to mobile payments adoption?