QuePay to make M-Pesa easier and faster with QR Codes
Safaricom’s M-Pesa, the leading mobile money network in East Africa, has been providing the region with mobile money services such as bill payments and the purchase of goods and services through the mobile phone.
A company called Veno is listening to users who have been complaining that the checkout process in supermarkets and other stores while using M-Pesa can be long and tedious at times resulting in cancelled transactions and bad user experience.
Veno Limited released a new App in Kenya called QuePay to sort out these issues with a new simpler approach of generating QR codes (similar to the Alipay or Wechat QR code payment method used in China). This has simplified transactions to a quick scan of a QR code and the entry of a PIN to make payment. All that is needed is for both customer and teller to download the app.
This could potentially be make transactions faster and easier with M-Pesa payments and if successful, could increase mobile money transactions. Although it is still limited to only M-Pesa subscribers that have access to smart phones.
While a good idea, QR payment is not new and is widely available outside the region (China, the most obvious example). In addition, if the method proves to be popular with users nothing prevents Safaricom themselves to embed it into their own platform and make the additional app redundant.
In fact, MySafaricom App already has QR codes, but still requires a lengthy process before one is ready to pay. Upgrading this feature to provide the level of service the Quepay app provides could also significantly affect Quepay’s subscriber retention.
It will be interesting to see if QuePay adds additional features to their platform with an emphasis on key features that promote user retention and loyalty; if not, Safaricom may be waiting around the corner to steal their lunch