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Monday, 7 September 2015

Mobile Wallets! Ins & Outs

Mobile-wallet is a mobile-based virtual wallet, where you preload a certain amount in your account created with the mobile wallet service provider, and spend it at online and offline merchants listed with the mobile waller service provider. Depending upon the service provider, you can also pay through apps, text message, social media account or website. What are the types of wallets? What transactions you can make? How you can use your pre-loaded money in the wallet? What are the pros & cons of Mobile Wallet? Answers here-below:-

  • There are four types of mobile wallets in India - open, semi-open, semi-closed and closed by Mobile Wallet Providers like Airtel Money, Pay TM, Free Charge, iKaaz, mRupee, m-Pesa, Oxigen Wallet & Idea Money.

  • The biggest advantage of mobile wallets is the massive rewards in the form of discounts and cashbacks.

  • You can transact anything and everything, right from utility payments to e-tailing and offline payments. You can even perform most of your daily transactions.

  • Coming to type of wallets, open wallets are the ones that allow you to buy goods and services, withdraw cash at ATMs or banks and transfer funds. It also allows to send money to any mobile number / bank account.

  • Airtel Money is a semi-open wallet which allows you to transact with merchants that have a contract with Airtel. Cash can be withdrawn. Closed accounts are popular with e-commerce companies, where a certain amount of money is locked with the merchant in case of a cancellation or return of the order, or gift cards. Semi-closed wallets like PayTM allows the users to buy goods and services at listed merchants and perform financial services at listed locations.

  • Not to worry about your money in your mobile wallet as service providers cannot have free run over it. RBI has strictly laid down a set of guidelines for them.

  • There are some merits and demerits in having Mobile Wallet. Your pocket-wallet can be stolen or misplaced but your mobile can never be. Mobile wallets allow you to pay in one-tap unlike net banking which has time-consuming process.

  • While using Debit / Credit Cards, users have to disclose sensitive bank data on the merchant's site or banks which can lead to unwanted financial transactions. Another big advantage of mobile wallet is 'big savings' in the form of discounts / rewards / cashbacks.

  • Inspite of above merits, it should be noted here that only mobile-savvy people (with dependable and speedy internet connection) can use such services. Some mobile wallet service providers have limited numer of e-commerce / online merchants like Snapdeal, Flipkart, eBay, Foodpanda, Naaptol etc. , listed with them. Mobile wallets are useless for high value payments.