From this Reuters article, reporter Brett Young tells us about Nokia's latest foray into mobile banking.
The world's top mobile phone maker Nokia said on Wednesday it would launch a mobile financial service next year targeting consumers, mainly in emerging markets, with a phone but no banking account.
Nokia said its Nokia Money service was based on the mobile payment platform of Obopay, a privately-owned firm that Nokia invested in earlier this year, and it is now building up a network of agents.
Obopay, which uses text messaging and mobile internet access, charges users a fee to send money or to top up their accounts.
"Mobile-enabled financial services has tremendous growth opportunities," Nokia Chief Development Officer Mary McDowell said, noting there are 4 billion mobile phone users globally but only 1.6 billion bank accounts and 1 billion credit cards.
"There is pretty significant gap between people, especially in emerging markets, who have a mobile device yet don't have a bank account," she said.
Mobile money is one of the hottest topics in the wireless world, but so far take-up of services has been limited mostly to a few emerging markets, as in developed countries, the popularity of online banking has been a brake on mobile money.
The Consultative Group to Assist the Poor (CGAP), a U.S.-based microfinance policy and research center, has said the market for mobile financial services to poor people in emerging markets will surge from nothing to $5 billion in 2012.