SMEs to use smartphones as points of sale

Absa Bank Kenya has partnered with global digital payments major Visa, to introduce Absa Mobi Tap service, a service that allows small businesses to accept card-based payments through Android smartphones.

By using smartphones as points of sale (POS), the move speeds up the purchasing process by enabling clients to pay with just a tap of their debit or credit cards on an Android phone or tablet. Merchants will only be required to download the Absa Mobi Tap app from the Play Store, set up their profile, and be ready to accept card payments without the need for a PDQ/POS machine.

The customer taps their contactless card on the back of the smartphone, enters their PIN if necessary, and completes the transaction once the merchant enters the transaction amount.

Elizabeth Wasunna, Director of Business Banking at Absa Bank Kenya, emphasized the bank’s commitment to technological innovation. “The new solution will enable businesses to accept contactless payments in a faster, easier, and more secure manner, facilitating the adoption of a cashless society for the benefit of all,” said Wasunna.

Near Field Communication (NFC) technology is used by Absa Mobi Tap to make it easier for the merchant’s device and the customer’s contactless payment card to communicate. SMEs, especially those with mobile operations that previously relied on cash or electronic funds transfer (EFT), are the target audience for the service. Many businesses, including restaurants, salons, hardware stores, and drivers for ride-hailing services, currently employ the technology.

Read also: Absa’s Sh2 billion investment to accelerate switch to solar energy

Eva Ngigi-Sarwari, country manager for Visa in Kenya, lauded Absa for its dedication to enabling SMEs by lowering barriers and enhancing access to digital payment solutions.

“Mobi Tap will help increase financial inclusivity by providing under or unbanked SMEs greater access to digital payments. The solution allows sellers to take advantage of the technology they already have – mobile phones, which are widely owned throughout the country,” said Eva.

Absa will give retailers an installment plan to buy cellphones with NFC functionality to drive usage of Absa Mobi Tap. In order to increase the use of digital payments in the nation by making them simpler, faster, more practical, and safe, the launch is in line with the recent implementation of a Standard QR Code for service providers and banks.

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