Cellphone minutes as money.

I ended up reading this via GigaOm. Its a cool concept: essentially cellphone companies built in the functionality to easily add/subtract cellphone minutes and people figured out that they could use this as currency. I've heard dozens of times recently, including at this panel at the GSB management conference, that eventually the mobile phone will replace the credit card and in an environment where the credit system is just not well developed it looks like it already has. Considering how slow mobile banking has been to gain acceptance in the West, will it develop most (like mobile technology in general) in the developing world?

But does that mean we'll be having conversations like this soon? :)

Dude 1: "Hey, how much for that apple?"
Dude 2: " 13 minutes."
Dude 1: "C'mon! Its not worth more than 5."
Dude 2: "You're killing me. It takes me that long just to say hello talk to the apple supplier."

Comments

Josekin said…
They already do that in Japan and Hong Kong
Josekin said…
Ops... not trading minutes, but having credit card functions on cell phones.
Anonymous said…
Generally speaking - I would think that countries with enough cellphones would also have enough currency stability. Also, will then there be a Fed reserve for minutes, will there be a discount rate for these minutes and will the laws of economics apply to these as well? I'll say it's kinda far fetched to think that something like this will happen - but then who knows it might?
BTW, check out the "Google Gears" - I loved it!
Anonymous said…
-Abhi

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