Anne Ho

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November 22, 2010

Technology has transformed the banking industry with the introduction of mobile banking services that offer unprecedented convenience and accessibility to customers. Decreases in mobile phone prices and the cost of mobile phone network infrastructure, combined with an increase in pre-paid service plans, have contributed to a near eightfold increase in mobile phone users worldwide, from 600 million in 2000 to 4.6 billion in 2009. Banks and telecommunications companies have responded to this growth by using mobile banking to build their brands, retain existing customers, and acquire new customers by upgrading the quality of services and nature of customer relationship management. Asia is already a leader in the adoption of mobile banking services, accounting for over half of total users worldwide; the region includes several successful mobile banking delivery models to existing customers as well as to populations traditionally without access to financial institutions. This Asia Focus report describes the various approaches to mobile banking in Asia, and examines how particular countries have addressed regulatory issues.