Mobile wallet: Meaning, examples and more

Mobile wallets have become a popular alternative to traditional forms of payment in many countries around the world, and Nigeria is no exception. These digital payment platforms offer convenience, increased security, and the ability to make banking transactions seamless without the need for a bank account. 

In this article, we will take a closer look at the benefits and challenges of using a mobile wallet in Nigeria, as well as some of the most popular mobile wallets available to consumers in the country. 

Whether you are a seasoned mobile wallet user or new to this payment method, this article has something for everyone.

What is a mobile wallet?

Mobile wallets are forms of digital wallet storing devices that store banking and debit card information in the mobile device using an app. This innovation allows people to undertake banking transactions without the availability of the conventional banking method. 

Are mobile wallets the same as bank apps?

Mobile wallets and bank apps are both digital payment platforms that allow users to make financial transactions, such as sending and receiving money, paying bills, and making purchases. However, there are some key differences between the two:

Mobile wallets are standalone platforms that are not tied to a specific bank account. This means that users can access and use their mobile wallets without having a bank account. In contrast, bank apps are tied to a specific bank account and can only be used by account holders.

Mobile wallets often have more limited functionality compared to bank apps. While bank apps typically allow users to access a range of banking services, such as checking account balances, transferring funds, and paying bills, mobile wallets are often focused more on peer-to-peer payments and making purchases.

Mobile wallets may have different fees and limits on transactions compared to bank apps. For example, some mobile wallets may charge fees for certain types of transactions, such as withdrawing money from an ATM, while others may have limits on the amount of money that can be transferred in a single transaction. Bank apps, on the other hand, may have different fees and limits depending on the bank and account type.

Mobile wallets may offer additional features and services beyond basic financial transactions. For example, some mobile wallets may allow users to pay for transportation, purchase event tickets, or access other types of services or discounts. Bank apps, on the other hand, typically focus more on traditional banking services.

Why use a mobile wallet when you have a bank app?

Even if you already have a bank app, there are several benefits to using a mobile wallet in addition to, or as an alternative to, your bank app.

First and foremost, mobile wallets offer convenience and ease of use. With a mobile wallet, you can make quick and easy transactions without the need to log in to a separate bank app or visit a bank branch. This is especially useful when you are on the go and need to make a payment or transfer money quickly.

Another benefit of using a mobile wallet is increased security. Mobile wallets use advanced security measures, such as encryption and secure authentication, to protect your personal and financial information. This can give you peace of mind when making transactions, especially when you are using public Wi-Fi or unfamiliar networks.

In addition, mobile wallets allow you to make payments and transfers even if you don’t have a bank account. This is especially useful for people who are unbanked or underbanked, as it gives them access to financial services that they may not have otherwise.

Overall, mobile wallets offer a convenient and secure way to make financial transactions, whether you already have a bank app or not.

Examples of Mobile Wallets in Nigeria 

1. MTN Mobile Money

MTN Mobile Money is a popular mobile wallet in Nigeria that allows users to make financial transactions, such as sending and receiving money, paying bills, and making purchases. It is offered by MTN, one of the largest mobile phone operators in the country.

One of the key benefits of MTN Mobile Money is its wide reach and acceptance. The platform is available in many parts of the country and can be accessed through a variety of channels, including USSD codes, the MTN Mobile Money app, and authorized agents. This makes it easy for users to access and use the service, even in areas where traditional banking services may not be available.

2. Paga

Paga is a leading digital payment and financial services platform in Nigeria. With Paga, individuals and businesses can easily and securely make and receive payments, store and access funds, and access a range of financial services through their mobile phones or online.

Paga also provides a range of financial services beyond just payment and transfer, including the ability to buy airtime, pay bills, and access loans. This makes it a one-stop shop for many of the financial needs of Nigerians.

3. Quickteller

Quickteller has a wallet app that allows you to send and receive money. You can also pay bills from their app.

4. FirstMonie

Firstmonie is a mobile wallet created by First Bank of Nigeria and probably one of the earliest mobile wallet services in the country. If you are a First Bank account holder, you might want to get on this service as it operates seamlessly with your First Bank account.

5. Chippercash

Chippercash is one of the newest additions to the ever-growing market of mobile wallet services in the country. With chipper cash, you can send and receive money across the country and from any bank user.

But it does not limit you to the country, as it also allows the account holder to receive and transfer money to any country in Africa within seconds.

There are a lot of other mobile wallets in operation in the country. And then there is also the official mobile wallet E-Naira app introduced by the federal government to facilitate transactions within the country.

How to set up a mobile wallet in Nigeria

Setting up a mobile wallet in Nigeria is relatively simple and can be done in a few steps:

  1. Choose a mobile wallet provider: Some popular options in Nigeria include QuickTeller, Paga, and MTN Mobile money etc.
  2. Download the app: Most mobile money services are offered through smartphone apps, so you may need to download the app from your device’s store.
  3. Sign up for an account: To sign up for a mobile wallet, you will need to provide some personal information, such as your name, email address, and phone number.
  4. Link your bank account: Most mobile wallet providers in Nigeria allow you to link your bank account to your mobile wallet so you can easily transfer funds to and from your wallet.
  5. Download the mobile wallet app: Once you have signed up for an account and linked your bank account, you can download the mobile wallet app from the App Store or Google Play Store.
  6. Activate your account: After downloading the app, you will need to activate your account by following the instructions provided. This may involve verifying your phone number or email address.
  7. Start using your mobile wallet: Once your account is activated, you can start using your mobile wallet to make payments, send money, and more.

Conclusion

Mobile wallets can be a lifesaver when it comes to sending and receiving money in the country. While the process is often smooth with bank apps, and USSD, they are not always reliable. In such a case, having a mobile wallet can save you from embarrassment and stress.

Also, your mobile wallet can be a cautious step. Sometimes, you may not always be comfortable opening and operating your main bank app in public. 

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Can I make international payments with my mobile wallet?

Yes, international payments can be made using mobile wallets to undertake inter-boarder transactions.

Can my mobile wallet work outside Nigeria?

Yes, nonetheless, the mobile wallet seeks to undertake Naira transactions only.

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Richard Okoroafor

Richard Okoroafor

Richard is a brilliant legal content writer who doubles as a finance lawyer. He brings his wealth of legal knowledge in corporate commercial transactions to bear, offering the best value that exceeds expectations.

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