Will we be able to solve the mobile payments puzzle to lift the poorest 2 billion out of poverty?

[First posted on Sep 2018, see update below]

It is estimated that nearly world’s 2 Billion population live below the international poverty line in the developing regions. They live in a cash-based system and have no access to any financial tools you and I have take granted. This is a huge problem , as you can imagine:
– in terms of physical security, as you keep all your savings and deal all transactions in cash
– you cannot use or leverage any of the banking/financial tools, hence you cannot grow your assets or hedge risks

These challenges keep the poor people poor and insecure forever. This is one of the greatest and very complex challenges of our times. It is not like we don’t know how to solve this technologically! Variety of today’s technologies can be used but what we need is much more than a simple tech solution. In fact with the advent of mobile technology and cheaper mobile phones, M-Pesa , developed in Kenya was a great success but it has not caught on in other developing countries as rapidly!

This shows that the solution has many facets and it has to be not only secure, reliable, low-cost, easy-to-use for the illiterate poor for -buying anywhere -paying fees -keeping savings, but also it has to meet the cultural & regulatory environment . As you can see, it is a very complex challenge to solve but is a Problem Worth Solving to empower the poorest 2 billion!

Given the size of the challenge, do not fear, you are not alone in this. Gates Foundation organizes exploratory challenge to grant funds to good ideas, which meet its criteria. It is a great way to explore your solution and fund with the backing of the foundation. Good Luck!

Update (Mar 10, 2022)- Given the evolution of Ethereum and DeFi, we are still in the very early stages but looks like they might give us a hope  to solve this #ProWoSo

[Photo Credit: Thanks to WDnetStudio via Pixabay]

About Krishna Vuppala 54 Articles
I am passionate about technology & innovation with a mission to 'Accelerating Global Innovation'. I believe, that there exists an "innovation gap" and the current global innovation efforts to solve real meaningful challenges are moving at a slower pace! The reason, I believe, is lack of awareness of those challenges to the global talent! This blog is part of that journey to spread the word on the Problems (that are) Worth Solving! #ProWoSo

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