Electronic Commerce (E-Commerce) is all about buying, selling or exchanging of products, services and information using the Internet platform and in particular the Web. E-Business, on the other hand, carries a broader definition, not just the buying and selling of goods and services, but servicing customers, collaborating with business partners, and conducting communications and transactions within and outside an organization.
E-commerce is considered to be the buying and selling of information, products, and services via computer networks. Thus, a primary distinction between m-commerce and e-commerce lies in the differences between transactions and access. E-commerce is oriented toward supporting and realizing transactions. However, the wireless protocol originally designed to facilitate mobile commerce transactions (WAP) has not fulfilled its technological promise, so the most distinctive feature of m-commerce that has emerged in many of the larger mobile markets is the facilitation of enhanced information network access.
The main idea of the differences between modalities is that e-commerce can be mobile, but m-commerce is not always transactional. Considering Internet-enabled in-store kiosks, m-commerce could also be transactional if not always “phone-in-hand” mobile. This distinction exemplifies a typical e-commerce practice in Japan: iMode phones provide customers with information about shopping choices, but actual product orders are often entered via in-store self-service computer portals. So, m-commerce provides good support and promotion for e-commerce transactions to roaming users, even if it’s not always fully functional for every shopping need.
In other words, we can say that M-commerce is a subset of e-commerce that deals with electronic transactions using mobile communication equipment. It refers to electronic transactions and businesses such as financial services or shopping, the only difference with e-commerce being that the medium is wireless rather than wire line. Short Message Service (SMS): There are a variety of Internet-like applications available for today’s mobile phones. The introduction of the second generation GSM mobile phone brought a simple but popular application called Short Message Service (SMS). This allows text messages to be sent from one phone to another.
Wireless Application Protocol (WAP), commercially launched by many operators in 2000 and allows mobile phones to browse the Internet. Users access web sites specially adapted to fit the screen size of a mobile phone. WAP has been plagued by a number of problems including a shortage of handsets, slow speed and a lack of applications and there were less than five million users at the end of 2000.
Difference between Mobile commerce and Electronic commerce: Frequently, m-commerce is represented as a “subset of all e-commerce” thus implying that any e-commerce site could and should be made available from a wireless device. However, M-commerce should be recognized as a unique business opportunity with its own unique characteristics and functions, not just an extension of an organization’s Internet-based e-commerce channel.