The use of wireless device enables the user to receive information and conduct transactions anywhere, at anytime. Accessibility: Mobile device enables the user to be contacted at virtually anytime and place. The user also has the choice to limit their accessibility to particular persons or times. Convenience: The portability of the wireless device and its functions from storing data to access to information or persons. Localization: The emergence of location-specific based applications will enable the user to receive relevant information on which to act.
Personalization: The combination of localization and personalization will create a new channel/business opportunity for reaching and attracting customers. Personalization will take the form of customized information, meeting the users’ preferences, followed by payment mechanisms that allow for personal information to be stored, eliminating the need to enter credit card information for each transaction.
Benefits of WAP to e-commerce: The WAP technology provides an effective solution for accessing WEB in he short term and realizing MEB in the long term. Through the use of WAP devices, such as WAP phone, people can keep in touch with the internet world anywhere and any time. It is expected that this will lead to the development of many innovative e-commerce services. (E-commerce, p267)
Data-Time Mobile Service: In a short coming time most wireless companies will be charging their customers an extra fee for data-time instead of air-time, which means that you can have a dedicated connection to the Internet with your cell phone and only be charged when you send data. This allows a businessman to stay online with his wireless device connected to his payment terminal at all times, and only be charged when he keys in a transaction.
Mobile finance application: Mobile finance applications are likely to be one of the most important components of m-commerce. These applications include mobile banking, bill payment services, m-brokerage services, mobile money transfers, and mobile micro payment. These services could turn a mobile device into a business tool, replacing banks, ATMs, and credit cards by letting a user conduct financial transactions with a mobile device. (introduction to e-commerce p346)
Wireless electronic payment system: Wireless payment system transform mobile phone into secure, self-contained purchasing tools capable of instantly authorizing payments over the cellular network for goods and services consumed. Micro payments: Micro payment are electronic payment for small-purchase amounts (generally less then $10). Micro payment can be implemented in a variety of ways. One way is that the user could make a call to a certain number where per-minute charges equal the cost of the vending item, this method transfer money from the user’s telephone bill to the vending provider’s account. Another way to perform micro payment is by using prepaid cards purchased from a service provider, bank, or credit card company. Attaching a smart card with prepaid money on it to a mobile device is another option.
Wireless wallets: Nextcard.com has developed wireless wallet that enable a cardholders to make purchases with a single click from their wireless device. Called m-wallet (mobile wallet), the service is offered by other companies as well. Bill payments: In addition to paying bills with checks or through online banking, one can pay bills, such as MasterCard or utility bill, directly from a cell phone. This can be done via bank, a credit card, or a prepaid arrangement.
Advantages of The mobile Internet: The technology is available anytime, anywhere, while one is on the move. As far as time critical transactions, such as stock trading, banking and travel planning/changing itinerary, are concerned, M-commerce provides an easy, quick and effective solution. Advertising, rather than paralleling its E-commerce equivalent (banner ads, link after link connecting sites), will consist of direct and personal marketing to the individual based on characteristics such as spending habits and price range, GPS position, time of day, etc.
A meaningful discussion of the comparisons between E- and M-commerce should also include mention of the weaknesses of the mobile Internet, including: Generic mass advertising will not be possible. Customer information (not contained on a phone’s SIM card) will be less easily collected due to screen constraints (for example, when ordering books from amazon.com, customers will not be willing to enter loads of personal data, as Amazon currently requests from its online clients. M-commerce is not suited to lengthy and complex transactions, such as real estate and automobile purchases, nor for complicated and involved business-to-business transactions.
Limitation of M-commerce: Several limitations are slowing down the spread of m-commerce and/or leaving many customers disappointed or dissatisfied. – The usability problem: When mobile Internet users visit mobile Internet sites, the usability of the site is critical to attract attention and retain user stickiness. There are three dimensions to usability, namely effectiveness, efficiency, and satisfaction. Mobile visitors to a web site are typically paying premium rates for connections and are focused on a specific goal (e.g. conducting a stock trade).
Lack of a standardised security protocol: As of 2002, there is no consensus or standardization on the security methodologies that must be incorporated into all mobile-enabled web sites. Because of this, customer confidence in the security of using their mobile phone or PDAs to make payment is law. In order for m-commerce to spread, confidence in its security must be raised.