Mobile Banking Growth In Korea

Mobile financial tools are starting to emerge all over the world, from the Nokia efforts, to DeXit in Canada. But few efforts are getting the traction that we are seeing in Japan and Korea. Japan has the Sony-based FeliCa RFID solution, that DoCoMo adopted last year, and KDDI just endorsed this month. South Korea has dueling efforts from LG Telecom and partner Kookmin Bank and from dominant mobile player SK Telecom. The linked article, however, only discusses the LG/Kookmin effort, and with no mention of the SKT effort to dominate mobile payments by deploying over 300,000 point-of-sale infra-red receivers that allow merchants to be paid with SKT’s ‘Moneta’ phones. While the LG effort seems to be based first in banking, and second in commerce, the SKT effort is moving the opposite direction. SKT recently announced they will likely make a bid for one of the nation’s troubled credit card banks, to capture a greater portion of the business.

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