Singapore Telecommunications Limited (SingTel) has grand plans to be the leading mobile commerce hub in the Asia Pacific region. To help achieve this goal, the company will be introducing a new mRemit mobile remittance service to bolster its mCommerce status.
Essentially, mRemit enables consumers to use their smartphones to remit funds to overseas recipients' mobile wallets. Some of its benefits include Instant Remittance, where the funds are transferred instantaneously to recipients mobile accounts. Users will also receive an SMS notification once the transactions are completed. SingTel did not disclose the remittance charges involved, but cited a "low remittance fee" as one of its perks.
However, there are a few limitations. For starters, the remittance process is restricted to over-the-counter transactions for now. It'll be available from the 17th of September onwards at SingTel's flagship remittance store located at Lucky Plaza, while the mobile-to-mobile service will only arrive in the later part of the year. SingTel is working with one of their overseas business affiliates, GCASH, to make this happen.
Secondly, users will only be able to remit funds to the Philippines for the time being. Recipients may withdraw the remitted funds via any of the 6,000 GCASH outlets or 9,000 ATMs located across the country. According to Mr Yuen, the firm might extend its reach to India, Thailand, and Indonesia subsequently, although no clear time-line was given for their actual launch dates.
GCASH is a subsidiary of Globe Telecom with 31 million mobile subscribers in the Philippines under its belt. And with 180,000 Filipinos currently located in Singapore, mRemit may prove to be a helpful service which enables them to remit cash to their loved ones with lesser costs and hassles involved.
SingTel also plans to launch a suite of mobile payment services this year, such as mobile credit card payments and NFC tags used for advertising purposes.