After 24 months of installing M-Pesa servers locally, the telco has finally brought the mobile money services home after a weekend of indefinite shut down. The company has promised uninterrupted mobile money transfers with faster and better transactions for the mobile money users.
With an announcement of the shut-down hours end of last week, the process ran from Saturday 11pm to Sunday noon, Kenyans have expressed gratitude towards the deed urging the government to copy from the development in order to implement change in services offered. The move has also made Safaricom subscribers hopeful that the implementation will lead to lower transaction fees now that it is home based.
Safaricom had first announced plans to replace its M-PESA platform last year, seeking to migrate the current platform to an enhanced platform that will allow for faster transactions, improved stability as well as enable more functionality from the service.
The platform previously hosted in Germany suffered outages due to undersea fibre optic cables destruction leading to delays and unfulfilling services. Safaricom has promised faster M-Pesa services that will double to 900 transactions per second also allowing a wider range of services.
About 19 million customers depend on the mobile money services with 81 agents transmitting the services to the public. M-Pesa recorded a peak average of 260 transactions per second and 440 airtime top-up transactions per second in the fiscal year ended March 2014.
In the process, the company integrated all existing internal systems including security, redundancy and disaster recovery on the new platform. The development comes a month after the company launched M-Pesa services in Tanzania in a partnership with Tanzanian mobile service operator Vodacom to enable seamless transactions between Kenya’s nearly 20 million M-PESA customers and Tanzania’s 7 million M-PESA customers.
The move was also aimed at deepening financial inclusion and give a further boost to the regional integration agenda.