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Electronic Commerce, is commonly known as E-shopping Commerce, consists of the buying and selling of products or services on the internet, especially the World Wide Web.
The amount of trade conducted electronically has grown extraordinarily with widespread internet usage. The use of commerce is conducted in this way, spurring and drawing on innovations in electronic funds transfer, supply chain management, Internet marketing, online transaction processing, electronic data interchange(EDI), inventory management system and automated data collection systems.
Mobile commerce is known as M-commerce is also part of E-commerce. M-commerce basically means that it is wireless mobile electronic devices, we can buy and sell different products and services throughout the world whatever and whenever we want. Mobile business also allow you to transact business wherever you can connect your mobile device to the internet. Mobile Commerce, or M-Commerce, is about the explosion of applications & services that are becoming accessible from internet enabled mobile devices. It involves new technologies, services & business models. Its quite different from traditional E-Commerce.
One of the basic examples of M-Commerce, it is use for receiving sales promotion via the handheld device. The commonly used application for M-commerce is service provider text messages to subscriber for prompting new products, free trials and services, it is also used as a different type promotional campaign is not charged any fee & subscriber can respond with return text message without any type of fee. Several major cellular services off subscribers to opt into this type of M-Commerce, or be excluded from receiving the messages.
Some main kinds of Wireless Handheld Devices that are helpful for M-Commerce are:-
1. Palmtops/Notepad- It's the common example of Sun Ray.
2. Smart Phones(WAP)- It's the common example of Nokia 8390.
4. Personal Digital Assistants(PDAs)- It's the common example of Palm i705.
5. GPRS enabled Cell Phones- It's the common example of Nokia 6233.
6. TV Internet Receivers- It's the common example of MSNTV.
7. Wireless E-Mail Handheld devices- It's the common example of BlackBerry.
ï”Unique Features Of M-Commerce Applications And Services
M-Commerce is not different application of E-Commerce but Combines the advantages of Mobile Communications with existing E-Commerce services. There are some features of mobile technology, such as Convenience and accessibility, Reach ability, Mobility, etc, which give M-Commerce an advantage over E-Commerce.
Mobile Technology is a broad category that includes all devices, procedure and infrastructure that allow to communicate , interact and exchange data with one or another system anywhere and anytime. For example-includes mobiles phones, PDAs(Personal Digital Assistants). The major characteristics are Convenience and accessibility, mobility and Reach ability. Convenience and accessibility is a time and space constraints are removed and people can access applications to their time and preferences. Mobility means that users can carry cell phones or other mobile devices to transact from anywhere in mobile networks area. Reach ability allow to access on your demand from anywhere. The unique features of mobile technology generate value added attributes of M-commerce applications and Services.
Unique Features Of M-Commerce
ï‚˜Easier Information access in real-time
ï‚˜Devices that store data are always at hand.
ï‚˜Contacted anywhere anytime.
ï‚˜Preparation of information .
ï‚˜Communication independent of user location.
ï‚˜Getting easier and easier to use.
ï‚˜The choice is limit their accessibility to particular person or times.
ï‚˜Creating services that customize the end-user experience.
Major Dimensions To M-Commerce Applications And Services
These five features address three major dimensions: Time dependent, location -sensitive and personalized, which make up three dimensional spaces to describe the set of possible customized services. On the other hand, there are still some Limitations in TECHNICAL: Limited memory and computing power, insufficient bandwidth and limited data transfer. However, as with the growth in the use of mobile technologies, these limitations may become disgrace to the user but still these cannot be avoided in any case and the user has to be bare these anyhow.
ï”M-Commerce Vs E-commerce
"M-Commerce is the child of E-Commerce with more technology".
M-Commerce is part of E-Commerce which allows a person to conduct transactions using his mobile phone .M-Commerce is also known as next generation's of E-Commerce. Now, declaration explains about us the importance of M-commerce. Here are some similarities between M-Commerce and E-Commerce:-
1 .E-Commerce is available to only those places where we have net connectivity, but with M-Commerce we are free from all such boundaries.
2. Video conferencing has become possible with M-Commerce even in places where there is no internet.
3. E-Commerce not only need internet but also electricity whereas there is no such requirement with M-Commerce.
4. M-Commerce is costlier than E-Commerce.
Conclusion:- we can finally achieve that M-Commerce is approval for everyone. No matter, is there so many limitations, one cannot deny that significance of M-Commerce that reduced gaps between especially for the trade and business.
ï”M-Commerce Applications And Services In Banking
M-Commerce in banking sector is termed as Mobile Banking. Mobile Banking (also known as M-Banking, SMS-Banking) is a popular term. Mobile Banking is a financial transaction conducted by logging on to a bank's website using a cell phone, such as viewing account balances, making transfer between accounts or paying bills. Mobile Banking is most often performed via SMS or the Mobile Internet but can also use special programs called clients download to the mobile device.
The Distributed Transaction Platform arranged both at the mobile operator's site and at the financial institution securely manage financial operation carried out between the mobile user and the bank, over the wireless networks.
Technology had a major impact in helping bank services .The mobile Banking Services gives your customer account information and real time transaction capabilities from the mobile phone to access anywhere, anytime. It's also allowing you to send message on the bank services and products to your customer.
ï”Mobile Banking Applications
There are three main types of applications used for delivering m-banking services. All three discussed in below:-
Browser based Applications generate the user interface on the server and transport it subsequently to the mobile device. This interface is then pre-sented to the user graphically with the help of a browser.
There are currently two main protocols that browser applications are based on .These protocols are WAP and I-mode:-
Wireless Application Protocol (WAP) is a global and open standard.WAP enables mobile devices, such as mobile phones or PDAs, to access specially designed information or services on the internet .A WAP-enabled device cannot be used to browse the Web. It can only access special pages that have been written in the Wireless Markup Language (WML).
I-Mode-NTT DoCoMo's i-mode is a wireless internet service that allows for the creation of websites specifically designed for mobile devices. I-mode services are offered outside of Japan by a few network carriers, such as E-Plus in Germany and KPN in the Netherlands.
The main advantages of Browser-Based Applications is that the most data processing is done on a server side because there is no need for handheld to have a lots memory or to have high computing power and there is no need for special mobile banking software presence on the device. Browser Based application are also highly convenient. They can be used on every mobile devices having suitable browser.
Browser based applications has problem. Because whole user interface is sent to user via network it generates quite high networks.
Although there is a lot of disadvantages this type of services are more and more popular. This is mainly because of technology improvement. New, faster types of networks (2.5g, 3g) and bigger screens allow today to create more user-friendly and attractive applications.
Today browser-based application can be used to provide all three kinds of service -mobile accounting, brokerage and financial information.
Messaging -Based Applications
In messaging based applications the communication between the customer and the bank is carried out via text messages. These messages may be triggered automatically by the bank whenever certain predefined events occur, for instance whenever a transaction is performed on the account. There are two types of messaging based applications:-
Push-Push messages are those that the bank chooses to send out to a customer's mobile phone, without the customer initiating a request for the information.
Pull-Pull messages are those that are initiated by the customer, using a mobile phone, for obtaining information or performing a transaction in the bank account. Example of pull messages for information include an account balance enquiry, or request for current information like currency exchange rates and deposit interest rates, as published and updated by the bank.
Messaging-based applications are mainly based on SMS (Short Message Service) technology. This technology allows sending short messages from and to cell phone.
The main disadvantages for user are lack of any help from system. For example-transfer money users have to supply several information-bank account number, amounts and so on. It's easy to make mistake and the system can't check it before the message is actually sent.
The last type of applications to discuss is Client-based applications. Client-based Application is those which require software to be installed on the mobile device. Transactions can be prepared offline. Once all necessary data have been keypad in a connection to the server is established and the data transmitted. Before the data is transmitted is a security check takes place by means of PIN and TAN, Client-based applications are attractive because a significant part of banking process is conducted offline reducing online connection time and costs.
However, two important things that could be a problem. firstly mobile device must have enough processing power and memory in order to run software. Although most new cell phones and PDAs are prepared for that there are mobile phones on the market because of that they will be required to find someone to do it for them or buy specially prepared handset. Finding such a handset could be problem because every bank may choose different software.
Two main technologies are utilized in client -based applications for m-banking-:
SIM Toolkit applications is known as STK ,it was developed in 1996 in Europe ,is a standard of the GSM system which enables the Subscriber Identity Module(SIM) to initiate actions which can be used for various added services.
The biggest advantage of this solution is its simplicity. There is no requirement of starting client application. This application is build in the phone's menu. This menu is most probably well known to the user, so there is no need to learn anything new.
On the other hand this standard is quite old and don't allow for creating sophisticated user interface. It is much like SMS banking, but user don't have to learn or type transaction commands.
Several other Mobile Banking clients that are utilized for conducting banking activities are based on java that can be deployed on electronic devices independent of their respective operating systems.
These clients are run inside a Java Virtual Runtime Machine (VRM)-piece of software that allows starting a client independent of handheld's operating system. Same client used all types of devices such as PDA's, cellphones, smartphones and so on and there is also no need for different handheld's.
The biggest problem is requirement that have to be met in order to install VRM.Not all today's mobile devices are ready for this type of applications.
ï”Benefits of Mobile Banking
24/7 bank services anywhere, anytime
Variety of financial and information services
Monitor your fund activities
Save your time and efforts
Increase your operations security
Boost your sales
Attract retain services
Flexible service and pricing setup
ï”Mobile Banking can offers services such as the following:
Mini-Statements and Checking Of Account History
Alerts on account activity or passing of set thresholds
Monitoring of term deposits
Access to loan statements
Access to card statements
Mutual funds statement
Insurance policy management
Pension plan management
Status on cheque,stop payment on cheque
Ordering cheque books
Balance cheque in the account
Due date of payment(functionality for stop, change and deleting of payments)
PIN provision, change of PIN and reminder over the internet
Blocking of(lost, stolen)cards
Payments And Transfers
Fund Transfer-Own Accounts
Fund Transfer-Within Accounts
Fund Transfer-Across Bank Accounts
Utility Bill Payments
Account Status Change
IB Pin Regeneration
Authorization Password Change
Mobile Number change
Authentication with a confirmation code
Chip Authentication Program(CAP)
Mobile Banking Managements
Template ,form and message text setup
Setup of data sources for various message types
Flexible pricing management
Mobile banking enrolment through various channels (ATM, self-service, Web, Client application)
ï”Mobile Banking Technologies
There are four important approaches to mobile banking. The first two rely on technologies that are standard features on almost all cell phones as are follows:
IVR(Interactive Voice Response)
SMS(Short Messaging Service)
WAP(Wireless Access Protocol)
Standalone Mobile Application Client
Interactive Voice Response (IVR)
Interactive Voice Response (IVR) service operates through pre-specified numbers that banks advertise to their customers. Customer's make call at the IVR number and are usually greeted by stored electronic message followed by a menu options. Customer can choose options by pressing the corresponding number in their keypads, and then read out the corresponding information, mostly using a text to speech program.
Mobile Banking based on IVR has major limitations that they can be used only for enquiry based services also, IVR is more expensive as compared to other technologies, it involves making a voice call which is generally more expensive than sending an SMS or making data transfer(as in WAP or Standalone Clients).
Short Messaging Service (SMS)
SMS and Mobile Banking are synonymous.SMS uses the popular text-messaging standard to enable mobile application based banking. In this applications communication the bank and the customer is carried out via text messages.SMS works in either push or pull mode. In pull mode, the bank send one-way text message to alert a mobile subscriber of a certain account situation or to prompt a new bank service. In push mode, the mobile subscriber sends a text message with a predefined request code to specific number. The bank responds with a reply SMS containing the specific information.
The main advantage of deploying mobile applications over SMS is that almost all mobile phones are SMS enabled.
An SMS based service is hosted on a SMS gateway that further connects to the mobile serve providers SMS centre. There are a couple of hosted IP based SMS gateways available in the market and some open sources like kannel.
The limitations in SMS are related to the inherent limitations of text messaging For example, message can only be 160 characters and there is no guarantee that message will actually be delivered to its recipient.
SMS Network Infrastructure
Wireless Access Protocol (WAP)
WAP is the technology architecture that makes accessing Internet pages possible from a mobile phone..Because it includes the concepts of browsers, servers, URL's and gateway.
WAP uses a concept similar to that used in internet banking. Banks maintain WAP sites which customer's access using a WAP compatible browser on their mobile phones.WAP sites offer the familiar form based interface and can also implement security quite effectively.
Two- way communications isn't possible .Customers can innate a dialog ,but banks don't .
Mobile Phones lack the level of anti-virus and personal firewall pretection now considered standard on PCs.
WAP banking requires a smart phone or a PDA, but such devices represent less than 10 percent of the phones in use. even if a customer has a WAP-enabled phone, he or she can elect not to sign up for the more costly data plans required for internet access.
WAP Network Architecture
Standalone Mobile Application Clients
Standalone Mobile Application are the ones that hold out the most promises as they are most suitable to implement complex banking transactions like trading in securities. They can be easily customized according to the user interface complexity supported by the mobile.
One requirement of mobile applications clients is that they require to be download on the client device before they can be used, which further requires the mobile device to support one of the many development environments like J2ME or Qualcomm's and requires the mobile phone to support Java.
The major disadvantage of mobile application clients is that the applications needs to be customized to each mobile phone on which it might finally run,J2ME ties together the API for mobile phones which have the similar functionality in what it calls 'profiles'.
ï”Critical Evaluation And Implementations Issues
Mobile Business Models
A wide spectrum of mobile/branchless banking models is evolving. However, no matter what business model, if mobile banking is being used to attract low-income population in often rural locations, the business model will depend on banking agents, i.e., retail or postal outlets that process financial transactions on behalf Telco's or banks. The banking agent is an important part of the mobile banking business model since customer care, service quality, and cash management will depend on them. Many Telco's will work through their local airtime reselers.However, banks in Colombia,Brazil,Peru and other markets use Pharmacies etc.
These models differ primarily on the question that who will establish the relationship(account opening, deposit taking etc) to the end customer, the bank or the Non-Bank/Telecommunication Company(Telco).Models of branchless banking can be classified into three broad categories-Bank Focused, Bank-Led and Nonbank-Led.
Bank- Focused model
The bank-focused model emerges when a traditional bank uses non-traditional low-cost delivery channels to provide banking services to its existing customers. Example range from use of automatic teller machines(ATMs) to internet banking or mobile phone banking to provide certain limited banking services to bank customers.
The bank-focused model emerges when a traditional bank uses nontraditional low-cost delivery channels to provide banking services to its existing customers. Example range from use of automatic teller machines(ATMs) to internet banking or mobile phone banking to provide certain limited services to bank customers.
Non bank-led models
The non-bank-led model is where a bank does not come into the picture (except possibly as a safe-keeper of surplus funds) and the non-bank (e.g. Telco) performs all the functions.