M-pesa 1Tap: Safaricom’s big step ahead.

M-pesa 1Tap: Safaricom’s big step ahead.


Mpesa was launched in 2007 by Vodafone, for use by Safaricom and Vodacom, one of the many inventions that have made these two networks the largest mobile operators in Kenya and Tanzania.

What is M-pesa 1Tap?
This is a new and simple enhancement by Safaricom whose main objective is to make the normal M-Pesa service more convenient and efficient than ever before.

Every M-pesa customer will be issued with a 1Tap tag (a small plastic card or a wristband), and every merchant (owner of a business that has a lipa na mpesa till) will be given a 1Tap POS, all free of charge!

Customers can now pay easily with their 1Tap tags at any outlet that has the 1Tap POS devices. I know of a supermarket where Lipa na Mpesa was discouraged by the staff members to combat the jam that starts to build up when a customer begins settling his/her bill through phone. Yes, it always drove me up the wall until I learned the essence of shopping in a kibanda, which can be well understood by those who have been in a similar situation and I bet it always sucks. Not pleasant at all.


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But now, the 1Tap is a great, secure shortcut that will enable processing payments in under a minute. Wait…what did I just say? Under a minute? Of course.

IMPORTANT: Mpesa 1Tap is not a replacement to the current Lipa na Mpesa. It’s only an improvement to shorten the transaction process and make it more secure. So the old way of payment will continue working alongside Mpesa 1Tap.

The two great improvements that made me write this post are:

1. Customers no longer need to type in the till number as all transactions are now merchant-initiated. Let’s say goodbye to those annoying moments when a client types the wrong digits of a till number. You know what it takes for an M-pesa reversal request to even reach customer care. Leave alone waiting for 24 hours or more for a successful reversal.

2. Security – The 1Tap tags go hand in hand with the customers’ phones. So tell them to calm down, security has been catered for. Nobody will steal their tag and go shopping with it. Otherwise they will be required to steal the phone and steal the M-pesa Pin too. In short, a customer must authenticate a transaction by entering his/her Mpesa pin in the popup box that shows up on the phone to complete the transaction.

Thanks to whoever invented Mpesa 1Tap. If only I had a chance to meet him, I would pat him on the shoulder.

The pilot was successful in Nakuru Town, attracting rumours that the Safaricom CEO, Bob Collymore is set to officially launch the card on Wednesday 10th 2017…buzzes yet to be dyed in the wool..

What’s your opinion?

Duke Bosire



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