The Ultimate Guide to Mobile Wallets: What They Are and How They Work

February 16th, 2023 by Felix Cheruiyot

In the fast-paced digital age, it is no longer enough to offer customers traditional payment methods such as cash, checks, or credit cards. Customers want fast, convenient, and secure ways to transact, and that is where wallet providers come in. A wallet provider is a platform that enables individuals and businesses to store, send, and receive money digitally, and Kenya is no stranger to this technological advancement. As a startup or business in Kenya, integrating a wallet provider into your operations can be the game-changer that sets you apart from your competition. In this article, we will explore what a wallet provider is, the benefits of using one, and what you need to consider when choosing the right wallet provider for your business in Kenya. Let us explore the world of wallet providers and see how they can take your business to the next level.

What is a Wallet Provider?

A wallet provider is a digital platform that allows users to store, manage, and transact money through their mobile devices. In Kenya, wallet providers have revolutionized the way people and businesses handle their finances, making it easier, faster, and more convenient. The rise of mobile money services in Kenya is driven by factors such as the high number of unbanked populations, low banking penetration, and a robust mobile phone infrastructure. According to a Statista report, the number of registered mobile money users was estimated at 50.9 million in 2022, which further proves how mobile money services are the future of payments in Kenya.

Wallet providers in Kenya offer various services such as bill payments, money transfers, airtime purchases, and online shopping, among others. These services are accessible through mobile applications or USSD codes, making it easy for even those without smartphones to transact. Additionally, wallet providers have created networks of agents across the country who offer cash-in and cash-out services, making it easier for users to deposit and withdraw cash.

Some of the popular wallet providers in Kenya include IntaSend, M-Pesa, Airtel Money, Equitel, and T-Kash. Each provider has its unique features, pricing, and benefits, making it essential for businesses to select a provider that fits their needs. For instance, M-Pesa, which is the most popular wallet provider in Kenya, offers instant and secure money transfers, airtime purchases, and bill payments. Airtel Money, on the other hand, has a broader agent network, making it more accessible to people in rural areas.

Using a wallet provider in Kenya comes with numerous benefits for both individuals and businesses. Firstly, it eliminates the need for carrying cash, which reduces the risk of theft and loss. Secondly, it allows for fast and convenient money transfers, especially for businesses that need to pay suppliers and employees. Wallet providers also offer a secure and reliable platform for online shopping and bill payments, reducing the need for physical visits to various service providers.

What is IntaSend Wallet as a Services?

IntaSend offers wallet services, and the good news for businesses, startups, and developers is that the IntaSend platform allows them to start building digital wallets by simply integrating APIs into their web and mobile application and going live after testing everything from the IntaSend sandbox.

IntaSend understands that building a secure digital wallet can be very challenging, which is quite an understandable sentiment, especially when one is building to make it scalable. For this reason, IntaSend has taken all the stress away by offering complete and comprehensive wallet services that are PCI-DSS compliant. You might like to check out IntaSend’s API for Developers.

Use cases

Whether you’re a startup owner or a developer that’s looking to integrate wallet services into existing mobile or web applications, Intasend lets you allocate secure wallets to your users, with the ability to create several wallets, disburse money to mobile money like M-Pesa, move funds between wallets, and fund wallets very easily. Use cases include;


Multi-currency support

With IntaSend wallet services, you’re not restricted to just local markets. IntaSend lets your business widen its reach to a global audience by offering multi-currency support, including KES, GBP, USD, and EUR. With this feature, you can also manage all your finances from one single dashboard. This is an ideal option for businesses that want to expand their market without being limited to a single currency.


There’s no point in running a business where users can’t have complete trust in the payment options or services you offer them. IntaSend lets you build trust with your users by offering the highest security levels possible. IntaSend adopts PSD2 security protocols for authentication and authorization. When you add that to the already popular PCI-DSS compliance that is under 24/7 monitoring, you have one of the strong security protocols any wallet provider can offer.

Go live in days

While it takes some wallet providers weeks for their users to go live with their wallet offers, IntaSend only takes a few days. Since you’re not building from the scratch, it only takes a few days to integrate the IntaSend wallet API, which is completely free. To learn more about the integration fo the wallet API, check this page.

Why Do You Need a Wallet Provider?

Using a wallet provider in Kenya comes with numerous benefits for both individuals and businesses. Below are some of the reasons why you should consider using a wallet provider in Kenya:

Convenience and accessibility

Wallet providers in Kenya have created a platform that allows you to transact from anywhere, at any time. Whether you are in a remote area or in a busy city, you can use your mobile phone to send or receive money, pay bills, or purchase airtime. This convenience has made it easier for businesses to transact with their suppliers and employees, even in different parts of the country. It has also made it possible for Kenyans to access financial services even in rural areas that may not be served by financial institutions. The platform has also enabled Kenya to transition from a largely cash-based economy to a digital economy and this has created job opportunities in the digital sector.

Fast and secure money transfers

Wallet providers have revolutionized the way money is transferred in Kenya, making it faster, easier, and more secure. With just a few clicks on your phone, you can send money to anyone, anywhere, at any time. Wallet providers in Kenya also offer secure platforms that ensure the safety of your money, reducing the risk of fraud and theft.

Their innovative technology is constantly evolving to keep up with the ever-changing needs of customers. This makes it easier for people to manage their finances and monitor their spending, giving them access to the latest financial products and services.

Today, wallet providers are providing a range of payment options, from debit and credit cards to mobile money and online banking. This means customers can make payments quickly and conveniently, using their preferred method. By using these innovative services, customers can stay in control of their finances and make sure their money is safe and secure.

Reduced risk of theft and loss

Using a wallet provider in Kenya reduces the need to carry cash, which reduces the risk of theft and loss. With a wallet provider, you can store your money on your phone, eliminating the need to carry cash when traveling or running errands. The wallet provider also offers security measures, such as PINs, passwords, and fingerprint verification, to protect your money from theft or unauthorized charges. The wallet provider also offers value-added services, such as balance inquiries, money transfers, and bill payments. It is easy to use and provides a secure way to store and manage your money. You can also use the wallet to receive direct deposits from employers or transfer money to other people and businesses.

Access to credit

Some wallet providers in Kenya offer credit facilities to their users, allowing them to access loans without going through the traditional banking system. This has made it easier for individuals and small businesses to access credit, which they can use to start or grow their businesses. As a result, trends in the Kenyan market have changed drastically, with increased access to capital leading to more entrepreneurship. Furthermore, the increased access to credit has led to increased consumer spending, which has in turn led to a more vibrant and dynamic economy. This has helped the Kenyan economy to grow and become more competitive in the global market.

Online shopping

Wallet providers in Kenya have made it easier for individuals and businesses to shop online. With a wallet provider, you can make payments for goods and services online, eliminating the need for physical visits to various service providers. This convenience has made it easier for businesses to reach more customers and expand their operations.

Wallet providers in Kenya have allowed more users to purchase digital goods and services which were previously inaccessible. This has enabled businesses to reach out to more users and expand their customer base. It has also helped create new opportunities for entrepreneurs to explore new markets, especially those involving digital goods and services.

Factors to Consider When Choosing a Wallet Provider

Choosing the right wallet provider in Kenya is crucial to ensure the security and convenience of your transactions. Here are some factors to consider when choosing a wallet provider:

Security measures

When choosing a wallet provider in Kenya, it is important to consider the security measures that they have in place. Look for a provider that offers secure login processes, two-factor authentication, and encryption to ensure that your funds and personal information are protected. While some wallet providers may offer lower fees, it is important to consider the safety and security that are offered with any wallet. Reputable providers offer more comprehensive security measures such as tamper-proof passwords, robust firewalls, and multi-signature authorization procedures.

Transaction fees

Wallet providers in Kenya charge fees for their services, such as transaction fees and withdrawal charges. Consider the fees and charges of each provider to ensure that they are affordable and transparent. This is because fees and charges vary from one provider to another. It is important to understand these fees before deciding on which provider to use. For example, some providers may charge a flat fee per transaction while others may charge based on the amount of money being transferred. It is important to know the average fees and charges that providers in the market are offering to ensure you are getting the best value.

Accessibility and convenience

Consider the accessibility and convenience of the wallet provider. Look for a provider that is available on multiple platforms, such as mobile phones, laptops, and tablets. Ensure that their services are easy to use, with a user-friendly interface and quick response times.

Customer support

Look for a wallet provider in Kenya that offers excellent customer support, with quick response times and helpful agents. Consider the quality of their customer support services, such as phone, email, or chat support, and whether they offer 24/7 customer support. Make sure they have a track record of responding quickly and resolving customer issues. Also, find out whether they provide any educational resources to help customers understand the wallet provider’s services.


Consider the reputation of the wallet provider in Kenya, with regard to their track record, user reviews, and industry recognition. Look for a provider with a good reputation for reliability, security, and customer service. Reviews from other customers should be taken into consideration and can give you a good idea of how the provider responds to customer complaints and queries. Also, research the provider's background and history to ensure that they have a track record of success and that they have been in operation for a significant amount of time. This will help you make an informed decision about which wallet is best for you.

Integration with your business

If you are a business owner, consider a wallet provider in Kenya that offers integration with your business systems, such as e-commerce platforms. This can make it easier to manage your business finances, reduce costs, and improve efficiency. It can also provide you with access to a range of features and services that are designed to help you make the most of your money. From payments to budgeting and analytics tools, a wallet provider in Kenya can make it easier to manage your money and provide insight into your financial performance.


Digital wallet providers are essential for businesses and individuals in Kenya, providing a secure and convenient way to make transactions. When choosing a wallet provider, it is important to consider factors such as security, fees, accessibility, customer support, reputation, integration, and additional features. By selecting the right provider, businesses can reduce transaction costs, improve cash flow, and enhance efficiency, helping them succeed in Kenya's growing digital economy. We hope this guide will help you make the best decision when it's time to choose your ideal wallet service provider. Sign up today to customize your payments workflow today with our wallet services.

Cover Photo by Gilles Lambert on Unsplash

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