CIO East Africa (Nairobi)

Kenya: M-Pesa's Main Server Set to Be Brought Back to Kenya By March 2015

The reason why M-PESA Application Programming Interface (API) is taking long to be rolled out is because the mobile money transfer platform is not hosted here in the country. However, there's finally hope as an initiative to bring the platform back home by March 2015 is already.

According to Veronica Ogeto, head of innovation, Safaricom, having the M-Pesa platform hosted locally will help unwrap more APIs quickly and easily.

"If safaricom rolled out an API, it would see many website owners implement some functionalities such as M-Pesa payment options on their websites. This would see many website implement very efficient payment gateways," said Ogeto during the PIVOTEast 2014 confrence held in Nairobi today.

The developer community has for long been anticipating that Safaricom would release an API for its M-Pesa service that would open doors for app developers to easily extend the functionality of M-Pesa to their e-commerce applications.

According to Wikipedia, an API specifies how some software components should interact with each other. In addition to accessing databases or computer hardware, such as hard disk drives or video cards, an API can be used to ease the work of programming graphical user interface components. In most cases, an API comes in the form of a library that includes specifications for routines, data structures, object classes, and variables. M-pesa is a mobile money transfer service that was first launched in Kenya by Mobile Operator Safaricom. The product was developed by Vodafone but initially funded by UK-based Department for International Development (DFID). The service has so far grown into few international markets including Tanzania, Afghanistan and South Africa.

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