Consumers who would not normally qualify for credit can now use the phone itself as the asset backing the loan, writes Arthur Goldstuck
20 February 2022 – 00:00
At the dawn of the mobile phone industry, back in 1994, the cellphone was an expensive status symbol, confined largely to the privileged. Very quickly, however, new business models emerged, allowing more pricey phones to be bought on contract, and cheaper phones to be fuelled by a novelty called “prepaid”.
SA was the second country in the world, after Portugal, to introduce the prepaid model. Within five years, millions were using the devices, and the pioneering operators had a licence to print money…