Technobiography

Mobile phones, services and applications. PCs, PDAs, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, Internet, gadgets, electronics, photography. A technology-life journal ... Relaxed prose, sometimes witty, sometimes funny, reflective and insightful. Short and sweet. Filipino.

Sunday, August 15, 2004

Smart Padala, Sweaty Padilla

Note: Welcome! There are many people searching for info about Smart Padala, and I'd like to help clarify things for you guys. I'll be updating this page soon. I'll add some more info about Smart Padala. See Links - Smart Padala for more info. (update: 6 Oct 2004). Thanks! - Edwin


After giving a brief description of some current Value Added Services of the Telcos (Read The VAS Difference), I'd like to discuss further two particular services in more detail: Smart Padala and Smart Partner.

First up, Smart Padala

Smart Padala is a remittance service that takes advantage of Smart existing Smart Money service and Smart's tie-up with McDonald's.

A remittance begins with an OFW going to a Smart Padala remittance station abroad (basically, existing remittance offices affiliated with Smart). Then the recepient in the Philippines is informed of the remittance via cellphone. The remittance is supposedly instantly available in the recepients (virtual) Smart Money cash card.

There are two ways to encash this money.
  1. If the recepient has an existing Smart Money card, he/she can withdraw the money at BancNet and ExpressNet ATMs.
  2. If the recepient does not have a Smart Money card, the remitted money is loaded in the recepient's virtual Smart Money card. To encash the remittance, the recepient goes to a nearby McDonalds. There, the recepient transfers the e-money from his/her Smart Money card to the local McDo's account. Once transferred, McDo will turn-over cash (finally!) to the recepient.
Charges:
  • If remittance is withdrawn at an ATM, there are transaction charges ranging from P8-15 depending on the ATM. Furthermore, each bank has a maximum withdrawal limit.
  • If remittance is encashed at McDo, there's a service charge of P1 for every P100 encashed.
What appears to me as rather variable is the amount charged to the OFW by the remittance center abroad. I think the charges aren't being published in the press releases and flyers because it probably varies depending on the remittance center.

Now, what we should find out is how the service compares to Western Union and to the mom-n-pop Filipino-store remittance services abroad.

I'm quite sure delivery is faster with Smart Padala. They have a line in their print ad saying their padala is "sing-bilis ng text". Conceivable. I was able to manually deliver remittances via Smart Money within 5-minutes, I'm sure Smart could do it automatically with the speed of text.

What Smart Padala needs to contend with is whether the regular Filipino subscriber will accept this new way of sending and receiving remittances. Smart will have to show OFWs and OFW families that the service is reliable, cheaper, convenient and/or easy enough to use.

If so, Smart has done good service to the Filipino people, especially OFWs and their families. I wonder if Western Union will roll back their remittance charges. Let's see...

(Call Smart Padala hotline +632-845-7788; *7788 using a Smart Cellphone; 1-800-10-845-7788)

- Edwin
p.s. Smart Padala posters feature Robin Padilla in fighting form with boxing fabrics wrapped around his fists. I still can't comprehend the wisdom of the choice of endorser. Mas-gaganahan ka bang mag-remit kung makita mong pawisan si Robin Padilla sa Smart Padala poster? I still need to see the TV ad, then maybe I'l get the punchline.

Read:
Links - Smart Padala, The VAS Difference, Smart Padala to Bolster Peso?, Smart's killer app (on Inq7.net), Search Google: Smart Padala

8 Comments:

  • At 4:13 pm, Blogger nox said…

    hmmnnn... ka edong medyo may mga "issue" dito...

    1. this is an irreversible transaction. pag na transact mo na wala na. kung magkamali ka sorry ka. remember the beneficiary is not checked for "identifciation". am not sure if this violates the know your customer/beneficiary remittance policy.
    2. the phone is your identity, medyo scary ;)
    3. there are hidden costs here.
    4. ang chismis mcdo has the option of denying a transaction.

    but what i see great is its person to person application. basically everybody with a smart money account can be an encashment center. say aling nena has extra cash and has a smart money account, beneficiary can "transfer/wallet to wallet" his recieved remittance to aling nena in exchange of cash and its up to aling nena how much she will charge that transaction.

    like you i dont get it why its robin padilla... hehehe...

     
  • At 1:25 pm, Blogger Edwin "ka edong" said…

    HI nox!

    Congratulations sa iyong baby boy!!!! [clap clap]

    > 1. this is an irreversible transaction. pag na transact mo na wala na. kung magkamali ka sorry ka.

    I spoke to some Mcdo People. May codigo sila dun sa back-room nila. Then they have a Smart Money number prominently displayed at the counter. That's the number you should send to para mai-encash mo sa Mcdo na iyon. If you make a mistake and there's no such Smart Money number, the system will not proceed with the transaction. If you make a mistake and there's a number out there that you transferred to ... tsk tsk tsk, tough luck, you just made someone else rich!

    > 2. the phone is your identity, medyo scary ;)
    hhmmmm.... What do you mean? Privacy issues ba ang concern mo? Tell me more ;-)

    > 3. there are hidden costs here.
    Ang na-hanap ko pa lang na hidden (or un-published) ay yung charges to the remittance sender at the affiliated remittance center abroad. Ano pa ang nakikita mo?

    4. ang chismis mcdo has the option of denying a transaction.

    hmmm.... dapat hindi. Ang kwento sa akin, may P10k max limit per transaction. I wonder what basis a mcdo would have to deny a transaction. MAy hotline ang Smart Padala, dapat i-report agad kung may denial of transaction. in other words, dapat "de-nial mo agad yung hotline" ... get it, get it? hihihih.

    mabu-hey!

    ka edong

     
  • At 1:29 pm, Blogger Edwin "ka edong" said…

    btw, nakita ko na yung tv ad ni sweaty padilla.

    It shows him kicking a punching bag, kicking some crates etc .... and the message is something like ...

    tama na ang mabagal na remittance (punch).
    tama na ang hindi maasahan na remittance (kick).
    tama na ang ma-hassle na remittance (umbag).

    Smart padala ... mabilis, matipid, maaasahan ... sing bilis ng text

    or something like that.

    ;-)
    ka edong

     
  • At 4:15 pm, Blogger nox said…

    hehehe... thanks din... we have to do it scientifically to have a higher percentage na maging boy... ;)

    regarding these issues... i'll try to verify some more... am asking around for other info (like who do you report to when your cellphone is stolen, who cancels the account? what are the criterias for them to identify you as the real owner, is there no way of correcting a transaction, the actual cost of remittance etc)... dont get me wrong i think its a great product (a real killer app)... but its a bit "hilaw", minadali masyado... anyway my apologies for posting, i was looking for articles regarding this service when i saw your post at the mailling list... globe's launching a counter product very soon, lets see...

    btw, you should be a columnist. as i find your articles really readworthy and spiced with witty humor...


    cheers!

     
  • At 7:18 pm, Blogger Edwin "ka edong" said…

    pareng nox! (hehe, feeling close)

    >like who do you report to when your cellphone is stolen, who cancels the account? what are the criterias for them to identify you as the real owner,

    The SmartMoney number that will be assigned to the remittance recepient is "married" to the cellphone number. The cellphone number was given to Smart by the remittance sender.

    If you lose your phone, you have to report it to Smart, then they can suspend the SIM and any activities. Through some paperwork, you'll be able to recover the money (over the counter) in the SmartMoney account.

    > is there no way of correcting a transaction, the actual cost of remittance etc)...

    hmmmm.... i'm sure meron. This has been figured out already. The likely problem would be how Smart will carry-out solutions to these problem. We all know how big a bureaucracy Smart has become. It's become so successful (and so big) that not one Customer Service Representative knows all the solutions to any one problem.

    > dont get me wrong i think its a great product (a real killer app)...
    Agree.

    > but its a bit "hilaw", minadali masyado...
    I don't think so. I rolled-out the same service on a small scale, and it was rather easy. ;-)

    > anyway my apologies for posting
    hey, no apologies needed. I appreciate the feedback. it's a nice exchange. (feeling close ulit heheheh)

    > i was looking for articles regarding this service when i saw your post at the mailling list...
    which mailing list? ph-mobile?

    > globe's launching a counter product very soon, lets see...
    talaga! wahoooo! that's good news. Regardless of which service is better, the ultimate winners are the customers.

    kwentuhan mo nga ako tungkol dun sa globe product. what will make it different? would you know?

    post ka pa ng questions! kwentuhan mo rin ako ng mga na-usyoso mo tungkol dun sa service.

    > btw, you should be a columnist. as i find your articles really readworthy and spiced with witty humor...

    I'll print this out, have it notarized, get a signature from you attesting that you wrote it. Tapos, ipapa-frame ko siya, itatabi ko dun sa wedding frame namin ni maya sa bedroom namin.

    mwahahahha! ;-)

    Thanks bro,

    edwin

     
  • At 1:25 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    We conducted tests last week on sending money from Hong Kong using Iremit via SMART Padala, BDO via SMART Padala, Western Union, PCI Express Padala and YESPinoy.com. Iremit sent the money within 5 mins. BDO took 5 hours because the SMART Money account number was entered incorrectly. Remitter had to make several phone calls to follow this up. Western Union went through ok as did PCI Express Padala. YESpinoy.com allows you to use a credit card to send to smart money account that can be accessed using SMART Money card or Cellphone as per SMART Padala.

    Receiving the cash in the Philippines was not that easy. First trying to get the cash sent by Iremit and BDO from McDonalds. After 30 mins of trying the 1st McDonalds said machines were offline, 2nd McDonalds said the swipe machine could not read their smart money card. 3rd McDonalds we were able obtain the money but it took 50mins. This was the first time for each McDonalds to serve a customer using SMART Padala. Western union took 15 mins to complete forms and confirm cash was available. PCI Express Padala wanted to know the exact method that had been used to send the money. Apparently PCI have 3 methods. Beneficiary had to contact sender to confirm service used, by which time bank was closed. Money Sent using YESPinoy was obtained using SMART card at an ATM. Interestingly YESPinoy are not pushing the idea of redeeming the remittance using a SMART Phone. They are sticking with the SMART Money Card and ATM approach.

     
  • At 5:10 pm, Blogger Edwin "ka edong" said…

    > Anonymous said…

    > We conducted tests last week on sending money from Hong Kong using Iremit via SMART Padala, BDO via SMART Padala, Western Union, PCI Express Padala and YESPinoy.com.

    Thanks for the info, Anonymous! That's quick and definitive summary. Will you be coming out with the detailed evaluation of the services? Care to share? ;-)

    Any plans to test the online web remittance services? Xoom.com, padala.com etc. (see short list here)

    edwin

     
  • At 1:38 pm, Blogger Edwin "ka edong" said…

    I believe the comparison of remittance services described above was sent in by Paul Hubbard.

    See more details of that comparison on Mig's blogmabu-hey!
    edwin

     

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