Meet An Innovative African Company That Pays You For Using Your Phone

by Duke Magazine

Technology firms leverage the data of mobile phone users to make money. For instance, they can know a user’s location, product preferences, spending habits, among others. While the tech firms monetize users’ data, customers get nothing in return.

That is where ZmBIZI (pronounced zam-bee-zee) comes in. The minority-owned tech firm is seeking to make our phones work for us. The end game is to develop a win-win situation. Tech firms monetize our data and we in turn make money from using our phones.

The firm’s new smartphone, Z2, allows users to earn an average $10 monthly cash reward for searching, sharing, and shopping in the ZmBIZI app ecosystem. The phone has a high resolution, a MediaTek Helio P60 processor, 8GB RAM, and 128GB of storage. In addition, it has multiple cameras at the back, a dual sim slot, and is powered by a 4,400mAh battery.

According to Internet Cloning, each Z2 comes with a visa debit card which allows users to redeem and use the rewards in any place Visa is accepted. The Verge explains that each ZmBIZI coin is equivalent to $0.01, and when one has accumulated at least $20, then one can move their coins onto the digital visa debit card preloaded on the phone, which enables them to use that money in the real world.

The phone also serves as a smart point of sale, where approved US small businesses can now accept contactless payments directly on their ZmBIZI smartphones, Internet Cloning added. According to The Verge, the Z2 is the first phone Visa has partnered with to pilot its Tap to Phone program in America. This means that customers do not need to download a third-party app like Venmo to pay but they can just tap their existing forms of payment — card or Apple or Google Play.

ZmBIZI was founded by Alpesh Patel and Benjamin Aubin, who hails from Haiti. According to Patel, the thriving metropolis in Los Angeles inspired them to create ZmBIZI.

“Los Angeles is exactly the kind of thriving metropolis that inspired us to create ZmBIZI,” said Patel. “The creative drive, the rich culture, the entrepreneurial ecosystem and spirit that has changed the world many times over—it can’t be constrained by the usual phones and plans.

“We see you, and we’re here to put financial control and new possibilities in your hands. Getting paid ‘on the go’ is the new way of working, as increasing mobile productivity empowers people and increases community wealth.”

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