Safaricom has been piloting their payments card dubbed Lipa na Mpesa card for quite a while now. We got wind of it as early as June last year. New details emerge indicating that the number of cards issued are 16,000 with 47 companies already accepting the payments.
The card has been used by students and staff at the United States International University-Africa, Catholic University of East Africa, Kenyatta University and Mt Kenya University. The firm said the use of the Lipa na M-Pesa card reduced errors typically made by inputting wrong payment amounts at the till.
Techniques are both pin and chip, and NFC, the latter being quite convenient but has it's own security challenges.
It's good that they are still working to ensure that the product works with no glitches before going out public.