GSM COMMUNICATIONS AND MODERN BANKING The advent of the GSM communications have transformed the world into a global village and thereby making lives easier. Communications is now easier, cheaper and safes time. UPDATE ON COMMODITY PRICING: There is a trial scheme for the micro industry whereby commodity pricing will be made available to vendors at a moments notice. Vendors, market women etc can determine the buying and selling prices of commodities by merely sending an SMS and getting a reply instantly. Market women and other business people within the micro industry can use this facility to their advantage TOPPING UP: This is now a reality. People can top up their credit with relative ease by the use of their phones without having to go to the particular Bank or Micro finance institution. The same facility can be used in the purchase of Electricity vouchers for topping up. There could not have been a more convenient way of going around these problems. This scheme is in its trial period and Africell has entered into an agreement with a financial institution and a micro finance institution as well to conduct the trials. BALANCE ENQUIRIES: Most of the long queues in Banks and Micro finance institutions relates to enquiries. With this facility, it makes it relatively easy for clients to know the status of their accounts before getting to the Bank or Micro finance institution. TRANSFER OF FUNDS: Clients can move funds from one account to the other without the need for them to travel distances to the Bank or Micro Institution. In the same vein, one can order for cheque or savings books from the institution and also to stop payments at a much faster rate and with relative ease. OTHER ASPECTS OF IMPORTANCE: SMS TO E- MAIL: Sending and receiving mails through the phone has made life easier. News items can be received on the phone and on real time meaning that you get the news as it happens. SECURITY ASPECTS: The phone can be a life saver in some circumstances. Parents are finding it relatively convenient to track their children particularly in this day and age where you have pedophiles and psychos on the loose through the use of the mobile phone. With the GPS, it is now possible to locate your vehicle from anywhere in the world when stolen. Phones can save lives as a navigating system particularly for our local fishermen who normally go out stream fishing without a clue as to their where about at sea.