The Role of Trust and Risk in Mobile Commerce Adoption within South Africa
Janine Joubert, Jean-Paul Van Belle

South Africa holds the promise of a fast take-off in mobile commerce (M-commerce), potentially leapfrogging the country past its low Internet penetration. However, consumers demonstrate a lack of enthusiasm, possibly due to a lack of trust. This research investigates a model that incorporates trust and risk factors to explore adoption of M-commerce. A survey was used to test the trust model using partial least squares (PLS). The study determined that personal characteristics and influence the perceived trustworthiness of the vendor, technology and the institutional framework. Although systems-based trust influences the intention to use M-commerce services, none of the other trust types did. Risk only impacted trust (negatively) but had no direct impact on intention to adopt. Amongst early adopters, M-commerce benefits such as compatibility and image were at least as, if not more, important than trust.

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