While the overall use of the traditional post office to send and or receive mails is becomingly extremely threatened by the adoption of technology, Posta Kenya’s latest innovation – Mpost clearly shows there’s still some technology juice to be squeezed to keep it afloat for the time being. The pressure isn’t going away by any means, but still there are ways the state corporation could exploit; using someone’s phone number as their postal address rather than having to rent a box at a discounted rate is just but one of those opportunities.
Being a customer to the Posta Kenya mainly in receiving mails and parcels send from overseas has in some ways been quite an experience. For instance, just by looking at the staff who have become withered over time in one of Kenya’s biggest and best employer decades ago reveals just how technology has managed to make some services irrelevant today. We used to send letters, post cards, parcels and even money through Posta; today, eighty percent of these services can be accomplished via a mobile phone such as text messages/ emails instead of letters, sending money via mobile money services and lastly sending parcels through reliable courier that assures their delivery in a day upcountry.
As of today, Posta Kenya has partnered with various telecom operators in the country including Safaricom to unveil Mpost – a service that utilizes your mobile number to allocate a virtual postal address box that can offer similar services as a real rental box. The deal with Safaricom for example allows subscribers to register for a Post Office Box linked to their mobile number by visiting the M-Post website or dialing *234*1*9#. The service is priced at Ksh300 annually.
While commenting on the development, Safaricom’s CEO Michael Joseph acknowledged that Kenya’s economy has become increasingly digitized leading to the growth of online delivery of goods and services. He also added that Posta’s logistical capabilities and Post Office branch network which are well placed to meet the shift will offer value to Safaricom’s customers by empowering them to conveniently and affordably receive parcels and goods wherever they may be across the country.
How to make your Mobile number become your Postal address via Posta Kenya’s Mpost
- If you are a Safaricom subscriber, dial *234*1*9# on your phone and follow prompts
- Otherwise dial *890*90# and follow the prompts
- You can register for the service online as well at MPOST
- You’ll have a personal box, without sharing
- Secure, affordable and convenient.
- No waiting for mails, mailing is instant.
- Your mails will never get lost, you can track the current location of mail.
- Mails follow you were ever you go, at your door steps, up country or when on holiday.
- Sms Notifications on your mobile phone when you have mail in your box
MPost box numbers will be in the format “P. O. Box 254XXXXXXXXX” where XXXXXXXXX is the customer’s mobile phone number, for instance, “P. O. Box 254722000000”. Safaricom subscribers who opt into the service will receive their mail at no cost as is the case with a traditional box, and they will receive an SMS notification whenever they have mail to be collected at their Postal Branch. The mail can then be collected over the next 7 days over the counter.