Just as e-commerce a few years ago, mobile commerce is gaining an increasing importance and visibility in the context of the digital economy. Companies start realizing that they can use the mechanisms and technologies offered by e-commerce to put their stores online. An important feature of mobile commerce is that the online store is accessible 24 hours per day to a potentially huge mobile customer base scattered around the world. By their very nature, mobile commerce applications will rely increasingly on wireless communications, including a combination of terrestrial and satellite links. To be cost effective and thus economically viable , these applications will have to reach reliably and at a reduced cost per transaction a wide consumer base. In turn , this suggests that a wide coverage ‚ indeed, a global one ‚ is a must in mobile commerce. Such a global coverage is only achieved by a combination of terrestrial and satellite networks. As we argued, satellite networks and other recent developments are already emerging as the platforms of choice for delivering multimedia worldwide at a reasonable cost to the user .
As for e-business and e-commerce applications, transaction security will remain a major issue for mobile commerce applications. It is well known that due to an assortment of impairments and characteristics of radio transmission, security problems in wireless network applications and, in particular, in mobile commerce are not only ubiquitous but also hard to solve. Providing an inexpensive and robust solution to these problems promises to be an exciting area for future developments.