Nikhilesh Dholakia, University of Rhode Island, USA
Ruby Roy Dholakia, University of Rhode Island, USA
Mark Lehrer, University of Rhode Island, USA
Nir Kshetri, University of North Carolina at Greensboro, USA
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Mobile phones, mobile Internet access, and mobile commerce (m-commerce) are growing much faster than their fixed counterparts. Several characteristics of mobile networks make them more attractive than fixed networks for less-developed countries and for those countries that want to "leapfrog" the leading IT nations. To exploit the new mobile communications infrastructures, companies from developed as well as developing countries are rapidly integrating m-commerce technology into their business models. Countries around the world, however, exhibit considerable heterogeneity in their adoption of mobile phones and m-commerce technology. Examined in this chapter is the current stage of mobile technology and m-commerce diffusion across the world, and analyzed are factors influencing the diffusion process. In this chapter, the ways in which the m-commerce landscape of a nation—defined by the penetration rate of mobile phones, the specific combinations of different generations of mobile technology, and the blending of various standards within a given generation—is shaped by politicoeconomic, sociocultural, and policy-related factors are reviewed.