The e-Naira speed wallet has been deleted from Google Playstore less than 48 hours after the central bank digital currency was launched by President Muhammadu Buhari. The e-Naira speed wallet app was removed for bad reviews after the app had recorded more than 100,000 downloads by Nigerians.
Before the e-Naira speed wallet was taken down from Google’s Playstore, it had a rating of 2.0 out of 5, and endless amount of complaints from Nigerians.
The e-Naira launched on Monday, the 25th of October, 2021 after it was postponed from a scheduled launch date of October 1st – the date set aside to commemorate Nigeria’s 61st independence. While the e-Naira is available for use, it cannot be accessed and/or used without the wallet. The central bank launched the speed wallet to be used alongside the e-Naira, so that Nigerians can find using the e-Naira for various purposes easy.
A separate merchant wallet for the e-Naira was launched by the central bank. While the speed wallet app for individuals has been taken down from Google Playstore as a result of bad reviews, the merchant wallet is still available for download on Google Playstore. The merchant app has already garnered more than 10,000 downloads on the store.
The e-Naira speed wallet is still available on Apple’s app store but checks showed that the app had been updated. On the Apple store, the e-Naira speed wallet showed ratings of 2.5 out of 5; very similar ratings with what the app was rated on Google Playstore.
According to Nigeria’s central bank, the e-naira had been in development for about two years before its launch. Rakiya Mohammed, the Director of IT at the Central Bank of Nigeria, during an online news briefing at the end of a Bankers Committee meeting held months ago said that “when eventually issued and operational, Nigeria’s digital currency would complement cash notes”. According to the Information Technology Specialist, the CBN is issuing a digital currency to take on its plans of making remittances travel from other countries to Nigeria safe and easy to do. She emphasized that having a digital currency would accelerate the ability to meet the target irrespective of where people are based, but with limited access to the e-Naira wallet, could these goals/plans of the central bank be defeated?
The central bank is yet to say anything about the recent development. The speed wallet is, however, available for download on Apple store and on the e-Naira website.