Swedish vendor Ericsson and pump manufacturer Grundfos announced a new initiative to deliver an ATM water dispenser capable of taking mobile payments in Kenya.

The system combines mobile technology with innovative water ATMs to “enable access to a sustainable water supply”, according to a statement.

Ericsson’s interconnect solution can enable mobile wallet service providers to add the connected water kiosks as a new consumer utility service, thereby “helping to drive cashless transactions and usage of the mobile wallet”.

Revenue collection will play an important role in ensuring water supply points do not fail due to a lack of funds, which has been known to happen, while also providing capacity for operations and maintenance, said the company.

“Enabling access to water will support social and financial inclusion, and enable the sustainable development of local communities, potentially impacting millions of people,” said Peter Heuman, head of M-Commerce at Ericsson.

It has been deployed in country initially, powering selected water kiosks in the Makueni region, and the collaboration could extend to other developing nations.