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M-Payments Forecast to Reach $1.3 Trillion by 2017

22 Aug, 2012 By: Doug McPherson

HAMPSHIRE, England – Juniper Research, the telecom specialist, predicts that in five years mobile payments will hit the $1.3 trillion mark (yes, trillion, with a t).

Its new report, “Mobile Payments Strategies: NFC, Remote Purchases & Money Transfers 2012-2017,” suggested that pieces of the M-payment puzzle are coming together to generate rapid expansion. More specifically, the report credited the widespread rollout of NFC (near field communications) support infrastructure and the increased engagement of operators with the M-commerce space. Plus, point-of-sale systems from VeriFone, the consortium of carriers and payment providers in ISIS, and a European venture around mobile wallets called Project Oscar are developing tools.

However, the report did caution that for NFC to fulfill its potential, marketing behind the mechanism would need to be scaled up dramatically.

Report author Windsor Holden said, “While we are now seeing significant deployments of contactless infrastructure, consumer awareness is extremely low. Thus, it is imperative for all members of the NFC value chain to engage with the public to heighten its profile as a simple, intuitive payment mechanism.”

Even with all that growth, M-payments will only account for 4 percent of purchases in five years. However, Juniper contends that M-payments will also account for 30 percent of e-retail by 2017.

The main source of revenue growth, Juniper believes, will be from mobile payments for physical goods, and that more than half of purchases being made on phones by 2017 will be to buy tangible items that are most likely near at hand.

The report also notes the growing importance of mobile as a means of enabling both domestic and international money transfer, although it stressed that in many markets service adoption was being inhibited by national regulatory requirements and by a lack of interoperability between services.

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