Global mobile payment volume to nearly double to $86 bn in 2011

Global mobile payment volume to nearly double to $86 bn in 2011

New Delhi: Worldwide mobile payment volume is expected to nearly double to $86.1 billion in 2011 from $48.9 billion in 2010, says market research firm Gartner.

The number of mobile payment users worldwide will surpass 141.1 million in 2011 against 102.1 million in 2010, it said.

Gartner analysts, however, forecast a slower-than- expected growth for mobile payment market in spite of strong growth projections.

“While developing markets have favourable conditions for mobile payments, such as high penetration of mobile devices and low banking penetration, this is no guarantee of success, unless service providers adapt their strategies to local market requirements," Gartner research director Sandy Shen said in a statement.

Shen added that in developed markets, companies are trumpeting the prospects of Near Field Communication (NFC) without realising the complexity of the service model.

“We believe mass market adoption of NFC payments is at least four years away," Shen said.

Gartner analyst identified effort to change user behaviour as one of the biggest challenge in mobile payment business.

The firm found that SMS and Unstructured Supplementary Service Data (USSD) are likely to remain the dominant access technologies in developing markets due to the constraints of mobile phones.

USSD is used by telecom operators to send alert to mobile phone users at the end of each calls or sms.

The research found that Wireless Application Protocol (WAP) will remain the preferred mobile access technology in developed markets, where the mobile Internet is commonly available and activated on the phone.

Money transfers and prepaid top-ups will drive transaction volumes in developing markets, the report said.

“We predict that in 2011, merchandise purchases will account for 90% and 77% of all transactions in North America and Western Europe, respectively," Shen said.