Worldwide mobile payment transaction values will surpass $171.5 billion in 2012, a 61.9% increase from the $105.9 billion recorded in 2011, according to new research from Gartner.
Accordingly, the number of mobile payment users will reach 212.2 million in 2012, up from 160.5 million in 2011, says Gartner.
“We expect global mobile transaction volume and value to average 42% annual growth between 2011 and 2016, and we are forecasting a market worth $617 billion with 448 million users by 2016,” said Sandy Shen, research director at Gartner. “This will bring opportunities for service and solution providers who will need to cater to the local demand patterns to customize their offerings.”
According to Gartner, NFC will take a back seat to other mobile payment technologies until 2016, when growth is expected to pick up.
“NFC payment involves a change in user behavior and requires collaboration among stakeholders that includes banks, mobile carriers, card networks and merchants,” said Shen. “It takes time for both to happen, so we don’t expect NFC payments to come into the mass market before 2015. In the meantime, ticketing, rather than retail payment, will drive NFC transactions.”
In the meantime, SMS will remain the dominant access technology in developing markets, while Web/WAP will continue to be the preferred channel in North America and Western Europe, where mobile Internet is commonly available and activated on user devices.
Gartner expects Web/WAP access to account for about 88% of total transactions in North America and about 80% in Western Europe.
Eastern Europe is projected to see the highest m-payment user growth between 2011 and 2016, albeit from a smaller user base. Asia/Pacific tops all regions in the number of users, followed by Africa. According to Gartner, the two regions combined for more than 60% of the global mobile payments volume in 2016. North America is the third-largest region by value in 2016 and is twice the value of Western Europe.
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