$508 Billion Moving Through Mobile

Discussions of mobile payments are everywhere.

Now comes a new report projecting just how big that market will be this year, and it’s not small.

Besides boasting a mouthful of a title, The Mobile Payment Strategies: Remote, Contactless & Money Transfer 2014-2018 report by Juniper Research sees the value of global payments via mobile devices hitting $508 billion this year.

And what a difference a year makes with the size, increasing 40% from a year ago.

The growth is being driven by purchases of physical goods from mobile devices. The research also shows that the average transaction size from purchases made on tablets exceeds those made on PCs in many markets.

Juniper attributes this to increased consumer confidence and willingness to engage with mobile as a content browsing and payment mechanism.

Smartphone spending also increased sharply, though the primary function in retail was researching with the final purchase being made on a tablet.

Part of the reason consumers are almost four times as likely to make a purchase on a tablet vs. a smartphone is that purchases made in the home involve spend migrating from the desktop to the tablet, based on the report.

As we’ve written about here in the past, much of mobile commerce growth is being driven by mobile ticketing applications and by metro and transit authorities in Europe and North America, according to Juniper.

Mobile or contactless payments has had few commercial launches, according to the researchers, while positively projecting a brighter future for them with the emergence of cloud-based and NFC (Near Field Communication) products.

Of course, Apple doesn’t use NFC in its devices and Juniper speculates that the company will  introduce a digital wallet for secure contactless payments with the launch of the next iPhone.

Part of the report’s optimism for payments is that the majority of point of sale terminals shipping now contains contactless technology, so at least more retail locations will be mobile payment possible.

By geography, the Far East and China are the largest markets based on mobile transaction values and are expected to remain so, according to Juniper. Mobile payment growth in Africa and the Mideast is driven my money transfer transactions

While a large amount of money is moving through mobile devices, most of it is not at the actual point of sale at a store. Yet.

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