Commentary

Mobile Payments Meet Biometrics (In a Big Way)

More smartphones are coming with technology that could be the jolt that mobile payments have been patiently waiting for.

Within five years, 100% of smartphones will include embedded biometric sensors as standard features, according to a new market forecast by Acuity Market Intelligence.

By that time, mobile biometric systems will be used to authenticate about 65% of all mobile commerce transactions, based on the forecast.

For anyone who appreciates big numbers, this represents 126 billion biometric payment transactions generating more than $1 trillion in consumer mobile commerce purchase value.

And we’re not talking just a fingerprint scanner, like many are using with Apple Pay.

There are three categories or segments of mobile biometrics:

  • Biometric Sensors -- Embedded in smart mobile devices including smartphones, tablets and wearables
  • Biometric Apps -- Offered directly by biometric vendors, or downloaded to smart devices via mobile service providers such as banks, payment processors, social media sites, retailers or online identity providers.
  • Biometric Authentication  -- For payment and non-payment transactions provided via secure cloud-based services linked to biometric apps on smart devices.

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Rather than consumers using a tablet, wearable or some type of biometric device like a fingerprint scanner or face recognition device in a store, the smartphone will be the definitive biometric mobile device at least for the next five year, according to Acuity.

Many studies show that security is a top consumer concern around any form of mobile payments.

We soon will see if biometrics is the magic bullet for mobile payments. 

Any bets?

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