News & Views - Savantor

Mobile payments gain momentum

Wednesday, 15 April 2009

There have been signs this year that mobile payments are starting to receive more interest after a period of uncertainty. The market has been held back by too few NFC equipped handsets and uncertainties regarding business models. Recent research by Informa suggests that by 2013 nearly 300 billion transactions worth more than $860 billion will be conducted using a mobile phone. The report also suggests that 95% of this spend will be for physical goods and services as opposed to the current focus of ringtones and the like.

This year has seen Swiss telcos Orange Switzerland, Sunrise and Swisscom form a working group to promote and establish standards for mobile phone payments. The objective by the end of 2010 is to be able to provide service models to banks, transportation companies and trading firms to support their electronic services. Also Citi has teamed with Visa and mobile operator M1 to launch a three month contactless m-payments trial in Singapore. Barclaycard and wireless operator Orange have formed a strategic alliance for the development and adoption of contactless mobile payments services.

If the key players can manage to collaborate effectively then the report forecasts the market could have 178 million subscribers using NFC phones to buy goods and services and 424 million customers using mobile money transfer.

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