Mobile money transfer and NFC to make up 50% of mobile payments market

Mobile money transfer and contactless near field communications (NFC) will together account for half of the overall mobile payment market globally by 2013, (based on the gross transaction values), according to Juniper Research’s new Mobile Payments Study.

The Juniper report found that the mobile payments market, which today is dominated by purchases of digital goods such as ringtones, music, and games, will in future be driven by subscribers transferring money and using NFC features on their handsets to make purchases. This will drive the overall mobile payments market to grow by a factor of ten between now and 2013.

Report author Howard Wilcox, explained: “We see significant opportunities for new services making it easier for the ‘underbanked’ population and migrant workers to make remittances, using their mobile phones as mobile wallets: the services already in operation are seeing rapid growth.” Wilcox added that mobile wallets will incorporate NFC which will enable people to use their mobile phones to pay for small value items such as refreshments and magazines.

The top three regions for this sector will be the Far East & China, Western Europe and North America. Together these will account for over 70% of mobile money payments on a gross transaction basis by 2013. However, there will be hurdles to be addressed for the market to reach its tipping point, including NFC handset availability, workable business models and financial legislation.

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