A new report from Juniper Research indicates that the number of consumers making contactless payments via their mobile handsets may very well reach 300 million globally by 2017.
In comparison, that number stood at just over 110 million last year.
The report found that many markets were being seeded for mobile contactless adoption by accelerated rollout of contactless cards. These rollouts were being accompanied by marked increases in contactless POS (Point of Sale) terminals, with leading vendors VeriFone and Ingenico both now shipping the majority of their terminals with NFC (Near Field Communications) as standard.
However, the report cautioned that stakeholders needed to step up efforts to raise consumer awareness about mobile contactless payments and to educate retailers about the contactless value proposition.
Report author Dr. Windsor Holden says contactless is “largely being sold to retailers on the basis of faster throughput at the POS. The other critical opportunities offered by contactless – such as consumer engagement and product upselling – are much lower on their radar.”
Lastly, Juniper researchers argue that the lack of a coherent business model had constrained NFC rollouts, with the cost to deploy a mobile payment card more than to issue a plastic card. Furthermore, while it claimed that the anticipated launch of an Apple iWallet would create a positive “halo effect” for the wider contactless space, it was unclear at present whether additional POS upgrades would be required.