Last night Canvas8 hosted ‘Mobile Money’ with David Birch of Consult Hyperion and Anil Malhotra of Bango. For those of you who weren’t able to attend, or those who’d like a quick refresher, we’ve provided a recap of the event’s key points.
Mobile transactions are an increasingly important part of the retail landscape. Ebay predicts that there will be $8bn made in mobile sales in 2012, and Ofcom predicts that mobile retail will be worth $29bn to the British economy by 2021.
As well as the banks and mobile service providers, there are a range of external players innovating in this space, including Square, PayPal and Simplytap. Barclays’ Pingit registered 400,000 users within the first eight weeks of its launch.
There has been a movement away from cash to cards and, increasingly, smartphones. This offers innovation opportunities for businesses big and small.
There are more mobile phone subscriptions in the world than toothbrushes.
Smartphones are more than just cashless wallets – they are transaction devices which enable payment processes.
When it comes to mobile usage and mobile payments, the world can be segmented into four main groups: the US and Canada, Korea and Japan, developed markets and emerging markets. Korea and Japan are trailblazers in both fields, with one in six Japanese people using their mobiles to pay for services. In Japan, one in eight people use mobile phones to pay in McDonald’s; in the UK mobile payments in McDonald’s are “rarer than a forged £50 note”.
Mobile transactions provide opportunities for innovation; in Kenya, for example, they have enabled banks to offer short-term insurance policies. M-Pesa accounts for between one quarter and one third of Kenya’s GDP.
Mobile has the potential to be a global payment system; Starbuck’s Cards, for example, are accepted internationally.
Mobile payments offer brands more than swift financial transactions – they can help build brand loyalty as phones combine customer promotions with payments.
In the future, smartphones could house many wallets in one device - ‘the operator wallet’, ‘the bank wallet’, ‘the platform wallet’, ‘the retailer wallet’ and ‘the cloud wallet’.
David and Anil both highlighted how important mobile payments are likely to become over the next few years, driven by technological advancements from companies like Bango, the rising cost of cash and the ubiquity of global mobile phone usage.