Mobile payments set to grow to 17 billion transactions in 2013

The number of customers paying for goods and services with mobile phones is estimated to grow to 17 billion transaction worldwide in 2013

The number of customers making payments with their mobile phones is estimated to grow to 17 billion transactions in 2013.

This compares with 141 million in 2011, according to research from Capgemini, RBS and retail association Efma.  

Currently only 2.1% of all mobile phone users made mobile payments last year, showing substantial potential for growth, said the World Payments Report 2012.

Volumes are expected to surge once near-field communication (NFC) e-wallets are launched. In developing economies, the growth in mobile payments is being driven by large populations of consumers who have no bank accounts but who can get access to payment services options through mobile devices, said the World Payments Report 2012.

The payments industry is developing hybrid instruments that combine various payment channels. E-commerce merchants are looking to capture this trend by mixing online payments with other channels, so consumers can pay using online banking capabilities rather than cards.

Online payments increased by 25% to 28.3 billion transactions in 2011, compared with the previous year, said the report.

Kevin Brown, head of international banking at RBS, said: “As more and more consumers move to mobile and other electronic payments, we’ll continue to see the exponential growth of innovative payment solutions.”

According to research from the IMRG Capgemini e-Retail Sales index the number of customers using smartphones to make purchases in the UK has soared 254%.

Adam Plummer, head of e-commerce at The Body Shop, said one in five visits to the store’s website are from mobile devices. 

“Mobile really is a game-changer. The shift to becoming the primary device of choice is well under way," he said.

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