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Mobile payments to surpass US$235 billion this year

05 Jun 2013

Worldwide mobile payment transaction values will reach US$235.4 billion this year, representing a 44% increase from 2012 values of $163.1 billion.

In a report released by Gartner, the research group claims the number of mobile payment users worldwide will reach 245.2 million by the end of the year, up from 200.8 million from the previous twelve months.

"We expect global mobile transaction volume and value to average 35% annual growth between 2012 and 2017, and we are forecasting a market worth $721 billion with more than 450 million users by 2017," says Sandy Shen, research director, Gartner.

"Nevertheless, we have lowered the forecast of total transaction value for the forecast period due to lower-than-expected growth in 2012, especially in North America and Africa."

Near Field Communications' (NFC's) transaction value has also been reduced by more 40% throughout the forecast period due to disappointing adoption of NFC technology in all markets during the past year, and the fact that some high-profile services, such as Google Wallet and Isis, are struggling to gain traction.

Shen forecasts that NFC will account for only about 2% of total transaction value in 2013 and 5% of the total transaction value in 2017, although growth is expected to increase from 2016 when the penetration of NFC mobile phones and contactless readers increases.

Money transfers and merchandise purchases will account for about 71% and 21% of total transaction value this year respectively, making them by far the largest contributors.

From a regional perspective however, Asia Pacific's transaction value is expected to grow 38% to reach US$74 billion with deployments in developed markets such as South Korea and Singapore and in developing markets such as India expected to drive healthy growth.

As a result, in 2016, Asia Pacific will overtake Africa to become the largest region by transaction value, reaching US$165 billion.

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