In-store mobile payments set for growth in Europe and North America – report

In-store mobile payments set for growth in Europe and North America – report

04 JUN 2013

In-store mobile wallet payments in North America and the “EU27+2” region (EU member states plus Switzerland and Norway) will reach a combined total of €78 billion by 2017, up from €0.6 billion in 2012, according to a new report from analyst firm Berg Insight.

In Europe, from a relatively meagre baseline of €0.1 billion in 2012, Berg Insight calculates the value of in-store mobile wallet payments will expand by a robust 275 per cent CAGR through to 2017, reaching €45 billion.

This figure, says Berg Insight, will correspond to 1.6 per cent of credit card and debit card payments in the EU27+2 region at the end of the forecast period.

Driving the growth will be new projects. Berg Insight reckons there will be commercial mobile wallet services in nearly half of EU27+2 countries by the end of 2013.

Many of Europe’s largest mobile operators, banks and retailers – such as T-Mobile, Orange, Telefonica, BNP Paribas, Barclays and Auchan – are flagged up by the analyst firm as key mobile wallet players.

In North America, Berg Insight finds that mobile wallet users completed in-store payments for a total of US$0.5 billion (€0.4 billion) during 2012. However, the vast majority of these payments were made using Starbucks’ smartphone app. Mobile wallets that can be used at multiple merchants, noted Berg Insight, have yet to gain traction.

In the longer term, universal mobile wallets – such as those provided by Isis, Google and MCX – are expected to drive the majority of the mobile in-store purchase volume in North America, which Berg Insight estimates will reach US$44 billion (€33 billion) by 2017.

For companies hoping to make a market impact with their mobile wallet services, Berg Insight advises that a broad range of services should be offered to customers beyond basic payments.

“People do not have a problem with cash or payment cards today,” says Lars Kurkinen, a telecom analyst at Berg Insight and author of the ‘Mobile Wallet Services’ report. “Value-added services that enable new shopping experiences before, during and after payments, will be what truly distinguish mobile wallets from the traditional payment instruments.”

Kurkinen adds that the next few years will be a very important time during which mobile wallet operators have an opportunity to improve their services.

“Gaining an early lead in the market can be crucial, as in the long term only a limited number of mobile wallet services will survive in each market due to network effects,” he said.


Ken Wieland

Ken has been part of the MWC Mobile World Daily editorial team for the last three years, and is now contributing regularly to Mobile World Live. He has been a telecoms journalist for over 15 years, which includes eight...More

Read more