Looking ahead to mobile and digital payments, MasterCard CEO Ajay Banga sounded an optimistic note on NFC, particularly with the prospect of growing take-up in the US.
“My sense is you’re going to get NFC growing decently, particularly with terminalisation, and I believe terminalisation will happen with all the EMV and chip migration as well as the fact our new terminals are coming contactless-equipped, so you’re probably seeing a two or three-year cycle of a fairly dramatic increase in contactless-equipped terminals in the United States, “said Banga (pictured).
He added that contactless had only taken off so far in a number of countries, including Australia, Canada and Turkey.
“But the US, which is the large one, I think you’ll see that,” he added.
Banga, who was speaking to analysts during MasterCard’s Q4 results, said digital payments was a mix of contactless, in-app and online browser, of which the latter category is currently the largest.
Contactless, or NFC, he described as “slow burns”, despite the buzz around Apple Pay.
“You saw Apply Pay talk about their mobile payment growth, and at the end of the day, yes, they’ve done a great job and it’s excited the market, but it’s still a very small percentage of what the total number of transactions are,” he said.
Last week CEO Tim Cook said Apple Pay accounts for more than $2 out of $3 spent on contactless payments across the three leading credit cards in the US. But, as Banga points out, this is still a relatively small figure.