Poor user experience is holding back mobile payments – report

Poor user experience is holding back mobile payments – report

13 MAR 2013

A survey of leading payments experts found the lack of an improved customer experience is the biggest threat to the success of mobile payments.

Forty per cent of respondents chose poor user experience when asked about mobile payments’ biggest barrier.

“Many existing applications are just too complicated to use for consumers,” according to the Global Innovation Jury, a group of industry experts who convene every two years to be quizzed on major issues.

The second biggest threat, which only attracted 16 per cent of votes, was the lack of monetisation models for mobile payments, followed by the absence of a regulatory framework (12 per cent), security risks (12 per cent), the lack of technical standards (eight per cent) and other barriers (12 per cent).

In response to another question, the majority of contributors (64 per cent) said mobile operators pose “some threat” to traditional payment providers. Only four per cent saw operators as a serious threat. About one quarter (24 per cent) said they are a significant threat and eight per cent viewed them as little or no threat at all.

But interestingly this area was one of the most hotly debated, said the report, with strong opinions on both sides. Some members of the jury took the view that mobile payments “may be overhyped; customer habits will be hard to change and NFC technology has not yet delivered what it promised”.

But a few members were vociferous that operators’ billing relationships with customers made them a serious threat to the status quo.

Another interesting question was which mobile financial services will consumers be willing to pay for? The most popular answer was improved P2P payment services with nearly one third (32 per cent) of votes. But quicker point-of-sale transactions via NFC only attracted four per cent support. Access to bank account services (16 per cent) and using a mobile device as an authentication tool (12 per cent) were the other most popular answers.

When it came to the most hyped area of payments innovation then NFC and contactless payments was mentioned most frequently, with almost 60 per cent of jurors believing that NFC will not live up to expectations in its current form.

The jury was drawn from 25 experts in banks, payments processors, card schemes and tech firms. They were granted anonymity. The report is sponsored by Ixaris, a payments provider, and Anthemis Group, a financial services group.


Richard Handford

Richard is the editor of Mobile World Live’s money channel and a contributor to the daily news service. He is an experienced technology and business journalist who previously worked as a freelancer for many publications over the last decade including...

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