Google may have just unveiled its preliminary plans to bring contactless mobile payments to the U.S., but mobile payments in using various technologies are prime to blow up in several other markets around the world as well. Swedish wireless analyst firm Berg Insight on Thursday issued a report on mobile money in emerging markets, and the group believes adoption will skyrocket over the next four years. In 2010 there were 133 million people in emerging markets who used their cell phones to move money or pay for goods and services. That number is set to grow an average of 40% each year to reach 709 million in 2015, the firm believes. Over that same period, the total value of mobile payment transactions will balloon from $25 billion in 2010 to $215 billion in 2015. “In developing regions such as Africa the mobile phone will become the primary digital channel for people to conduct financial services in the coming years,” said Telecom Analyst Lars Kurkinen. “Financial institutions are beginning to realize the importance of mobile phones to reach new clients viewing mobile money services as high-priority strategic projects. Also mobile operators and third party service providers are ramping up their efforts to target the huge unbanked populations in emerging markets.” Hit the break for Berg’s full release. More →
Sources speaking with Bloomberg claim Google is finally ready to take the wraps off its mobile payment service. According to a new report, Google will host an event on Thursday, May 26th to introduce its new service, which will initially be available only to Sprint subscribers in New York, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Chicago and Washington, D.C. who own the company’s Nexus S 4G smartphone. The system will be NFC-based, and Bloomberg did not specify which retail partners would support Google’s initial offering. Google has made a series of moves leading up to the imminent announcement this week, such as its recent acquisition of stealth Toronto-based start up Zetawire, which had filed a patent for “a payment system, an advertising system, and an identity management system” combined into a single product. While Google’s preliminary offering might not include unique technology such as Zetawire’s, it’s safe to say the Internet giant has a lot in store for us as it enters this emerging space. BGR has not independently confirmed that Google plans to introduce a new payment service, but we have received an invitation to a press event taking place on Thursday and we’ll be on hand to cover it live. More →
Today, AT&T, T-Mobile, and Verizon Wireless officially took the wraps off of their rumored mobile payment service. Dubbed ISIS, the new “mobile commerce network” aims to use NFC (near-field communication) technology to make mobile phones the preferred method of payment for consumer point-of-sales transactions.
“While payments are at the core of the offering, it is only the start,” reads the press release. “Isis intends to deliver a complete mobile wallet experience that goes well beyond ‘credit card on a phone’ and makes the shopping experience significantly easier by eliminating the need for consumers to carry cash, credit and debit cards, reward cards, coupons, tickets and transit passes.”
The tri-network venture has a customer-base of over 200 million and expects to launch in “key geographic markets” in the next 18 months. ISIS will provide the associated wireless carriers with another revenue stream to help bolster their oh-so-important bottom lines. Hit the jump for the full press release. More →