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MasterCard Says Early Days for Mobile Payments with No Two Markets the Same

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A report by credit card processor, MasterCard has identified Singapore, Canada, the USA, Kenya and South Korea as the most prepared markets for mobile payment services to take off.

Their Mobile Payments Readiness Index of 34 countries indicates that while it's early stages for mobile payments adoption, all markets globally -- either highly scaled and integrated ones like the UK or compact and technology-driven ones like Singapore - are making progress towards reaching an inflection point where mobile devices account for an appreciable share of the payments mix.

The Index also found that in some markets such as Australia, young affluent consumers between the ages of 18 and 34 years old are the most willing to engage in mobile payments as they recognize the value of using mobile payments instead of cash or payment cards. While this demographic was predominantly male in most countries, women showed higher levels of interest in countries such as China, Egypt and the Philippines.

In addition, findings of the MPRI reveal that partnerships among the key players in the mobile payments ecosystem are essential to accelerate the commercialization of mobile payments. Cooperation and collaboration among financial institutions, telcos, governments, technology providers and others can foster an environment that enables a market to reach critical mass.

Other key findings include:

  • Nine of the 10 markets with the highest consumer scores are in APMEA (Asia/Pacific, Middle East and Africa).
  • Of the three mobile payment types, more consumers had engaged in m-commerce in 71 percent of the countries surveyed.
  • In developing economies, consumers are typically drawn to mobile payments for access to the larger economy, both national and global, as well as to a regulated and secure economic infrastructure. Consumers in the developed world are drawn to the convenience of mobile phone payments.

"Technology infrastructure, a responsive regulatory environment and a robust economy are table stakes for the advancement of mobile payments," said Theodore Iacobuzio, vice president, Global Insights, MasterCard Worldwide. "The necessary conditions are consumer readiness and industry integration. As no one entity can develop and promote mobile payments by itself, key players in the ecosystem must work together to collectively advance the cause of mobile payments."

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Tags: mastercard  mobile payments  Singapore  Canada  USA  Korea