M-payment users 'to increase by over 70%'

29 May 2009

The number of mobile payment users worldwide is set to hit 73.4 million in 2009 - an increase of 70.4 percent from 2008, according to new research from Gartner.

In its Dataquest Insight: Mobile Payment, 2007-2012 report, the analyst said there will be around 190 million m-payment users by 2012 - over three per cent of global mobile customers.

Gartner research director Sandy Shen said the "most profound impact" of mobile banking and payment services will be in developing markets, where they will provide a largely non-banking population with cost-effective access to modern financial services.

She added that such technology can "greatly improve standards of living" in areas where most people do not currently have a bank account or payment card.

Nevertheless, Ms Shen said the wider adoption of mobile payments still faces challenges, particularly over security concerns, the adequacy of its "ecosystem" and its status as a grey area when it comes to banking regulation.

Earlier this week, a study by TowerGroup said the desire to keep a close eye on personal finances and the increasing sophistication of smartphone technology would see mobile banking become a "mainstream" service in 2009.

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