Within the next three years, the world will spend $50 billion in payments and transactions through mobile phones, according to a recent report Juniper Research. By 2014, Near Field Communication (NFC) technology will be at the center of this phenomenon. First to tap NFC technology is Google Wallet—a mobile app that makes use of mobile phones to pay for services and products instead of credit cards. But aside from money, Google is also looking at the customers’ data as part of this app. Is this a step closer to a cashless society and a departure from the plastics era? Guess so.
Senior Analyst David Snow offered details of the study saying, “Based on our analysis and interviews with key industry players our view is that the next 18 months will see launches in up to 20 countries. As a result Juniper is forecasting that North America and Western Europe together will exceed the Far East region in under three years based on transaction value.”
Along with Dolby Labs and NXPI, Michael Trager of SiliconANGLE predicted that NFC technology will be the next big thing within the mobile platform and the tech community in a few years time. While others see this as overhype, it is rather difficult to ignore organizations that show interest in NFC technology. In April, Amazon announced the possibility of exploring NFC mobile payments to expand their market. There are reports that also note Apple’s interest in wireless payments to be incorporated in iPhone 5, and the subsequent use of NFC technology. The company also penetrated Norway to power the country’s mobile ticketing and fuel its quest to eliminate cash payments.
NFCNews also reported that North America will have the biggest chunk of the NFC market by 2016. This will correspond to around $113 billion in mobile transactions. Furthermore, 1 out of every 5 smartphones worldwide will carry NFC technology come 2014, translating to almost 300 million NFC-enabled smartphones.
You know that something is great when competition arises. Visa unleashed its digital wallet to directly challenge current NFC adoption by other companies. Clearly, the immense potential of mobile payments is heating up this race. With giants like Google, Apple and Amazon gearing up for the war, the $50 billion-prediction may appear dwarfed in no time.