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Mobile contactless payments set to nearly double by 2023

Using Apple Pay to pay for shopping
(Image credit: Apple)

Contactless payments made using mobile phones will almost double over the next two years – twice as fast as the growth of contactless card payments.

A study by Juniper Research found that the volume of mobile contactless transactions rill rise from 26 billion in 2021 to 49 billion in 2023, driven by enhanced security, convenience, and the increasing cross-channel payment capabilities on devices.

For example, it’s possible to make Apple Pay payments to retailers and service providers online as well as via a contactless terminal.

Mobile payments

In Latin America, transaction volumes are set to rise by 400% as smartphone penetration and access to digital financial services increases.

“Latin America has seen rapid development in its digital infrastructure in recent years, shown by the increased investment into supporting digital transformation, as well as an increasingly favourable regulatory environment. This will further drive payment digitalisation in the region,” suggested Research author Susannah Hampton.

Analysts have urged mobile digital wallet providers to capitalise on this demand by offering value-added services, such as loyalty schemes, and personal finance management that can be key differentiators in the market.

However, one barrier to adoption remains security. The report urges vendors to increase support for biometric authentication to ease concerns.

Nearly all card transactions in the UK are contactless, according to Barclaycard, a trend driven by convenience and the need for more hygienic options during the pandemic. The government has reacted by increasing the limit to £100.

Steve McCaskill is TechRadar Pro's resident mobile industry expert, covering all aspects of the UK and global news, from operators to service providers and everything in between. He is a former editor of Silicon UK and journalist with over a decade's experience in the technology industry, writing about technology, in particular, telecoms, mobile and sports tech, sports, video games and media.