With companies racing to take advantage of new technologies facilitating payment services over mobile phones, most executives worldwide believe the use of cellphones for financial transactions will gain widespread acceptance within four years, according to a KPMG survey.
According to the survey conducted among nearly 1,000 executives primarily in the financial services, technology, telecom and retail industries globally, 83 per cent of the respondents believe that the use of mobile phones for payment will be a mainstream practice within four years.
In fact, 46 per cent of the respondents believe mobile payments will be mainstream within the next two years. Furthermore, 9 per cent of the respondents saw payments over mobile phones as mainstream even today.
"We believe that exploding smartphone growth and myriad opportunities will grow mobile payments at a much faster rate than our respondents anticipate," the Global Chair of KPMG''s Technology, Communication and Entertainment Practice, Gary Matuszak, said.
"A wide variety of payments is ready for adoption, as several key players already provide or are rolling out mobile payments and interest among consumers in utilising mobile payments is growing, in line with the industry's readiness to deploy them," he added.
The 2011 KPMG Mobile Payments Outlook said that 72 per cent of the executives surveyed opined that mobile payments are already important, or will be reasonably so in the future, with companies already looking to leverage its potential, even as m-banking has gained significantly greater traction.
What is more, 58 per cent of the respondents said they already have a mobile payments strategy in place, the survey noted.
While the majority of the business leaders surveyed believe that consumers' primary concerns when using mobile devices are security and privacy, they believe other factors are more critical to a successful mobile payment strategy.
Specifically, 81 per cent believe convenience/accessibility is the most important attribute, followed by simplicity/ease of use (73 per cent), security (57 per cent) and low cost (43 per cent).
At the same time, business leaders globally view security as the main challenge to developing a mobile payment strategies. Technology is regarded a distant second, followed by privacy.
"The business leaders understand that when it comes to consumers choosing a provider based on security, reputation can make the difference and any damage to a business' brand can prove costly, even to the extent of being a showstopper.
"As a result, leading businesses are adopting multiple approaches to alleviate customers' privacy and security concerns," KPMG US Digital Services Leader in the TCE practice Sanjaya Krishna said.