Future of payments

This article is part of a series of articles on the future of payments. Read more.

Need to know

  • According to the Global Mobile Payment Market report, the market is projected to grow at an annual rate of 33% between 2019 and 2026, reaching US $457 billion in 2026
  • Given that today more people have access to mobile devices (96%) than bank accounts (89%), it’s no surprise that established financial institutions, including central banks, are increasingly forming partnerships with mobile payment providers or developing their own services
  • According to GlobalWebIndex, markets like Thailand (56%) and China (51%) are at the forefront of the mobile payment trend (after Denmark). Their ‘late mover advantage’ in the financial ecosystem has allowed them to transition from a primarily cash-driven economy into a digital payments hub, with mobile at the centre of this
  • Mobile payments are seen as the preserve of fast-growth developing markets such as China and India. But Europe is slowly catching up with APAC. Denmark’s Danske Bank’s MobilePay and Austria’s Bankomatkarte Mobil are two examples of European success
  • Foreign players like Alipay, the Chinese payment platform, are planning to make the UK one of its biggest international markets for mobile payments. Alipay is currently accepted in most of Chinatown, as well as Harrods, Selfridges and Heathrow’s shops among others
  • PayPal has established itself as the top service in 31 markets, most of which are mature, key competitor acquisitions have helped secure this position. But in fast-growth markets, local players such as AliPay, WeChat Pay and PayTM dominate
  • The fragmented industry landscape resulting from complex regulation has led to a situation whereby homegrown mobile payment operators come to the fore in emerging economies
  • Hong Kong has emerged as one of the most contested battlegrounds between regional and western mobile payment providers in 2018 with western payment providers Apple Pay and PayPal being overtaken by regional providers WeChat Pay and Alipay
  • Next generation ‘super apps’ control everything from payments and insurance, to food and tickets