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Contactless payments reaching new heights

Online, mobile and contactless payments annual value will hit $3.6 trillion (£2.5tr) in 2016, a new report by Juniper Research suggests.

That represents a significant, 20 per cent jump, year-on-year, as in 2015, the annual transaction value hit $3 trillion (£2.08tr).

According to Juniper Research’s new study, entitled Digital Payment Strategies: Online, Mobile & Contactless 2016-2020, the market is set to continue on its growth path, as infrastructure expands and the card payment limits in key markets are increased.

Cards will be the main means of payment, grabbing hold of a 90 per cent market share in the next five years, but near field communications (NFC) payment options, deployed by high-profile players such as Apple and Samsung, will boost the overall consumer awareness of the technology.

Another interesting trend has been spotted in the report – the push social media companies are doing into the eRetail space.

Companies such as Facebook, Instagram or Pinterest have already introduced the ‘buy’ button, allowing users to buy stuff directly through the social media channel with a tap of a few buttons.

According to research author Dr Windsor Holden, “Facebook has already rolled out a P2P service linked to its Messenger service in the US, and we would expect additional deployments in other core markets over the next year or so.”

But the transformation won’t stop there – it will expand further into the P2P (person to person) payment space. The report mentioned China’s WeChat, which saw 32 billion ‘red envelope’ monetary gifts sent in February.