No more pockets – the future of mobile payments

25-10-2017 | Industry news

Mobile payments, have you ever made one? Chances are you do them weekly, if not daily? Maybe you have mobile banking on your phone? Perhaps you even have a wearable device that allows you to pay with a tap.

There are so many different types of mobile payments out there, think of mobile wallets where you load money into your digital wallet, or NFC chips inside mobile phones and wearables, facial recognition or fingerprinting for security authentication. Technologies that, up until fairly recently were more likely to be seen in old sci-fi movies, have become part of our everyday lives. But when will they be the first thing that comes to mind when we think of payments? If it’s up to new disruptive payment companies, cash and card payments will soon be a thing of the past.


Alternative Payment Methods still far away

Most people still leave the house with a physical wallet or at the very least a bank card or two. The real acceptance to leave the old and trusted payment methods behind to truly adopt an alternative is still far away. Interestingly, Africa seems to be a frontrunner in this adoption of mobile payments due to less than desirable infrastructure in rural areas. However, this reason does not translate well across western regions.


“we might change the entire concept of money”


Countries that we traditionally consider to be early adopters of new payment technologies haven’t abandoned old methods yet. The possibility of earning loyalty points and discounts make using certain mobile wallets slightly more attractive, but apart from this, the current offerings don’t add much value for the consumer. It will be interesting to see how companies like Apple Pay develop their footprint in this old-fashioned industry.

And what’s next? Perhaps after that, we might change the entire concept of money, trading in the number of years we have to live instead of currency? Scary thought… But for now, get ready for your traditional wallet to be left to gather dust at the bottom of the closet. A bagless, pocketless future awaits us all.

Do you think mobile payments will take over cash and cards in the next 5 years?  Follow our discussion on LinkedIn