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David Williams
Global Director of Sales, Research
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Mobile Payments: Opportunity in the Run-Up to 4G
The idea of mobile payment systems began taking shape in the early 2000s, primarily overseas in developing African and southeast Asian economies. Since those first deployments, other developments have made operators consider the growth opportunities of supporting mobile payments. Subscribers began buying digital content, such as ringtones, from their phones. People would buy innocuous items such as horoscopes by texting messages to predetermined codes. Operators began observing people using their phones to pay for things.

Mobile payment systems present unique growth opportunities for handset manufacturers and mobile operators opportunities that are sure to increase as operators begin to deploy 4G networks and services. Handset manufacturers have relied upon making feature-rich phones that can support faster download and upload rates in relatively small form factors. Mobile operators have focused on acquiring subscribers in light of falling rates for voice and data services.

Despite the success of mobile services, handset manufacturers, mobile network operators (MNOs), and mobile virtual network operators (MVNOs) face challenges in finding ways to take advantage of growth opportunities. MNOs and MVNOs must determine how to sustain their businesses in light of declining rates for consumer voice and data services, while handset manufacturers seek to capitalize on the next great feature to increase their share in a market driven by volume sales. Presenting a significant growth opportunity is the emergence of mobile payment systems.

The lack of a standardized solution does encourage further development and investigation, which ultimately benefits the potential users of mobile payment systems. The concept of conducting financial transaction via my mobile phone has yet to be embraced by all worldwide, so any further innovation that can occur in this space can only help to increase awareness, and subsequently adoption. Until then, the mobile payment systems space will become increasingly crowded, offering potential customers more options than imaginable.

Mobile Payments: Opportunity in the Run-Up to 4G evaluates the current state of mobile payment systems in terms of adoption rate, applications they are supporting worldwide, and the major components of the emerging mobile payment system architectures. It identifies and analyzes companies that are offering various technologies and/or platforms targeting customers that want to implement a "mobile payment" system and the components that enable such a system. The report also evaluates those companies' current offerings and discusses the challenges they face as they pursue opportunities as mobile networks progress toward 4G implementation.

Sample research data from the report is shown in the excerpts below:
Table of Contents (4gltei0710_toc.pdf)
The MNO/MVNO payment system is trending to be the most popular in developing countries, where the populations are unable to open a bank account, apply for credit cards, or have no access to a banking infrastructure. The following excerpt shows a "generic" mobile payment system architecture and the typical interactions between the components that can make up such a system.
[click on the image above for the full excerpt]
Companies profiled in this report include: Aepona Ltd.; Arcot Systems Inc.; Boku Inc.; CellTrust Corp.; eServGlobal Ltd. (London: ESG; ASX: ESV); Gemalto NV; Inside Contactless; Luup International Ltd.; mBlox Inc.; Mitek Systems Inc.; Mozido LLC; Obopay Inc.; PayPal Inc.; Syniverse Technologies Inc. (NYSE: SVR); Sybase 365, a subsidiary of Sybase Inc. (NYSE: SY); and Think Computer Corp.
Total pages: 19
To view reports you will need Adobe's Acrobat Reader. If you do not have it, it can be obtained for free at the Adobe web site.
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