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EDITOR’S BLOG 22-06-16 Maybe this will get mobile payments going?

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Skeldon2014BWsmallMobile payments has long promised so much – not least to the telemedia industry, where it gave carrier billing a shot in the arm. But, to date, not that many consumers are actually using it.

According to the Walker Sands Future of Retail Study, 44% of people have at some point used a peer-to-peer mobile payment service, but repeat use is low and still more than half haven’t.

But could that all be set to change? Apple has introduced Apple Pay – its ‘mobile’ payments offering – to websites accessed through Safari.

So what? You cry… well this maybe only something that those locked in Apple’s iPhone-Mac walled garden can use, but it will make payments for them online and on mobile sites much quicker and give them an option that is way better than even PayPal.

And this could be what catapults mobile payments into the mainstream. All those happy Apple users are likely to have been the early adopters of m-payments anyway (hence why Apple launched Apple Pay in the first place – well that and owning payments), but sticking it on the web will make it even more compelling to use.

I don’t know about you, but I already use PayPal as much as possible online as it’s so much easier than paying in any other way other than Amazon Pay on Amazon. Having something even quicker and more secure will be even more compelling.

And once all my poor Android using friends see it in action they too will want to start to use it mobile to pay for online.

Android Pay already boasts more users than Apple Pay – At 19%, Android Pay tops the list of mobile payments currently used by consumers, followed by a retailer’s mobile app (12%) and Apple Pay (11%), according to Walker Sands – it won’t be long before Android is offering the same sort of functionality for mobile payments on the web.

And then there is PayPal and Amzon pay: they aren’t going to sit around and let this happen without upping the ante. After all they have a ton of customers to hang on to.

All this together makes for a compelling case for mainstream mobile payments.

Carrier billing has a natural role to play in this too. With mainstream attention now on simple and quick ways to pay online using the mobile phone getting mainstream attention from Apple et al, now is the time to push how carrier billing can fulfill a similar role for those wanting digital goods and interactions or those that don’t have an iPhone and a Mac.

The case for carrier billing continues to grow and will do so for many months to come, now is the time to come in from the cold, sort out the issues within the MNO community around it and make it happen.

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