The success or failure of the mobile payment industry may depend on the U.S. version's ability to emulate Japan in 2011, according to a report from Javelin Strategy and Research. Overseas, taking on credit card debt using a mobilephone has become the norm, and companies must reassure consumers that this system is secure effective.
"In Japan, mobile wallets play a broad role in consumers' lives," said Beth Robertson, Javelin director of payments research. "An individual's mobile phone might contain their airline boarding pass, help track their loyalty programs, unlock their home, pay for a taxi or soda out of a vending machine and be used to purchase items at a store."
Javelin found that nearly half of consumers are hesitant to take on credit card debt in this way over concerns for the security of the transaction, the report said. However, one-third iPhone users say they are likely or very likely to try it.
A number of companies have tested systems that allow consumers to take on credit card debt using their smartphones in the last few months.