• Mobile Payment in Italy

    When talking about mobile payment, everybody knows what it is about (even though maybe not in a technical way); each and everyone of us knows that we can pay through our mobile phone and, since we can trust that method a lot more, it reassures us about its cyber security. In a market where digital payment through paypal amount to 220 billion euros, mobile payment in Italy amounts to to 6.7 billion euros (60% more compared to 2016), in the amount of 14.6% of digital payments (46 billion euros).

    "Italians allured by new digital payment: market reaches 46 billion euros": this was the title of an article by corrierecomunicazioni.it of the beginning of march 2018; it was about new payment methods: as we already said it a 46-billion-euros-worth market, 21% more compared to "old style" digital payment method (with credit card). An astonishing news, since it's estimated that, up to 2020 the value will be more than doubled (it will be a 100-billion-worth market).

     

    What is mobile payment?

    Let's take a step back to the root of the word itself. When talking about mobile payment we are making a reference to the purchase and payment of goods and services (digital content included, through our smartphone). There are two different kinds of mobile payment: remote and proximity modality (remote, or payment "from a distance"; proximity, means payment "close"to the device)

     

    Remote Mobile Payments

    Remote Mobile Payment involves everything we buy from our smartphones, it may be the usb plug from Amazon, or either the car parking through an app. After many years of fast growth, this mobile payment method's growth lets up sensibly in 2017, making an amount of 800 billion euros worth in transactions with a growth rate of 35%, thus confirming the stabilization of this particular market share. The most interesting news come indeed from the proximity mobile payments.

     

    Proximity Mobile Payments

    Proximity Method of Mobile Payment allows you to pay what we buy in physical shops through a special "reader" that can read what we but simply by swiping our smartphone. This particular payment method took over and it registered a very fast growth (70 billion euros-worth transactions were made in 2017, instead of the barely 10-billion-worth transactions that were registered back in 2016).

    This growth can be linked to two technological fronts:

    - NFC payments (Near Field Communication) where we can find Apple Pay, Samsung Pay, PosteMobile, PAyGO by Intesa Sanpaolo, Monhey by Unicredit, Nexi Pay, BNL Pay, Hello! Pay;

    -  Payments that use a different technology compared to NFC, such as geolocalization and cellphone number, such as Satispay, Jiffy (which as recently added NFC Payment method too), HYPE and Tinaba – there are some others that prefer to use QR coding to make the transaction, such as Mobysign, or the solutions proposed by the owners (Autogrill, Coop Liguria, Iper, Eni Pay, and so on).

     

    More generally, in Italy the number of Mobile payments users continues to grow, along with their satisfaction (in spite of the stabilization of remote payments), as well as owners (especially bigger ones) that have understood the value of this solutions by now, preparing the check-out points and training the employees.

     

    Mobile Payments future in Italy

    The world of online payments is changing rapidly and continuously, due to the increased competition and to the development of new technologies. The Mobile Payment and Commerce Observatory studied 281 international start ups that are operating in the field, thus identifying new guidelines to keep an eye on throughout the next few years:

    - Mobile Wallet connects digital payment and fidelity card;

    - Biometric authorizes the payment only if the biometric traits of the person trying to make it matches the data;

    - P2P and Instant Payment: they allow a transaction between private citizens in less than 10 seconds;

    - Mobility (let's think about how we need our smartphone when trying to get a bike through a bikesharing app);

    - Internet Of Things (Remember our article?) where clever objects connected to the web will be able to initialize a remote payment. The fridge from the future will be able to recognize its content through video cameras and will be food shopping all by itself.

    - Vocal assistants and chatbot, Facebook being one of many.

    - Blockchain, of which we have largely talked about in this article.

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