The global mobile commerce market - excluding entertainment purchases - will become a $40bn industry by 2009, fuelled by growing volumes of micropayments, according to a study by UK-based Juniper Research.
Juniper - a provider of research services to the telecoms industry - says large numbers of micropayments for items such as tickets will make up the vast majority of sales via mobile phones. An average consumer in Western Europe will make approximately 28 mobile transactions a year by 2009, with the average transaction expected to be worth approximately $3.
Although the current m-commerce market is dominated by mobile entertainment services such as ringtones and games, the purchase of tickets - such as car parking and cinema tickets - using mobile phones will become a major application area by 2007 with revenues totalling $39bn by 2009. Retail point of sale (POS) mobile transactions will be slower and worth only $299m by 2009.
Marc Ambasna-Jones, author of the study, says the key for m-commerce growth is simplicity: "Will it be easier to use than a credit card for example? Can it ever be more convenient than cash? Ultimately the success or failure of mobile commerce, either macro or micro payments, will come down to this."
Juniper says RFID and infra red technologies will impact the evolution of handsets to payment devices, but the development of global standards will continue to be slow.