More than 41.5 billion financial transactions will be carried out by mobile phone by the end of 2011 as unbanked consumers adopt the technology to access banking services, according to a study by Juniper Research.
Juniper predicts that 612 million mobile phone users will conduct financial transactions with their handsets by 2011, generating over $587 billion. Annual global mobile banking transactions will soar from 2.7 billion in 2007 to 37 billion by 2011.
The study cites the millions of mobile phone users in developing countries who do not have bank accounts or credit cards as a massive potential market.
The remittance and money transfer market will prove particularly popular, although Juniper warns providers that issues surrounding legislation designed to combat money laundering make it a costly exercise.
The Far East and China will see the biggest adoption, with 250 million mobile phone users conducting financial transactions by 2011.
In the developed world, Juniper predicts teenagers who cannot access regular financial services will drive adoption.
The figures are conservative compared to a report published earlier this year by market research outfit IMS Research which predicted that 884 million users of contactless mobile payments, mobile banking and over the air (OTA) transactions will complete a total 62 billion transactions between them in 2012.