Earlier this year, Rambus welcomed leading payments experts from around the world to our Rotterdam offices for the Mobey Forum member meeting. During the networking sessions, we spoke to a range of industry experts to get their thoughts on where the mobile payments industry is now, and where it is heading in the future.
So what were the key takeaways?
Mobile wallet adoption is going to be all about the end user
For too long, the industry has been focused on the product rather than the end user. Banks, MNOs, retailers and others have had to work hard to overcome various technical challenges to make mobile wallets a reality. This has seen the end users and their habits fall out of view. But this is changing. The OEM Pays are rolling out around the world and are realizing what many in the industry have been saying for some time – payments alone are not a big enough digital wallet USP to get consumers to leave their cards at home and ‘go mobile’.
The driving force behind mobile wallet adoption:
Mobile wallets need to bring the value
After a lot of work, we are now at a point where consumer trust is growing. As more banks sign up to the OEM Pays and consumers become more familiar with digital payments, it will become less important to promote the security.
Added-value is now the key differentiator for wallets. Most wallets enable contactless payments, but few go beyond that. To be successful, wallets must seamlessly integrate multiple functions like loyalty, gift card value and payments. And this is just the start, as consumers come to expect functionality such as tailored offers, augmented reality in-store product info, in-app checkout and order-ahead. These features are the new battleground.
Once these features are in place, the next big challenge for players like retailers is to drive meaningful consumer adoption. We’re going to see a lot of creative campaigns, initiatives and techniques to convince consumers to use digital wallets for the first time, showing them that they are easy to use and can bring value to everyday life.
Key ingredients for a successful mobile wallet:
Moving from payment to ‘buying experience’
In an increasingly competitive market, retailers are looking to digital wallets to differentiate their in-store experience. They have an opportunity to bring a range of functionality together into a single branded wallet to give consumers a rich and value-packed buying experience. Contextual information can be given to customers as they move through stores building even more loyalty.
The role of the mobile wallet driving the buying experience:
Perfecting the buying experience
If you go to any of the big payments conferences, you’ll encounter the words ‘invisible’ and ‘seamless’ at every turn. Digital wallets should be about the services, not the transaction. Otherwise, they don’t offer much more than your physical one. With payments becoming just one part of a much broader experience, there is a drive to push it into the background. Much more work is now being done on UI and UX design to make wallets simple, engaging and joyful. This is how we drive adoption.
What does the perfect buying experience look like:
Mobile services are converging but, paradoxically, to get there we are going to see even more fragmentation. PSD2 is going to see more new players entering the market, P2P payments are growing outside of the card networks, OEM Pays will continue to grow and retailers will increasingly own in-store experiences with their own wallets. The common theme, however, is that the winners will be those who put their consumers first.
How will consumers pay in 2020: