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Will Mobile Wallets Surpass Traditional Payments in the Next Decade?

In recent years, global mobile payments have emerged as a driving force in reshaping the financial landscape, propelled by government endorsements of digital transactions. The surge in digital payments is projected to experience a robust growth rate, with a staggering +14% CAGR anticipated between 2023 and 2030, ultimately reaching a value in the trillions of Euros.

Governments across the globe are actively championing digital payments as a means to foster transparency, drive economic progress, and minimize reliance on traditional cash transactions. However, amidst the promising growth, the industry faces challenges such as the lack of internet infrastructure in remote areas and concerns related to fraud, including identity theft, phishing attacks, and potential misuse of cross-border transactions.

Our upcoming report “Global Mobile Payment Methods 2024” sheds light on the changing landscape, indicating a significant surge in contactless card transactions, projected to surpass EUR 9 trillion in value by 2027. Additionally, virtual card transactions are expected to soar past EUR 8 trillion by the same year, showcasing a remarkable CAGR from 2022 onwards. Moreover, the digital wallet sector and global QR code payment transactions are poised for significant growth from 2023 to 2028, with the value of digital wallets nearly doubling from 2023.

The year 2023 marked a turning point as Asia-Pacific emerged as the leader in digital payment transaction value and volume, contributing over 50% to the global market. This growth can be attributed to the active promotion of digital payment methods by various governments in the region, aiming to reduce cash usage, increase financial inclusion, and drive economic growth.

Digital Wallets Paving the Way

Consumer sentiment towards mobile wallets is overwhelmingly optimistic, with a survey revealing that nearly half of respondents in LATAM, North America, and EMEA believe that mobile wallets will fully replace card and cash payments within the next ten years. In the European payment landscape, digital wallets have already secured a prominent position as one of the top online payment methods, with more than half of respondents expressing a preference for this mobile payment method as of September 2022.

Interestingly, alternative payment methods like Buy Now, Pay Later (BNPL) experienced slower adoption during the same period. Examining preferences within digital wallets, a survey revealed that over 50% of respondents in Europe valued speed the most, while around a quarter considered security as the utmost important attribute.

MENA Region: A Digital Payment Hub

Turning our attention to the MENA region, projections indicate a significant shift in online transactions by 2025. It is forecasted that over two-thirds of the total online transaction value will originate from mobile commerce, with digital wallets contributing around 20% of online spending.

As we navigate through this digital payment growth, the global landscape is evolving, driven by technological advancements, government initiatives, and changing consumer preferences. The future appears promising, yet challenges persist, urging stakeholders to collaborate in creating a secure and inclusive digital payment ecosystem for the benefit of all.