2013 Mobile Payments Predictions Already Coming True

In late December, we began witnessing an anticipated daily barrage of “lists” featuring 2013 predictions regarding mobile industry developments that would supposedly transpire inside the next twelve months.

Six weeks into the new year, it’s apparent that the most universal prediction is already on the path to being realized.

In Chetan Sharma’s January 2013 mobile predictions survey, 35 percent of respondents indicated mobile payments will be the biggest standout in mobile breakthroughs this year.

“Our industry seems fascinated with the potential of mobile payments and voted it to be the top mobile applications and services category for 2013,” the report reads.

So far in 2013, the high expectations for mobile payments haven’t been for naught. Prosper Insights & Analytics says that as of late January, three out of four users (77.1 percent) conducted banking activities using a smartphone or tablet this year. What’s more, 57.9 percent admit to engaging in shopping behaviors via mobile.

These are some of the most impressive stats we’ve seen in mobile payments to date. And the bold trend-line pointing up and to the right shows no sign of changing course.

“Three years ago, mobile payments/commerce seemed to be the ‘blue ocean’ opportunity but financial guys have firmly protected their turf, at least for now. Hopes were high for operator led initiatives but the enthusiasm has tapered off,” Sharma said in January’s report. “Startups like Square are doing more to disrupt the payments space than some of the established players. The only exception is PayPal, which has so far been able to create good distance with the competitors.”

If the trend continues, millions of people the world over will be able to forget the best advice Karl Malden ever gave them. Indeed, it is finally becoming safe to leave home without American Express. Rather than cash or plastic, soon the smartphone may be all one needs to purchase anything the day ahead requires.