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BizReport : Mobile Marketing : July 11, 2012

IDC: One-third of Americans have used mobile payments

Mobile payments have come from nowhere to be used today by over a third of Americans, according to the figures from IDC Financial Insights' latest Consumer Payments Survey.

by Helen Leggatt

A year ago just 19% of respondents to IDC's Consumer Payments Survey had used their mobile phone to make a purchase.

This year that figure has risen to 34%.

IDC found that mobile apps were used for most mobile payments with almost half of those who had made a point-of-sale purchase using one, far more than had used contactless methods or SMS.

"One finding that was surprising was how much POS purchases people reported making," said Aaron McPherson, financial insights practice director at IDC. "Over a third of the people that had made a mobile payment said they had done it at the point of sale."

Of those that had made a mobile payment, more than half used PayPal Mobile (56%), with Amazon Payments and Apple's iTunes service tied at around 40%.

"What we are seeing is a lot of experimentation and one-off types of things," he said. "A lot of that may be the Starbucks app, which would count as POS and has significant penetration," added McPherson.

While apps and online digital goods are easily purchased via mobile, surprising stats from the study reveal that more people reported buying physical goods with their mobile phones than online digital goods.

Tags: mobile apps, mobile market, mobile marketing, mobile payments, payment options, Point of Sale

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