Australia; no longer the outback for mobile payments

A new global study from MasterCard Worldwide shows Australia is on track for a cashless future – but the country still has obstacles to overcome before mobile payments become the norm. 

The MasterCard Mobile Payments Readiness Index (MPRI) reveals Australia now sits middle of the pack globally in our readiness for mobile payments, with 17 percent of Australians surveyed willing to use a mobile device to pay for goods in-store. The MPRI measures a country’s readiness for three types of mobile payment – person to person (P2P), mobile e-commerce (m-commerce) and mobile payments at the point of sale (POS).

The index found those leading the charge toward a mobile payments future in Australia are young, affluent men aged 18-34 years who recognise the value in using platforms like PayPass and the soon to be launched PayPass Wallet Services.

The global index scores Australia 35.3 in mobile payment readiness, just above the global average of 33.2. Singapore, considered the most advanced country in mobile payment readiness scored 45.6 – the closest nation to the optimum readiness target of 60 points. M-commerce usage in Australia sits at 13 percent, compared to a 9 percent index average.

The results follow a recent MasterCard Australia online shopper survey which revealed 71 percent of Australians have access to the internet from their mobile phones, but in contrast only five percent claim to have made a recent purchase. However, 31 percent of Australians surveyed are familiar with using a mobile device to surf and shop the internet, compared with an index average of 20 percent

MasterCard Australasia, Head of Market Development and Innovation, Matt Barr says it is these types of findings that confirm there is a long way to go to improve upon the current customer experience. “While there is work to be done, it’s Australia’s willingness to embrace new technology that saw it chosen as one of the first markets globally to launch PayPass Wallet Services. Australia is a sophisticated market which demands only the best payment services. When PayPass Wallet Services hit our shores later this year consumers will enjoy a new level of convenience, with mobile payments made possible at the push of a button. Whether it’s online, in-store, or on a smartphone, PayPass Wallet Services will change the way Australians pay.”

For Australia to advance toward a mobile payments future, MasterCard believes momentum needs to come from all quarters including government, telcos, banks, technology providers and retailers. JB Hi-Fi is one of the first retailers to get onboard with PayPass Wallet Services.

“As Australia’s largest leading technology and entertainment retailer we’re obsessed about a great customer experience and the payments piece is an important part of this experience,” said Richard Murray, CFO, JB Hi-Fi. “The future of retailing is about a harmonious experience both in-store and online, and with PayPass Wallet Services we feel we’ll be able to provide innovative payment solutions to our customers to deliver on this.”

Matt Barr says while retailers are showing their support for new technology, it’s important other key players put their full support behind mobile payments and come together to collaborate. “In order to realise the full potential of mobile payments it is vital for key stakeholders to play their part. NFC enabled handsets are a critical piece in this puzzle. We’re currently waiting on Telcos to declare their strategy and provide the crucial infrastructure required for mobile payments to flourish.”

To download an executive summary of the MasterCard Mobile Payments Readiness Index, view an Interactive Global Map of the data or study the findings of the 34 countries that make up the Index, please visit http://mobilereadiness.mastercard.com.

 

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