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Social media conversations reveal surging demand for mobile payments

People now expect “always on” ability to pay by card or contactless in new survey

Contactless payments at the Olympics

People expect mobile payments to be "on-demand" in the same way as watching a movie or TV show via the internet, according to social media conversations identified in a new survey.

In the latest Mastercard Digital Payments Study, mobile payments represented more than 27% of the total social media conversation around payments, with total mentions increasing 20% over the prior year. Mentions of mobile wallets more than doubled since 2017.

The survey, now in its sixth year, the study, developed in partnership with PRIME Research, analysed more than 3.3 million conversations from the past year across several social media channels, including Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and Weibo.

In the past year alone, such mentions on social media increased by 30% since the last study. Today, nearly 20% of all mobile commerce payments are focused on contactless payments and mobile wallets. Beyond these primary focus areas, consumers are interested in how artificial intelligence, QR payments and wearable payments will impact their lives.

The study found that nearly all (95%) mobile wallet conversations were favourable, with 30% of posts praising the speed, efficiency and simplicity of the current products.

A rise in mobile payments has also been seen in markets across Asia and Africa. India was the most dominant market 30% in discussing the use and potential of mobile wallets, particularly around public transit and the use of QR-based payments. The US was a distant second in consumer's discussions on mobile wallets (10%).

Around 111 million conversations were around biometrics, driven primarily by an interest in voice payments and fingerprint scanners. While tokenisation, and its critical role in supporting and protecting payments of all types, was featured in conversations reaching a potential audience of 11 million viewers.

While breaking news around data breaches drove one-fifth of data-related conversations, another 13% of these conversations noted the potential of digital security technologies, including blockchain, tokenisation and biometrics.

Rose Beaumont, senior vice president of European communications and sales enablement at Mastercard, said that on-demand isn't just an expectation for cable and content provider; "it's a reality for how people say they want to shop and pay every day".

"In this year's study, we see just how much these fast, convenient and secure ways to pay are being embraced across all markets. And, it points to the continued interest and demand for years to come," she added.

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