Mobile NFC payments and ticketing are making our lives easier

Last updated: 29 October 2019

The Wu-Tang Clan famously rapped ‘cash rules everything around me’ in a single from their 1993 breakout debut album. But just two decades later, the importance of physical money is well into decline. And if projections are to be believed, we might not be too far from a cashless society.  62% of Americans think this will happen in their lifetimes, and in the UK cash payments are sliding—now making up less than half of all payments. There has also been a radical transformation in how we access public transport, with huge efficiencies driven by authorities embracing technology.

NFC is at the heart of these grand societal shifts. We’ve spoken about the mass adoption of contactless cards before, but it’s the rise in mobile payments and ticketing that is the key here. It is forecast that we will spend $769 billion this year on our mobiles globally, up from $550 billion last year—a rise of 42%. It isn’t outside the realms of possibility that these growth figures continue until a tipping point is reached, where people will find it as strange to see people using their cards as it is to now see someone writing a check.

It’s also worth noting how there are dozens of cities around the world now offering NFC ticketing, with adoption increasing each month as new services come online, and people realize their smartphone is the only ticket they need.

In China, handset manufacturers Xiaomi and Huawei have launched their NFC payment services (Huawei Pay and Mi Pay) both with China Union Bank utilizing biometric authentication and tokenization for security. Meanwhile in the States, a recent survey suggests that 89% of iPhone users have heard of Apple Pay, 64% of Android users have heard of Android Pay, and 54% of Samsung users have heard of Samsung Pay. These are encouraging figures, especially in driving adoption and awareness in two of the world’s largest mobile markets. The popularization of fingerprint recognition is also noteworthy, satisfying the security requirements of payment networks, and being simple enough for consumers to understand and use.

Gemalto has been working with NFC technology and services for years, championing its convenience and security, and are delighted that it’s taking off in such a concerted fashion. Some still have reservations about the technology so to reassure those thinking about deploying related services, we developed a guide that dispels 7 misconceptions around Mobile NFC.

Now that the technical infrastructure is in place and consumers are increasingly aware of the services on offer, we need to move to the next level to drive acceptance and wider adoption. We’ve learned a number of lessons over multiple global projects to ensure the investment needed to deploy services and solutions is successful. These include everything from understanding existing infrastructure, to perfecting the customer experience and the best ways to communicate with end-users.

For the full insight into how to ensure the long-term success of the mobile NFC payment ecosystem, please visit this link: Five key success factors for mobile NFC deployment.

If you have any questions, or would like to find out more, please get in touch either @GemaltoMobile or below in the comments.

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