Mobile payments in China are soaring.
China’s central bank transferred nearly US$1.59 trillion in funds last year and
registered 1.67 billion transactions.
The People’s Bank of China has published statistics
showing a remarkable 213% year-over-year growth and an over 300 percent rise in
denomination. For the sake of comparison, e-payments from desktop computers
totaled $1.77 trillion. The latter increased by less than 30% in 2013 - significantly
more slowly than mobile.
That’s likely because 75% of China’s 564M person (and
growing) online population accesses
the Web via mobile devices. Smartphone and tablet use is steadily increasing
while desktop PCs and laptop computers are becoming less popular.
Mobile payments in China are being used for e-commerce,
which has boomed
over the past several years. In-app payments are likewise experiencing
remarkable growth. Emoticon stickers and games are immensely
popular among China’s popular WeChat
messaging app users, which now number over 500 million.
There’s also immense potential for mobile advertising. The
rapid growth of Chinese online represents an unparalleled marketing opportunity
for global brands to tap into an audience that may not have been exposed to
their products before.
China’s embrace of mobile payments is significant, because
it’s the world’s largest laboratory for what a cashless society might look like
and what solutions will stick as fragmentation gives way to standards.
This post was originally published on Smartplanet.com