In the U.S., the launch of Apple Pay seems revolutionary, but for users of telecom supported M-Pesa, mobile payments are old hat.
Although Gartner projects $325 billion in mobile payments worldwide this year, much of it will be conducted through older technologies such as text messaging.
Kenya’s M-Pesa, for example, is practically ubiquitous, even in a land of feature phones. Gartner analyst Sandy Shen notes that while Apple Pay is interesting, Google Wallet and other payment initiatives are falling flat.
Gartner says it’s sticking with its forecast from May 2013, which anticipates that tap-to-pay technology like Apple Pay will make up a small fraction of all mobile payments.
“Cash and cards are convenient and accepted in all locations, so mobile phone payment needs a better reason to persuade people to make the switch,” Shen told Bloomberg in an email