"Mobile Is Everything."
That was the theme of Mobile World Congress 2016.
And as MPD CEO Karen Webster wrote in her column this week: "Mobile is everything because just about everyone in the world now has a mobile device ... Mobile is also everything because those devices are a natural and essential extension of every aspect of our lives."
But, of course, there's a caveat. Even in the year 2016, which, by many standards, has been assumed to be the "year of mobile pay."
"As transformational as mobile has been so far, when it comes to commerce and payments, well, we’re still very much making our way to first base," Webster wrote.
Still, as we saw out of mobile's big week at MWC 2016 in Barcelona, whether or not mobile truly is everything (yet), there's a lot of ground being made up from the top players in mobile pay. At least, that's what we gathered from this week's news packed with announcements from Samsung, PayPal, MasterCard, Visa, Chase, Starbucks and Apple.
To show just how much mobile pay is making its mark in the "mobile is everything" mindset, PYMNTS broke down 12 figures that show how mobile pay made its way to center stage this week.
$500M | The amount of transactions Samsung Pay has processed in six months
In terms of the mobile payments ecosystem, Samsung probably created the most buzz at MWC this week after it was announced just how many consumers use its mobile payments service.
Samsung released figures early in the week revealing that Samsung Pay has roughly 5 million registered users and has had more than $500 million processed through the service since its release last September. That's through eligible credit and debit cards from more than 70 major and regional banks supported through the offering.
In the coming months, users can expect to see Samsung Pay reaching China, followed by Australia, Brazil, Singapore, Spain and the U.K. later this year. Canada is also expected to be a new addition on the company’s global expansion roadmap for Samsung Pay.
Samsung also made news with the rollout of the new Samsung Galaxy S7 and Galaxy S7 edge smartphones — two more Samsung Pay-compatible phones.
140 Million | Number of users PayPal can now access through its latest telecom partnerships
To be successful in the global remittance market, it means achieving two things: massive distribution and getting to scale. And for the hundreds of millions of consumers who are turning to mobile for their financial needs — to pay bills, to pay a merchant, to buy in-app, to pay online — PayPal's series of announcements showed how it's giving third-party platforms access to a plethora of commerce options. And vice versa.
PayPal is also working with telecom providers in Mexico (Telcel) and Brazil (Claro) on their digital wallets to help their more than 140 million active users manage and make purchases via mobile devices.
“The reason the telcos want to work with us is because we are the only payment third-party platform that gets them ubiquity everywhere the consumer is using their mobile device,” Anuj Nayar, global head of product communications at PayPal, told PYMNTS in an interview. “They want to work with one partner to get all of that."
42 | Number of countries Xoom users can send money to
Xoom's footprint got a little bigger this week. It was announced early in the week that PayPal and M-Pesa are teaming up to enable the automatic deposit of remittances into Kenyans’ M-Pesa accounts via Xoom.
What this deal secures is the ability for a Xoom user in the U.S. to directly deposit funds into an account of friends/family in Kenya via their M-Pesa account — without the need of another means to gain access to those funds.
This follows on the heels of a similar announcement last week with a new bill payments service in the Philippines that allows people in the United States to pay the Smart and PLDT postpaid bills of their friends and family in the Philippines online, thanks to another third-party partnership between Xoom and PayMaya Philippines.
200 Million | How many fewer women than men are estimated to own a mobile phone in emerging markets
The GSMA announced the launch of what is known as the Connected Women Commitment Initiative, which the collection of mobile phone operators and other firms said represents a commitment to reducing what it termed the “mobile gender gap.”
The association said that the commitments from its members, covering more than 75 million mobile Internet and mobile money customers, will focus on connecting millions of low- and middle-income countries’ women to technology. The initiative ties in with the United Nations Sustainable Development Goal that looks to boost the proportion of their female customers.
In a statement released in conjunction with the announcement, Mats Granryd, director general of the association, said: “In an increasingly connected world, women are currently being left behind. GSMA research estimates there are 200 million fewer women than men who own a mobile phone in low- and middle-income countries.”
2 Million | Number of positive social media posts about mobile payments, as tracked by MasterCard
What do consumers want out of their mobile payments experience? That's the question MasterCard was after with its annual mobile payments study, which taps into consumers' social media posts about the subject to determine where and what is trending around mobile payments.
This year, MasterCard was able to look across a much larger database — across 2 million posts logged on Twitter, Facebook and others, up from the 85,000 posts just four years ago — that showed a “positive sentiment about mobile payments technology,” said MasterCard.
The positive sentiment furthers a two-year trend of such a sanguine mood toward payments. Looking at the mobile conversations themselves, MasterCard noted that digital wallets, with marquee names such as Apple Pay, Android Pay and Samsung Pay, were the focus of the overwhelming percentage of posts (with gains in mentions in every region of the world) at 97 percent.
Wearables also gained momentum, with mentions of such devices up 30 times in the final quarter of the year compared to the first quarter of 2015.
7,500 | Number of Starbucks' retail locations where Chase Pay will be able to be used
Chase Pay just got a very big mobile friend in its back pocket.
News broke this week (during JPMC's Investor Day, not MWC) that Chase Pay is being integrated into the Starbucks mobile app, which is being used at more than 7,500 of the latter’s retail locations. The payments relationship will begin later this year, said Gordon Smith, who heads JPMorgan’s consumer banking unit as chief executive officer.
The mobile app itself, for Starbucks, has been responsible for roughly 10 percent of the sales conducted in the United States inside of the coffee chain’s brick-and-mortar locations, using Mobile Order & Pay, which led to 6 million transactions taking place in the fourth quarter alone, Starbucks said in its most recent earnings announcement.
The latest agreement expands a relationship between the two companies, though an intermittent one, that stretches back more than a decade. The latest iteration comes more than 10 years after JPMorgan and Starbucks collaborated on a cobranded card, known as Duetto, a rewards card, which launched in 2003 and folded in 2010.
143 | Number of markets PayPal One Touch now has a presence in
PayPal’s online and mobile checkout tool, One Touch, is celebrating some big milestones. The company announced this week that, in the 10 months since One Touch launched, it now has 18 million consumers opted-in across the world and has also reached 143 markets globally.
PayPal noted that 20 percent of the total number of One Touch users have started using the service within the last month alone.
One Touch is designed to make checkout quicker and more secure online and on mobile, without the user having to type in their payment credentials. Instead, users are authenticated in the background on their preferred devices.
22 | Number of markets Visa Checkout will soon be available in
Visa announced at MWC that its online payments service, Visa Checkout, will be expanding to six new regions across Europe (France, Ireland, Poland, Spain and the U.K.) and India.
Visa Checkout launched in 2014 and is currently in 16 countries but will soon (following the launch of those six more) be in 22 countries. Visa Checkout has more than 11 million consumer accounts and is accepted by more than 250,000 merchants online.
With the added markets, Visa Checkout will have a presence in the following countries: Australia, Argentina, Brazil, Canada, Chile, China, Colombia, France, Hong Kong, Ireland, India, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Peru, Poland, Singapore, Spain, South Africa, United Arab Emirates, the U.K. and the U.S.
20 | Number of new mobile money markets HomeSend will ready with its Vodafone M-Pesa partnership
HomeSend, an international payments and money transfer hub, announced a new deal through Vodafone's M-Pesa to launch remittance services into five new markets during 2016.
What this deal entails is a collaboration to enable the real-time, mobile receipt of remittances by M-Pesa users in the Democratic Republic of Congo, Ghana, Lesotho, Mozambique and Albania. In addition to Kenya, HomeSend has launched connections for inbound remittances with M-Pesa in both Tanzania and Romania.
HomeSend continues to expand the reach of its network, with coverage expected to reach more than 70 markets in 2016. These will include 20 new mobile money markets. Through this deal, HomeSend will provide a way to receive remittances by enabling MasterCard payments cards to be used.
“M-Pesa makes money mobile, now increasingly across borders, too. We’re delighted to offer our customers more choice to send and receive money from other countries and networks. HomeSend connects them to an extensive global network, offering an affordable, secure and convenient solution for inbound digital money transfers," said Claire Alexandre, head of M-Pesa commercial and strategy for Vodafone.
14 | Number of countries MasterCard's "Selfie Pay" is expected to roll out to this summer
While it was reported that MasterCard's facial recognition payment option, commonly referred to as “selfie pay,” is expanding beyond tests in the U.S. and Netherlands, that won't be all.
The technology is currently in pilot mode but is expected to roll out to 14 countries this summer. This technology enables consumers to use their fingerprints or a photo of themselves to validate their identity. This was created for online purchases and developed with the purpose of nixing passwords or codes.
MasterCard officially rolled out its “selfie pay” concept in the fall of 2015. The feature will make it possible for merchants to verify the identity of a shopper by looking at a photo of their face. That rollout will continue throughout the United States in 2016 and go global in 2017.
3 | Number of new deals Visa struck with its car-based commerce partnerships
Visa announced a deal with Honda and ParkWhiz that extends its Visa Token Service for auto manufactures to enable car-based commerce transactions.
Through this partnership, Visa is bringing a range of digital payment solutions — which consist of new standards for Bluetooth and QR codes — in order to expand the availability of mobile payments for merchants and consumers. Essentially, Visa wants to enable an ecosystem of payment partners to streamline purchases and payments any place an Internet connection exists. This includes everyone from auto manufacturers to a point-of-sale provider.
The new options from Visa enable the following solutions:
- Car-Based Commerce: Developed by Honda Developer Studio and fully integrated into Honda’s head unit, the fuel and parking proof-of-concepts are aimed at streamlining the tasks and services that consumers do every day.
- Fuel App Concept: Enables consumers to pay for gas without leaving their car. The fuel app detects when the car needs gas and can even drive that consumer to the nearest gas station. Once parked, the app picks up how much the card needs and calculates the cost.
- Parking App Concept: This feature enables consumers to park and automatically pay via mobile for the spot. It also eliminates the need to pay more or too little as the app only charges for the exact time used.
.07 | Percentage reported that Apple charges China's issuers per transaction
While this wasn't technically at Mobile World Congress, the news of it came out during mobile's big week.
New details surfaced as to why China’s banks were finally ready to jump on the Apple Pay bandwagon. According to a report by the Chinese news site Caixin, Apple cut a deal with Chinese banks to charge them fewer fees than what it charges banks in the U.S.
While that report cited unnamed sources said to be close to the matter, it does come at an interesting time, as it was somewhat curious what made China’s banks give into Apple’s deal, since there are already other mobile payments options (like Alipay) dominating the consumer payments market.
What the sources indicate is that Apple will get .07 percent of each Apple Pay transaction, which is less than half of what U.S. banks fork over to Apple per transaction. In the U.S., banks are charged .15 percent fees on each purchase. Apple will reportedly begin collecting its fees in two years post-launch.
While these details about China’s banks and Apple Pay transaction fees are not confirmed by Apple, it isn’t out of the realm of possibility, especially because the bank fees were at the root of what delayed Apple Pay from coming to China sooner. A deal was eventually made in December to bring Apple Pay to 15 of China’s banks, which is now up to 19.