Thursday, March 27, 2008

Mobile Phone, Meet Credit Card

The Center for Media Research reported on a study from Harris Interactive today. The study found that 25% of mobile phone users with mobile Internet use their devices to buy goods and services online with a credit card. What more, the study finds nearly 20% report they would like to someday use mobile phones as a "mobile wallet," where charges would be billed directly to their mobile accounts."

Check out the full reported findings below:


Buying and Banking On-The-Go
A new Harris Interactive study shows that one in four cellular phone users with mobile internet access now use their devices to buy goods and services online with a credit card, and nearly one in five saying they would like to someday use cell phones as a "mobile wallet," where charges would be billed directly to their mobile accounts. In addition, ten percent of the survey participants said they would consider wire transfers and stock trading via their mobile phones.

The study finds that mobile phone users are increasingly comfortable making banking and purchase transactions while on-the-go, a virtual taboo until now. 16 percent of mobile phone subscribers already use mobile banking services, with 60 percent of these people using the services at least once a week. Many others presently not banking and buying on-the-go expressed interest in mobile banking, with 35 percent open to checking bank account balances and transferring funds via their mobile devices. A third of those surveyed also said they would like to receive text message alerts from their financial institutions.

25% of Smartphone or iPhone users are more likely to "occasionally" use their device to make purchases, compared with 17% of mobile or cellular phone users. 77% of mobile users have "never" made a purchase with their device, compared with 65% of those with smartphones or iPhones.

Some 16% of mobile phone subscribers already use mobile banking services, and 60% of them use the services at least once a week, the study found. Consumers not currently banking or buying on-the-go expressed interest in having such applications on their mobile phones.

Joseph Porus, vice-president, Harris Interactive, said "Today's mobile devices are the springboard for... services, with huge pent-up demand for mobile commerce capabilities... If security concerns can be quelled, the sky's the limit with consumer acceptance of mobile banking and purchase transactions..."

Anxiety about sharing personal data is the biggest barrier to consumer acceptance of mobile banking and commerce, with two-thirds (66%) of respondents saying so.

17% are "extremely concerned" about the current cost of non-commercial transactions (e.g., sending an SMS, MMS, viewing a web page).

Porus concludes that "... concerns associated with using mobile devices for financial transactions... (is) similar to the evolution of the internet as a viable tool for banking and buying... We expect mobile technology to... become even more secure... (which) should ease people's fears and make mobile commerce appealing in the future."

For more information, please visit MarketingCharts here, or HarrisInteractive here.

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