China / Innovation

Mobile payments could replace cash, cards

By Meng Fanbin ( Updated: 2012-06-12 21:27

Mobile payments may replace cash and bank cards to become the mainstream method of payment by 2020, a survey suggests.

The results released on June 12 by Pew Internet, a nonprofit research organization based in the US, said that about 65 percent of respondents believed many customers will use smartphone terminals to pay by 2020.

But 33 percent of those polled disagreed, saying that cash and bank cards will remain the main methods of payment.

"Mobile payment may become the main method in Chinese first-tier cities in three to five years," said Zhang Xudong, an expert at iResearch, an organization focusing on research of China's Internet sector.

Because of the popularity of intelligent terminals and the maturing of mobile communication, these technologies are applied more widely in the field of mobile payment and the payment process is becoming more convenient, experts said.

"The security problem has already been resolved, and the key factor that hinders the development of mobile payment nowadays is convenience, including the configuration of related equipment and developing mobile payment habits among customers," Zhang said.

The implementation of mobile payment benefits many parties, for example mobile operators, payment servers as banks, equipment providers, merchants and terminal users.

"It will take time to build a cross-industry system and balance the benefits of all parties, " he said.

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