Apple Pay struggles to gain US foothold

The window of opportunity in the US for mobile payment providers like Apple Pay and Google Pay is closing fast, according to new research.

Despite high levels of support from retailers, only 14 per cent of US respondents to a Juniper Research survey currently use mobile payments for in-store purchases. The research covered over 1,000 smartphone users across the US and the UK.

Future growth is likely to be threatened by increasing deployments of contactless cards in the US, with Chase becoming the latest major bank to announce contactless Visa rollouts.

“Time is running out for mobile-pay providers to establish a dominant position in the US,” remarked research author James Moar. “Many of mobile payment’s benefits, like increased transaction speed, are not exclusive to smartphones, and our survey shows that the majority of users who have not adopted mobile pay are more interested in services like contactless cards than mobile-based payments.”

Juniper’s survey also confirmed that online shopping is having a detrimental effect on physical retailers, with 40 per cent of survey respondents in both the US and the UK reporting that they shop less in stores due to using online and mobile commerce.

In addition, the trend of ‘showrooming’ - looking at physical goods in stores and then checking prices online - was reported by 24 per cent of UK respondents and 13 per cent of US respondents.

However, while m-commerce is a zero-sum game in the UK, with few users increasing overall retail spending, it may open up new retail opportunities in the US. The survey showed 30 per cent of respondents across the pond reported shopping more overall due to their use of m-commerce, not merely shopping more online.

Additionally, the survey revealed that continued reliance on browser-based online purchasing is perpetuating non-biometric authentication methods, like passwords or PINs, presenting an ongoing security problem.

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