Digital Wallets Increasing in Popularity in APAC, Singapore As Top 3 Adoptersby Fintechnews Singapore March 19, 2016
Consumers in Asia Pacific (APAC) are embracing digital wallets as one in five users (19.5%) in the region say they are using these new mobile technologies, citing more convenience when shopping online. This represents an increase of 9.7% from two years ago, according to MasterCard’s latest Mobile Shopping Survey.
Most particularly, China (45%), India (36.7%) and Singapore (23.3%) are leading the trend as the region’s top three adopters of digital wallets.
“Smartphones are already deemed indispensable to consumers’ highly digital lifestyles in Singapore,” Deborah Heng, group head and general manager at MasterCard Singapore, commented in statements. “In the digital payment space, we continue to see a demand for seamless, quick and safe transactions.”
“We’ve also seen keen take-up of MasterPass for in-app payments of bills and taxi bookings, and are looking to incorporate MasterPass into other merchant apps – for instance in the food and beverage space – to provide consumers with a more seamless dining experience,” Heng said.
Introduced in early 2013, MasterPass is a service that lets people shop and make purchases on sites or apps, by using a MasterPass-connected wallet. MasterPass is currently available at over 250,000 merchants around the world and is live in 29 countries including Australia, Brazil, China, Hong Kong, India, Japan, South Korea, Singapore and Taiwan.
In Singapore, there are currently six banks offering MasterPass to cardholders: DBS Bank, Maybank, HSBC, UOB, CIMB bank and OCBC Bank.
MasterPass is accepted at various online and in-app merchants in Singapore, including ComfortDelgro, Lazada, Shaw Theatres, SilkAir, Singapore Airlines and SISTIC. Payment technology providers AsiaPay, eNETS, MC Payment, Red Dot Payment and WireCard have also availed MasterPass to their merchants.
According to Raj Dhamodharan, Group Head, Digital Payments, Asia Pacific at MasterCard, new forms of mobile payments technology are making transactions easier, safer, whether it is online, in-app and in-store. They provide a more convenient and secure buying experience and come in line with the changing consumer behavior, he said in a statement.
MasterCard, which surveyed 8,500 people aged 18-64 across 14 markets in APAC, also found that mobile banking apps are still most widely used among other new mobile technology such as in-app shopping and Near Field Communication (NFC) payments. In fact, digital wallets have seen the fastest uptake over the last two years, the firm claims.
Unsurprisingly, APAC consumers are increasingly using digital wallets to shop online: nearly half of respondents said they have made a purchase using their smartphone in the past three months. India (76.4%), China (76.1%), South Korea (62%) and Thailand (61.1%) are the top markets for the use of mobile devices for online commerce.
Growth rates have been particularly high for m-commerce in India, rising to 29.3% from two years ago, followed by Singapore (17.1%) and Vietnam (16.8%).
53.9% cited convenience as the key driver for m-commerce, followed by the ability to shop on the go (42.9%), as well as the growing number of available apps that are making the online buying experience easier (41.4%).
On the other hand, the survey found that Australians and New Zealanders are the least likely to adopt m-commerce. In Australia, only 23.7% of respondents said they have already made a purchase using a mobile device. The number drops to 16.2% for New Zealanders.
Featured image: Singapore Skyline, via Wikipedia.