Fed Survey Shows Consumers Still Wary of Mobile Payments 

March 26, 2012

While the potential business opportunity in mobile payments seems unlimited and announcements of the most recent pilot or rollout seem to emerge daily, a new report from the Federal Reserve Board shows the financial services industry still has plenty of work left convincing consumers to adopt the new technology. In Consumers and Mobile Financial Services the Fed reports that just 12 percent of mobile phone owners have made a payment using their device in the last 12 months. Security remains the biggest issue, with 42 percent of consumers citing it as the biggest reason they do not use mobile payments. Security, however, is not the only obstacle providers must overcome.

According to the report, there are many consumers who just don’t see value in mobile payments. Thirty-six percent respond that it is easier to pay with other methods, and 37 percent say they do not see any benefit from using mobile payments. Other reasons for not using the technology include the lack of necessary features on a phone (31 percent) and a lack of trust in the technology to properly process payments (20 percent).

“Recent survey data show that some consumers view mobile payments as timesaving and convenient while providing them with increased access to, and control of, their finances,” the authors write in the report. “Despite these positive mobile finance attributes and perceptions, consumers also remain concerned about the cost and the security risks inherent in mobile financial transactions.” Nearly 2,300 consumers, representative of the U.S. populations, took part in the survey.

Download the entire report for free here .