China is steadily marching toward a cashless society, enabled by Alibaba’s Alipay and Tencent’s WeChat Pay. Those two leading payment systems have introduced QR code-backed payments into the daily habits of consumers. Proximity mobile payments are now ubiquitous for purchases in apparel stores to supermarkets to convenience stores.
How many people in China use proximity mobile payments?
Proximity mobile payment users in China grew by 10.0% in 2019 to reach 577.4 million (by far the largest in the world). While 81.1% of smartphone users use proximity mobile payments, penetration is much lower (49.6%) among the overall population, meaning this market still has room for further growth.
What are the leading proximity mobile payment service providers in China?
Alipay, owned by Alibaba affiliate Ant Financial, and Tencent’s WeChat Pay are the most widely used proximity mobile payment services in China.
Why are proximity mobile payments so popular in China?
Two primary factors have led to consumers in China embracing mobile payments; 1) China is a mobile-first market, meaning most internet users’ first device was a mobile phone; 2) Credit card ownership was low when mobile options Alipay and WeChat Pay were first introduced.
What are the opportunities for more adoption of proximity mobile payments?
Those in China who have lagged in adopting mobile payments include individuals ages 35 and older and those in rural areas, which have more limited access to internet and mobile networks. The challenges to convert those groups to switch to a mobile payment system will require consumer education, product adoption and infrastructure investment.
WHAT’S IN THIS REPORT? This report features our latest forecast for proximity mobile payment users in China. It also examines what’s driving the proximity mobile payment market, as well as potential opportunities and challenges.
KEY STAT: We estimate that, by the end of 2019, 81.1% of smartphone users in China will be proximity mobile payment users, and yet, that represents less than half of the country’s population.
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