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While the global NFC picture presents an expanding ecosystem, consumer uptake of SIM-based mobile payments has been lower in recent years than expected, according to a new report from the SIMalliance on 2016 global SIM shipments.
The organization said that slow uptake of SIM-based mobile payments led to a contraction in NFC SIM shipments in 2016. In addition, the impact of the demise of Softcard in North America was still being felt in 2016.
However, growth of NFC SIM shipments in Europe and CIS regions a rising demand for this type of product in specific markets, according to the report.
Overall, the alliance reported 5 percent year-on-year growth in 2016 shipment volumes, with a total 4.9 billion units shipped during the period.
This is the highest annual volume of shipment units reported yet by the organization, according to the report. SIMalliance members estimate that the total available global market for SIM cards also grew in 2016, adding 2.8 percent for a total of 5.45 billion units.
"The data released by SIMalliance is very good news indeed and evidences increasing demand for UICC/ IM-based products and solutions across established use cases, and also emerging markets such as M2M and IoT," Steffen Frenck, a SIMalliance board member, said in a statement.