Study looks at Apple Pay prospects six months on

Early consumer surveys reveal that few iPhone 6 users have both enabled a card for Apple Pay and made a purchase with it. Moreover, few retail locations currently support NFC payments — just 700,000 according to Apple's latest reckoning. So is Apple Pay dead in the water?

Not quite, according to "Apple Pay at Six Months: A Medium-Term Outlook," a research note, from Mercator Advisory Group. Based on data from a number of mobile commerce sources, as well as demographic characteristics and payment industry trends, Mercator concludes that writing off Apple Pay for its slow initial adoption misses the forest for the trees.

Mobile is increasingly becoming the foundation of all retail experiences, whether online or in-store. And Apple Pay, by making it easier to shop on mobile makes the entire experience more convenient and more secure.

"Apple Pay's elimination of the inconvenience of entering card numbers to complete purchases on smartphones and tablets will hasten mobile's growing dominance of the overall e-commerce pie, which continues to expand," said Nikhil Joseph, emerging technologies analyst at Mercator and author of the note. "We will also see brick-and-mortar merchants creating new retail experiences that leverage Apple Pay in their native apps for a seamless payment experience."

Highlights of the research note include:

  • analysis of trends showing mobile's growing dominance in e-commerce, and the blurring line between mobile and in-store commerce;
  • summary of data from recent consumer surveys on the use of Apple Pay and implications for its future adoption;
  • identification of variables that will drive the adoption of Apple Pay as a POS payment method of choice; and
  • forecast to 2020 of the number of Apple Pay-capable iPhones, total card commerce volume associated with users, and projected Apple Pay volume using a probability-based model.

One of nine exhibits in the 12-page note:

Topics: Contactless / NFC, Handsets / Devices, In-App Payments, Mobile/Digital Wallet, Trends / Statistics

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