According to a recently released report by Forrester Research, mobile banking is growing both in the United States and in Europe. By 2017, there will be 108 million mobile banking users in the U.S., accounting for about 46 percent of all bank account holders in the country.
Although only about 13 percent of bank account holders in the U.S. and 9 percent of European bank account holders regularly use mobile banking services, these numbers will continue to grow in the next few years, says the report.
"As consumers become more familiar with mobile banking, their use of it is progressing from simple functionality like account balances and ATM locators to transactions like bill payments and account transfers," the research firm said in a statement.
As per the report, majority of users currently use mobile banking in order to check their balances (45 percent), transaction histories (61 percent) and to transfer money between their own accounts (31 percent). In the U.S., 65 percent mobile bankers use their bank's mobile sites while 45 percent of them use apps.
On the other hand, SMS alerts are still the most common type of mobile banking in Europe, TechCrunch has reported.
According to another research report by Gartner, the worldwide mobile payment transaction value will surpass $171.5 billion in 2012, a 61.9 percent increase from 2011 values of $105.9 billion. The number of mobile payment users will reach 212.2 million in 2012, up from 160.5 million in 2011.
"And while the technology is out there to offer near-field-communication between smartphones and POS systems, it is Web transactions and SMS services that are making up the bulk of these digital transactions," said a VatroNews report.
"We expect global mobile transaction volume and value to average 42 percent annual growth between 2011 and 2016, and we are forecasting a market worth $617 billion with 448 million users by 2016," said Sandy Shen, research director at Gartner. "This will bring opportunities for service and solution providers who will need to cater to the local demand patterns to customize their offerings."
Gartner says SMS still remains the dominant access technology in developing markets because of the constraints of mobile devices and the ubiquity of SMS. On the other hand, Web/WAP is the preferred access technology in North America and Western Europe where mobile Internet is commonly available and activated on user devices.