Utilization of Mobile Wallets is Growing

A recent study conducted by MasterCard reveals an increase in the utilization of mobile wallets. The research shows that digital wallets or mobile wallets were mentioned in 75% of tracked conversations regarding new ways to pay amongst social media users.

The MasterCard Digital Payment Study analyzed 3.5 million conversations across various social media platforms.

The rising interest for mobile wallets is no surprise. After a plodding start, expected adoption rates of mobile wallets are finally happening, and for all the right reasons. While many consumers still reach for their plastic cards when making purchases, the trend toward digital alternatives is now increasing as initially projected. Shifting to mobile wallets brings many benefits to both consumers and businesses. They provide better security compared to plastic cards, they help drive conversions, and they make transactions incredibly convenient.

With a mobile wallet, payments are quick and easy. Consumers can load multiple cards into mobile wallets, including debit and credit cards. That gives them a choice to use their plastic cards when shopping in-person or use their mobile devices. When it comes to online purchases, it is more convenient to use a mobile wallet than a plastic card, not to mention how much more secure it is.

The use of mobile phones as payment devices “in-person” is increasing as NFC (near field communication) devices are proliferating in merchant locations. Consumers are finally adopting the benefits of mobile wallets. Payments are quicker and safer compared to plastic cards, and it allows consumers to load their cards into one wallet and then choose which card to use for each transaction – using the one device they always have at hand: their mobile phone.

Reasons mobile wallets are growing in popularity:

  • Accessibility: Day to day transactions are incredibly convenient when using mobile wallets: Download an app, create a user ID and password. Once it is set up, using a mobile wallet is as easy as logging into your Facebook or email account.  
  • Simple Money Load: Consumers can easily add money to their digital wallets using bank accounts, debit cards and credit cards. Given the ability to store these payment options on one device saves time and eliminates the hassle of entering payment details each time a transaction is consummated.
  • Full Range of Uses: Consumers can use mobile wallets for a variety of transactions, from paying utility bills to purchasing groceries. They are easlily used for in-person purchases as well as online purchases.

Most Popular Mobile Wallet Providers


  • PayPal: Launched in 1998, PayPal has a global presence of around 228 million. It is available for NFC, in-store and online payment modes.
  • Android Pay: A mobile payment option for Android users exclusively. With a global market close to 25 million, Android Pay supports NFC in-store and online payments.
  • Apple Pay: Launched exclusively for iOS users in 2014, with a global reach of more than 85 million, Apple Pay supports NFC in-store and online payments.
  • Samsung Pay: Launched in 2015, with an approximate global reach of 32 million. Samsung Pay supports NFC in-store and online payments.
  • Chase Pay: JP Morgan’s mobile payment and digital wallet product launched in October 2015 supporting only Chase Credit and Debit cards.
  • Citi Pay: A mobile payment option for Android operating Citibank users, launched in 2017. It allows access to MasterCard services and supports NFC in-store and online payments.
  • Visa Checkout: Introduced in July 2014, it supports online payments using other digital wallet providers. It has a global reach close to 25 million and comes with biometric protection.
  • Google Pay: Since 2018, Android Pay and Google Wallet have unified into a single pay system called Google Pay. A feature inside the system called Google Pay Send has replaced the Google Wallet service. It supports in-store and online payments, and works with hundreds of banks and payment providers.