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Consumers Ready for Mobile Commerce

By: Firethorn

Mobile phones aren’t just for talking anymore. For consumers, they’ve become indispensable tools that keep them organized and informed – including applications that can help them with mobile banking and retail transactions. They’re ready to participate in a behavioral shift made possible by mobile technology, according to new consumer research commissioned by Firethorn Holdings, LLC, a Qualcomm company, and conducted by StrategyOne.

A majority (59 percent) of consumers surveyed said they’re interested in using their phone at the cash register to make a purchase. They also report being interested in using their mobile phones as a shopping assistant for price comparisons (64 percent), access to credit card details, balances and transactions (61 percent), and organizing and tracking their gift card, loyalty and reward accounts (59 percent).

Businesses and popular culture ultimately follow technological changes. Consumers adopt forms they find useful, whether it’s moving from VHS to DVDs, CDs to MP3s or wired telephones to completely mobile devices.

A shift has started toward mobile banking use, which is a gateway to the larger universe of mobile commerce, including a wide variety of retail transactions. Consumers – even if they’re not mobile banking now – expect to change their habits in the future. For instance, nearly two of every five (38 percent) adults that aren’t using mobile banking now said they’d likely consider mobile banking in the next six months if it’s offered by their bank or wireless carrier.

What’s at stake is a share of the $8 billion in projected revenue from mobile fund transfers for wireless carriers alone, up from $65 million in 2007, according to ABI Research. That does not take into account the potential revenue opportunities for financial institutions or retailers from a brand loyalty or sales perspective.

Firethorn research reveals that many consumers are interested in learning about and utilizing new mobile phone applications. For example: Consumers are ready for mobile banking. They lead busy lives, they depend on mobile applications to make their lives easier, and they want to easily transition from the flow of their lives to their finances, using their mobile devices and mobile applications as the means to make that fluid transition.

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