The number of payments made through mobile devices is set to rise to almost 30 billion by 2014, according to an RBS report.
The World Payments Report 2013, produced by RBS and Capgemini, anticipates a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 58.5 percent in terms of the volume of transactions made using mobile devices between 2010 and 2014. This means an increase from a forecast of 17.8 billion transactions in 2013, up to 28.9 billion in 2014.
This level of growth means that mobile payments will begin to rival e-payments - transactions made through desktop-based browsers as opposed to mobile apps - in terms of volume in the near future. E-payments will see slower growth, reaching 34.8 billion by 2014, the report claims, with a CAGR of 18.1 percent.
While other countries such as Japan have taken to mobile payments relatively quickly, the UK has been somewhat slower to adopt. However, RBS and Capgemini expect that industry-wide moves, such as the mobile payments system being launched by the Payments Council next year, will drive swifter adoption, increasing the overall number of payments made via mobile devices.
The report also highlighted that, as smartphone and tablet adoption grows, the total number of people making mobile payments worldwide is set to pass 212 million in 2012, a 32 percent increase on 2011.
Kevin Brown, managing director, global head of transaction services, RBS International Banking, said that the growth in mobile payments is part of a trend away from traditional cash payments.
"The unabated rise of non-cash payments is a sign of the interconnected lives we live today,” he said.
“In the developing markets, mobile payments are giving more people access to financial transactions, while customer-centric innovation has helped prepaid cards and virtual currency gain traction in the more developed markets.”