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The findings come from an in-depth look at mobile payments included in GfK’s latest FutureBuy study, which tracks the convergence of digital and bricks-and-mortar activities in shopping across 15 product categories. GfK provides market and consumer information to its clients.
The research shows that, despite attitudinal differences, the generations are essentially the same in their use of mobile payments, which account for just 2 percent to 3 percent of all transactions in the U.S.
When asked if mobile payments are “easier,” “faster” or “more efficient,” 29 percent to 46 percent of Generations Y (ages 25 to 34) and Z (ages 18 to 24) agreed either completely or somewhat – compared to a range of 18 percent to 30 percent for Gen X (ages 35 to 49) and Baby Boomers (ages 50 to 68). And 38 percent of those in Gen Z said that mobile payments are more secure than other payment methods – compared to just 16 percent for Gen X and 12 percent for Boomers.
Overall, more than half (57 percent) of U.S. respondents agreed completely or somewhat that they are worried about the security of their personal information with mobile payments. In addition 42 percent said they found mobile payment technology “still clunky”; and 37 percent saw mobile payments as “more of a gimmick than a major way I pay.”
“While some view mobile payments as a solution in search of a need, our findings suggest that Millennials and even younger consumers will embrace mobile payment methods more and more,” said Tom Neri, executive vice president of GfK’s Financial Services team in North America. “This will accelerate store retail adoption – especially as devices such as wearables offer more convenience and sophisticated payment options. But, to encourage widespread acceptance, financial services companies and device makers will need to come to terms with consumers’ concerns about security and their sense that mobile payments may just be a gimmick.”
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