Mobile payments business case for banks & MNOs – Europe vs. Asia

Large banks have started to launch mobile payment services (earlier there were only trials and pilots). I see big differences in how they do it. Below is an example comparison between a large bank in central Europe that recently did a commercial launch versus a large bank in south east Asia that just launched a large pilot.

CE SEA Service Mobile payment Mobile payment Mobile wallet No, direct account Yes, card in the cloud Use case POS, online, ATM, vouchers, P2P POS Limit per purchase No yes, USD 65 Special HW No Special SIM Sensitive info on mobile None All card info Sensitive info at transaction None All card info Mobile Network Operator No, all Yes, one TSM need No Yes Handset support Android, iPhone, Blackberry, Java, Windows Phone 5 models NFC In plan Yes, but need certification Need special POS No Masterpass enabled

I believe there will be 4-5 major tracks for a mobile payment service setup and they will depend on region, bank infrastructure and card infrastructure but also on potential margins for a payment transaction. For example in northern Europe with a good bank/card infrastructure and low transactions fees, I think it will be harder to launch a payment only service from MNO’s versus if banks or card companies do it themselves. But for example in SE Asia and Africa a MNO or a MNO/Bank mobile payment service would/could work and there are already successful examples of that, eg. M-PESA even though that service up to recently has been a mobile money service.

Different mobile payment service setups:

  • Bank or bank coop’s (incl. joint ventures)
  • MNO or MNO coop’s (ex. Weve, WyWallet)
  • Card company or card processor
  • MNO/Bank joint ventures (ex. M-PESA, ISIS)
  • Big brands (ex. PayPal, Google Wallet)