The mobile wallet has been much ballyhooed, but so far, the hype doesn’t seem to be translating into action on the grand scale, suggests a new report from Yankee Group, a Boston-based research-and-data firm focused on technology.
For example, only 16 percent of mobile device owners have used their phone to make an in-store payment in the past three months, notes a report titled, ‘‘US Mobile Wallet Roundup: Gauging the Future Potential of Today’s Solutions.’’
“PayPal has taken an early lead in the mobile wallet race,” says the report, which adds that smaller merchants see greater value in third-party wallet solutions than their upmarket counterparts do.
In a statement, Yankee Group analyst and report author Jordan McKee said: ‘‘With the hype surrounding mobile wallets building on a daily basis, separating the signal from the noise has become increasingly difficult. The harsh reality is that despite billions in investment across the ecosystem, adoption of such mobile payment technologies has been far from illustrious. Just 16 percent of mobile device owners have used their phone to make an in-store payment in the past three months. More concerning, of those using mobile wallets, 73 percent are doing so fewer than five times per month. Clearly, the way we pay for goods and services is not slated to change anytime soon. But although cash and cards may enjoy dominance for some time, with fully two-thirds of consumers remaining interested, it’s important to recognize that the mobile wallet is far more of a latent opportunity than a pipe dream.’’