Affordable portable devices increase mobile commerce
April 26, 2013

The biggest trend in payment processing today is mobile commerce, and it is only set to continue growing. According to new research, smartphones are dropping in price, making accepting mobile payments a financially viable option for businesses. 

Number of smartphone, tablet users increasing
Research conducted by eMarketer estimated there will be 79.4 million mobile users by the end of this year, with 52.3 million smartphones users and 70.6 million people having purchased a tablet. The estimate is a major leap from last year, when mobile sales reached 57 million.

The increase in mobile device owners may make it easier for businesses who accept mobile transactions to drive sales. With more customers becoming aware of the purchasing method, companies may see a boost in mobile commerce.

Mobile devices become more affordable
According to a study by ABI Research, a technology market intelligence company, low-cost smartphones are on the rise and may promote stronger consumer conversion to mobile payment processing. Phones that cost less than $250 are expected to increase 300 percent in the next five years, going from 259 million phones currently being shipped to consumers to almost 788 million in 2018.

The research reported prepaid smartphones are driving the transition to cheaper devices and may translate to other parts of the mobile market, such as tablets.

Michael Morgan, senior analyst at ABI Research, told Mobile Payments Today more affordable devices will promote industry growth. 

"As the feature phone segment continues to lose its battle for relevance, the low-cost smartphone has become the tool for operators seeking to drive increased data revenues," Morgan said.

Smartphones and tablets are projected to become more affordable and increase mobile conversion within the next few years. Accepting transactions through portable devices using the right tools, such as with Sage Mobile Payments, can help companies reach the growing mobile consumer base and increase sales. 

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