28th European Regional Conference of the International Telecommunications Society (ITS): "Competition and Regulation in the Information Age", Passau, Germany, 30th July - 2nd August, 2017
Mobile payment services are experiencing the fastest growth compared to other payment methods, mainly due to the ever-increasing popularity of smartphones in recent years. Even though the technology has been available for more than a decade, mobile payment has been adopted into widespread usage only in some countries, including Japan, South Korea, Kenya and the Philippines. Nonetheless, other parts of the world appear to be catching up fast and it is important for both public and private sectors to understand the determinants of mobile payment adoption. This study investigates the drivers of mobile payment adoption in the past decade through comparative studies of both developed and developing countries. Conceptual frameworks, including the network effects and broadband ecosystem, are also applied to support the analysis offered in this paper. Moreover, this study explores the similarities and differences between the above mentioned countries and why they have been more successful in adopting the mobile payment technology compared to other states, such as the US and European countries. The key finding is that a successful and widespread adoption of mobile payment requires strongly growing demand and ready availability of infrastructure and technology on the supply side. The rapidly growing popularity of smartphones fueled the demand side by making the new payment technology reachable by large groups of consumers. Nevertheless, the use of mobile payment could not be significantly increased without an introduction of killer applications in each country or region. This is where the regulators in both financial and telecommunication sectors play a crucial role. A good combination of regulation and/or policy on the supply and demand sides is a way forward.