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Study: Apple Pay to lead contactless payments surge among mobile wallets

Contactless payments will exceed the $1 trillion mark for the first time in 2018, a year earlier than expected, according Juniper Research. In 2020, in-store contactless payments will reach $2 trillion, or 15 percent of all point-of-sale transactions, the fintech and payments research firm said in a press release.

Of the $2 trillion, 15 percent, or $3 billion, will be enabled by OEM payment wallets from providers such as Apple, Samsung and Google according to the new Juniper report, Contactless Payments: Payment Cards, OEM Pay & Mobile Wallets 2018–2023.

Contactless transactions via card will continue to dominate, driven by strong adoption in Europe, China and the Far East, Juniper said. Already, contactless card payments are the strongest across the China and the Far East and Asia Pacific regions, according to Juniper. Together, those markets account for nearly 55 percent of global contactless card transaction values.

The mobile contactless payments market will be driven by Apple Pay, Samsung Pay, Google Pay and other OEM Pay wallets. Combined, these OEM Pay wallets users will reach 450 million in number by 2020, with Apple accounting for 1 in 2 OEM Pay users globally.

Beyond in-store payments, the research forecasts rapid growth in contactless ticketing, especially in European and North American markets where mobile wallets have been deployed.

Juniper forecasts nearly 10 billion mobile contactless tickets purchased and validated by 2022, with North America dominating the sector, followed by the Far East and China.

"We believe that growth over the next 5 years will continue to be dominated by offerings from the major OEM players," research author Nitin Bhas said in the release. "Additionally, we now have the likes of Huawei Pay and Fitbit Pay launching in several markets; this is now included in Juniper's contactless forecasts."