Beyond devices and connections, the pace is just as fast for mobile services. The addiction of users to mobile broadband and Internet is quite amazing. The figures speak for themselves, often at the billion level mark. Almost half the population of the planet uses mobile communications… There were a total of 3.2 billion mobile subscribers in 2012… … 7 billion connections were made in 2012 and 10 billion are expected by 2017… More than 100 million tablets were sold in 2012… And the same year, 5.1 billion SIM cards were shipped. Mobile applications, based on the combination of identification and transaction services, are opening new business opportunities in nearly all sectors of life and business.
The 2013 annual CARTES, Secure Connexions Event will be held from 19 to 21 November 2013. In its “mobile payment “ and “Smart shopping” areas, this world leading and annual exhibition intends to focus on innovations and advanced technologies already conceived to meet users’ expectations of secured mobile payments. The conference “Your future is mobile: Trust it!” chaired by Sirpa Nordlund, Executive Director of Mobey Forum, will highlight the latest developments.
The power of mobile introduces a disruptive transformation in financial services. As convenience and user-friendliness are the main benefits expected by users, NFC is a key enabler of mobile payment. Mobile devices that enable tap-and-go payments through Near Field Communication (NFC) technology are starting to achieve widespread penetration. The development of mobile payment strategies is still dependent on the confidence of customers, especially regarding payment services. Users need to be fully convinced that their personal bank details are securely kept and managed by their mobile device. In mobile payment as a whole, differences appear according to the type of market. In mature markets, mobile payments generally apply to purchases of goods and services from online or proximity sales points.
In emerging markets, mobile transactions are a financial service provided to unbanked populations and generally relate to peer-to-peer money transfers. In both cases however, mobile payment is the result of the high degree of penetration of mobile devices.
NFC projects in the mobile payment space are being introduced to the market in Europe as well.Telefónica Germany recently introduced its O2 Wallet enabling the storage of virtual credit cards and other apps. For the wallet service, Giesecke & Devrient is providing both the multi-application NFC SIM cards and the TSM (Trusted Service Management) service.
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Advanced Info Service Plc. (AIS), the largest telecom operator in Thailand, is currently providing a NFC SIM card enabling a mobile phone to be used as an e-purse to pay for public transportation and goods in Bangkok. Service users can also directly top-up credit on their SIM card and check both their balance and transaction history using their mobile phones.
Security is key, SIM is the key
In this tremendous social shift, customers’ trust matters a lot. The players of the mobile ecosystem therefore are committed to providing seamless security and safety to citizens, businesses and social entities generally, whatever the final service to be delivered. Most mobile devices can store personal data, photos, working documents, mail and content. Security is the cornerstone of mobile business, from digital identity to financial transactions and from health to education. The challenge is sizeable as users are exposed to a wide range of risks: ID theft, transaction repudiation, communication interception or breach of privacy…
In the face of the ever-growing complexity of the mobile ecosystem, the SIM (as in ‘Security, Identity, Mobility’) UICC card stands out as the technology best able to fulfill security and trust requirements. Its inherently secure components provide a safe execution environment enabling functions such as the generation of security keys or the legally binding certification of digital signatures. Thanks to the SIM and whatever the device (handset, smartphone, tablet), users can make use of mobile services with the same high level of confidence that they have shown over the years to their mobile phone thanks to the SIM.
A focus on mobile market opportunities in health
The mobile industry is now addressing a large range of socio-economic domains. One in particular is worth noting: health. Although the potential benefits of mHealth solutions have been widely discussed for over a decade, until recently the market never emerged from the trial phase. The commercialization phase is opening now and according to Research2guidance the mHealth market is expected to reach $26 billion in 2017.
Not only are consumers taking advantage of mobile devices to manage and improve their own health, so are healthcare professionals. A significant number (15%) of mHealth applications are primarily designed for them. These include CME (Continued Medical Education), remote monitoring and healthcare management applications. 97,000 mHealth applications are currently available in major app stores, 42% of which are fee paying.
Orange France and Morpho recently announced the creation of the world’s first mobile identity management system for the healthcare sector, extending existing health card solutions and enabling secure access to patient data anytime, anywhere and on any mobile device.
With more and more traditional healthcare providers joining the mobile applications market, the business models will broaden to include healthcare services, sensors, advertising and drug sales revenues.
Mobile markets are limitless and trust is the portal to a never-ending list of business opportunities and applications. To adopt them, the last word will as usual be that of users, consumers and citizens…
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