PFs May Not Know Mobile Wallet Users As Well As They Think

When the new Auriemma Consulting Group Mobile Pay Tracker report was released on Tuesday (May 31), it delivered some surprises. For example, most mobile wallet consumers do not have their favorite (aka most used) card as the default card in their mobile wallet. Even in April 2016, most mobile users (57 percent) don’t have the technology to do almost any mobile payments. The report also detailed the higher incomes of iOS users compared with Android.

Even one of the non-surprising details of the report—that tech brands are more trusted than financial brands-is interesting in its scope, with “banks/financial institutions” getting roughly one-third of the trust points awarded to Apple and performing only slightly better when compared with Google and Samsung. (Note: The exact phrasing of the question is unclear. If the choice was literally “banks/financial institutions,” that might not be fair to compare a nameless vertical against specific brands. Had they, however, compared Chase and Wells Fargo to Apple and Google, that would have been more, please forgive me, apples-to-apples.)

This is how Auriemma characterized its methodology: “The study was conducted online among 2,004 consumers in the U.S. with Apple Pay eligible (n=1,000), Android Pay eligible (n=838), and/or Samsung Pay eligible (n=327) smartphones between March 3 – April 7, 2016. Respondents were screened to own an iPhone 6/6+/6s/6s+ or Apple Watch (in combination with an iPhone 5/5C/5S) – a Samsung Galaxy S6, S6 Edge/Edge+, S6 Active or Galaxy Note 5 – and/or other Android phone with KitKat (4.4) OS or newer. All respondents also have a general purpose credit card in their own name. In addition to the quantitative web survey, twenty in-depth interviews (IDIs) were conducted March 21, 2016 – March 25, 2016 via telephone with Android Pay and Samsung Pay users recruited from the quantitative web survey. For this round of IDIs, the focus is or was on the Android and Samsung Pay users, and their usage and experience thus far.”

In terms of perception, the default card information they cited is interesting. In all likelihood, the reason for the disconnect is not an emotional or psychological hesitation as it is practical, such as a consumer’s favorite card couldn’t be installed in the wallet at the time that that consumer first activated their mobile wallet.

Don’t forget that many Apple enthusiasts, for example, immediately tried using Apple Pay when it was released, meaning that they could only choose from a tiny number of cards ready for that initial launch. Even if the cards did become available weeks and months later, many might not have bothered adding them in, opting instead to use whatever they were able to install. Lesson learned: Being available at the day of launch has its marketshare advantages.

But it does mean that PFs can’t make a seemingly logical leap. Just because Consumer 1234 uses Card Brand ABC almost exclusively for her purchases and Consumer 1234 uses a mobile wallet that accepts Card Brand ABC, that doesn’t necessarily mean that Consumer 1234 has Card Brand ABC in her mobile wallet. That further means that they may be as emotionally attached to the default card in their mobile wallet as many assumed. Hence: opportunity.

Some other interesting stats. They broke down marketshare for iOS (38 percent), Samsung (32 percent), non-Samsung Android (29 percent) and other (5 percent). But if you retweak those numbers purely on OS, it’s 61 percent for all Android.

Who is eligible? Only 20 percent of iOS users are mobile payment eligible, with that number being 24 percent for Android Pay and eight percent for Samsung Pay. Nitpick: I might disagree with Auriemma’s definition of mobile pay, with some mobile payment schemes relying on QR codes or barcodes, meaning that they only need a decent camera on the phone. And magstripe-emulation systems also can work on older non-NFC equipped phones. Indeed, that’s part of the argument for Walmart Pay.

The report delved into some disposable income issues. When it came to employment rate, both Android Pay (82 percent) and Samsung Pay (87 percent) slightly beat Apple Pay (79 percent). But the advantage went to Apple Pay in terms of having more than $50K annual income (79 percent to Apple Pay compared with 65 percent for Android Pay and 70 percent for Samsung Pay) and for having more than $100K in savings (50 percent for Apple Pay, 43 percent for Android Pay and 46 percent for Samsung Pay).

When it came to the age demographic, Apple Pay seemed to win on both extremes (the largest percent of both 18-34 as well as “55+”) while Samsung grabbed 51 percent of the 35-54 group (Android Pay got 41 percent of that middle group and Apple Pay got only 30 percent).

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