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4G: The Expansion of Mobile Payments

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Will the rise in 4G networks herald a new wave of innovative mobile payment services for businesses to offer customers?

While it is true that there are significant growth opportunities awaiting the emergence and development of mobile payment systems, contactless payments and 4G are among the least important features to be considered when it comes to the considerations of consumers in the purchase of a new mobile phone according to MediaTel.

Shocking? Well not really, I’m pretty much happy with my entry-level budget friendly Xiaomi phone that packs everything you could ask for in a mobile phone today. No 4G and no contactless payments? No big deal.

Sure, it must be great to have blazing fast 4G Internet browsing speeds and loading YouTube videos in an instant, but I’m definitely sure that on my daily commute, I’ve seen a number of irritable and grumpy faces (it’s quite a rare thing these days) whenever the train goes right into the deep end of the tunnel. It’s a pity really, though that aside, I’m pretty much satisfied with my no frills, 3G-enabled phone.

On the perspective of mobile payments, 4G does very little for now in solving my occasional needs for m-Commerce because really, 3G gets the job done effectively and efficiently without compromising downtime. And really, I’d like to see the day where I can confidently state that mobile phones will effectively replace my wallet. But it isn’t the case. Well, not quite yet.

When 4G networks do eventually become a staple in the diet of every mobile phone, the undeniable fact remains that even during the peak times of shared internet bandwidth, speed is what drives consumers to have their eyeballs firmly plastered to their mobile screens.

But I must admit that the lack of a standardized solution still encourages further development and investigation by introducing convenience and user-friendliness into innovating mobile payments. Conducting financial transactions over mobile phones are still yet to be embraced on a worldwide scale and so, now is the time to increase awareness over the possibilities and later on comes the eventual adoption where push comes to shove.

Until then, the mobile payment systems space will become increasingly crowded, offering potential customers more options than imaginable.

Just take a look at how NearBytes, a sound-based data transfer technology that looks to breathe down the neck of NFC with simple yet powerful features that’s great for potential app and game developers that are interested in seamless device communication to create content with ease and boosting engagement levels.

As the technology relies on a mobile phone’s built-in microphone and speaker, no add-ons or internet connection is required. All it simply takes is to place the two handsets a few inches from each other. And for budget-conscious individuals like myself, this feature already scores brownie points with me with the fact that both LTE and NFC enabled phones are considered to be outrageous in pricing.

In the event of power shortages or outages, 4G remains to be vulnerable especially in the context of conducting mobile payments particularly so in emerging markets. Therefore, it’ll definitely takes some time for 4G to rapidly expand its presence, let alone mobile payments to effectively take off.

[Image: Malaysia Insider]

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