Mobile Payments in China Are Growing So Fast, Predictions Can’t Keep Up

This post originally appeared on Campaign Asia, our content partner.

China will have 63.5 percent of the world’s users of proximity mobile payments in 2018, higher than the 61.2 percent previously expected, according to the latest eMarketer forecast.

The company defines a proximity mobile payment as a point-of-sale transaction made by scanning, tapping, swiping or checking in with a mobile device.

This year in China, 525.1 million people will use a proximity mobile payment app at the point of sale, up more than 13 percent over last year, the research company reports. That equates to 79.4 percent of China’s smartphone users.

In a distant second in terms of user numbers is India, which has 73.9 million users but is now the fastest-growing market. Adoption in India will jump 39.7 percent this year, and eMarketer expects double-digit increases through 2022.

Photo: e-marketer/Campaign Asia

“Chinese citizens have skipped the adoption of credit cards, making proximity payment apps part of day-to-day life,” eMarketer junior forecasting analyst Showmik Podder said in a release. “This starkly contrasts with Western countries, where payment app adoption has been slow, and the credit card is still king. The biggest players in China—Alipay and WeChat Pay—design their systems such that they are easily integrated with already popular social media and on-demand services platforms. This ease of use is helping to drive expansion, with further growth coming from rural users.”