The Roundup: Mobile Payments - Not So Fast

Mobile payment systems will take much longer than expected to gain widespread adoption in Europe.
SCPM Catching Fire?
Another week, another high-flying prediction for an up-and-coming enterprise software market.

This time it's ARC Advisory Group of Dedham, Mass., saying that the Supply Chain Process Management market could grow four-fold to $518 million by the end of 2005, up from approximately $125 million in 2000.

SCPM (also called Supply Chain Event Management and Supply Chain Visibility) provides alerting, alert resolution logic, and extended supply chain visibility into inventory in motion (incoming raw materials and outbound finished goods), inventory at rest (inside a factory and inventory in distribution centers), and a real-time view of key performance indicators.

ARC said investments in the technology have the ability to pay off quickly for enterprises. It compared the return-on-investment to what companies experienced with supply chain planning software. Not bad, considering some companies made the investment pay for itself within one year.

Cutting Costs While Managing Human Capital
In another indication that there are savings to be made in the costs of managing human capital, the Aberdeen Group of Boston reports that nearly have of benefits professionals surveyed say that implementing workplace self-service (WSS) is among their top-five priorities for 2001.

Aberdeen forecasts that the sector will surpass $12 billion by 2003, with consolidation predicted among WSS solutions vendors. Consolidation is also predicted among providers of staffing, benefits administration, compensation planning and workplace learning providers.

What's driving it? A desire for lower costs and more efficiency managing benefits and other items services relating to their workers. WSS applications promise lower "human capital management" transaction costs, more data accuracy and access, and higher levels of user satisfaction. Aberdeen said people-related expenditures amount to as much as 70% of an enterprise's budget.

Workplace self-service applications are delivered through an enterprise portal, most often via an application service provider (ASP). These solutions guarantee greater data integrity because they allow employees and managers to enter and maintain personal information and benefits options, process transactions, and access corporate policy information via the Web, Aberdeen said.

In Europe, Scaling Back European Mobile Payment Promises
Forrester Research has issued a report out of Amsterdam that throws cold water on European retailers' plans for enabling mobile payments in the coming years. The upshot: It will take much longer than expected to gain widespread adoption.

Forrester says despite the enthusiasm from retailers for mobile payments, "consumers don't want it, providers can't offer it and technology can't support it." Further, the problems will not be resolved during the first half of this decade.

The problems will limit mobile transaction in Europe to 26 billion Euros in 2005, or 87 Euros per mobile user, just 0.5% of consumer spending, Forrester says.

Last year, payment for "mobile content" dominated the market. Soon, leadership will shift to small-value transactions, like vending machine payments, by 2003. The trend will move to high-value transactions, such as grocery payments, in 2005, says Forrester.

Belgium, France, Greece, Luxembourg, and Spain will adopt mobile payment slowest, averaging 3.47 Euros per mobile user per month in 2005. Austria, Ireland, Italy, the Netherlands, Portugal, Switzerland, and the UK will see an average of 6.77 Euros per mobile user per month in 2005. The Nordic countries plus Germany will lead in mobile payment adoption, averaging 10.90 Euros per month in 2005, Forrester says.

Among the many reasons for slow adoption: European consumers don't trust mobile payment systems and have resisted attempts to change their habits, Forrester says.






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