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Mobile money statistics and comparison of UK with US, Japan and more

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I got this report from Monitise a month ago, but only just got around to writing about it.  It's stats about mobile money and, if anyone knows me well, they'll know that I like stats.  So here are some numbers:

  • 1,008 million people use Facebook mobile every month
  • 341 million people only use Facebook mobile
  • 50 billion apps have been downloaded from Apple’s App Store
  • $10 billion is the income Apple generated from apps in 2013
  • 500 million tweets are sent every day
  • 540 million people use Google+ 
  • $108 (UK) $96 (US) is how much Google makes out of every adult (15+) in 2013

Source: Facebook, Business Insider, Twitter, Google, Apple, UN

... and a few more …

  • More than 50% of the US’ 5,800 commercial banks now offer some form of mobile banking [Source: ABA, December 2013]
  • 82% of US18-25 year olds owned a smartphone in Q4 2013, and 61% of those engaged in mobile banking. That compares to around 60% and 30% respectively for their parents. [Source: Alix Partners, March 2014. With permission.]
  • There are over seven billion SIM cards globally, enough for one per person on earth. Only 50% of the global population has a formal financial account.  [Source: World Bank, GSMA, 2014]
  • Mobile-cellular penetration rates stand at 96% globally; 128% in developed countries; and 89% in developing countries. [Source:  ITU, February 2013]
  • In 2013 smartphone sales surpassed feature phone sales globally for the first time. 1.8bn phones were sold, of which 968 million were smartphones.   [Source: Gartner, February 2014]
  • On Christmas Day 2013, mobile made up 48% of all online retail traffic in the US, and mobile sales reached 30% of all online retail sales.  [Source: IBM, February 2014]
  • 90% of US bankers surveyed expected at least a 10% decline in branch numbers over the next 5 years, with 45% expecting the decline to be 25% or more. Branch numbers have declined 9% in just the last 3 years. [Source: Celent, February 2014]
  • 50% of smartphone users in the UK would like to do more mobile banking in the future. [Source: FICO, January 2014]
  • There were 700m active smartphones and tablets in China at the end of 2013, more than double the 380m in Q1 2013 - 27% of those are high end ($500+). 55% of the top 1000 apps have links to the major Chinese social platforms. (WeChat, Tencent etc). Finance apps are up 109% in terms of active users. [Source: UMENG, March 2014]
  • In the UK 12.4million banking apps have been downloaded, which are used on average 18.6million times per week. [Source: British Banker’s Association, March 2014]
  • In June 2013 there were over 60million active mobile money accounts globally and 203million registered mobile money accounts.  [Source: GSMA, November 2013]
  • 76% of banks see the key value of a mobile solution as competitive advantage – yet 68% of respondents to the same survey already have mobile banking technology and 21% are in the process of adopting it.  [Source: CEB TowerGroup, Mobile Banking Solutions Technology Analysis, December 2013]

Meanwhile, I would hve headlined this blog post as the UK Leads the Way in Mobile but, after yesterday's post about London leading the way in FinTech, I felt that might be a red rag to a bull.

Nevertheless, the UK Payments Council compares our experiences with mobile payments with Sweden, Kenya, India, Japan and the USA, and finds that we're the leaders:

  • the UK’s Paym remains the only industry-wide free to use person-to-person mobile payments service globally;
  • Japan and the United States – traditionally seen as world-leaders in payments technologies - lag behind their European counterparts, the UK and Sweden, in delivering person-to-person mobile payment solutions;
  • India struggles to provide the universality of service provided in the UK and Sweden, due in most part to the demographic and geographic disparity of the country; and
  • Kenya’s M-Pesa has increased financial capability and inclusion in a country lacking in a banking and payments infrastructure.
Chris Skinner Author Avatar

Chris M Skinner

Chris Skinner is best known as an independent commentator on the financial markets through his blog,, as author of the bestselling book Digital Bank, and Chair of the European networking forum the Financial Services Club. He has been voted one of the most influential people in banking by The Financial Brand (as well as one of the best blogs), a FinTech Titan (Next Bank), one of the Fintech Leaders you need to follow (City AM, Deluxe and Jax Finance), as well as one of the Top 40 most influential people in financial technology by the Wall Street Journal's Financial News. To learn more click here...

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