Peer-to-peer (P2P) technology continues to be one of the hottest trends in payments. Services like Zelle®, Venmo and CashApp have taken the age-old, familiar practice of exchanging money with friends and family and turned it on its head.
As cash usage declined during the pandemic due to lockdown mandates and rising hygiene concerns, P2P payments usage exploded. According to the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco, the share of person-to-person payments made with mobile apps nearly doubled between 2020 and 2021, from 15% to 29%. Meanwhile, cash usage for such transactions fell below 50% for the first time in five years. Although cash remains popular, consumers are getting increasingly comfortable with using their smartphone to initiate payments, and the end of the pandemic hasn’t slowed this trend down.
Forecasters predict total U.S. P2P mobile payment transaction volume to reach nearly $1 trillion in 2022, a 23.5% increase over 2021. Much of this growth is being driven by Zelle®, a popular and easy-to-use P2P platform that is open to virtually anyone with a U.S. bank or credit union account. The Zelle Network®, operated by Early Warning Services, LLC, enables enrolled members to send or request payments using just an email address or U.S. mobile phone number. Members love the fast and easy Zelle® experience, a key reason why consumers and businesses sent 1.8 billion payments over the network in 2021, an increase of 49% over 2020. Total payments value of money sent with Zelle® is double that of its nearest P2P competitor, according to Aite-Novarica Group.
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