Will mobile payments give way to wearables?

Twenty years ago, the idea of paying for your groceries with your phone seemed more like something you’d see on Star Trek than at your local market. But unless you have been living under a shell, you will be aware that most everyday items can be bought without ever taking out your wallet.

Paying for purchases with your mobile phone is hardly as common as using your debit card but in 2015, revenues from mobile payments topped $450 billion. Projections place that number closer to $1 trillion just three short years from now.

And from here, things only get more futuristic. Payments can already be made via items you wear – from watches to jackets. But are wearable forms of payment really the way of the future?

Challenges for one, challenges for both

Wearable payment devices and mobile payments are tightly linked. Mobile payments have paved the way for the versatility of wearables. But even though mobile payments are getting some heavy adoption, they still face hurdles before contactless mobile payments become as ubiquitous as credit cards.

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