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Contactless Credit Card Usage Grows, Survey Suggests Bright Future

by Peter Andrew
Contactless Credit Card Usage Grows, Survey Suggests Bright Future

MasterCard issued a press release last week touting the results of its PayPass contactless payment technology in retailers where it is accepted. At the same time, a new survey reinforced the message by reporting that over half of all respondents were willing to use contactless cards to buy gas, fast food, groceries, and other frequent purchases.

MasterCard reported nearly 10 million PayPass cards and devices on the market and approximately 32,000 merchant locations around the world that accept PayPass, including McDonald’s, 7 Eleven, CVS, pro football and baseball stadiums, and more. Looking at consumer card usage data from a major but unnamed issuer of PayPass-enabled cards, MasterCard reported a 36% increase in overall card usage and a 45% increase in total transactions compared to the same period in 2005.

A 230% increase in usage at PayPass merchants and a 270% increase in the number of transactions at PayPass merchants was also reported, although it’s hard to say whether this reflects a greater desire to use the card at PayPass merchants or simply the greater availability of such merchants versus the prior year. Dovetailing with MasterCard’s announcement was the survey by Ipsos Insight and Peppercoin, in which Ipsos translated its survey results to mean that 100 million Americans are willing to go contactless if the opportunity exists. Younger respondents and higher-income respondents were most likely to view contactless payments favorably, while those who would shun the cards say security is their biggest concern.

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