NFC market to exceed $180 billion by 2017
A new report from Juniper Research suggests that the NFC retail payments market will surpass $180 billion globally by 2017. This is a more than seven-fold increase from what the market is currently. Much of this growth is linked to the events of 2011. Last year, technology companies began laying the framework for the aggressive growth of mobile commerce. The promotion of NFC technology was part of this endeavor, which seems to have been somewhat successful, as noted by the Juniper report.
NFC infrastructure and standards established in 2011
In order for the NFC mobile payments market to grow, retailers, technology, telecommunications, and financial organizations had to establish a comprehensive NFC infrastructure. 2011 saw the establishment of new standards concerning the use of NFC technology and mobile commerce practices. These standards laid the foundation upon which companies invested in mobile commerce would build. The last piece of the puzzle, as suggested by Juniper Research, seems to be NFC-enabled mobile devices. These devices are quickly approaching commercialization, however.
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Mobile security may present serious challenge to NFC market
Though the report notes the promising growth the NFC market is expected to experience, it also draws attention to the problems that the market may face in the future. The aggressive development and market acceleration experienced in 2011 highlighted serious problems that may mean the market, and those invested in it, are unprepared for what the future may hold. The most significant of these problems is mobile security. Companies invested in mobile commerce have been quick to laud the security features of their services and NFC systems, but many of these features have already been dismantles by hackers and security enthusiasts. Some have suggested that NFC technology itself is flawed and could lead to financial disaster if used on a large scale.
Companies show serious commitment to solving security issues
The potential problems facing the NFC market are not being taken lightly by those invested in mobile commerce. Companies like Google and Isis are currently working on developing new security features for mobile commerce and NFC –based services. Existing NFC services and mobile commerce systems are still somewhat unfamiliar to many consumers, which may help in lowering the early exposure of these consumers to hacking attempts and shortfalls in security.