In July 2015, market intelligence firm, Tractica, released their ‘Wearable Payments’ Report analyzing market leaders, latest technologies and key drivers within this field. Intellitix has been recognized within this report as a key industry player and here our Chief Revenue Officer, Eric Janssen, explores more.
Digital payment via wearable devices is most certainly on the rise and it’s great to see Tractica’s report examining the current and future landscape of wearable payments. Over the years we’ve seen a shift in attitudes as live event organizers and consumers are embracing cashless payment solutions for the value-added benefits. This wide consumer acceptance and adoption of our solution has led some of the biggest names in live events to deploy the technology and push boundaries within this quickly growing market.
In the current festival scene, I certainly see wearable payments as having a stronger impact in 2016. There is no doubt that mobile is part of the future – but NFC technologies integrated into phones has yet to reach critical mass. Why? Because there are a few key logistical and practical reasons why mobile can’t be the sole method of payment on an event site.
The first is battery life. Charging a mobile phone when you’re at a festival is still a problem.
Secondly, not everyone has a Smartphone believe it or not, and those that do, don’t always take these devices with them to the event, or they opt to leave the device in their car or place of accommodation due to fear of theft, loss or damage.
Research has revealed that 1 in 60 festival phones will end up in a ‘portaloo’ (source: mobile insurance), while 1 in 20 revellers at Glastonbury Festival had their phones lost, stolen or broken (source: mobile insurance).
However, with wearables (in particular RFID-enabled wristbands) all festival-goers have affordable access to the payment method. We primarily use RFID technology because it’s proven to be reliable, fast, economical, and most importantly, durable.
Some of this summer’s biggest festivals have gone fully cashless including Mysteryland, Carolina Country Music Fest, Squamish Valley Music Festival, Taste Food Festivals and many more set to follow suit. While North America has seen a surge of adoption since 2014, the European market is beginning to pick up steam. We expect 2016 to be a record-breaking year for European cashless deployments, following the positive guest experience at major festivals like Tomorrowland, securing over 180,000 sold-out tickets in Boom, Belgium. The cashless implementation was a booming success and we’re eager to develop our partnership further.
According to Tractica’s research report, payment transaction volume will increase from $3.1 billion in 2015 to $501.1 billion worldwide by 2020. Wearable payments are just getting started, and we’re excited to be at the forefront of this revolution.