Nearly half of consumers (45 percent) in the Asia Pacific (APAC) region expressed interest in biometrics and other forms of authentication to enhance digital payment security, reduce fraud, and eliminate passwords.
This according to the 2017 edition of Mastercard Digital Payments Study, in partnership with PRIME Research and Synthesio. The study analysed more than 3.5 million conversations on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and Weibo in 2016 to identify the key trends around digital payment methods, technologies, and purchases.
In APAC, consumers' excitement around new biometric and authentication technologies drove positive sentiment (66 percent) for safety and security discussions. New developments in facial recognition and fingerprint and touch authentication drove over half of biometric/authentication conversations (51 percent).
The study also found that digital wallet was the most discussed payment method in APAC (83 percent) and worldwide (75 percent). The increased acceptance of digital wallets in-store, online, and in-app generated more than 2 million mentions worldwide.
Newer technologies like artificial intelligence and smart home assistants was the second most discussed payment topic last year. Consumers were mainly discussing how they might shop with smarter devices such as wearables. Majority of APAC consumers (93 percent) were positive about the rumors of mobile wallet integration with wearable devices.
Beyond the payment methods, consumers also hope for an additional functionality like storing loyalty cards and supporting closed-loop public transportation systems.
"Technology is making the promise and the potential of a less-cash life a reality for more people every day," said Marcy Cohen, Vice President of Digital communications at Mastercard, in a press release.
"This year's study notes a change in the level of interest for new ways to shop and pay that only a few years ago would have seemed far-fetched," added Cohen.
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