If you're feeling behind the eight ball when it comes to understanding mobile payments, I'll tell you a secret - you're not alone. Plenty of industry "experts" are trying to figure this one out - and have been for some time.
I distinctly remember speaking with a number of industry analysts who covered the banking space many years ago, discussing a live and working service that I was oh, so anxious to promote. What was on their mind? Mobile payments. Or should I say the potential that mobile payments had to offer. It was a veritable gold mine of opportunity waiting for some smart entrepreneur to come along and unleash it.
Here we are several years later and yes, there have been some significant advances in the actual use of mobile devices for payments (primarily due to the proliferation of these devices). However, there is still a wide open field and still a great deal of speculation around how the technology will work, with competing entities vying for NFC devices, software solutions and consumer mind share.
I found this overview, published by Citi GPS (Global Perspectives and Solutions), https://www.citivelocity.com/citigps/ReportSeries.action?recordId=12 , to be quite helpful in understanding the current mobile payments landscape.
If you want a more humorous glance at the mobile payments landscape, check out this infographic from mobilepaymentstoday.com: http://www.mobilepaymentstoday.com/infographic.php?id=2 .