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retailWhich technologies of the present (and future) are creating the most excitement among consumers? Virtual reality is on the list. And so are convenient and secure mobile payments.

According to the findings of a new Mastercard report shared Monday with VRJournal, digital wallets continued to gain prominence in smartphones and laptops across the globe and dominated the discussion of new ways to pay, with the topic now topping 75 percent of conversations tracked in the 2017 edition of the Mastercard Digital Payments Study.

“At the same time, consumers are showing an increased interest in the application of new technologies to make shopping faster, easier and more secure,” the report summary notes. “The topic of virtual reality generated the most positive sentiment as shoppers imagine completing a purchase with the simple nod of their head.”

Per the findings, the increased acceptance of digital wallets in-store, online and in-app generated more than 2 million mentions, with 84 percent of them taking place on Twitter. Beyond the payment, consumers looked forward to additional functionality like storing loyalty cards and supporting closed-loop public transportation systems.

The activation of newer technologies like artificial intelligence and smart home assistants was the second most discussed payment topic throughout 2016. These new ways to pay generated particularly strong consumer interest in the fourth quarter, as people discussed how they might shop with newer, smarter devices.

As for key report takeaways, take a look:

  • On the Go – Wearables was the leader among emerging technology topics, driven by partnership announcements from technology developers and payment providers. In the Asia Pacific region, consumers shared rumors of mobile wallet integration with wearables.
  • At Your Service – Smart assistants, virtual reality and artificial intelligence also emerged as new payment technology interests. Consumers across North America showed an increased interest throughout the year in the simplicity of sending and receiving mobile payments with one comment to a smart assistant.
  • Connecting Your Devices: The Internet of Things was a hot topic with the majority of conversations taking place in North America (44%) and Europe (34%). Discussion centered on the Internet of Things becoming the Internet of Payments where payments could be enabled in any connected device.

For more insight, check out the infographic shared below.



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