34 billion tickets to be delivered to mobile devices in 5 years, ABI Research

More than 34 billion tickets will be delivered to mobile devices over the next five years, said ABI Research.

The combined number takes into consideration the multiple technologies used to present a mobile ticket at time of authentication, including QR codes, NFC, SMS, mobile wallets, Bluetooth Smart, and dedicated apps.

In terms of the tickets delivered over the 2014 to 2019 time frame, QR codes are forecast to make up 48 percent of all tickets delivered, NFC with 30 percent and SMS and others making up the remaining 22 percent.

Though NFC will have the fastest growth with a CAGR in excess of 100 percent over the same time frame, QR codes will account for the majority of mobile tickets delivered having had a substantial head start in the market.

QR mobile ticketing has already established itself with companies like Masabi at the forefront of QR code ticketing deliveries. The technology is now established within mobile ticketing applications such as airline boarding, train and stadia and events use cases.


Earlier, ABI Research said that a combination of memory and microcontroller smart cards alongside disposable ticketing solutions will reach shipments totaling 1.7 billion units in 2018. The primary drivers include the increasing move to national standards and the enablement of NFC and open-loop payments.

This trend is a consistent feature across all continents with particular progress within the UK, U.S., Australia, Germany, Turkey, and the BRIC countries forming a growth engine for future contactless ticketing adoption.

Growth is particularly strong in China, India, and Brazil where accelerating contactless ticketing programs within flagship cities can be found. In 2013 these three countries accounted for 21 percent of all smart contactless ticketing cards shipped worldwide. As these projects evolve ABI Research expects to see further expansion across other cities and the enablement of open-loop and NFC acceptance.

ABI Research analyst Phil Sealy said: “Added value enablement is not limited to one singular technology type with QR codes, mobile wallets, NFC and dedicated apps all able to expand offerings and provide platforms from which added value can be enabled.”

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