25% of smartphone owners use payment apps monthly

The use of payment apps is on the rise, with 25 percent of smartphone owners now making mobile payments monthly. And according to a new report, they prefer retailer-specific apps.

The report from Parks Associates found that shoppers showed a preference for retailers' mobile payment programs such as Starbucks over larger payment systems including Apple Pay, Google Wallet and Android Pay.

Consumers are using payment apps mostly for purchasing food and drink, clothes, and tickets for events such as concerts, according to "Context is King: Monetizing Consumer Data for Commerce."

The most dominant payment app is PayPal, which is used by one in five smartphone owners. PayPal boasts an active user base of 179 million worldwide and leads not only in user adoption but also in user spending, according to the report. Roughly 7 million users have adopted its payment app, which is accepted by 1 million retailers.

Retail branded apps were the second most-used form of mobile payments.

Walmart began rolling out its mobile payment program, Walmart Pay, this summer and retailers such as Walgreens, CVS and Kohl's have been growing mobile loyalty programs as part of their proprietary apps.

For more:
- see this Parks Associates report

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