The use of combined government ID and payments cards is expected to quadruple by 2019, reaching approximately 27 percent of the world’s population, according to a new study from ABI Research.
ABI said the functionality, convenience, access to government services and the ability to improve the disbursement of payments will drive the convergence of smart cards in the mainstream.
Of the 569 million converged credentials currently in circulation, 95 percent are in China and Malaysia, which have deployed a social security and welfare payments cards, while the remaining five percent is undergoing pilot tests in countries like Nigeria, Russia and Brazil.
ABI said the migration to the EMV standard has helped clear the way for converged ID and payments solutions, adding that the benefits provided to governments with EMV will encourage usage over competing solutions and help address interoperability barriers that have challenged the adoption of government ID solutions.
“All the major smart card vendors, Gemalto, Oberthur Technologies, Morpho, and G&D are gearing up to serve converged markets,” ABI Senior Analyst Phil Sealy said. “These vendors are well positioned, with e-government solutions already in place, a host of specifications and standards from which each can leverage, and online solutions, providing multiple platforms to enable access to converged solutions through multiple channels. Competing in a converged market will likely be a more crowded playing field, requiring multiple partnerships and/or consortiums to bring products to market. Those smart card vendors active at the top end of secure credential manufacturers want to be a part of this market trend, strategically positioning themselves now to become future of choice.”