- New mobile technology devices such as mobile telephones, PDAs and interactive television will not deliver significant business to retailers in Europe, Forrester Research in Amsterdam said Monday in statement.
The limitations of the devices themselves will keep their stake in total online retail to just 19%, or 33 billion euros ($US29.7 billion) in 2005, Forrester said. Therefore, the study, entitled "Driving Retail With Devices," concludes that retailers should use mobile commerce devices for promotional purposes, rather than for retail transactions.
According to Forrester, mobile telephones will only make up 3% (5.2 billion euros) of total online retail by 2005. Mobile phone transactions will mainly be used for buying such products as flowers and movie tickets, Forrester said.
Poor TV resolution will in part keep online purchases over interactive television down to 16% of the total, or 28 billion euros in the same period, the study said. Users will continue to see television as a form of passive entertainment, rather than an interactive forum, Forrester said.
As for PDA's, the first wireless models are not expected to hit the European markets until 2001, and even then Europeans will prefer their Internet-enabled mobile phones at a ratio of 150-to-1 by 2005, the report found. PDAs can look forward to garnering less than one-tenth of 1 percent of online retail sales, Forrester said.
The PC will continue to dominate online retail, creating a market worth 141 billion euros in 2005 and accounting for 80% of online retail sales, Forrester said. In the same year, the PC will have a household penetration of 50% throughout Europe, the study found.
In contrast to Forrester's study, some research and analyst companies have predicted an explosion in mobile e-commerce. For example, in June the Boston-based Aberdeen Group Inc. predicted that the second half of 2000 will see unprecedented growth in mobile e-commerce due mainly to activity in the financial services, travel and retail industry segments.
The Forrester study consists of interviews with 40 executives from European retailers who support at least one mobile device for commerce in addition to the PC. Forrester also used results from its the Technographics Europe survey of 23,000 consumers released in May, the company said.