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ABI Research: 419 Million NFC Chipsets to Ship in 2012

ABI Research has published its most recent prediction for the NFC market. The Oyster Bay, New York-based research firm predicts "steady growth" for NFC chipsets over the next five years, culminating in shipments numbering 419 million by 2012.
Jan 07, 2008This article was originally published by RFID Update.

January 7, 2008—ABI Research has published its most recent prediction for the NFC market. The Oyster Bay, New York-based research firm predicts "steady growth" for NFC chipsets over the next five years, culminating in shipments numbering 419 million by 2012. As economies of scale are realized, the per-unit price of the chipsets will decline to $0.97 over the same period, yielding an aggregate market value of $406 million that year.

ABI cites a number of factors that will contribute to growth in demand for NFC, the RFID-based contactless technology that will consolidate a host of commerce services on mobile devices. "Transportation systems are implementing contactless payment schemes, wireless device content management is growing, and connectivity options are escalating without offering clear ease-of-use focused applications," analyst Douglas McEuen was quoted in the release. "NFC technology ... addresses each of these issues with proven technology in an industry-standardized format."

ABI also observes that Europe, while generally behind North America in its adoption of mobile payments, is particularly ripe for the proliferation of NFC. The "transit-centric" region is "full of content and mobile payment opportunity across its GSM family networks."

NFC has emerged as a closely-watched technology whose promise still outweighs considerable hurdles to widespread adoption. Among those hurdles is the complexity of the NFC "ecosystem"; that is, the many stakeholders -- cell phone manufacturers, network operators, transit companies, payment processors, to name a few -- that must agree on cost- and fee-sharing before the technology can become ubiquitous. (See RFID Forum at MIT Discusses the Future of NFC for more on this theme.)

Hurdles notwithstanding, NFC firms are seeing strong investor interest. Indeed, the sector's $76 million in private investment last year was essentially the same as that in the passive RFID market (see RFID Investors Pour Millions Into Segments Old and New).

Read the announcement from ABI Research
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