eBay Predicts Mobile Commerce Will Grow 60 Percent in 2012

EBay’s John Donahoe has drawn his 2012 mobile predictions line in the sand.

He is forecasting that mobile commerce — purchases made from apps or the browser on a phone or tablet — will hit $8 billion in mobile gross merchandise volume this year, up 60 percent from $5 billion in 2011.

Donahoe made the predictions last night in Las Vegas, where he gave the keynote at a technology dinner for leaders of the Consumer Electronics Association.

Additionally, the company predicted that PayPal will reach $7 billion in mobile total payment volume this year, increasing from $4 billion in 2011.

He made the bold predictions despite the recent unsettling departure of PayPal President Scott Thompson to join Yahoo as CEO, indicating that he is still confident about PayPal’s mobile future.

During the keynote, Donahoe also announced that Best Buy was its newest partner to use the RedLaser barcode scanning app to offer local in-store pick-up services. Other companies that offer it today include Toys “R” Us.

Other big data figures: 

  • EBay Mobile currently has more than 65 million downloads of its mobile applications across all platforms.
  • More than 890,000 new eBay shoppers made their first eBay purchase through the company’s mobile apps in 2011, a 113 percent increase year over year.
  • PayPal’s original prediction for 2011 was that it would achieve $1.5 billion in mobile total payment volume for 2011. Instead, it hit $4 billion. A year earlier, it totaled only $750 million.


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Just as the atom bomb was the weapon that was supposed to render war obsolete, the Internet seems like capitalism’s ultimate feat of self-destructive genius, an economic doomsday device rendering it impossible for anyone to ever make a profit off anything again. It’s especially hopeless for those whose work is easily digitized and accessed free of charge.

— Author Tim Kreider on not getting paid for one’s work