India's push toward cashless payments accelerated in 2019. Mobile payments that bypass card rails rose 163% to $286 billion in 2019. Point-of-sale transactions completed using debit and credit cards, including online and in-app transactions, grew 24% to $204 billion.
S&P Global Market Intelligence estimates that card and mobile payments represented only 21% of $781 billion in retail purchases at brick-and-mortar stores in 2019. While a contraction in economic activity amid lockdowns due to the coronavirus outbreak will adversely impact cashless payments, mobile payments should be relatively resilient. Their uptake will accelerate due to concerns over usage of cash and plastic that interacts with potentially virus-infected surfaces.
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