Mobile operators could make $8.1 bn in 2025 from digital ID

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A new study has found that mobile network operators' revenue from digital identity could rise sharply from $1.3 billion in 2020.

Juniper Research found that mobile operators could earn $8.1 billion (€6.687 billion) from digital ID services in 2025.

It seem to be missing a trick suggesting that the primary markets are emerging ones where banking is sparse – passwords and other ID methods are the bane of millions of people's lives in developed economies. Surely there is huge opportunity for operators to act as identity guarantor of identity everywhere?

Juniper said that as the identity sector evolves, mobile operators could play an increasingly important role in providing verification of digital identity and universal login based on subscriber identity.

Biometrics on smartphones

However, the research also found that that verification needs greater adoption to secure digital identity and recommends leveraging biometric capabilities of smartphones, of which 5.2 billion are expected to be in use in 2025.

The research’s co-author Nick Maynard explains, "Bringing biometric verification within digital identity requires robust orchestration capabilities and extensive partnerships, meaning that digital identity vendors must focus on building out their ecosystems".

API economy has big ID implications

The research reckons the rise of open APIs is stimulating the digital identity market, by providing interconnected data and allowing access to different systems.

As such, identity vendors have more data than ever, but this comes with the challenges of ensuring that all the data is orchestrated correctly and that the transaction is correctly authorised or declined.

The research recommends AI as critical to this orchestration but highlighted “explainability” around decisions as essential for supporting greater digital identity use, particularly in highly regulated markets, like financial services.