A new survey has found that the use of m-commerce has remained relatively stable in the past 12 months, suggesting that it’s failing to catch on with consumers.

Orange’s Exposure report found that 29% of smartphone owners had purchased an item using the mobile web in the past six months, compared to 24% in 2011.

This is despite the fact that smartphone ownership has increased from 41% to 49%, which you would think meant that people are becoming more comfortable with the technology.

A previous survey from Webcredible found that security concerns are one of the main barriers to m-commerce, and Orange’s survey seems to back that up.

The 29% who have made a purchase on their smartphone breaks down as 13% who gave a credit card number and 19% who didn’t use a credit card to buy something online.

This suggests that smartphone users are keen to avoid entering credit card details on their device, yet very few retailers currently accept alternative payment methods such as PayPal.

The survey, which interviewed 1,000 respondents, found a rather different situation among tablet owners.

Tablet penetration has now reached 17% in the UK, two-thirds of which (64%) have made a purchase online using their device.

Of this number, those who made a payment on their device using a credit card were actually in the majority (47% vs. 23%).

This tallies with reports we’ve seen which show that tablets drive more sales than smartphones and a higher average order value.

In fact data included in a recent infographic from Affiliate Window shows that 55% of mobile commerce sales come through the iPad, followed by 29% on iPhone and 13% on Android devices.

Second screening

Anyone who owns a smartphone or tablet will probably be aware that multi-screening while watching TV is a very common activity.

According to the survey, 89% of smartphone owners use their device while watching TV, rising to a massive 97% among tablet owners.

On both devices looking up information about the TV show was the most popular activity (76% on smartphone vs. 79% on tablet), followed by using social media to discuss what they are watching (50% vs. 51%).

The report also suggests that 37% of smartphone owners have used their devices to buy a product while watching TV, rising to 48% among tablet owners.

However as only 29% said they have used m-commerce on their smartphone, this is likely to include respondents who were simply researching products rather than buying them.

For more information on this topic, check out our report The Multi-Screen Marketer.