The following article, excerpted from a May report by Celent Communications Inc., is the first in a two-part series on electronic bill scanning. In October, we'll run the portion of the report evaluating bill scanning providers.

Over the past four years, analysts have repeatedly declared that the market for Electronic Bill Presentment and Payment (EBPP) was on the verge of exploding, and that electronic bill presentment-touted as the next killer Internet application-would spark a mass market financial services boom comparable to that of Internet brokerage.

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