Consumers abroad for years have relied on mobile phones to conduct crucial financial transactions, such as collecting funds sent through remittances.

Companies globally that provide such services will see some $55 billion in international remittances made through mobile devices by 2016, according to a December report from Juniper Research. The United Kingdom-based firm estimates some $12 billion in mobile remittances occurred in 2011.

Western Europe should experience the most growth because of substantial interregional and intraregional activity involving various countries and their citizens, according to Juniper. Smartphone innovations also should help spur more mobile remittances as the devices add more features and become easier to use, Juniper said.