News & Views - Savantor

Advanced Payments

Monday, 14 February 2011

In the 2010 Advanced Payments Report there are some interesting pointers to future directions for the industry.  There are the expected predictions for the size of the contactless market over the next few years the key to which has to be the roll out of terminals.  Merchants particularly in the UK have been, as expected, somewhat reluctant to adopt the technology wholesale as the benefits to merchants are often less easy to detail.  If this year is to be a turning point for contactless and mobile payments then there needs to be some key retailers starting to adopt the technology visibly in their stores.

As an example of this we heard recently that fast-food restaurant chain, McDonald's, will roll out contactless payments in all of its 1,200 UK stores by the end of October.  McDonald's claims the payment system, which will be launched by the end of the summer this year will be one of the largest roll-outs of contactless technology in the UK.  This can only be good news for contactless although McDonald's has not commented on whether they will create a smart phone app, similar to the one Starbucks has offered recently in the US.

The report also commented on payment trends for 2011 which included:

·         Payments made though social networks

·         Alliances between financial institutions and non-financial vendors

·         Investments on new options for mobile transactions

It stressed that the most pressing threat for banks will be mobile payments through providers such as Bling Nation which might cause banks to be circumvented due to the links they are creating with social networks.  That may be overstating the case but just look at the raft of announcements on mobile money in this issue and there is clear indication that non financial players are making their moves.

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