News & Views - Savantor

Innovation season

Thursday, 31 October 2013

It may be too early for the season to be jolly but it certainly seems like the season for new ideas. In the most cashless society on the planet, the sellers of Situation Stockholm, a culture magazine sold by homeless people, similar to the Big Issue in the UK, were last month equipped with card readers to accept donations. The move marks a world first, according to their employer. Bills and coins represented just 2.7% of the Swedish economy in 2012, compared with an average of 9.8% in the euro area and 7.2% in the U.S. Situation Stockholm can already be bought via a text-message service. By using card readers supplied by iZettle, the magazine is seeking to accelerate sales growth. Five of Situation Stockholm’s 350 vendors are using the new equipment and the publication plans to introduce the devices on a broader scale after its initial trial led to increased sales.

Square have a new product which allows payments between debit cards using any email address, without the need to setup a Square account or pay any transaction fees. John Lewis is providing tailored offers and discounts as part of its loyalty card programme as well as free tea and cakes. If you eat at Prezzo you can see your bill on your mobile at any time during your meal and pay when you’re ready.

A Ukraine bank has introduced a new type of ATM with no screen. This ‘topless’ ATM allows customers to set up transactions using the screen on an Android mobile device. The ATM is equipped with an NFC reader and has no keypad or buttons.

Lastly, although it seems that making payments are not a big attraction for mobile users, storing loyalty schemes on your phone rather than having to carry around several cards looks like it could be catching on.

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