Friday, 17 January 2014

A Change In The Way We Pay

Loyalty cards, credit and debit cards, and good old cash in a wallet has been the same for the last 20 years or so, but that is all about to change.

Some big names in the tech world could be trying to convince us to ditch the metal and the plastic and to opt for new ways to pay.

Just a few days after it was announced that total online sales has risen year-on-year to £11.1bn in December last year, it is no wonder that the likes of Google and Apple are coming up with ways to appeal to the mobile audience.

Digital wallets are just another technology advance that consumers can expect to see in 2014. In fact Google’s wallet service will allow users to put money on their phone to spend in-store, as well as being able to spend it online too. This software will transform an Android phone into a contactless card with near field communication technology.

Similar to Google, Zapp make sure that there is an app for that.  Zapp is a system expected to launch in the autumn which will be made available to 18 million UK account holders. If you hold an account with HSBC, Nationwide, Santander, First Direct or the Metro Bank, you will be able to shop with the Zapp app, which claims to be more secure than card payments.

This clever little app will allow consumers to use their smartphones to pay for their purchases in 2014, making cards and cash seem like a thing of the past. This system will only allow people to pay for purchases made online initially but they expect the app to be branched out to in-store shops not too long after.
Square is another way for us to pay, and this is an idea created by Twitter co-founder, Jack Dorsey.

Dorsey’s aim is to remove cards altogether but this small appendage plugs into a headphone jack of any mobile phone and allows merchants to swipe cards through it in order to take a payment. After a high-profile deal with Starbucks, that means a lot of people could be using this method of payment.

A lot of people have been worried about the security of these methods though, but there is no doubt that this new way to pay will be another technological advance to look out for in 2014.

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