It’s official: mobile payments are expanding rapidly. The NFC Times Project Database suggests 150 mobile payment services have been launched or piloted across the world, while a recent report predicted 39% growth in the volume of mPayment transactions by 2020. This year alone, more than 100 million people are expected to make an NFC mobile payment. The pace of innovation even prompted one of our Connected Living 2025 tech experts to predict a cashless future (check out our Twitter chat) – and in the UK a popular restaurant chain is shifting to NFC-only payments!
Before you get ready to ditch your notes and coins, though, it’s important to consider payment security and the overall customer experience. Let’s face it, the whole point of NFC technology is that it’s seamless and convenient for payment and transport, as we saw in the #MyNFCDay video series. Luckily, Vodafone, who recently announced a partnership with PayPal, along with Apple Pay, are taking customer convenience very seriously indeed. In fact, we’ve noticed three similarities between their approaches.
Tokenization, the generation of an ephemeral code, is undoubtedly a handy tool for strengthening payment security. What’s striking is that both Vodafone and Apple deploy the security solution, but in a seamless, user-friendly manner.
For Vodafone consumers, the process of digitizing a payment card is as simple as taking a picture of their card, or using their PayPal account. Similarly, for Apple Pay users, all they need to do is quickly add a photo of their card, or manually enter the card information, which doesn’t take long at all!
Global payment enabler partnerships
Something else Vodafone and Apple Pay have in common is that they choose to work largely through global mobile payment enablers (international payment brands, global processors. This approach facilitates wider adoption of smartphone payment technology.
By prioritizing user convenience, both services have enjoyed significant growth. Since launching in October 2014, Apple Pay has attracted 12 million monthly users globally. Plus, a recent survey on trust in Apple as a mobile wallet provider has increased to 25% among UK consumers, rivalling MasterCard on 27%. Vodafone, meanwhile, believe their partnership with PayPal will add ‘millions of users’.
Clearly, then, mobile payments providers can reap rewards by placing customer convenience at the core of their deployment strategy. While we believe that different forms of implementation are likely to coexist in future, they have to be frictionless for consumers, otherwise there could be problems. To find out more about how mobile payments operate, check out our handy guide here.
What’s your view on maintaining customer convenience in mobile payments? How can we find security solutions which preserve the frictionless purchasing experience? Let us know by posting a comment below, or by tweeting to @Gemalto.