Payments round-up: 2 September 2016
Time flies, so we’ve devised a quick fix. Here’s a round-up of key events in the payments space.
In China, Qilong and Shenzhen Qianhai Exce-card Technology (SQEC) have formed a strategic agreement to co-ordinate with banks to issue China Union Pay audio bank cards. The latter make sounds when the buttons on the cards are pressed – in case you wondered. For each transaction, the card generates a different sound, which “cannot be used more than once”. The card can be used directly on traditional phones, smart phones, computers and tablets; and it can function as a “regular bank card”.
SQEC says it has independently researched and developed the audio payment technology, and various patent applications have been filed. The audio bank card comprises a paper battery, speaker, button, electrical circuit and processor. It is connected online, which “bridges the gap between offline IC [integrated circuit] cards and the internet”.
Over to another titan nation. In India, DCB, a private sector bank, is rolling out Visa’s mVisa, a mobile-based payment solution, at retail outlets across the country. DCB says it has equipped over 1,000 “Smart Shop” retail outlets with the mVisa solution and plans to expand it to over 25,000 shops across India in the coming months.
Through mVisa, customers can also use the Cash@POS service (for debit card holders at POS terminals) and pay for goods and services directly using their smart phones. The bank is partnering with Chennai-based digital payment companies, M2P Solutions and GI Technology, to implement mVisa.
Meanwhile, in Mexico, credit card use has increased 14% as a payment method. The president of the Association of Bank of Mexico (ABM), Luis Robles, says the latest figures show that nearly 50% of card users now use their credit cards to buy goods and services, and settle within 28 days, without incurring any interest.
Robles says this demonstrates that card holders are increasingly seeing their credit cards as a way to pay for goods and not just as a way of gaining credit. The latest ABM figures show that credit obtainable by credit cards in Mexico grew by 7%, whereas other areas of consumer credit increased by 20%. Overall, consumer credit grew in the second quarter by 14%. No sombre news indeed.
Big numbers, big firm. Samsung says Samsung Pay has reached 100 million transactions in seven countries since its launch. The company says the market has processed more than KRW 2 trillion ($1.79 billion) in transactions with more than 25% of the transactions made online across South Korea.
Samsung Pay was launched in South Korea in August 2015, followed by the US in September, and China in December. It made its European debut in June 2016 in Spain, followed by Singapore and Australia. Soon after, in July, the service launched in Puerto Rico and Brazil. By the end of 2016, Samsung Pay says it anticipates go-lives in Canada and the UK.