This week was lit up by the news that french banking Groupe BPCE have developed a method of paying by twitter. Before you exchange all your filthy old lucre for shiny new payment methods it’s worth pausing for thought. There is something beyond the reactionary knee jerk that makes me question these new methods of payment. The idea of trusting payment details to devices normally used to broadcast thoughts and opinions to a online community of billions, it’s no wonder there is such suspicion. Mind the old adage: ‘beware Geeks bearing gifts’. Might these methods not be susceptible to Trojan horse?
Here’s the low down on the most high-tech and high-speed methods of spending your hard earned cash.
The French public can now transfer money via social media. With the simple requirements of a twitter handle and a bank account, the banking group BPCE allow you to send “a bit little extra” with your the customary 140 characters. It comes as twitter explores other ways to gain revenue from it’s position as world-wide social media giant. Rumour has it that Facebook has it’s own plans to explore its cash handling potential. Quite how it works is a top secret affair, which is for the best. I still don’t know if I would trust a loudmouth bird with my banking details.
Market leader, Google Wallet has been around for three years. Acceptance has not come easily. The theory of gaining loyalty and store credit, sending and spending all from one device is a beautifully simplistic one. The reality is horribly complicated. Relying on android devices, the fragmented operating system has had to be fine tuned for each and every supported handset. This is of course not ideal for matters of security. Complexity is the place where virtual bandits hang out. The USP of “storing all your credit and debits in the cloud” has become a bit of a turn off. As private and embarrassing breeches of the cloud are currently in the public eye, cloud credit storage might cost you more than your dignity.
If any company can make a successful launch of a new technology, it would be apple. With an army of trusting tech fans, the new iPhone 6 has already been prepared for the imminent arrival of apple pay. But how does it work?
Payment by Proximity
Apple Pay is a contactless payment system. Getting rid of cash and card methods, you’ll pay with your phone or watch. The NFC (Near Field Communications) technology works via a chip: Low power radio signals communicate with this chip when the reader is within range. It’s already part of the Apple Watch and iPhone 6.
Security: a Touchy Subject
Using the finger print reader on the iPhones, the TouchID allows payment to be verified with fingerprints.
In App and IRL
Supported in app or apple store, these are the perfect place to trial apple pay on the technically minded. However, the aim is for shops and stores to start using apple pay. It will be rolling out in America by the end of this month but the UK will have to wait. All eyes are on the USA as the next few years will define whether the Apple Pay will be a world changer or a flash in the pan.
Do you use any of these cashless payment solutions? Penny for your thoughts @JerrardWayne