Digital wallets enable customers to make payments using nothing but their mobile phone. Their use may be limited in the UK at present however with Facebook and Apple developing solutions and widespread use anticipated by 2017 its worth keeping up with developments.
1. The most trusted digital wallet is Paypal. In a recent poll of 4,000 customers 38% said they would trust Paypal with their digital wallet, 35% would trust their bank, 23% Amazon with Apple and Google trailing behind.
2. Facebook is trialling a digital wallet. Going by the name of Autofill, Facebook’s mobile payments feature seeks to allow users to pay for goods using only their phone and Facebook details for verification. One barrier may be whether customers trust Facebook with their bank details.
3. Apple are thought to be developing a digital wallet. The iPhone is capable of fingerprint verification and this could allow Apple to offer customers the option to pay in stores using their iPhone through the app store or itunes. When asked recently about mobile payments CEO Tim Cook hinted they were working on a solution.
4. Some digital wallets use Wifi technology eg. Square. To pay through Square Wallet all the customer needs to do is check in then tell the store their name when they want to pay. ID is verified through a photo which appears on the store terminal. (US only).
5. NCF is used for ‘tap and pay’. Near field communication is the technology favoured by Google and is the same as for contactless payment cards. To make a payment you hold your phone near to the payment terminal. The disadvantage of this solution is not many smartphones are NCF enabled at present.
6. Google Wallet has introduced an accompanying payment card for US customers. If you want to use Google Wallet but the store does not accept mobile payments you can now use your Google Wallet Card. The card is accepted anywhere that takes mastercard, you can use at an ATM and its linked to your bank account.
7. Coin Card. Summer 2014 sees the US release of coin card, a digital payment card which stores data for all your payment cards. Once you have uploaded the data from your other payment cards through the app the only card you need to make payments is the Coin Card.