Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Digital Wallets & Alternative Payment Systems

I'm beginning to generally read about "alternative payment systems" and digital wallets. The first step is some definitions:

conventional payment systems: cash, checks, credit cards, wire transfer, debit cards, gift cards
alternative payment systems: everything else including paypal and mobile phone payments.

Which category does a credit card count in if it doesn't get swiped? I dunno.

What is an e-Wallet? Let me quote an investment report from UBS which in its write-up of Apple's Iphone 5 Announcement, included a paragraph on the question of whether it is an e-Wallet.

Passbook is the first step to using the phone for significant
transactions. iPhone 5 does not have near-field communications (NFC) though.
Phil Schiller, SVP of Marketing, said afterwards that it’s not clear NFC is the
solution to any current problem. We think Apple’s recent acquisition of
AuthenTec, known for its innovations in fingerprint identification technology
(FPID), could pave the way for another transformative technology leap.
Integrating fingerprint ID technology into mobile and computing hardware is
likely to (1) enable secure financial transaction security, and (2) improve user
convenience by obviating the need for usernames and passwords.

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Dunkins mobile app for automated payment

Mobile Phone Payment Dunkin Donuts
America Runs on Dunkin.

Although I have a fondness for a no foam grand latte, I go back much further with Dunkin.  It's funny how aware I am of my internal conflict over which of these brands I feel most loyal to.

Be that as it may, this mobile app automated payment announcement caught my eye the other day.  Another new way to pay!

I'd like to think that there will be a single payment system for all stores, not a separate app for each one. Only time will tell.

Remember this other mobile payment system for parking that I ran across earlier?

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Credit CARD Act of 2009 & Credit Approval Problems

President Obama signed the Credit CARD Act of 2009 into law May 22, 2009, following passage days earlier in the Senate and the House.This law either changes the way the system works or is the excuse for things that are changing and so we're trying to understand it. 

While I can find plenty of discussions of the new credit card law for consumers, I can't seem to find any info on how it changes things for those of us  who accept credit cards. Help?

In particular, it is being used as the excuse for an ongoing problem with Mastercard debit and gift cards that we are having with automatic processing. We are getting ~75 calls per week from consumers who report:
- their card works fine on Ebay & elsewhere online in an automated fashio
- it's getting refused by us. We keep speaking to our ISO who says, many different things, most of which consist of he doesn't know about or what to do about the problem.....

We do monthly billing and these people, after a few months, are pretty sick of calling for verbal approvals. I hate to think about all the customers that we are losing who don't even bother to call for approval.