The world of payments and fintech is evolving at a rapid pace. There have been quite a few headlines in the media, with topics ranging from wearables and surveys into consumer payment method preferences to new investments and market expansion strategies.

Let’s take a look at what you may have missed last week.

How do you prefer to pay?

That was the main question around which ING focused their latest International Survey Mobile Banking 2018. The bank asked almost 15,000 people across Europe, the US and Australia how they are using their mobile devices to bank, make purchases and pay.

The main takeaway is the fact that 58% of people across Europe prefer their main bank for money services, but others are starting to select other personal finance technologies.

Other findings include:

  • 1 in 5 have transferred money via organizations other than their main bank in the last 12 months;
  • 15% have done so to make peer-to-peer payments;
  • 13% used digital banking services, and 9% borrowed money

The survey shows that the ability to make payments whenever people want as the main reason for moving beyond their main bank. Of those who prefer not to use any of the suggested digital ways to pay, 44% claim that they always have their card or cash with them, while 42% do not see any added value compared to the payment methods they already use. In addition, 36% expressed concerns over data collection and storage.

Latest investments

PayPal, City Ventures and HPE Growth Capital are investing USD 50 million into PPRO, a UK-headquartered cross-border payment services provider. More about this move here.

Amazon India is set to invest Rs 2.3 billion into its digital wallet pay. The company is planning to develop new services for customers and continue to drive adoption for Amazon Pay.

Market expansion moves

Apple Pay now available for Spanish customers. After Poland and Norway, Spain is the next country for Apple Pay’s expansion. BBVA, a multinational Spanish banking group, has just expanded its payment offering for its Spanish customers by introducing the mobile payment platform Apple Pay. As CrowdfundInsider reports, customers need to use only a credit or debit card with Apple Pay. The card numbers are not stored on the device, nor on Apple servers. Instead, a unique Device Account Number is assigned, encrypted and stored in the Secure Element on devices and every transaction is authorized with a one-time unique dynamic security code.

Tencent plans to expand its payment service WeChat Pay in the US. So far, the company has been focused on Chinese tourists abroad rather than rolling out local versions of the platform. With WeChat Pay, users can show a barcode on their smartphone via the Tencent-owned WeChat messaging app while making in-store purchases. WeChat has over 1 billion users and nearly 800 million of them use the Pay functionality.

Klarna, a Swedish payments provider, has announced a payment card launch and is also aiming to expand out of the Nordic and German areas. Founded in 2005, the company gives online consumers the option to pay now, pay later or over time.

Technological developments and new partnerships

Wirecard and Mastercard join forces for contactless payments via wearables. As a result of this partnership, Wirecard will be made available in Germany via Garmin Pay, a contactless payment solution.

Garmin Pay customers can already make smartwatch-based payments with boon in Germany and 6 other European countries without using their bank, if they own a digital boon Mastercard. Boon is a mobile payment solution in Europe which operates independently of a bank.

Worldpay and Mastercard partner for digital payments in the UK. As of early 2019, Worldpay will offer the Pay by Bank app to merchants. Developed by Mastercard’s Vocalink business, the app enables customers to make online payments for goods and services in the UK via their banking app and directly from their bank account.

Walmart, Microsoft team up for digital transformation in retail. Under the new 5-year agreement, Walmart will use Microsoft’s cloud and artificial intelligence technology, as part of its strategy to compete with Amazon. By integrating its data more deeply into Azure, the company hopes “that new AI and machine learning algorithms will make it easier to streamline deliveries (…) as it continues to expand its online offerings”, as Gizmodo reports. These include grocery pickup, smart home tech installation, in additional to traditional online purchases.

If you’re interested in learning more about recent industry developments, take a look at our previous top weekly business news.

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