Bohdan Myrinow, Chief Strategic Officer, Amadis, discusses with Douglas Blakey and Evie Rusman the prospects and key priorities for the sector in 2021

The digital, contactless payment trend will push the envelope on payroll

IoT and COTS devices will Power the next wave of contactless payments

The rapid growth of contactless payments that took place in 2020 will continue in 2021 and beyond. The presence of contactless payments will emerge in more places using non-traditional devices, including COTS (commercial off the shelf devices), and through (IoT) Internet of Things.

Digital transactions and kerbside pickup (card-not-present) transactions have grown quickly during the pandemic. This increase has led to a corresponding rise in fraudulent transactions, along with other unintended consequences.

For example, on a grocery kerbside pickup, in many cases 100 percent of the order is not filled. Correcting the transaction today is a laborious and time-consuming process (particularly for a stressed-out parent managing kids impatiently waiting in a car).

Adjusting a transaction typically requires a sales associate to go back and forth between an in-store terminal and outside customer, plus an additional transaction before the original transaction is rectified.

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But with contactless payments enabled on a COTS device, such as a BYOD smartphone or Honeywell scanner, the sales associate can instantly adjust the transaction on the spot, as the mini POS is embedded in the device.

Saving time, cost and enhancing the customer experience

This saves time and cost, while enhancing the customer experience. These mobile POS capabilities on COTS devices can also be deployed in-store, providing merchants with the ability to instantly checkout customers, wherever in the store the customer may be. In addition to being more secure and efficient, in the US, merchants save one percent on interchange fees, as the contactless COTS transaction bypasses the payment terminal.

As more consumers globally get comfortable with using their mobile device for payments, new opportunities for accelerating commerce are quickly appearing. Everything is getting smaller – from Apple watches to Fitbits, so payments can take place in more spots through more devices. Through the use of smartphones and digital wallets, along with Alexa, Android and QNX systems, a new wave of contactless transactions will be facilitated.

For example, when going through a fast-food restaurant drive-thru, instead of having to tap and pay, you will be able to pay in the comfort of your own car. In addition, as widespread air travel re-emerges, to make in-flight purchases, instead of passing a single payment terminal to hundreds of passengers on a given flight, safer transactions will be able to be made through phones and other mobile devices.

2021 forecasts Amadis: Meeting Customer Demand Requires Greater Interoperability

In order to meet the demand for growing commerce through phones and other mobile devices, global merchants need to ensure a high level of interoperability. Standards such as ISO 20022 and nexo enable interoperability between POS and payments systems; interoperability between financial systems and payment applications that sit on smartphones, and interoperability with smart phones and terminal management systems. Standards enable faster response by global merchants, while lowering their cost, and future-proofing their payment systems against rapidly evolving developments.

Conclusion

The year, 2021 will be an exciting time for the payments industry as the pace of contactless adoption continues to grow in new, innovative ways. As payments are increasingly being made on new devices in new spots, global merchants will need to respond faster, and ensure a higher level of interoperability between their payment acceptance systems.

Bohdan Myrinow is Chief Strategic Officer of Amadis, a payment software technology and consulting provider, with its software running on more than 10-million devices worldwide. Amadis has been instrumental in shaping global payment standards, including ISO 20022, and nexo.