Your Friday fix for global fintech and payments news
This week has been another interesting time in the world of payments. Our weekly round-up brings you a dose of some of the biggest news announcements from the past seven days so you can keep an eye on all that’s shaping our world this week.
- UK’s open banking tech hits one million customer milestone
- India requires cardholders to opt in to contactless payments
- Amazon working to connect credit card information to your hand
Last week, we covered a report on Open Banking in 2019, which gave insight and predictions as to how the system would operate in 2020 – one expert in particular was unsure, going as far to argue that he does “not see a demand among the general population in the near future.” Such skepticism seems to be able to be put to bed this week as the Open Banking Implementation Entity (OBIE) has revealed that the number of people using Open Banking has now surpassed one million since inception, doubling its numbers in the past six months alone.
Speaking to the Times, Imran Gulamhuseinwala, an implementation trustee for OBIE, commented that the technology is: “Allowing people to have all their information in one place, allowing them to make really good decisions and leading to higher engagement and less stress.” Gulamhuseinwala says that Open Banking’s one million milestone is “…by no means… the end”.
Industry leaders and pundits have added to the conversation, predicting that Open Banking is expected to have its biggest year yet in 2020, as new regulations allow the “Open Banking Umbrella” to encompass more than ever before, including mortgages, savings, insurance and pensions.
There has been a big development in the Indian cards market this week as new central bank regulations have announced that all new cards being issued in India will not have their contactless features readily available to use. Instead, cardholders will have to opt-in for this feature. The new regulations will come into effect from 16 March, along with similar changes announced by the Central Bank that all customers should be given the option to opt-in for a wave of additional transaction services, such as contactless, online transfers or at the point of sale (POS).
It might be safe to say that Jeff Bezos is a fan of Total Recall (2012) after news came out this week that Amazon is working on connecting credit card information to your hand. Amazon has filed a patent for a “non-contact biometric identification system” that would see cardholders scanning their hands at the POS to pay for goods. This development is another stride in Amazon’s quest to revolutionise the modern-day shopper’s retail experience at brick-and-mortar stores. Its announcement of Amazon Go in 2018 revealed its ambition to allows shoppers to buy without queuing to check out.