Exploring the Future of Money, Banking and Philanthropy

Archive for May, 2011

Payments Disruption in Action — Payments Views from Glenbrook Partners

Every so often, we can be witnesses to disruptive innovation in action. It’s exciting when it happens – for those who see it. Alas, most don’t see it – although they will eventually. Which pair of glasses are you peering through?For those who can see it, there’s disruptive innovation in action at the moment in the merchant acquiring sector of the card payment system. The pieces on this particular game board are beginning to be moved around.In one case, it’s the result of the combination of powerful technology Apple’s iOS platforms in the the hands of skilled designers and engineers from outside the traditional card payment system. They’re taking a beautiful new and powerful platform and shaping it to accelerate change in a stodgy legacy world. Envisioning a new world that leaves the legacy behind. After all, why not?In another case, one of the important incumbents is reshaping its approach to an increasingly important corner of the market. It’s adapting to the new conversation that market has been having with stakeholders and beginning to evolve its traditional model into a next generation solution.I’m reminded once again of the Albert Camus quote: “Great ideas come into the world as gently as doves.” There’s a bit of fluttering going on – all around. Can you see it, feel it? Are you adapting/adjusting or just sailing along?

via Payments Disruption in Action — Payments Views from Glenbrook Partners.

because we think …: Google wants to own your Wallet…

Yesterday’s launch of Google Wallet was an important moment for the payments industry. Google announced an app that will turn shoppers’ phones into their wallets. Google Wallet enables consumers to store their credit cards, coupons, loyalty and gift cards securely on their phone, so they can pay, redeem offers, and earn loyalty points – all with a single tap of their phone. It is in a field test now and will be available to all consumers this summer.�But what makes this so unique is that– it’s putting the wallet in a single app on your mobile phone.�Google Wallet has been designed for an open commerce ecosystem. Since Google Wallet is a mobile app, it can do more than a regular wallet ever could, like storing thousands of payment cards , loyalty cards, gift cards, receipts, boarding passes, tickets, and Google Offers. Every offer and loyalty point can be redeemed automatically with a single tap via NFC.�In partnership with MasterCard, First Data, Sprint, Citi, Google wants to move your wallet into your phone. Google Wallet is not a simple replacement of an ordinary wallet; it is an example of the ‘Wallet of the future’.�Here is the product launch Video.Stephanie Tilenius, vice president of commerce at Google, announced at the launch “We are about to embark on a new era of commerce. We believe that 2011 will be the year of mobile local commerce. Just TAP, PAY and SAVE”. She said “The world of commerce is ripe for a new wave. We are on the verge of major shift in payments and therefore commerce. Google is uniquely positioned to bring about this shift and accelerate.”�Google Wallet is coming together of Mobile and Local Commerce. It brings together Merchants, Payments Network, Carriers, banks and other pieces of ecosystem to make this possible.�There are over 3 billion mobile phones worldwide. Over 40% of the world’s population carries a mobile phone, far more than use a computer or have access to internet. Mobile Phone is fast emerging as a ‘preferred’ transaction medium. Smartphone sales grew 72% in 2010, and 300 million smart phones sold in 2010 globally. Many other forces accelerating the pace of customer adoption.

via because we think …: Google wants to own your Wallet….

Google Unveils Wallet And Offers: An Open Platform For Mobile Payments

Important development with profound ramifications for Moneeey Inc, …. enabling offers and payment using granular money substitutes

…With Wallet, you’ll be able to add your existing credit cards though only Mastercard is a partner right now of the major card companies. And it’s a wallet you can lock, Tilenius notes. There are multiple levels of security. There’s the phone lock, a required Google pin, credit card information encryption, and your credit card number is never fully displayed.Right off the bat, Google Wallet will work with Mastercard Paypass. This means right now 300,000 merchants around the world and 120,000 in the U.S. are technically ready though it’s not rolling out everywhere yet. It will initially work with “Gcard” a Google pre-paid card set up by Mastercard.The initial trials will be in San Francisco and New York. Tilenius says this will expand nationally in the coming months.The other component of the announcement is Google Offers. These work seamlessly with Google Wallet. You find an offer you want, save it to Wallet with a click and you’re ready. You can redeem them by tapping the phone at the point of sale. Or you can show the offer to a cashier.Initially, Macy’s, Subway, Walgreens, Toys R Us, and more are partners. The first trial programs will be in San Francisco, New York, and Portland this summer.Tilenius notes that the first offers will be “offer of the day” but notes that “this is just the tip of the iceberg.” Eventually, there will be check-in offers, offer ads ads on Google that are really offers that you can easily transfer to Wallet, and others.

via Google Unveils Wallet And Offers: An Open Platform For Mobile Payments.

Bitcoin, Ven and the End of Currency

Virtual currencies are in the news again with all the discussion around Bitcoins, which is limited in supply and can be exchanged anonymously. Our own long experience with another digital currency, Ven, has made us think about the logical conclusion of these activities, and what it means for money at large. And what it means is the end of money as we know it.Digital currencies are really just online account books that measure and record transactions of financial value between nodes on the Internet. The first ones—Beenz, Flooz and others, arrived with the first wave of the Internet in the 1990s and failed. By the middle of the last decade, the virtual currency economy boomed on the strength of gaming systems: theLinden Dollar in Second Life, World of Warcraft Gold,Entropiaand Tencent’s QQ in China encountered success with volatility. Now Internet currencies are moving out of virtual gaming systems and into the global economy, …

via Bitcoin, Ven and the End of Currency.

Reputation.com CEO: Your Personal Information Is The New Oil

Your personal information — what sites you browse, what stuff you buy and what you do in your spare time — is black gold, version 2.0.So says Michael Fertik, CEO of Reputation.com, an online reputation manager, who calls users online data the “new oil.”Multibillion dollar industries, from search engines to social networking, have been built on the aggregation of personal data, information the World Economic Forum likens to a “new type of raw material … on par with capital and labor.” Companies are monetizing users’ clicks, status updates and emails — so how about a cut for the users themselves?According to Fertik, individuals should be able to charge companies to collect and use data about their online activity, which most sites currently acquire for free, then use to serve up targeted ads and other personalized content.Though details on the technical specifics and feasibility such a plan are still quite slim, Fertik, an online-privacy proponent, suggests that the future could see the creation of digital personal data vaults that companies would have to pay to access. Users would, theoretically, be able to control who uses their personal information, and could also be compensated for allowing businesses to tap into their data.“Imagine an even better world in which we provide for you a data privacy vault and you put all the data into that vault. Every time someone wants to get access to it they pay you for it,” said Fertik. “You actually get to benefit from the fact that your data is the new oil and you get paid for the mining of your data. That’s an easily achievable world from a technical perspective, it just requires true grit.”The WEF has outlined a similar mechanism by which individuals could be compensated by companies that use their data, deemed the “new economic ‘asset class.’”

via Reputation.com CEO: Your Personal Information Is The New Oil.

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