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A cashless society: how technology will become the new currency

Cash is becoming increasingly redundant with the rise of contactless payment systems and digital wallets. Technological innovation is truly revolutionising the way we shop and coins may soon be consigned to the museum.

However, the current emphasis in the retail space has been on change in physical stores, while less attention has been paid to online payments. eCommerce has completely changed the way people shop, but the payment options have remained pretty much the same. Ironically, it is lack of innovation in the online sector that is holding us back — why do consumers still need to carry around physical bits of plastic in their wallets in order to shop digitally? As shopping moves increasingly online, consumers are looking for alternative payment solutions that offer a controlled, convenient and transparent way to spread the cost of their purchases. Tech firms will need to rise to the challenge.

Talking points:

  • Developments in payments e.g. Google Wallet, Mastercard PayPass (offline only)

  • Lack of online innovation — there hasn’t really been anything except PayPal and not all online shops offer this method of payment

  • Consumer psychology — today’s shoppers have grown up in a credit society, but more and more are saying they want a controlled way to spread the costs of shopping

  • Need for clever online solutions, particularly in the area of consumer credit

With Peter Woodfine, PayLater

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