Last week, we shared an article written by Randy Cook comparing the 3 major mobile payment solutions. Apple Pay vs Google Wallet vs Bitcoin
Unfortunately we (the consumers) may never get the benefits of any of these wonderful solutions because of a conglomerate of companies under the umbrella of the Merchant Customer Exchange. The MCX has been developing a mobile payment solution that they call CurrentC, and in a nutshell it utilizes your phones camera to scan a bar code which is presented to the cashier, who in turn scans it to bill your bank account directly. You read that right…The system requires a direct link to your bank account which is debited for the sale price of the item(s) you are purchasing. So reading between the lines, this means that any stores using this technology can avoid credit card fees that come with standard charge cards or via NFC charges to charge cards, using a solution like Apple Pay or Google Wallet.
The MCX is made up of a very large number of companies, many of which are large retail chains including Walmart, CVS, Target and Best Buy, just to name a few. Some of these merchants started disabling their NFC terminals this week and it doesn’t take connecting many dots to figure out that they are probably trying to remove that variable so the CurrentC solution will be the only possible mobile payment avenue available for consumers.
The net result is that the retailers will avoid credit card fees and require consumers to use a solution that is nowhere close to the ease and convenience of those of Apple and Google. Perhaps you don’t like the solution that Apple and/or Google provide and are happy things are going this way, but you need to ask yourself one question…”Do I want my mobile payments to have a direct link to my bank account?”