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As we are all coming down off a sugar high from Halloween candy and settling in for the first week of November, PYMNTS.com has compiled a few answers from a recent Ask the Industry: What do you think is the true mobile financial services “killer app” today?
We encourage you to share your thoughts and let us know what you think!
"True mobile Killer App? The market isn't ready for one yet. In addition to what Lou grilli mentioned in his comments, the market is basically in an exploration phase where companies are coming out with all sorts of methods for mobile payment. I figure that a small project with the right market, right customers and the right kind of infrastructure is the best way to start. Consumers confidence is (in my mind) the major factor which without, the process of using the mobile will not be successful." David Neo
"I always cringe when the “killer app” topic comes up. When my crystal ball is a little fuzzy, I like to look back through history for guidance. Remember when Push-To-Talk was going to be the killer app that would drive the need to upgrade to Next-Gen networks? (never materialized) Remember when video calling was going to be the next killer app (after years of many other vendor attempts, Apple may make that one reality – we’ll see). Bottom line – I don’t believe there will be a killer app in the mobile payment space. I believe there are three areas where incremental advances will slowly change consumer behavior. 1) Mobile banking needs to evolve from just accessing balances to being able to do everything on my smartphone that I can do on the web, but with added capabilities that take into account my current location, and my phone number as an access identify. 2) Likewise Tap-to-pay needs to evolve from a novelty for a handful of credit cards at a handful of locations to an everyday activity. 3) E-wallets need to evolve from traditional PayPal-like model to a true m-wallet, where I can digitally store my coupons, vouchers, loyalty program info, prepaid discounts, etc, and give me flexibility to have multiple funding sources, which I can choose on-the-fly based on the type of purchase.
IMHO, none of these are the killer apps, but rather represent a collection of capabilities that will slowly evolve, and will be taken up in different demographics in different ways to cause a gradual change in mobile consumer behavior. Just like texting was once a novelty, taking pictures with a phone was once considered unusual, I believe mobile payments will take time to become the norm." Lou Grilli
"The mobile financial services "killer app" hasn't appeared yet.
I keep a photo of the font and back of my credit card on my iPhone, for use when I forget to take my wallet with me. So far I haven't been able to get any merchant to accept it, even the local grocery store that sees me twice or more times every week.
But, that's what I want. I want to be able to present a card for payment by doing something with my iPhone. I want to securely transmit the necessary information to the physical merchant, just as I can already to the virtual internet merchant, that will enable the merchant to authorize, clear and settle my payment for goods or services.
Some of the data can be in the clear, to satisfy the merchant's desire to collect information about its regular customers, the better to induce more frequent larger sales. Some of the data must be encrypted. I don't want any listening device around to be able to capture the data an aspiring criminal needs to pretend to be me and access my line of credit, funds on deposit or whatever pool of value I use to make purchases.
That's mine and the payment system has to provide me a reasonable assurance that my payment data will be protected. Otherwise, I will not use the service.
How to securely encrypt payment data without placing a secure handling burden on the cell phone? You can't have the aspiring criminal getting into the cell phone and stealing the encryption key. But you can't assure that the cell phone will be handled by the user in a way that guarantees security.
A secure encryption scheme created for point of sale PIN entry devices that permits less expensive manufacturing and distribution by avoiding the necessity of secure handling is Derived Unique Key Per Transaction. Because the device never contains a clear key that will be used to encrypt any future transaction, no aspiring criminal can get any useful data from it, no matter how careless the device owner is about it. This could be a useful tool to create secure transmission of payment data in the cell phone world." Scott Harrison
"I use Financial Services in the broadest sense when I say the closest thing we have to a killer app is the barcode reader. It may not be "killer" but it's the only one I've actually seen drive consumer purchasing behavior. Swiping a card or a phone at a POS still results in the same purchase at the same place. Scanning a barcode give you the choice to buy now (in the location that you're at with a merchant you can speak with) at a premium or delay your gratification and get a discount down the street or get it shipped. Scanning the barcode of the wine you liked at the local bistro lets you see it's available at the Trader Joe's next door." Dan Whipple
Read the rest of the answers here