French startup Lydia launched with a simple idea: become the alternative to Venmo for French users. The firm’s amibitions have expanded since launch, however, and nowadays users can also shop on eCommerce websites through Lydia. And the app is now ready to go on the Apple Watch, which means ordering off of a push notification is just a tap away for Lydia users.
“We think that Lydia’s mission is to make it easier to use your money,” co-founder and CEO Cyril Chiche said in an interview with TechCrunch. “We don’t want to be a great app to pay back your friends, nor a great app to pay online. We want to offer as many use cases as possible to our users.”
There are now three use cases for Lydia – P2P payments, real world retail payments and (coming soon) eCommerce payments with a “Buy With Lydia” button.
The P2P part of the app works using a debit card and allows money to be moved freely and easily from the app to a user’s bank account. In store, Lydia allows users to enter an amount, at which time it generates a QR code which the merchant can scan. Merchants have to pay 0.3 percent per transaction and a monthly plan between €4.90 and €49.90 – making it an awful lot cheaper than a card terminal.
And the user experience is even better if you have an Apple Watch, because the notification will show up on your wrist. To complete the purchase, all a Lydia user has to do is affirm the payment method that pops up, and hit buy.