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Top News in Payments: Amazon Seeks Patent For Hand Recognition; Record Holiday Retail Sales

In today’s top news in payments, Amazon applied for a patent for hand recognition software, and retail sales reached new heights thanks to record online spending. Also, China is planning to build its blockchain cross-border pilot program.

Amazon Seeks Patent For Hand Recognition

Amazon applied for a patent for a software system that can identify individuals through unique biometric qualities and characteristics associated with the palms of their hands, according to the United States Patent and Trademark Office.

Mastercard: Holiday eCommerce Nearly 15 Pct Of Retail Sales

Retail sales hit record highs this holiday season, thanks to massive growth in online spending, which was up 18.8 percent from last year. Online spending made up 15 percent of the near $880 billion retail sales from Nov. 1 to Dec. 24, 2019.

China To Widen Scope Of Blockchain Cross-Border Platform

China is in the midst of planning the development of its blockchain cross-border pilot platform, according to Lu Lei, the deputy head of the State Administration of Foreign Exchange (SAFE). SAFE’s is the only such platform certified by a central state agency at the Cyberspace Administration of China.

Italian Gov’t To Pay Consumers To Ditch Cash For Digital Payments

Italy has one of the lowest rates of credit card use in Europe, and its commitment to cash leaves the country more vulnerable to black market deals and fraud. The Italian government wants to change this, starting by offering bonuses to those who use electronic payment services next year.

BNY Mellon On The Two Key Factors For AP Automation

Digital payment innovations such as RTP have given businesses more options to improve slow accounts payable (AP) processes. But a significant share of firms lacks the knowledge for adopting automated processes. In the latest Next-Gen AP Automation Tracker, Carl Slabicki, head of strategic payment solutions at BNY Mellon, explains two critical factors that are key to consider when switching from legacy to automated AP processes.

Getting Payors On Board The Instant Payments Bandwagon

The benefits of instant payments are obvious. What’s needed next, said Ingo Money CEO Drew Edwards, is collaboration and a willingness to evolve. In the final edition of the “How to Instant” podcast series, Edwards sits down with Karen Webster to discuss some useful guidelines for making instant payment ubiquitous.

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LIVE PYMNTS ROUNDTABLE: MODERNIZING & SCALING FOR THE NEW NORMAL

The pressure on banks to modernize their payments capabilities to support initiatives such as ISO 20022 and instant/real time payments has been exacerbated by the emergence of COVID-19 and the compelling need to quickly scale operations due to the rapid growth of contactless payments, and subsequent increase in digitization. Given this new normal, the need for agility and optimization across the payments processing value chain is imperative.

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