Welcome to The Axis, your late look at payments news from around the world. Coverage includes the introduction of automated teller machines (ATMs) with facial recognition technology from Spain’s CaixaBank. The U.K.’s Tesco Bank unveiled Apple Siri functionality for its mobile app, state-owned firms in Indonesia are combining their mobile payments efforts through LinkAja, and the U.K.’s Modulr as well Paxport are developing a new travel payments product.
Spain’s CaixaBank is launching automated teller machines (ATMs) that allow clients to withdraw cash using facial recognition instead of PIN codes, according to reports. The technology, which has been installed by the bank, was created with the help of FacePhi and Fujitsu. And the bank believes that the offering will have strong demand, with 70 percent of customers in a survey saying that they would tap into the service. Benjamí Puigdevall, who leads the bank’s digital business, said per reports, “In the current financial context of digital transformation, security and agility are key in transactions, and the incorporation of biometric technology at ATMs offers multiple benefits in these two areas.”
And the U.K.’s Tesco Bank unveiled Apple Siri functionality to help clients check the balances in their accounts in its mobile app, according to reports. The bank’s clients can enable the feature via the settings menu in the mobile app. Tesco Bank Digital Director Grant Bourbousson said, according to reports, “The addition of Siri functionality illustrates our commitment to deliver new services that utilise technologies that UK consumers really value, and which importantly meet our customers’ needs.” As it stands, the bank reportedly has had 1.2 million mobile app customer registrations.
In Indonesia, five companies owned by the state are joining their mobile payment offerings into a system known as LinkAja, Nikkei Asian Review reported. Bank Rakyat Indonesia, Bank Negara Indonesia, Bank Tabungan Negara and Telekomunikasi Indonesia as well as Bank Mandiri are combining their efforts “to challenge Go-Jek and Ovo,” according to the outlet. The service could grow to encompass other offerings (insurance, for example). As it stands, the digital payments market in the country has topped $3.34 billion in the value of transactions.
And Modulr and Paxport are developing a new payments product geared toward tour operators and travel agencies, TTG Media reported. Through the effort, an application programming interface (API) from Modulr is becoming a part of the Paxport software. As a result, payments be made through different currencies and methods. Paxport Chief Executive Tony Barker said, according to the report, “Each year we process over £300 million of travel commerce transactions and it’s important we remain at the forefront of faster, easier and more reliable payments by partnering with a Financial Conduct Authority (FCA)-regulated payments provider.”