Netclearance, the smart beacon technology provider, announced on Thursday (Sept. 22) the launch of its latest beacon: the mBeaconVend.
The mBeaconVend is a mobile-agnostic beacon technology that enables vending machines to accept payments directly from a smartphone mobile wallet, ending the requirement for loose change as we move into a cashless society.
According to Netclearance, in the U.K., there are more than 462,000 vending machines, vending 6 billion items per year, with a market turnover of approximately £1.65 billion per annum. But three out of every four vending machine transactions are still cash-based. With 79 percent of all transactions in U.K. shops now cashless, the vending machine industry is lagging behind retailers in embracing modern payment methods in the era of mobile payments.
“The vending machine industry has been slow to capitalize on the growing cashless economy in the U.K., with the vast majority of machines still relying on cash-only transactions. Mobile payments are both attractive and safe for consumers and have the power to revolutionize the purchasing experience, making payments more convenient and quick,” Jonathan Duffy, EMEA executive director at Netclearance, said in a press release.
According to the company, the mBeaconVend is based on Netclearance’s mobile payment solution, mBeaconPay. Using a customized mobile app, customers can simply wave their mobile device over the smart beacon to be shown the purchase amount before confirming the payment on-screen. In seconds, a purchase is made without the need for cash or a payment card. The smart beacon also supports a range of mobile phone platforms, regardless of make, model or operating system. The new service also integrated with existing vending machine multi-drop bus (MDB) technology, making it relatively easy to swap out the existing coin box on machines with the smart beacon, the company said.