Today In Payments: Amazon’s Biometric Tech Lets Whole Food Shoppers Pay By Hand; Venmo Users Can Now Buy, Sell, Hold Crypto

In today’s top news, Amazon is launching its pay by hand technology in Seattle Whole Foods stores, and Venmo users can now trade in cryptocurrencies. Plus, Afterpay is exploring a public listing in the U.S.

Amazon’s Biometric Tech Lets Whole Food Shoppers Pay By Hand

Amazon is launching its biometric technology, Amazon One, at Whole Food stores in Seattle, beginning at the Seattle Whole Foods near Amazon’s headquarters. The technology gives shoppers the ability to pay with a scan of their palms.

Venmo Users Can Now Buy, Sell And Hold Cryptocurrency

PayPal’s peer-to-peer (P2P) payment app Venmo now offers its users the ability to buy, sell and hold digital currency on the app. Customers can choose and use bitcoin, Ethereum, Litecoin and Bitcoin Cash. In-app guides and videos are also available to help answer common questions about cryptocurrency.

Afterpay Reports 123 Pct Sales Spike, Explores US Public Listing

Afterpay Limited saw a record 123 percent year over year increase in sales for the quarter ending March 30 (Q3 FY21), the buy now pay later (BNPL) platform said on Tuesday (April 20), and the firm is now considering a public listing in the U.S.

Oscar Health Launches ‘Tech-Driven Platform’ After IPO

Health insurance firm Oscar Health is launching +Oscar, a tech-driven platform” that will help its healthcare clients improve member and patient engagement. The new business unit will be overseen by Meghan Joyce, who has been with Oscar Health since 2019 and helped launch Virtual Primary Care and the Cigna+Oscar small business product.

Report: Digital-First Consumers’ Payment Preferences Drive Interest In Debit Rewards

Rewards have long been synonymous with the use of credit cards, but many younger, digital-native consumers prefer debit. In the latest Next-Gen Debit Tracker, Ryan Wuerch, CEO of rewards app Dosh, explains how younger consumers’ digital payment preferences are shining a spotlight on debit rewards and how merchants can keep pace with the trend.

Circle CEO: Crypto’s Growth Depends On Improved Settlement Process

The process of accepting and settling digital currency transactions takes time, adds costs and limits innovation. As Circle CEO Jeremy Allaire told Karen Webster in a recent interview, a more efficient settlement process will be part of what he calls a third wave of crypto development.

Banks Bet On Spending Swinging From Debit Back To Credit  

Deleveraging and debit spending have been hallmarks of recent bank earnings reports — but the stage is set for credit card usage to resume as the economy improves and consumer confidence grows.