Guest Column | December 1, 2015

2016: The Year Of Mobile Payments

By Bill Lodes, EVP, Business Development & Strategy, First American Payment Systems

Mobile Payments

Now that 2015 has come to a close, it is imperative to take a look at the future and what transformations are expected to follow within the payments industry. The payments landscape is taking another turn towards the growth of mobile payments and ISVs and VARs need to continue evolving and to react to the changes occurring. Mobile payment acceptance has made an impact as of late and will further differentiate payment offerings in 2016 as well.

Over the next several months, the majority of merchants will continue to upgrade their solutions and products to meet EMV standards. These new credit card standards have triggered a shift in liability, requiring ISVs to implement solutions and technology that are EMV compatible.

For ISVs and VARs, the activity around EMV implementation opens up the opportunity for new product offerings, such as mobile. By capitalizing on the long-term effects of EMV coupled with near field communication (NFC), the technology that accepts mobile payments, ISVs and VARs will be able to provide a seamless integration between EMV and mobile acceptance. As a result, ISVs and VARs that offer these latest solutions of payment will uphold a competitive lead over their competitors.  

Mobile wallets and apps will continue to evolve and excel in 2016. Several of the top smartphone companies, including Apple, Samsung, and Google, have been heavily involved with the rising trend of mobile wallets. Apple entered into the mobile payment landscape in 2014 and paved the way for providing a secure alternative to traditional cash or debit/credit card payments. Soon to follow in 2015 included the mobile wallet release of Android Pay by Google and Samsung Pay by Samsung. These three mobile wallet leaders are already available at over a million different merchant locations worldwide and are anticipated to continue growing in accessibility in 2016.

With the popularity of the top three major smartphone providers involved in expanding mobile wallets, there has also been an increasing interest throughout the tech community. Tech giant such as Microsoft, a historical non-payment player, has entered the space by creating a Microsoft Payments pay platform. Facebook has also dabbled into mobile payments by generating a payments feature for its Messenger app.

It is clear that all major smartphone providers and tech companies are competing for positioning on our smartphones and wallets and will unquestionably take advantage of the opportunities to come in 2016. With that in mind, the ISV and VAR community also needs to continue progressing with mobile payment solutions. The time is now for ISVs and VARs to provide protected and secured solutions within their platform. Adapting to mobile payment acceptance is essential and will moreover increase market share for ISVs and VARs.  

Mobile payments will only continue to become more prominent for every day purchases and grow throughout 2016. ISVs and VARs must make sure and adapt to the mobile changes that are proceeding within the payments industry to meet the demands of their customers and consumers.

For information from First American on incorporating mobile payments into your solution in 2016, contact