The Perfect Transaction (How does it work?)

Ryan Hervey 17/03/2017 10:29:21

Queues, unruly customers and stodgy payment methods – transactions can be clunky, cash dependent and just plain frustrating.

These scenes often present themselves in a number of situations; at a busy bar, supermarket checkout and in airports, some scathing confrontations can take place (talking from experience, here).

Here at Qpal, we’ll present you with our perception of the "Perfect Transaction", how it works and how it ties in with the world’s shift towards contactless – with 55% of UK transactions last year made using the "tap-and-go" function".

Step 1 – Go Cashless!

Don’t get us wrong – cash can still be a fundamental way of paying for things – buses, parking meters and many nightclubs won’t accept card payments, which certainly saves the bank balance/dignity when checking your account the next day.

The cashless trend doesn’t just stick to our humble shores, Singapore have taken the progressive step to use contactless to pay local transport fares, becoming one of the first cities to do so, and the first in Asia.

Cashless world leaders, Sweden, have pioneered the concept, now only an astonishing 2% of transactions take place with physical cash.

While Dubai has some catching up to do with Scandinavia, the transition is coming.

Granted, cashless is a heavily debated commodity. Despite the safety measures and the £30 limit introduced on regular debit cards in the UK, attitudes towards the function have been mixed to date.

As time has passed following it's introduction way back in 2007, education and comfort in the feature has risen, as well as spending too– with a whopping £25 billion, spent in the UK in 2016 alone.

Perhaps this ties in with the ease of convenience of one tap/click/press features – Amazon's "1 Click" purchase, or Cornerstone's automated shaving product delivery have led us into an impatient, time-sensitive way of living.

But when it's this easy, who's really caring? To summarize – cashless means less hassle, less time spent in queues and more freedom in your pockets –no-one enjoys the abrasive jingling of change in their pocket, do they?

Step 2 – Hop to the till!

While the payment method of choice is tilting towards contactless, the introduction of self-service automated kiosks is complementing the quicker means of payment.

It's no secret that people are struggling for time to juggle all their on goings these days – it's no coincidence that London, one of the busiest and bustling cities in the world accounts for over a third of the UK's contactless payments.

Think of the possibilities – the time you spend punching in a pin could be spent bumping into the love of your life for the first time, or calling a friend, a co-worker, a family member to catch up and see how things are with them.

It seems small, but all the minutes add up. So give the reader a tap – and make the most of your minute!

Step 3 – Relax, it's all secure.

Contactless technology has the same-style chip-and-pin security measures implemented, for vigilance's sake.

Any data that could be obtained by a wannabe fraudster could only be obtained on the front of the card - which renders it useless if the card is contactless.

For a transaction to take place, a contactless card must interact with a contactless acceptance terminal.

To do this, it uses private or secret keys to generate one-time-only electronic signatures and cryptograms. That makes it just as a secure as a normal Chip transaction, where you also enter your PIN – safe as houses!

As for some statistics to put your minds at ease... Fraud on contactless cards remains low in the UK, with £2.8 million of losses compared to spending of £7.75 billion in 2015, equivalent to 0.00036% of overall spend – you’ll have to be extremely unlucky to be caught out!

Keep up to date with Qpal as we launch in Dubai later this year. Follow us on Instagram and Twitter - @QpalSocial – and get ready for the cashless takeover!

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