What will the future of payments look like? Scott Abrahams at Mastercard explored this question by discussing his company’s activities involving new technologies and improving existing ones. He shared a variety of novel methods, including multi-rail payments and blockchain technology, which will transform how we pay for goods and services in the future.
Mastercard’s goal is to provide more people with access to financial products and services so that they can live better lives. In this article, we discuss what they see for the future of payments.
The engagement of fintech companies has rocketed, and digital-only banking is sticking. In September 2021 alone, the fintech industry saw a five-year leap in payments in less than a month. As Scott Abrahams puts it, "We are at a point of reset and must think again about how payments get made".
The rise in digital banking is a sign that people are using mobile devices for most of their payment needs. And it comes down to three main elements; convenience, user experience, and security.
Convenience is the key
We, as consumers, are willing to pay more money for a service that saves us time or effort. We want something that works efficiently and quickly without having to worry about our safety while doing it.
User experience also plays a vital role because fintech companies have focused their attention on this area to a great extent, especially to make the process of transactions as easy as possible.
The widespread use of fintech is driving a lot of innovation, which Mastercard sees as a significant business opportunity. It plans to create cutting-edge technologies on top of its current payment system as an additional layer.
To understand the type of innovations Mastercard is exploring, one must look into its recent investments. The acquisitions of Vocalink, Finicity, and Nets' Corporate Services are indications that Mastercard is increasingly interested in open-banking, cryptocurrencies, and partnerships to offer extra services.
As central governments and regulators are entering the cryptocurrency arena, Mastercard wants to be at the forefront of this movement. It has acquired numerous blockchain systems to improve the consumer experience, as people are growingly open to adopting new things. Is it possible that Mastercard could introduce stablecoins into their card network in the future? We'll have to wait and see.
With a focus on accessibility and affordability, innovative concepts are undoubtedly on Mastercard's radar. Security and convenience are also at the core of their work. It aspires to achieve more inclusiveness and sustainability through creative solutions. And according to Scott Abraham, open banking, multi-rail, and blockchains may ultimately surpass what they are doing now.
The most serious risk to Mastercard is if it becomes complacent in its role rather than seeking for the next edge, which is what keeps it competitive. However, it is forward-thinking and innovative because it is well-aware that the newest consumers of today want to borrow and spend money in a different way. As a result, Mastercard has the third-highest number of blockchain-related patents in the world.
Mastercard is one of the most recognisable brands around, and they have been at the forefront of innovation for decades. Their vision for the future of payments is one that doesn't only improve current payment systems but also takes them to a whole new level.
From open banking, mobile wallets, and digital currencies to multi-rail solutions, Mastercard will continue exploring technologies it sees as having practical use-cases across its payments network.
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