Mobile Payments - D200

From New Media Business Blog

Jump to: navigation, search


History of Transactions

1200 BC

Before using money as a medium of exchange, bartering acted as a way to pay for goods and services. Bartering is directly exchanging a good or a service for another good or service without a medium of exchange. An example of bartering is exchanging clothes for bread.

1100 BC

China was the first country to use circled objects as a medium of exchange. These objects were an apparition of coins and were used to buy goods and services in the marketplace.

600 BC

Minted coins appeared in Lydia, ancient western kingdom in Anatolia, and became the first official currency. These coins were made with precious metals and prints to identify them as real money. As countries develop, minted coins became popular to represent smaller amounts of money.


Paper banknotes were developed and used in China during the Tang dynasty. It was adopted later in Europe during the 1600’s as currency. Paper banknotes are still the most common and familiar medium of exchange around the world. Paper banknotes are common to be used as a larger amount of currency compared to minted coins.[1]


The first credit card was introduced in the UK by Barclays. Having a credit card meant that you did not have to carry cash wherever you go to purchase goods or services. You could purchase multiple goods and services and do not have to use your own cash to pay on the spot of the purchase. The amount purchased would accumulate on your credit card and you would have to pay off the credit amount with your cash on or before a specific date.


Debit cards were introduced by banks to eliminate the amount of cash you had to carry and a more secure way of holding cash. To withdrawal money or purchase goods and services on a debit card, the cardholder would have to identify that they are the owner of the card to continue the process. A debit card differs from a credit card during purchases by transferring the money directly from your bank account to pay for goods and services.


When ecommerce was becoming popular, Visa and Mastercard built the SET protocol, which allowed electronic payments online. This allowed buyers to purchase products and services online by entering their credit card information into the vendors website.


PayPal was created to transfer money online to vendors and commercial users. If two parties have PayPal accounts, they are able to transfer money back and forth. Users would link their bank accounts to PayPal and transfer money without the hassle of delivering cash or cheques.


As traditional mobile phones turned into smartphones, they offer functions such as internet access. This means that buyers can use their smartphones to purchase goods and services instead of through their computers.[2]

What Are Mobile Payments

In-Store Payment

A mobile payment is money paid for a product or service through a portable electronic device. Some examples of portable electronic devices would be smartphones, smartwatches, and tablets. Among all the smart devices provided, smartphones are the most popular option and is widely used around the world.[3]

Types of Mobile Payments

    Remote Payments

    Remote payments are online purchases made through the internet with your smart devices. An example of a remote payment is buying a water bottle on through a web browser on your smartphone. Buyers simply enter their credit card information or other payment information and purchase the item.[4]

    In-Store Payments

    In-store payments are purchases made by physically paying with smart devices instead of using a credit card, debit card, or cash. Smart devices can act as a digital wallet and store different methods of payment information, such as credit cards, in an app to make purchases. To make a payment, users would open the app used to store their method of payment and tap their devices on the card machine terminal, much like how they would normally do using their credit card with a tap function.[5]

What Do You Need To Use Mobile Payments

To do a mobile payment, a smartphone or tab, a credit card or debit card, and Near Field Communication device (moneris with tap functions, barcode readers, etc) is needed, which is a device that can receive the information of other data just by being near it. The smart device is used to enable the mobile payment, the credit or debit card info is used to bill the user, and the NFC or QR code scanner is used to receive the payment from the smart device.

How do Payments Work?

QR Code

QR code payment is relatively simple and convenient and growing rapidly in Asia, especially in China. To do a QR code payment, the user downloads the app they want to pay with (Alipay, Wechat Pay, etc.) and registers an account. Once the account is made, a unique QR code associated with the account will be generated, then the credit or debit card information must be inputted into the app to bill the user for their transactions.The user simply lets the cashier scan their unique QR code and the transaction will be completed once the scanner receives the user’s information.

Near Field Communication

NFC payments are popular for its convenience and simplicity. To do a NFC payment, the user downloads a NFC friendly app and inputs their credit or debit card information into it. Then the user simply brings their smart device close to the cashier’s NFC receiver and the transaction will be complete. The user must also be aware of which NFC payment type they’re using as some stores only take specific types. For example, if the user wanted to pay using ApplyPay and the store only accepts credit or debit card tap, then the user would not be able to pay using ApplePay due to it being a different NFC payment type.


It Is Safer Than Using Debit or Credit Cards

If people take their physical credit or debit cards with them, they have a chance of losing their cards. Therefore, if that happened, anyone could enter their card’s information to make payments online or anyone could tap the card to complete a purchase under $100. However, with mobile payments, even if you lose your phone, the chances of losing money in bank account without you know it is very thin when the thief has to go through 2 layers of security which are your phone’s password and payment authentication where you have to use either fingerprint, PIN or Face Id to confirm your payment.

It Creates 4 Virtual Digits on Receipt

If you make a purchase in a store and get a receipt, there are usually last 4 digits of your card number printed on the receipt. However, with mobile payments, it creates 4 virtual digits on the receipt which are different from the numbers on your card [6]

NFC is Secure

NFC allows secure data exchange by using encryption and a special processor. In addition, wireless technology can only communicate in a short distance which decrease the opportunity for hackers to spy on communications and increase privacy and security. [7]

Who Offers Mobile Payments?

Samsung Pay


    Samsung pay is a mobile payment and digital wallet serviced by Samsung that allows users to make payments through compatible phones and other Samsung devices. The service was first launched in South Korea on August 20, 2015 and then experienced significant global growth and is now available in six continents which are North America, South America, Europe, Asia, Africa and Oceania and 24 markets including South Korea, U.S., China, Spain, Singapore, Australia, Brazil, Puerto Rico, Russia, Thailand, Malaysia, India, Sweden, UAE, Taiwan, Switzerland, Hong Kong, U.K., Vietnam, Mexico, Italy, Canada and South Africa. [8]

    Samsung Pay uses NFC technology to transfer card’s information to a NFC-enabled payment terminal. What makes Samsung Pay different from other types of mobile payments is that it also accepts traditional payment terminals and card machines by using MST (Magnetic Secure Transmission) technology, which sends out a signal that mimics the magnetic strip on a credit or debit card. The benefit of MST technology is that any payment terminal that accepts credit or debit card can take Samsung Pay. NFC technology is relatively new so not every payment terminal has upgraded this technology. For that reason, Samsung seems to be one step of other companies that also offer mobile payments [9]

    Where Can Samsung Pay Be Used?

    Samsung Pay users can pay almost anywhere from coffee shop to grocery store as long as these stores support NFC or MST (Magnetic Secure Transmission). For online or in-app purchases, Samsung Pay currently does not support these functions because it is focused on enabling simple and secure in-store payments. Online and in-app purchases will be considered for future releases of Samsung Pay[10]

    Devices and Banks offer Samsung Pay

    One downside of Samsung pay is that it only works on Samsung selected smartphones and wearable devices. These are smartphones and wearable devices compatible with Samsung Pay now.

    Smartphones: Galaxy S10e, S10 and S10+, Galaxy Note9, Galaxy S9 and S9+, Galaxy Note8, Galaxy, Note FE, Galaxy S8 and S8+Galaxy A7 and A9 2018 (*Only NFC payment supported), Galaxy A8 Star (*Only NFC payment supported), Galaxy A8 and A8+, Galaxy S7 and S7 edge, Galaxy S6 edge+, Galaxy A9 Pro, Galaxy A5 and A7 (2016 & 2017), Galaxy Note5.

    Wearable devices: Galaxy Watch Active (*Only NFC payment supported), Galaxy Watch (*Only NFC payment supported), Gear S3, Gear Sport (*Only NFC payment supported)

    Major banks and payment service providers that integrate with Samsung Pay in Canada: CIBC (Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce), RBC (Royal Bank of Canada), Scotiabank, American Express, ATB.

    How Does Samsung Pay Make Money?

    5% Cash Back with Walmart

    Samsung charges no fee to merchants and banks: It was reported that Samsung intended to charge 1.5 cents for each $1 processed in mobile payment transactions, but Samsung wanted to gain an advantage against their competitors such as Apple. Therefore, Samsung now allows merchants to utilize Samsung Pay at its store and businesses for free. Furthermore, there is also no charge for card issuers [11].

    Keep Samsung Pay users in Samsung ecosystem: Samsung Pay is not the main revenue stream for Samsung, but instead a way to sell phone and keep its user in their ecosystem. As Samsung Pay is significantly increasing the number of users registering the service every year which was reported to gain 6.6 million new users between 2017 and 2018, Samsung reached its peak in revenue which is 222.81 billion US dollars [12].

    Partnering with businesses to offer promotion for Samsung Pay users: Samsung recently announced a new Cash Back program for those who buy things from certain merchants through Samsung Pay. Users can see different promotions from various merchants in the Cash Back section; and if they select and make a purchase from any merchant from the list, a percentage of their purchase price will become credit in Samsung Pay. The credit amount will be deducted when they make the next purchase through Samsung Pay [13].

Apple Pay


    Apple Pay is a mobile payment and digital wallet service developed by Apple that lets users make payments through compatible devices and Apple devices. The service was first launched in the United States in October 20, 2014 and now has been expanded to Canada, Croatia, Australia, Brazil, the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Russia, Kazakhstan, China, New Zealand, Singapore, Japan, Taiwan, Hong Kong, and all countries in the European Economic Area (EEA) [14].

    The payment uses NFC (Near Field Communication) technology to help Apple devices wirelessly communicate with point of sale system. Apple is also partnering with Bird (a scooter company), Bonobos (a clothing store) to work on new NFC stickers or tags that will trigger Apple Pay for a payment without needing to have apps installed. With this new feature coming out in the future, retailers will not need bulky terminals, and Apple users do not need to download third-party app, for example; to buy gas or rent scooters[15].

    Where Can Apple Pay Be Used?

    Apple Pay in Online Store

    In store: Apple Pay works with any merchants that accept contactless payments and NFC technology

    In App purchases: Users can use Apple Pay to pay in apps when there is Apple Pay as a payment option.

    How to make a purchase with Apple Pay within app:

    1. Tap the Apple Pay button or choose Apple Pay as your payment method.

    2. Check your billing, shipping, and contact information to make sure that they're correct. If you want to pay with a different card, tap > next to your card.

    3. If you need to, enter your billing, shipping, and contact information on your iPhone or iPad. Apple Pay will store that information, so you won't need to enter it again.

    4. Confirm the payment. When your payment is successful, you'll see Done and a checkmark on the screen.

    How to make a purchase with Apple Pay within online store:

    1. Tap the Apple Pay button.

    2. Check your billing, shipping, and contact information to make sure that they're correct. If you want to pay with a different card, tap > next to your card.

    3. If you need to, enter your billing, shipping, and contact information. Apple Pay will store that information, so you won't need to enter it again.

    4. When you’re ready, make your purchase and confirm the payment.

    Devices and Banks Offer Apple Pay

    Apple Pay is compatible with these devices: IPhone 6, 6s, 6 Plus, 6s Plus, 7, 7 Plus, 8, 8 Plus, SE, X, XS, XS Max, XR, and Apple Watch owners make payments using NFC with their devices [16]

    In Canada, Apple Pay works with many of the major credit and debit cards from the top banks such as Royal Bank, CIBC, Canadian Tire Bank, TD Bank and ATB Financial Mastercard..

    How does Apple Make Money?

    According to CNN Business, Apple takes from card issuers 15 cents for every $100 in Apple Pay transactions which means that it charges 0.15% per transactions made through Apple Pay. However, these fees are not going to add anything significant to the company’s income. The main income Apple Pay generates for the company is that it locks people into Apple’s ecosystem. Its convenience and security make Apple Pay an attractive option for customers. A 0.15% charge will cover the cost of service and what really makes money for Apple is that it locks people into Apple’s world of apps and hardware since Apple Pay is only compatible with Apple devices [17].

Google Pay


    Send and Receive Money With Google

    Google Pay (formerly Android Pay)is a digital wallet platform and online payment system developed by Google. Originally announced as Android Pay by Google at its 2015 I/O developer conference and officially launched a few months later on September 11, 2015, now the Android Pay have unified into a single pay system called Google Pay. Google Pay is now available in 28 countries which includes Australia, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, Chile, Croatia, Czech Republic, Demark, Finland, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Ireland, Italy, Japan, New Zealand, Norway, Poland, Russia, Singapore, Slovakia, Spain, Sweden, Taiwan, Ukraine, UAE, UK and United States [18].

    Like Samsung and Apple Pay, Google Pay also uses NFC technology to transfer information from phones to payment terminal. The payment is secured by fingerprint on capable devices and PIN numbers. Beside NFC, now customers can make payments at store using Google Pay Send which is a function that allows people to send and receive money from a mobile device or desktop computer at no cost to either sender or receiver. However, this function is only available in United Kingdom and United States.

    How to use Google Pay Send:

    1. Open the Google Pay app.

    2. At the bottom right, tap Send.

    3. At the bottom, tap +Send or request.

    4. Choose a contact.

    5. Enter the amount.

    6. Tap Send.

    7. Confirm or change your payment method.

    8. Tap Confirm & send [19].

    Devices and Banks Offer Google Pay

    Google Pay works on most Android phones and wearable devices such as Samsung phones or Samsung watch.

    Banks in Canada that supports Google Pay: Bank of Montreal (BMO), Desjardins, Banque Nationale du Canada (NBC), President's Choice Financial, Alberta Treasury Branch (ATB), Canadian Tire Financial Services (CTFS), Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce (CIBC), Scotiabank.

    How Does Google Pay Make Money?

    Like Samsung, Google charges no fee to merchants and card issuers for using their service. Furthermore, to use send money function in Google Pay, customers will be charged 2.9% on credit card but no fee on debit card [20].

    Although Google does not make much money through charging fee on transactions, its main income comes from the data Google collects from every transaction. These data will be used for better advertising.

WeChat Pay


    Red Envelope

    WeChat Pay is a payment feature intergrated into WeChat app where users can quickly make payments with their compatible smartphones. “WeChat has Quick Pay, QR Code Payments, In-App Web-Based Payments, and Native In-App Payments all to fulfill the full range of scenarios your customers expect to fulfill different payment situation” [21].

    WeChat originally launched the red envelope feature which lets users send money to their family and friends in 2014. Thanks to this feature, Wechat Pay gained significant amount of user adoptions. Specifically, within one month of its launch, “WeChat Pay’s user base expanded from 30 million to 100 million users, and 20 million red envelopes were distributed during the New Year holiday period”. In 2017, the transaction value of red envelope is $14 billions which was used by 768 million users, which reportedly increase 10% compared to 2016. Now the number of users using Wechat Pay has climbed to over 1 billion users.

    Despite having more than 1 billion users, most of them are from China Mainland and Hong Kong Special Administrative Region. At the current time, Wechat Pay is only available to users registered in China Mainland, Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, South Africa and Malaysia. The users register outside of those regions will not be able to use the service to send red envelopes but they can use WeChat to make payments in stores that accept WeChat Pay [22].

    Where Can WeChat Pay Be Used?

    In China, WeChat Pay is accepted in most retail stores, restaurants, hospitals, taxis, entertainment venues and hotels as long as they have QR code. For users registered outside of China Mainland, Hong Kong, South Africa and Malaysia, they can add their debit or credit card to WeChat and complete payments at stores that have QR code.

    Devices and Banks offer WeChat Pay

    WeChat Pay works with almost every smartphone now. People just need to download WeChat App on either Google store or Apple store and after a few setup, they are good to use the service.

    At present, WeChat Pay covers more than 300 banks, and supports several oversea credit cards, including JCB, VISA and Mastercard.

    How Does WeChat Pay Make Money?

    With businesses operating outside of China, WeChat charges 3% per transaction to merchants who use their service. However, there is no fee to businesses operating in China [23].

    Moreover, If WeChat users want to withdraw money from WeChat balance to their bank account, there is a small fee which is 0.1% per transaction charged by WeChat. With the rapid growth of Wechat Pay in recent years, many businesses have been placing advertisements on Wechat to promote their products and services. Apparently, anyone now can place ads on a section called WeChat Moments. WeChat Moments is similar to Facebook News Feed where it allows anyone to share pictures with captions or statuses with their friends. According to WeChat, “WeChat moments advertising is charged on a CPM basis, meaning you pay a fixed amount for one thousand impressions. Impressions are triggered when the ad appears in the newsfeed or when a user clicks on the external link or engages with the ad” [24]

How People Have Shifted Towards Paying With Their Phones

Since cash is the official medium of exchange in any country, storing, purchasing, and receiving cash comes with no additional costs. When society moves towards a world of mobile payments, this will create a problem for many people across the world. More than 8 million people will be affected by the lack of cash available in circulation. Low income families and residents living in rural areas will struggle with being able to afford the right technology just to purchase and receive money. In the cities, low income families might struggle to purchase goods and services because the vendors might not accept cash as a method of payment.

Despite having more than 8 million people having trouble accessing mobile payments, 71% of the world’s population will have access to digital payment technology by 2025. The population mainly consists of people living in China, India, Pakistan, Indonesia, Bangladesh, Sub-Saharan Africa, and Latin America. Because of the fast development in China and their ability to quickly adopt technology, they are the biggest users of mobile payments in the world.[25]

Users of Mobile Payments

    Users In China

    In China, there are already 1 billion people using digital wallets for everyday transactions. The two biggest mobile payment apps that are being used in China are WeChat pay and Alipay. Since the development of mobile payments became available in China, many people started to adopt the technology quickly. Vendors saw this adoption as a strategy to attract customers by providing quick and easy payments. As more stores provided mobile payment technology, the number of users in China kept increasing to adapt to the technology.[26]

    Users In North America

    In North America, only 29% of internet users used a mobile payment service in December 2018 compared to 47% of users located in Asia Pacific.[27]

      Why North America Lags in Mobile Payments:

      Many internet users in North America do not trust mobile payments as a safe way of payment. Despite its effective security, people tend to stick with existing payment methods because it is the “norm” and it is how they have been purchasing goods and services historically.[28]

      Old Habit

      A smartphone acts like a digital wallet because it can store many things such as credit card information and gift cards. Although your smartphone can store more things than your wallet can, some items are still not considered legitimate because it is not the physical copy. An example of this would be a driver's license. You can easily take a picture or load your driver’s license on an app and carry it with you because it is convenient. If you get pulled over by the police, they will not accept the digital copy of your driver’s license because it could be fake and tampered with. Because of problems like this, people must still carry a wallet with them, which includes credit cards, debit cards, and cash.[29]

      Investment Of The Technology

      When some items in your wallet cannot be replicated into your digital wallet, such as a driver’s license, people must carry their wallets with them. Because people have either credit, debit, or cash carried in their wallet, many vendors do not invest in mobile payment technology to avoid further expenses. When vendors do not invest in the technology, people do not use mobile payments because it is not widely available to use. Because of the lack of use, vendors think it will not be worth investing in the technology. This phenomenon leads to a cycle of why mobile payments are not being used.[30]

      Humans Hate Changes

      One resistance of why people hate changes is because they fear the unknown future. People hate change because they do not know what the future will be like after the change has occurred. This happens because people like consistency and familiarity with minimal changes in their lives. An example of this would be going into a haunted house. Many people fear haunted houses because they do not know what will happen. People fear switching to a mobile payments because they do not know if they will be hacked or lose their information. Smartphone users who are not using the mobile payment system are comfortable with the current functions provided on their device.

      Another resistance for change is having mistrust. If people do not trust something, it would be hard for them to accept it or reject it completely. An example of people having mistrust is during federal elections. Politicians have a reputation of manipulating voters and not fulfilling their promises to the country after being elected. This leads to frustration from the public and would likely not trust their leader anymore. With respect to mobile payments, people do not trust the technology, despite the excellent security they provide.[31]

Why People Accept Mobile Payments


    Many people choose to use a smartphone because you can do pretty much anything at your fingertips. With smartphones, people can do their banking, networking, shopping, and much more all within one device. Since the majority of the people already carry around their smartphones everywhere they go, adding mobile payment methods onto smartphones will be more convenient. This will also reduce the need to carry around wallets all the time because all their credit and debit cards are all inside the smartphone.[32]


    Before a payment is made through smartphones using NFC, it requires authorization from the owner by either entering a pin code or using biometric functions. For example, when you are paying for lunch with your smartphone, the payment will be made when you scan your fingerprint. The transaction will proceed when the smartphone identifies that the fingerprint scanned is matched with what is set up to authorize purchases. Using biometrics is far safer than entering your pin because it is much harder to replicate the authorization.

    For QR codes, it is harder for thieves to hack your account compared to credit cards. If someone steals your credit card, they can easily purchase things, assuming your credit card has the tap function. When you have a mobile payment account using QR codes, thieves have to steal your QR code in order to make purchases. Stealing QR codes are much harder than stealing credit card information and cash, which makes it more reliable and safe.

    As mobile payments gain popularity, vendors might want to implement the technology in their stores and leave cash behind. By switching to mobile payment technology, payments are made easier for both parties and the probability of exchanging counterfeit money is significantly lower.[33]


    Unlike cash, when making purchases through smartphones, they can be traced and provide payment information. They can also provide the spending history and set spending limits accordingly to the amount the owner wishes. Credit cards have these functions as well, but mobile payment apps can provide this information to the user more easily on their smartphone.[34]

The Future of Mobile Payments

Amazon Go

Amazon Go

Amazon Go uses computer vision, deep learning algorithms, and sensor fusion to automate purchases. Computer vision enables Amazon’s system to interpret images through automatic extraction and analysis, deep learning algorithms enable the system to detect patterns and the meaning behind them, and sensor fusion harnesses sensory data to reduce uncertainty in data collection. Users simply walk into the store, pick out what they want, and walk out [35].

The All in One Wallet


    The potential of digital wallets is incredible. Not needing to bring a wallet out is a huge convenience since the need to worry about losing it wouldn’t exist. It would also mean less incentives to steal from someone as smart devices can be locked digitally and the NFCs on them are only active when the app is open and a transaction is about to be made.


    We are so far yet so close to digitizing the wallet, but there are several hurdles that we need to overcome before it becomes a viable option. First would be government policy on government issued IDs. Passports, ID, SIN numbers, and Health cards all need to be kept safely. With digital wallets, there would definitely be regulations on security requirements for these developers as well as what guidelines they would be using to safeguard this information. Furthermore, implementing this change would take a long time as well since government bodies within countries take a long time to pass bills and laws.


Aaron Pi Tu Bui Jerry Weng
Beedie School of Business
Simon Fraser University
Burnaby, BC, Canada
Beedie School of Business
Simon Fraser University
Burnaby, BC, Canada
Beedie School of Business
Simon Fraser University
Burnaby, BC, Canada


  1. Wikipedia. Banknote. Retrieved from:
  2. SlimPay. A Brief History of Payment Methods. Retrieved from:
  3. Investopedia. Mobile Payment. Retrieved from:
  4. Mobile Transaction. Different Types of Mobile Payments Explained. Retrieved from:
  5. Mobile Transaction. Different Types Of Mobile Payments Explained. Retrieved from:
  6. Retrieved from
  7. Retrieved from
  8. Retrieved from
  9. Retrieved from
  10. Retrieved from
  11. Retrieved from
  12. Retrieved from
  13. Retrieved from
  14. Retrieved from
  15. Retrieved from
  16. Retrieved from
  17. Retrieved from
  18. Retrieved from
  19. Retrieved from
  20. Retrieved from
  21. Retrieved from
  22. Retrieved from
  23. Retrieved from
  24. Retrieved from
  25. Forbes. Moving Towards A Cashless Society In A Cash-Reliant World. Retrieved from:
  26. Forbes. Moving Towards A Cashless Society In A Cash-Reliant World. Retrieved from:
  27. Statista. Share of Internet Users Worldwide Who Used A Mobile Payment Service In The Last Month As Of 4th quarter 2018, By Region. Retrieved from:
  28. YouTube. CNET. Why Mobile Payments Are A Mess | Bridget Breaks It Down. Retrieved from:
  29. YouTube. CNET. Why Mobile Payments Are A Mess | Bridget Breaks It Down. Retrieved from:
  30. YouTube. CNET. Why Mobile Payments Are A Mess | Bridget Breaks It Down. Retrieved from:
  31. Forbes. Overcome The 5 Main Reasons People Resist Change. Retrieved from:
  32. Forbes. Moving Towards A Cashless Society In A Cash-Reliant World. Retrieved from:
  33. Forbes. Moving Towards A Cashless Society In A Cash-Reliant World. Retrieved from:
  34. Forbes. Moving Towards A Cashless Society In A Cash-Reliant World. Retrieved from:
  35. Retrieved from

link title

Personal tools