What will the payments industry look like in 2020?

Predicting the future of payments is tough. There have been many articles published to date, most predicting mobiles and other wearables will be the way to pay by 2020. But are they right in saying this?

In an era where things are increasingly digital and changing rapidly, predicting the outlook of payments is challenging.


The payments industry’s rapid evolution


Looking back at predictions made a few years ago about what lay ahead for the payments industry shows that the future never runs as smoothly as what we may expect.

In previous years, the mobile network operators were confident they would dominate mobile payment, but their initiatives met with some failure. But there continues to be emerging predictions that payments will eventually become embedded in mobile apps and all payments will become mobile.

Banks and credit card companies have seen steady progress with contactless card payments, yet they are facing stiff competition from non-bank companies such as Apple, Google, and Amazon.

READ: 5 reasons mobile payments are here to stay


The Internet of Things, biometrics and beyond


It is anticipated there will be huge transformations in payments with the internet of things (IoT), where devices such as smart fridges have sensors and are connected to the internet, which orders food when stocks are low. This could lead to a world of instant payment, a free-spending society with minimal input from the buyer.

It is also anticipated a range of interesting biometric solutions are being developed, such as voice recognition, and MasterCard is introducing the so-called selfie-pay option, where cardholders can use an image of their face for identification, opening up an app on their mobile phone and scanning their face, blinking to ensure they are real people rather than a static image.

It will be fascinating to see how the few years pan out for the payments industry. For simple and secure payment solutions, visit MYOB PayBy.