In Europe, when we talk about mobile payment we immediately think of NFC technology and we picture a smartphone approaching a POS device. That’s because here the majority of businesses that offer contactless payments are based on this technology for the simple reason of not knowing another one, such as mobile payment using QR code, which is the most popular in Asian countries such as China.
Undoubtedly the two technologies have both advantages and disadvantages when it comes to facilitating mobile payments, but the important thing is to know their characteristics to choose the most appropriate method for each occasion. The society and the economy of a country, and, even individual factors such as the type of business and customer, will determine whether it’s more convenient to opt for a NFC or QR mobile payment system.
Mobile payment by NFC
Although not all of them, the majority of Western mobile phones already have Near Field Communication technology integrated. This is not only found on smartphones or only used to pay, but also found and used in everyday events such as signing up at work or entering the subway. To pay we make use of it both with mobile phones and credit and debit cards when we approach them to the POS of the stores and make a contactless payment.
The main problem with NFC technology is that it requires that both devices (transmitter and receiver) have the necessary hardware integrated and this has a high cost. For this reason, not all mobile phones have it, neither is popular in all areas of the world. Thus, the high cost and, consequently, the difficulty of adoption are the main drawbacks of this technology.
Mobile payment by QR
On the other hand, the mobile payment by QR code is in Asian countries, like China, the most used contactless payment system. Unlike in the case of the NFC, the payment system by QR is tremendously economical, since it only requires a printed code and a smartphone with a camera to read it. As it is easy to deduce, this makes it an option much more easily adopted in any country, but especially in those with fewer economic resources.
As an example, our e-wallet technology has been based on the QR system with the intention of facilitating access to it, even in developing countries where we work to achieve the financial inclusion of those sectors with a lower banking penetration rate. Contact us to discover how to market your own e-wallet app with the mobile payment system by QR code.