Mobile payments in Australia: state of the banks

Adam Bender

"Demonstration of the wallet at the Australian Open and the NRL Grand final confirmed customers want a simple to set up, easy to use and secure mobile payments solution," she said.

But ANZ fears the market may not be ready for NFC payments, she said.

"The NFC market is still evolving and has yet to reach a level of maturity that we would feel comfortable to launch a product that would meet our customer expectations and is available to as many customers as possible."

NAB

NAB is working on mobile contactless payments for iOS and Android, but has yet to announce specific details.

"Contactless payments on mobile devices represent an exciting opportunity for NAB to meet our customers' growing and ever-changing needs," an NAB spokesman told us.

"NAB is working towards a secure storage solution for devices so that consumers can shop online or in-store with their iOS (iPhone) or Android devices in a convenient and secure way."

"NAB has long recognised the importance of small business to our business and to the Australian economy — small businesses are the lifeblood of Australian communities. That is why NAB has decided to prioritise its efforts in this area on innovative ways for mobile businesses to accept payments via their smartphone."

Other banks

Smaller banks who have announced mobile payment trials include Bendigo Bank and bankmecu.

Bendigo Bank is trialling a mobile payments service called Redy with two small communities in Victoria. However, rather than NFC, the bank has relied on QR codes for greater universality among devices.

At the same time, bankmecu has an ongoing mobile payments pilot with 100 customers using NFC stickers. In the future, bankmecu would like to enable mobile payments without the tags, using NFC chips embedded in certain smartphones, according to Chris Newey, the bank's general manager of corporate services.

Adam Bender covers telco and enterprise tech issues for Computerworld and is the author of a dystopian novel about surveillance. Follow him on Twitter: @WatchAdam

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