Android Pay has announced plans to move into mobile banking. The payment platform has confirmed integrations with mobile banking apps in a number of top banks including the Bank of America, mBank, New Zealand Bank, USAA, and Discover. According to a Google blog post, the integration will allow users of mobile banking to enroll their cards into Android Pay using just one tap without having to manually scan and input card information. In addition to this, users in selected banks will be able to make online payments and pay in stores even if they don’t have the Android Pay app. Partnerships with banks are a strategy to help grow and expand Android Pay.
Even though the payment platform came into the market first, it has struggled to expand its user base compared to its competitors. According to a 2017 report, Android Pay only had 25% of the users of Apple Pay and just two-thirds of all Samsung Pay users. The idea of integrating and co-branding with established banks is designed to build trust and scale up adoption of Android Pay by new users who are already using mobile banking. Security has been a major concern with Android Pay. However, there is a lot of confidence that the trust most people already have with their own banking platforms will roll over to Android Pay through these partnerships.
As for the banks, the biggest benefits will be to lure more tech savvy customers into their service. It is now clear that digital banking capabilities like mobile wallets are becoming a priority for people. In fact, there is a significant percentage of customers who have shifted banks due to the promise of better technology and digital banking superiority. Google has said that the partnerships are only a first of many with other banks also expected to join in. Mobile wallets are now a central part in offering a convenient and easy option for people to pay for services online and offline.
Retailers, in particular, have leveraged on mobile wallets very effectively. They are keenly investing on more innovative features including rewards programs, custom marketing initiatives, mobile order-aheads and so much more. This has made mobile wallets in retail companies like Starbucks and Dunkin Donuts leaders in the overall mobile wallets sector. The success of retailer’s mobile wallets has been surprising though, especially compared to universal mobile wallets such as Android Pay, Samsung Pay, and Apple.
You’d expect that because of the universal nature of Android Pay, Apple Pay, and Samsung Pay, they would have an edge over retail-based mobile wallets since they can be used across different stores online to make payments. Experts say that the main reason why retailer mobile wallets have eclipsed universal wallets is simply because of innovative loyalty reward programs for users. As for Android Pay, whether the new partnerships with banks will help increase adoption remains to be seen but there is no doubt that it’s a good step in the right direction.