Today we all live in a world of technology, one where mobile phones make life more convenient, puts information at your fingertips and even lets you pay the bills. Paying for merchandise, food, and any number of things while at the store is a wonderfully convenient way to have all of my credit cards with me, even if they aren’t physically in my pocket.
Personally I use an Android phone, which in turn means I am using Android pay for my mobile payments. Many in the United States use Apple products, so you are familiar with Apple pay. Recently I had to have my Chase Sapphire card reissued, that a story for another day, and I went to add the new card number back into my Android pay wallet. A little surprise was in store for me when I was unable to add my card to Android pay. The error told me that Chase did not participate with Android in this arena.
Looking into this more revealed something interesting. Chase had no plans to add support for Android pay. Well the logical next question is, why? Well it turns out that Chase wants to roll their own application for making mobile payments that they call Chase Pay. Is this a good move or is it a mistake? Personally I think this is a huge mistake on the part of Chase, one that I have seen before from companies.
Trying to do your own thing for whatever the reason is, automatically gives your rivals a leg up on you. Android pay is out now, already supported by Citi, Amex and Bank of America among others. When Chase refuses to use any other payment service while they take time to set up their app due out “sometime in 2016,” that leaves months of a head start for other payment methods. That’s not all that I see wrong with Chase’s method of payment, they are completely changing the way the payment is made as well, relying on QR codes.
Let’s get blunt for a second, QR codes have lots of potential, but have never really caught on with the consumers. Chase wants to use them for scanning purposes. The merchant would scan the QR code, which would then require all of the merchants to have optical scanners… this isn’t the case at many grocery store and mom and pop businesses. Major retailers wouldn’t only need to have optical scanners, but also modify the software of every point of sale machine. If the past breaches have been any indication, it’s a pain to just get these retails to update basic software for security, why would they go out of their way for Chase? Especially when the payment system has yet to prove that anyone wants this.
Chase pay combines less convenience, additional hardware for retailers, and additional software for retailers… all of this while right after many retailers have started to switch to chip readers with NFC capabilities.
My Chase Sapphire card has already taken a back seat only coming out in restaurants now. This gives me even less reason to bank with Chase in the future, not a good move in my opinion.