Payments and the future of mobility


Payments and the future of mobility

How can payment providers create value and seize opportunities

Consumers are used to seamless payments for most daily transactions—and they will expect integrated and secure ways to pay for any trip and service. For payment providers, that means both challenges and opportunities.

Leading retailers and technology companies have set a high bar for the financial services industry to create better experiences and simple, seamless integrations that can make traditional banking, payment, and other related activities easier to accomplish. The advancement of omnichannel commerce and the presence of leading technology companies have specifically driven the industry to become more open and enable improved payments experiences. And payments are already becoming easier: Most commercial websites, browsers, and smartphones can store credit-card information1 and allow instant payments and transfers to merchants or contacts, and the first stores and restaurants are going cashless.

There’s no reason why consumers wouldn’t expect the same or better level of ease and convenience when engaging with the evolving mobility ecosystem that moves them and their goods about. Someone who uses an app to navigate a trip through a bike rental, a taxi ride, a package pickup, and a food delivery3 would expect an integrated, private, and secure way to pay for any trip and service.

With today’s shopping and bill-paying, there’s a great deal going on behind the scenes. A smartphone user might rely on a couple of one-touch payment apps,4 but underneath that clean interface lies a shifting, complex infrastructure of companies that are building a new ecosystem by partnering in new ways.

And the future of mobility is arriving with a whole new set of players and services that are expected to expand that ecosystem further. Most expect transactions in the new mobility ecosystem to be a bundle of services covering one or multiple modes of transportation as well as some ancillary services. Facilitating the flow of payments for such a mobility-as-a-service platform will likely be an important component, which means that, in order to be successful, payment providers would have to find their role in shaping the new mobility ecosystem or could risk losing importance for their current customers.

In this article, we look at how the evolution of mobility is likely to affect payment providers, and what opportunities they have to be successful in this rapidly changing ecosystem. The goal is clear: Payments in the future mobility ecosystem should be transparent, seamless, integrated, and highly convenient.

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