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Technology Shapes Today's Payment Landscape

The way we pay for goods and services has seen significant changes and development over the years, from the days of cash only, followed by cheques and then credit and debit cards. These changes have come about with improvements in technology, changes in consumer demands and the need for more secure payment solutions. Today we are spoilt for choice with the options of cash, credit card, EFT and all the other forms of contactless payment currently available to us.

These payment methods have created more unique, convenient and safer shopping experiences for the consumer. Such technological advancements in the way we pay have evolved because of a number of innovations following the magstripe card, amongst which some of the fundamental implementations have been: - EMV chip cards - Contactless payments - Mobile point of sale (POS) - Peer-to-peer (P2P) applications - Biometric payments - QR Code Payments

The way we pay is becoming increasingly more invisible, with technology rapidly advancing the speed, security and enjoyment of spending money. Although card-based payments look to remain with us for much longer than predicted, there are already major developments in the payment industry, with the relatively recent addition of Android payment platforms, mobile wallets and cloud-based services which are continuously evolving to meet customer demand.

It is important to remember, especially in developing countries, that technical infrastructure and the capacity of the e-commerce industry must be considered when technology is being used to create a digital payment model. In saying that, the development of networks which can facilitate safe mobile and biometric payments in rural communities is a game-changer for developing countries which will greatly improve financial inclusion.

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