Mobile payments are becoming a common thing in today’s on-the-go economy that is driven by technology.
Major tech companies have been working their way into this field. Google has its own Android Pay, Samsung has Samsung Pay, Alibaba has Alipay, Tencent has WeChat Payment whereas Apple as Apple Pay, just to name but a few. All of these platforms can be used to make payments and purchases using mobile phones.
Developing markets are proving to be a major breeding ground for most of these companies. Apple Pay, for instance, has found it hard to thrive in the American market where usage of mobile payments is not yet rife. However, it is finding it easier to enter markets such as China, Britain and other European regions where mobile payments are a usual thing.
While Apple is taking on China, another major retailing company, Amazon, is focusing its efforts on India. The Asian country has a population of about 1.25 billion people; however, only 12% of this population makes use of the internet. Amazon revealed that more than 50% of its customers use cash when making purchases on the platform – the company wants this to change as soon as possible.
The company wants to get rid of the middle-men that act as payment centers for the retailer as well as pick-up spots for goods bought online.
Amazon announced this week that it will be buying Emvantage, an Indian online payments firm. This move will help the company bring in the mobile phone as it looks to gain more market in developing markets such as India. With this firm, the giant retailer will be better off as far as making online shopping a lot more convenient than it is. No more carrying around cash to use when making purchases on Amazon, instead, users will be able to take advantage of the company’s mobile prepaid wallet to shop from wherever they are and goods shipped to their address of choice.
There are no available details of the deal so far.
Amazon is not the only company targeting India with mobile payments. China’s Alibaba is also hunting for space in this rapidly-developing market. The company has already invested in Paytm, which works no different from PayPal. Apple and Samsung, on the other hand, have been targeting China with their services, both partnering with UnionPay and Apple recently announcing partnerships with several Chinese banks with the aim of rolling out Apple Pay as from February 18.
It is easy to say that Amazon is playing catch up in the mobile payments industry. However, acquisition of Emvantage is a huge step towards gaining ground in the industry. India is the second most populated country in the world and according to recent stats by the World Bank; the country has more mobile phone users than PC users.