Mastercard is offering new details on a pilot program aimed at letting merchants accept mobile payments without specialized POS hardware.
The initiative was first announced at the start of summer. It is an app-driven system; a merchant needs only to download a special smartphone app, and can then accept payments through digital wallets like Masterpass, with the merchant’s smartphone essentially transformed into a payment terminal.
Mastercard had indicated that the system would be trialled in the UK and Poland, and it’s now gearing up for the latter project. The first stage will feature the participation of 200 small businesses, with only small purchases supported, capped at the country’s PLN 50 (or $14) limit to contactless payments not requiring a PIN. By the trial’s end, Mastercard expects 500 businesses to have participated.
In a statement announcing the pilot program, Benjamin du Haÿs, the co-founder of the Mobeewave mPayments firm, pointed to the participation of other major companies in the pilot program. “We’re delighted that through our partnership with Mastercard and Samsung, and with the support of OT-Morpho, we will be able to provide our mobile contactless payment acceptance solution in Poland,” he said. The involvement of Samsung could signal that the company’s iris-scanning smartphones will be featured in the trial.
The pilot program will launch in Poland this autumn, and is expected to conclude in the summer of 2018.