I wrote an article on the rise of PayMaya a few weeks back. I noted that PayMaya is becoming popular now because of the abundance of cell phones and the convenience of not having to use cash. They need some more work in my opinion, but they are definitely on the right track.
I forgot if I touched on it or not, but PayMaya seemed to be the only leading cashless pay service with a couple other cashless pay services trailing far behind. This kinda looks like the making of a monopoly, doesn’t it? Well, a couple of companies seem to want to take some of that market that PayMaya is holding.
In my other article, I mentioned WeChat, a social media type app in China that they use for a lot of stuff including messaging, paying for stuff and a lot more. Some of the things I wanted to see PayMaya implement are actually from WeChat. Anyway, WeChat has an app that they introduced to the Philippines recently called WeChat Pay, which is basically the payment aspect of WeChat separated from the social aspect. Because it’s been polished by years of use in other countries, I think it could be a really good offering. The article I read said that it would allow Chinese tourists to pay for stuff easier, which is true and will make a lot of things convenient for them, which should make their trip a more positive experience. Beyond this though, it’s not really clear to me if it would be available for Filipinos or not. I would assume it is and if they get enough merchants to integrate, then it would really be a cool app.
The other company that’s coming into the market (well, they’ve been in the market, but aren’t as strong as PayMaya) is Globe with their GCash service. They now have an app where your phone will just show a QR code and the vendor will scan it to get the payment. It’s kinda the same as WeChat Pay based on pictures of that I’ve seen, which makes me wonder if vendors that support one will automatically support the other, or at least will have an easier time implementing support. The good thing about Globe is, they already have vendors who say they will support it, so later on, maybe more will adopt support for it.
I think this is really good because consumers can choose which app they want to use. I will say though, it seems like PayMaya kinda has the others beat when it comes to support and availability because you can get a card that you can use anywhere, just like a debit card. As far as I know, WeChat Pay and GCash seem to only use the smartphone and QR codes for payments. The more stores that support the QR codes though, the less this will be an issue.
Anyway, just a follow up on cashless payment systems here. Kinda excited to see if these will take off or just fade away. My money is on them staying, especially if the companies behind them improve and expand support.