July 25 – Viewpost, the secure B2B network for invoicing, payments and cash management, released results of its recent survey of American consumers covering the future of payments and key issues around awareness of payment technologies, as well as perceptions about what will be the most popular and useful tools for paying and getting paid in the future. The company surveyed a cross-section of 1,000 U.S.-based consumers, finding that overall, 80 percent of Americans are in support of “futuristic” payments technologies and currencies, including tools like sensor fingerprinting, facial recognition, retinal scanning and voice control, as well as currencies like bitcoin.
Electronic payments have become commonplace today, with nearly 51 percent of people reporting that they are paid electronically via direct deposit, and an increasing comfort level with these paperless transactions appears significant in driving consumers’ interest in even more sophisticated forms of electronic payment. Respondents are unenthusiastic about traditional paper checks, as one-third of them think that paper checks will die within five years, and 83 percent believe they will be completely eliminated within the next 20 years.
Similarly, only 11 percent of Americans think that companies will bill their customers via paper in the future, while over half of Americans (54 percent) believe that companies will bill their customers via automatic payments from their bank account or credit card. A mobile and app-based future is definitely on consumers’ minds, with 52 percent saying they believe that payments between companies and customers will be exchanged via mobile app.
Futuristic currencies and payment technologies – particularly biometrics – are highly anticipated, and Viewpost’s survey data bears this out. Notable findings include:
- Sensor Fingerprinting — 50 percent of Americans believe fingerprint technology will be used for authentication to pay and receive payments over the next 10 years
- Facial Recognition — 35 percent see facial recognition as a key authentication technology for making payments within the next ten years, and 32 percent of Americans trust facial recognition for securing electronic payments
- Retinal Scanning and Voice Control — these advanced biometric methods have gained traction in consumers’ consciousness, with some 31 percent citing retinal scanning as a viable technology for authenticating payments and 18 percent seeing themselves using voice control to make payments by 2027
Consumers are clearly not afraid of new technologies that can make electronic transactions more secure, frictionless and, therefore, simpler. Even previously maligned technologies like bitcoin are seeing acceptance, as some 21 percent of consumers see it as a viable currency within the next 10 years.
“People are willing to embrace a more convenient, frictionless payments future,” commented Viewpost CEO Max Eliscu. “Paper invoicing and checks are well on their way out in the consumer setting, and more businesses across the spectrum are beginning to follow suit with transactions among their trading partners. But electronic invoicing and payments are just the beginning — the future of the payments industry is highly dependent on leveraging innovation like biometrics, data integration, and a growing variety of payment methods to securely drive more volume with visibility, speed and simplicity.”